As social media continues to establish itself as an essential tool in the marketing mix, more and more businesses are moving towards marketing their brand on platforms such as Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, TikTok, and LinkedIn. Hashtags can make all the difference in keeping up with trends, increasing engagement, and standing out in conversations among hundreds of other similar businesses and brands.
According to Forbes, a hashtag is a word or phrase attached to your online content. The infamous pound symbol followed by a word or phrase first appeared in this context in August 2007 on Twitter and began to gain momentum among larger audiences in 2010. Today, this beneficial tool not only acts as a connection between businesses and their target audience but also adds context to social content. Hashtags allow people to find and engage with your business and brand through shared interests and searches on social media platforms. Read on to learn our top tips for utilizing hashtags on your social media platforms.
WHICH PLATFORMS TO UTILIZE HASHTAGS ON
When it comes to increasing engagement, building brand awareness, and helping your target audience find you online through hashtags, the following social media sites are best to use:
The popular photo and video-sharing app Instagram is home to 1.3 billion monthly users and more than 200 million business accounts marketing to consumers. It is one of the leading social media platforms nowadays to use hashtags. However, getting lost within the vast sea of accounts on the popular social media platform can be easy.
According to Hootsuite, users should use three to five hashtags following the caption or in the comments section of posts on Instagram. In addition, if your business has specific branded hashtags, they should also be added to your profile bio, so users are encouraged to use them in their own posts related to your business.
Twitter, the birthplace of hashtags on social media, accounts for more than 300 million monthly active users globally. Today, the platform remains one of the most popular social media channels for hashtag usage.
According to Hootsuite, users should utilize one to two hashtags anywhere in a Tweet. Depending on where you place your hashtag in your Tweet can alter the meaning and emphasis of the hashtag. You can also utilize hashtags when you Retweet, in replies to others, and in your Twitter bio.
TikTok is one of the newest and fastest-growing social media platforms. Allowing users to post short clips across a range of topics, TikTok users can explore everything from educational videos to trending dance and entertainment content.
According to Hootsuite, users should incorporate three to five hashtags in the video description and leave space for them in the captions.
LinkedIn, the world’s largest professional network, is another great platform to utilize hashtags on to increase engagement and awareness of your brand.
According to Hootsuite, users should use one to five hashtags anywhere in posts. In addition, it is vital to use professional hashtags relevant to your business and brand.
As one of the largest and most popular social networks in the world, it is paramount to be part of relevant conversations as a business on Facebook.
According to Hootsuite, users should use two to three hashtags in posts or comments. Hashtags on Facebook help reach niche and specific groups of people by already grouping content by topic or theme.
HOW TO RESEARCH HASHTAGS
When using hashtags on any social media platform to build awareness and increase engagement, the hashtags you use should vary in popularity. For instance, in your posts, you could include one vague hashtag, one of medium usage, and one niche hashtag. Doing so will help reach out to more of your target audience and increase engagement.
Finding a niche or specific hashtags for your business and target audience requires research. According to Hootsuite, there are several ways to research hashtags for your social media platforms.
One way to research hashtags for your social media platforms is to monitor influencers and your competitors. Look at the hashtags they use most often, what posts get the most engagement and what hashtags they use. Also, note how many hashtags they use in each of their posts. Monitoring your competitors’ use of hashtags will help determine what keywords to use.
Another way to research hashtags is to utilize a hashtag tracker. Hashtag trackers, such as RiteTag, help you find hashtags that are not only trending and niche but also related to your posts and captions. RiteTag is perfect for searching for hashtags for Instagram and Twitter. Additionally, you could also search for hashtags on both platforms directly through their search engines.
To discover which hashtags are most popular and effective for your business and brand, you could also utilize a social media listening tool such as Hootsuite. Hootsuite allows you to engage with your target audience and keep track of social activities and trends happening across all of your social channels.
RED FLAGS TO WATCH OUT FOR WHEN USING HASHTAGS
Although Instagram allows users to use up to 30 hashtags in posts, spamming followers with an overwhelming number of hashtags is not always the most effective method to increase engagement and awareness. Here are some things to keep in mind when using hashtags:
HASHTAG TRENDS AND HOW TO SPOT THEM
Trending hashtags are used on millions of posts to boost engagement for those who use them effectively. The best way to understand potential trending hashtags is to conduct research.
On TikTok, trending hashtags change weekly and usually accompany a challenge or trending song. To find these trending hashtags, Vox recommends browsing TikTok’s search page.
Additionally, users can also find trending hashtags on Instagram through the explorer page. According to Brand24, Instagram is one of the best social media platforms for discovering trends. Here are some other ways to find what’s trending on Instagram:
Hashtag use on any social media platform is valuable to increase engagement and brand awareness. For more information on developing a hashtag strategy for a social media campaign, contact us.
By Mikayla Lynne Tuzon