They are all over Facebook, Instagram, Twitter – people even use them in conversation! – but what is a hashtag? What’s the point?
This blog is stuffed with helpful info on the mysterious hashtag; how to use them, how to find your hashtags, business hashtagging ideas and some extra tips and tricks – enjoy!
What is a hashtag?
Essentially, a #hashtag is a way for the internet and social media channels to organize relevant information together, and make it easily searchable – and this helps your content get discovered! Whatever image or post you choose to tag with a hashtag will then be able to be found by people searching that tag.
There are many ways you as a business can use them to help you with marketing and reaching your target audience – here are a few to get you started.
If you are running a competition you can create a very specific hashtag like #HatsOff2Win, for people to use to enter. This way no one else but the people you want to track will be using it. You are then able to search the tag yourself and look through all the entries to select the winner. This means you don’t have to scroll through your page or have people send you images or details– they are already complied under this tag.
Businesses can use them to make it easy for their audience to follow a project or campaign they are running. For example, if you are a landscaper, you can tag all the images you post throughout a design and build by tagging them with #PerthCityProject1. Then someone can search that tag and see only the project they are interested in looking at. You can even include that hashtag in your marketing – search #PerthCityProject1 to see our latest build! – as a way of sending people to images which showcase a particular project, instead of telling them to scroll through your full FB page.
A major way to find your audience is through using relevant tags on images and posts – especially on Instagram. People use them to scroll through what they are interested in, so include a few tags which might catch a new follower, instead of just a few business-related tags which will always reach the same audience. Especially useful if you are a foodie business, people now use tag like #recipeideas to look for new meals on social channels, instead of just googling it – so try think outside the box!
Tips and tricks.
- You can use up to 30 tags in Instagram, and research shows that images with 11 or more images get the most reach.
- Posting the majority of your tags as the first comment on your image, instead of in the post itself, keeps your post looking clean and easier to read.
- Try not to just use common tags like #summer and #nature, but search for more industry-relevant tags and local tags like #landscapingperth.
- Pick a tag for just your business like #HatsOffCopywriting or #HatsOffWordNerds and include in in every post, and ask your clients to tag you using them – for example, a post with their laptop open to their new website with “Thanks #HatsOffCopywriting for our sparkly new website content!”
- BE RELEVANT! Remember, people are searching specific words for a reason. If they search #Perthfashion and find your computing company, you won’t just annoy them, but will cause a loss of trust in your businesses reputation – as you are clearly just trying to get seen, not be useful.
How to find your hashtags.
The easiest way is to brainstorm a few keywords for your industry, think about the questions below, and then search them one by one on Instagram to see which are being used. Some might not get used as much, but the people searching them will definitely be your target market, so they are just as (if not more) important.
Go to Search in your Instagram, then select Tags. This will show you how many tags already exist for the word you are using – the more tags, the more often it’s used and the bigger following it has.
Location – where are your target audience? You’ll want to include local words or tags, for example, a widely-used Perth hashtag is #Perthisok. Have a look at your local tourist companies Instagram, or your local city, and see what they are using and if any will be relevant to you.
Industry – What are the top-selling or searched products or services in your industry? It’s almost the same as looking for keywords for your website content or marketing – what are people wanting to buy or see from your industry?
Competitors – This is an easy way to quickly collect relevant tags. Just find the top 10 people in your industry and see what they are using!
Buzz Words. There are always buzz words in every industry, and if you are in the succulent business at the moment you will have loads to choose from; #succulentlove #succulentaddict and so on. You can use the day of the week like #Mondaymotivation, #Fridayfeels, or whatever is in your image, #coffeetime, #workmode. Instagram also suggests tags for you once you put in the relevant word – just scroll down to pick one.
An important thing to note is to use variation. Don’t just copy and paste the same 30 tags on every image – you want to reach new people with every post. A good idea is to choose around 10-15 tags which are the mst relevant and important to your business, and try keep the other 15 fresh with each image.
We could go on, but that might be enough for now!
In short – using hashtags strategically can help you grow your business by exposing you to a variety of audiences, attracting new followers, and increasing engagement with your brand.
#socialmediatips #happythursday #getcreating #timetobrainstorm #copywriting