Hashtags became an established marketing tool, as both people and brands from all over the world are currently using hashtags to get access to various benefits.
It first started in August 2007, when Chris Messina posted the first hashtag on Twitter ( #barcamp, with the purpose of gathering online exchanges and relevant discussions regarding Barcamp, a technology-themed gathering that is being hosted every year.
By 2013, studies show that 75% of social media users were already used to using hashtags on a regular basis. Quite a momentum, right? As you’re reading this, it’s safe to assume that most of the social media users understand and value of hashtags, especially brands of all types and sizes.
Why Are Hashtags Important for Businesses?
Hashtags provide significant benefits for businesses that know how to smartly use them. A great hashtag marketing campaign can dramatically influence a brand’s reach, thus affecting its popularity in a positive way.
Here are the most important benefits of hashtags:
- Hashtags can help your brand become viral. There are many brands who have created big buzzes with viral hashtags, gaining a massive number of followers (e.g. #IceBucketChallenge, #ShareACoke, #GotMilk?)
- Hashtags help you increase your content’s reach, thus positively impacting your brand’s awareness
- By leveraging a properly branded hashtag, you can differentiate your business and leave a mark that puts you in a unique light (unique value proposition as a tagline)
- Hashtags are a great segmentation tool, which allows your diversified efforts to be categorized and well-aligned
- You can use hashtags to track your campaign’s performance and engagement
- Hashtags help you reach out to users that share the same interests (targeted traffic)
- Hashtags are a type of searching, which many people prefer nowadays. Instead of searching on Google, people prefer searching for hashtags using the social channels’ search features
- Lastly, yet very importantly, hashtags are a source of free traffic that can be exploited using the right techniques. As you keep reading, you’ll find out some of our key tips to capture the entire potential of your hashtags’ use
Most of these benefits are directly or indirectly linked to your brand’s popularity. A popular brand is a known brand. A known brand is defined by the number of traffic it gets in the first place. The popularity comes after.
Therefore, improving your popularity is about two things:
One, you need to drive a lot of traffic to your brand’s website, offers, and value propositions.
Second, you need to provide real value for your visitors. If you ask for their attention, make sure you serve them well, giving them useful information or great proposals. Lastly, offer them your full attention. Provide customer service, money-back guarantee, free shipping, or whatever would make you look generous and thankful at the same time.
Make people fall in love with your brand’s personality, and let hashtags support your attempt by symbolizing your brand’s culture and mission through various keywords. For example, Nike is all about action. Therefore, their #JustDoIt hashtag is triggering an emotional response that calls for action – exactly what their brand is trying to sell.” – Joseph McKinley, CEO at Essay Writer Australia.
5 Key Tips to Improve Your Hashtags Use
Now, let’s tap into a few more tips that’ll help you improve your hashtag campaigns and use overall. Pay attention and apply.
1. Keep Your Hashtags Unique, Memorable, and Relevant
Unique means that you shouldn’t pick #JustDoIt as your brand’s motto, as that is already taken. Choose something unique only to you and find a branded hashtag that represents your brand’s culture and values.
As for regular hashtags, also keep them unique, memorable, and relevant. That’s one way of saying – make them impactful to your target audience.
2. Keep them Short and Specific
Short and specific is also key. Long hashtags are not as memorable and impactful as the short and specific ones, so keep that in mind whenever posting.
3. Use Hashtags on More Social Networks
You shouldn’t limit your hashtags use to only one social network. You can use them on more platforms and reach audiences who are only separated by the network, not by their interests or passions. Therefore, taking leverage of more platforms will equal more traffic, which can lead to improved reputation and popularity.
4. Post the Right Hashtags for the Right People
It’s important to know your target audience before engaging in any type of marketing campaign. When it comes to hashtags marketing, having specific target personas in mind will be a useful factor, one that’ll always improve your end results.
5. Study, Measure, and Optimize Your Hashtag Campaigns
Hashtags are measurable and they can represent a great feedback tool for your strategy and actions. You can use hashtag analytics tools to measure and optimize your hashtagging posting frequency, your hashtagging choices (the keywords), and more metrics. It’s important to test until you figure out what works and what doesn’t. Practice and you’ll attain mastery!
Improving your hashtagging game will definitely help your brand gain new heights in less than a year. The speed of your growth is influenced by many factors, especially your ability to adapt and to remain consistent.
As the last tip suggested, test, measure, and optimize your campaigns. That’s the rule – keep improving your actions and you’ll keep improving your results. Along with the results, your popularity will also flourish.
Lauren Adley is a college paper writer and editor at Custom Essay, Pro Essay Writing, and Best Dissertation Service. She is dedicated to her family, work and friends. She is keen on reading, playing the guitar and traveling. She is interested in educational, marketing and blogging issues. Feel free to connect with her on Twitter and Google+.