Knowing about hashtags and actually how to use them are 2 different things. As a user of hashtags, you are categorizing your tweets and making them easy to find. When they’re used incorrectly then your followers are looking for new content they have to wade through the irrelevant information.
On Twitter, when you use use hashtags incorrectly they have a negative impact on you. But, when they are used on Instagram they have the opposite effect, ie the more hashtags the more engagement you see. That means that you have to know what you’re doing when you use hashtags.
What is a Hashtag?
# is used to focus on a keyword in your post so it can be indexed on the social network and found by other users.. When it picks up speed it becomes trending on Twitter. Trending doesn’t mean most popular because each user’s trending is unique to them, their social connections, and their interests. These rules mean the same across all networks although each social network works off their own rules and algorithms.
Where Did Hashtags Come From?
Hashtags were first used in 2007 but it took awhile for them to catch on. Now hashtags are indispensable and will be around for decades to come.
How to Use Hashtags
Here’s some trivia information you may be interested in—the word hashtag was added to the Oxford Dictionary in 2010 and to the Scrabble dictionary in 2014. According to RadiumOne, a social media agency, 75% of social media users use hashtags, even though only a few are using hashtags correctly.
When using a hashtag in a social media post all you have to do is add the sign # to a single word or phrase with no punctuation. You can include numbers with your hashtags. There are some things you should know to get the most out of your hashtags:
- When using hashtags for their intended purpose you shouldn’t string don’t string too many words together
- In a public account, whenever someone uses that hashtag to do was a search they will come across your post.
- don’t use # to spam, using them with every word, or adding them to a single post
- your best bet is to use a # only on a tweet that is relevant. It won’t do you any favors to use it when it is not relevant to your topic and people will be annoyed
The following are some examples of how to use hashtags
- events are conferences(# World Cup)
- holidays are celebrations(# St. Patrick’s Day)
- popular hashtags for days of the week(#TBT)
- general interest topics(# blogging)
Building a Hashtag Strategy
When using hashtags you should use them in a way that you can best reach your targeted audience and engage with them. Another way to use hashtags is to brand them for your brand. The hashtag doesn’t have to be your brand but it does have to relate to your brand so that they are connected.
You can also create hashtags that relate to advertising and a specific campaign. it can be to a specific product such issues, accessories, etc. You can also trademark your brand and hashtag. You want to be as specific as possible when using hashtags. when you are creating your own hashtags you need to be very conscious of your spelling–just by capitalizing the first letter of each word.
Using Hashtags on Specific Social Media Platforms
Twitter Hashtags–on Twitter hashtags are used to join in conversations and you’ll be found when someone uses that hashtag. On this platform suites generate a high engagement and drop when you use more than one hashtag. to find hashtags on Twitter all you have to do is use the search bar.
Instagram hashtags–when you use a hashtag on Instagram it collates all the pictures that of similar into one stream. when a hashtag is used on Instagram, it’s used to find content and build new followers. this exposes you to a wider audience by 12.6%. There are many studies available of how hashtags have been used on Instagram, but the results vary so there’s no definitive conclusion.
Facebook Hashtags–Since accounts on Facebook are private using hashtags doesn’t mean the public will find your content. To find hashtags on Facebook you should:
- Find the content by clicking the hashtag
- They weren’t always recognized on Facebook although they now are and you can find them through the search bar.
LinkedIn Hashtags–they are only now starting to recognize hashtags and they only work on mobile phones
Tumblr Hashtags–On Tumblr, they ask you for tags and they create hashtags from those tags by automatically place a # in front of it
Pinterest Hashtags–Hashtags on Pinterest are only clickable when you click on a pin description. You can’t use them to search for anything and the only way to search for anything is to use the keyword
YouTube Hashtags–hashtags are mainly used in the comment section, which can then link you to a page with videos that contain the hashtag in the titles. Hashtags are not widely adopted to this platform so you should always use keywords.