Hashtags are important discoverability metrics. Whether it is branded hashtags such as Lays’ #DoUsAFlavor or a simple category/niche hashtag like #travel, using these can help you get more people to see your content. The more people see your content, the better the engagement rates.
You may already be using hashtags but are you doing it right?
Your hashtags as well as how you use them can play an important role in making or breaking your game. If you are using too many hashtags, for instance, it may end up causing your posts to be spammy. You can avoid this from happening by following a well-informed hashtag strategy.
But first, let’s quickly take you through a sum-up on what hashtags are and how they can be helpful for your brand.
What Are Hashtags?
Hashtags are words, terms or phrases that are used with the sign ‘#’. When you use hashtags in your social media posts, these posts automatically get indexed in a stock of all the other posts using that hashtag.
Hashtags work like links to all the posts that use the same hashtag. But mind you, every social media platform follows a different algorithm in the way the posts with these hashtags appear on the feed.
Using hashtags can help you in many ways. Let’s look at the different ways hashtags can help your brand.
How Hashtags Are Helpful For Your Brand
Increase Brand Awareness
Since hashtags are essentially discoverability metrics, using hashtags with your posts can help you get more and more people to see your content. Using a particular hashtag in your posts automatically puts your post in a group of all posts using that hashtag.
So, for instance, you used the hashtag, #streetfashion in your social media post. You will find your post amongst all the posts using that hashtag. So, every person that looks up that hashtag will see your content.
In this sense, hashtag usage can actually increase the number of people actually looking at your content.
Encourage Branded Content
You can use hashtags to create branded content. You can generate hashtag campaigns around your brand.
In fact, there are many examples of brands creating hashtag-based user-generated content across social media platforms. Users post content featuring your brand and/or products, with the branded hashtag you generated. You too can create a branded hashtag and get users to put out content featuring your brand and/or products.
This will eventually help you increase brand visibility and enhance engagement for your brand.
Capture Audience Sentiment
Hashtags can help you figure out audience sentiment. Using a social listening tool, such as Unbox Social, you can find out what kind of conversations is your audience having around a hashtag. Using the information and insights you derive, you can modify your campaigns as well as social media strategy to your advantage.
Now that you know how hashtags can help you enhance your brand strategy, you need to learn how to use these across social platforms. For every platform, you need to follow a different hashtag strategy.
Twitter was the first social media platform where brands started using hashtags. Let’s begin with learning how to use hashtags on Twitter.
How To Use Twitter Hashtags
On Twitter, hashtags help users lead to tweets featuring the same hashtag. There is a section on Twitter which allows you to look up the top posts around a specific hashtag. So, you have to be smart with what kind of hashtag (s) you are using with your tweets.
Do thorough research on what kind of keywords represent your brand and what are the trending hashtags on the platform. Accordingly, build a strategy on which hashtags you will use with your tweets.
According to statistics, using at least 1-2 hashtags tends to help you generate 21% more engagement. Going beyond, to 3 and more hashtags tends to reduce your engagement levels by about 17%.
Stick with 1-2 hashtags for your tweets and use hashtags that are trending, yet align with your message.
How To Use Instagram Hashtags
You can use hashtags on posts, stories as well as your IGTV video. Tapping on a hashtag will lead you to all the pasts featuring that hashtags, bifurcated into top posts and recent posts. On Instagram, users also have the option of following a hashtag.
When it comes to hashtag usage on Instagram, the platform allows you to use no more than 30 hashtags in total, for a post. This includes the hashtags used in a comment. While 30 is the maximum number of hashtags you can use on Instagram, it is recommended to go with 9-15 hashtags.
Use hashtags that are relevant to your brand and niche. A mix of general hashtags and more specific hashtags related to your brand can help you gain traction for your brand.
How To Use Facebook Hashtags
On Facebook, only 28% of accounts are public. However, from the brand point of view, hashtags continue to be an important discoverability metric you can’t overlook.
It is recommended to use no more than 1-2 hashtags on the platform. It is also important to remember that hashtags with more than 10 characters tend to receive better engagement on the platform.
How To Use YouTube Hashtags
YouTube allows you to add hashtags to the video title or description. You should stick to using no more than 10-15 hashtags as it can lead to your content looking spammy.
It has been found that hashtags are most frequently used in the comments section.
Many brands are creating branded hashtags on YouTube as well. You too can create a catchy branded hashtag for your videos. By simply clicking on that hashtag, your audience can find all the videos queued up, featuring the hashtag.
Quick Tips To Keep In Mind While Using Hashtags
- Do not leave any space between words in a hashtag. So instead of using #Indian Food, the right way to use hashtags is this- #IndianFood
- Avoid using too many words in a single hashtag. Don’t go on to create full sentences with a single hashtag.
- Avoid over-stuffing your captions with hashtags, as it can lead your content to be marked as spam.
- Use the right mix of generic and specific hashtags with your captions.
- Create branded hashtags to enhance brand awareness.
SUMMING IT UP
Hashtags make for an integral part of your content marketing strategy. You need to follow a different hashtag strategy for every platform. Make the most of hashtags on every platform by following these tips-
- Use no more than 1-2 hashtags with your tweets
- On Instagram, stick to using no more than 9-15 hashtags
- Use 1-2 hashtags on Facebook posts
- On YouTube, use 10-15 hashtags