Hashtags are your Best Friends, and Here’s Why
It isn’t enough anymore to simply make yourself a presence on social media sites. Everyone has a presence these days, so you have to do what you can to stick out. This means generating quality content, interacting with your followers, and of course using hashtags to direct traffic to your company.
[dropcap]1.[/dropcap] What are hashtags?
Hashtags are sorters, searchers, and guides for people to travel the millions of tweets and messages posted every day to find what interests them, which means that if you work them to your advantage you can lead people to your company. A hashtag designates a search category and associates a hashtagged post with that category. So, if you’re a content marketing company with a focus on SEO optimization in a B2B setting, adding ‘#contentmarketing’, ‘#SEO’, and ‘#B2B’ to a post will bring it up when those keywords are entered into a search bar. It’s a great way to lead traffic to your site.
[dropcap]2.[/dropcap] Where can you use hashtags?
Twitter first broke through the wall with their hashtags to make them popular, but other social networks have adopted them too. When creating social media posts (especially on Twitter), adding a hashtag before several keywords within the post will increase your views immensely.
[dropcap]3.[/dropcap] How much is too much?
While hashtags are great for content marketing, they also come with the stigma of being associated with squealing high-schoolers texting nonsense about the latest whatever. That’s why overusing hashtags within any one post will make you seem immature, unprofessional, and overall unappealing to whoever is reading your tweets.
[dropcap]4.[/dropcap] What should be hashtagged?
The key to successful hashtag use is keywords. Tweets are short and to the point and hashtags have to follow along with that in mind. If you come across a post like “Smartwatches are the hot new technology this year” you can bet that the there’ll be a hashtag before ‘smartwatches’ and not before ‘technology’. It’s about being specific, not vague.
[dropcap]5.[/dropcap] But I’m not the only one hashtagging…
True, this is one of the hurdles of associating yourself with a category: there are others in there, too. But how do you set yourself apart? If you have interesting content to back up those hashtags then you’ll at least get a few people reacting to your tweets, but to keep that number up you’re going to want to interact with those people. Thank them personally, mention them use the ‘@’ key (another indicator like that hashtag that connects specific people to your tweet instead of topics), and chat them up in exchange. People like people who talk back, otherwise you might as well be waving at a brick wall.
[dropcap]6.[/dropcap] It’s a group effort
Hashtagging isn’t the cure-all for your lead generating woes. It’s a just a part of the total group effort and it should tie in with the rest of your strategies, just like your other strategies should tie in with your hashtags. Promote contests, giveaways, exclusive news and other such perks in the tweet you hashtag, and get some photos and videos up there, too. The world is more colorful with more colors, after all. This will all work to get more people interested in what you’ve got going on.
[dropcap]7.[/dropcap] More than just people pulling
Hashtags get you numbers, too. And we don’t just mean people coming to your site (though it certainly does do that). It gets you metrics, and plenty of them. These metrics, which you can get by using certain analytical tools, tell you when activity was highest, how much traffic your tweet saw at that time, and certain characteristics of those people who visited. You can use all of this to your advantage, especially when planning your next tweet.
Hashtags direct traffic to you. Throughout all those social media sites, a hashtag is what will make you, your brand, and your posts stick out from the rest, and that’s a huge advantage when compared to the people who aren’t doing the same.