If you work in marketing, hashtags are probably very familiar to you, but do you know how to use them strategically?
Over the years, hashtags have become a powerful tool for anything from expanding the reach of your content to improving your SEO and amplifying your brand.
Hashtags were first introduced in Internet Relay Chats, the first internet-based chat systems that allowed more than two participants to communicate online. Later, they became popular on Twitter before expanding out to other platforms such as LinkedIn and Instagram but the question is – what are the different categories of hashtags and how can you use them to your business’ advantage?
If you haven’t already, create your own brand hashtag. It’s worth making it unique to your company (for obvious reasons) and you should also keep it quite short, so it is memorable and easy to spell. Brand hashtags are useful because they allow a business to gain real time feedback from their consumers and can encourage them to engage as they enjoy feeling part of a community.
Example: KitKat uses #HaveABreak consistently across all its social media channels, to engage with its community.
You have a current marketing campaign you’d love people to engage, right? A campaign hashtag is a great way to bring your supporters together, but don’t forget to do your research – if your hashtag is already very popular it would be beneficial to use a different one. Whether your campaign is for a worldwide event or a seasonal offer, your audience will be able to engage with you and your other throughout the duration.
Example: Coca Cola uses #ShareACoke as its campaign hashtag; pairing a personalised touch with a desire to be part of a community makes this campaign successful.
A trending hashtag refers to one which has become very popular; you’ve probably seen the ‘trending tags’ side bar on Twitter? If a hashtag that is relevant to your business, whether topically or geographically, appears in the trending section, use it! If you utilise the benefits of these hashtags, you can place your content in feeds where it would not usually be seen AND engage with an existing industry community – result!
Example: A great example of a trending hashtag is seasonal; #Halloween2018 trended this year with everything from dressed-up business teams to beautifully carved pumpkins!
This type of hashtag is not branded and not necessarily popular, but is just related to the content within your post. Content hashtags tend to be popular for businesses wishing to improve the SEO of their posts, they will get your updates seen by consumers who are searching for, or using, those specific words.
Example: Beauty brands tend to use #beauty and #beautyblogger to get their posts noticed in the most commonly viewed feeds by their target audience.