We’ve seen them on our social feeds – hashtags – but do you know exactly what they are, how they work, and why you should include them on your social media posts? If not, then read on!
What is a hashtag (#)?
A hashtag is a keyword or phrase with the hash symbol (#) in front of it. The hashtags shouldn’t include any spaces or punctuation and can be placed anywhere throughout your post. They are a great way to connect social media content to a specific topic.
They were initially used on Twitter only but have now become much more common on other social media platforms including Instagram, Facebook, and LinkedIn.
If used the right way, hashtags could help you to expand your brand awareness, promote your business and its services, by boosting your views, likes, and shares and it costs you absolutely nothing to implement on your social media posts.
It’s also a great way to direct traffic to your website.
Why should you use them?
By adding hashtags to your posts, you could become more accessible to others (who don’t follow you on social media) who are interested in a specific topic.
For example, if you added the hashtag #financialgoals or #retirementplanning to your post, someone would search that hashtag and your post would appear. Clearly, you’ll always have a little competition, with other posts appearing under the same hashtag but you’ll still be helping people interested in what you are posting to locate your content. It’s better to have some sort of footprint on social media, than nothing at all.
How should you use them?
For your hashtags to work to your advantage, they should relate directly to your post. This increases your chances of reaching a broader audience who may not follow you on social media.
It could also encourage more interaction on your social pages; people could share your content with friends or colleagues if it is relevant.
Here are a few tips to make the most of hashtags in your social posts:
- Include no more than three hashtags in one post
- Keep them short and easy to remember
- Grouping them at the end of your post is better
- You don’t need to use them in every post, only use them when they will add value
There are no specific rules around using hashtags, you can add as many as you like, and there are no limits to the number you can add to a post but, to achieve the right results, it’s better to be specific.
Where to start?
To get started, have a quick look what your industry peers are doing (If they are doing anything at all! You might even get ahead of the game!)
Don’t agonise too much over what words to use as hashtags. You’ll soon get a sense of what is most effective and there is no “wrong” way to do it.
Whether you’re new to hashtags or you’re a little more advanced and have used them in the past, they can become a very powerful marketing tool if used correctly.
If you’re interested in finding out more about using social media as part of your marketing strategy, call us today.