Do you know the word “hashtag” has been officially inducted in the English dictionary? Hashtags are now used on most social media platforms such as Twitter, Instagram and even, on Facebook they are becoming popular.
Twitter is a bit more business friendly then Facebook, and thus knowing how to use hashtags correctly is vital for every business. Let’s get to know them…
What Is it?
Putting it in simple words, a hashtag is a keyword or a phrase (without space) and that has a hash sign “#” with it. For example – #Internetmarketing #socialmedia #icebucketchallenge
What Does it Do?
People use hashtags to make their content more searchable.
Hashtags allows your content to be a part of something huge that is already trending. For example, if your your tweets use that particular hashtag that is popular then your content is bound to get noticed. As a result, you are likely to get more likes, shares, followers and ultimately more people clicking to get on your website.
So, no matter if they’re following you or not, if someone searches a particular hashtag, your content will pop up amongst the list.
When large numbers of users start using the same hashtag it starts showing up as a top trend.
Trending topics are usually the result of some major event happening in the world. Breaking news, somebody famous like Lady Gaga receiving an award, a political scandal somewhere, a natural disaster – whatever else is huge at that moment.
Hashtags can be very useful for your business. They can help you gain popularity and reach a wider circle of people.
What Are the Best Practices?
1. Make sure that it’s original
If you want to start a fresh conversation, commonly known as a Twitter chat, you can do a simple Twitter Search and make sure that your hashtag has never been used before.
If it has been used before you can still use it, just make sure that it’s not something famous. This is because you only want your target audience to be tweeting and seeing the trend.
2. Keep it short
#Nobodywillbeinterestedinthishashtag … Here it is important to keep in mind that Twitter only allows 280 letters to be expressive. Longer hashtags means that you have less space for your content and link.
So, keep it nice and short.
Also, a short hashtag will make life easier for your audience because they are easy to remember.
3. Industry keywords
There are tools like Hashtagify that allow you to search for industry specific keywords. You can then select the best keywords from the list and use them with your content on Twitter.
Here it is important to understand that you must not overdo hashtags. Although there is no limit set by Twitter using too many hashtags in your post makes you look like a spammer. As a standard, use 3 or less hashtags per post.
4. Don’t be a hijacker
Using someone else’s hashtag(s) with an aim to promote your business is unethical. It’s basically profiting from other people’s hard work. Twitter won’t ban you from doing that, but it is not a good business practice. It may give you that temporary push, but in the longer run your business is likely to suffer. Remember BE ORIGINAL!
Experts recommend having at least one hashtag per tweet. Twitter hashtags also increase the likelihood of your content to be discovered online, which can bring more traffic to your website, and increase your followers. Last but not the least, it is important to be polite on Twitter and follow good social etiquette.