Hashtags are ubiquitous across social media. Yet despite their prevalence, many users just place a “#” sign in front of a few words (or too many words) and call it a day. Even more, these hashtags might have little to no relevance to the main message. That’s not effective; and quite frankly, it’s annoying.
Just like choosing the right word, it’s important to handle hashtags with care. How you use them can mean the difference between a good social media post and one that gets ignored. When used properly, hashtags can bolster social efforts—driving greater awareness and engagements. So how exactly do you pick or create an impactful hashtag that will support a social media program? That’s what this blog post dives into…but first, a few things to think about.
First, consider your audience. What hashtags are members using? Is the hashtag relevant to your audience? Will the hashtag be used to build brand awareness?
Once you’ve answered these questions, here are five tips to help ensure your chosen hashtag is successful.
Choose your hashtag wisely
Picking a hashtag can sometimes be difficult. One thing to keep in mind is how a hashtag is used elsewhere. Be sure that ones you’re considering are being used in the right context. If they’re not, your message will be mixed in with a pool of others that could have little relation.
Make sure they’re relevant
Hashtags can be tied to relevant or trending topics, making them valuable for jumping into the larger conversation. But before using any you come across, consider your key message. A hashtag should be relevant and support what your brand does.
Keep it short and sweet
Long hashtags are not effective. First, no one wants to spend time deciphering what they mean. And second, users will be reluctant to search it if they have to type a lot of characters. Either keep them short, or break it into separate hashtags.
Always, always, always spellcheck! There’s a huge difference between “#startup” and “#startip.” “#Startup” will link to posts about new businesses, while “#startip” will bring up random tips.
Each week I create social content for my clients. And each week, I refer back to the website above. Hashtagify.me enables you to investigate a specific hashtag, and it tells you its relevance to other topics. It also ranks its popularity so you can reach the largest possible audience using it.
Now, here’s a little hashtag humor that has a mix of effective hashtags and annoying ones. Happy hashtagging!