Sometimes seeing certain hashtags on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook makes me wonder if people know the purpose of hashtags. Social media allows us to connect with others who are talking about similar interests and join together in one conversation. When there’s a hashtag that takes up more than one line, that’s probably your first clue.
Let’s clarify, hashtags are used to connect with others sharing your same interests or discussing relevant topics. For example, when watching your favorite show, you may see your show’s hashtag trending on Twitter. You can click the hashtag and see what everyone else is saying about the show, and you can join in on the conversations. Hashtags also help others discover you when they click on a relevant hashtag.
Using hashtags that no one will ever use is a complete waste of a hashtag, like #mysistertaylorisamazingthankyouforthegiftiloveit. What? Hashtags are short and to the point, never full sentences. Also, that hashtag will probably never be used again. When choosing a hashtag, think about why you are using it. You can also test out a hashtag by searching to see who else is using that same hashtag.
Using hashtags at events is one of my favorite things to do, especially at weddings. When everyone uses the same hashtag at an event, like #hardywedding2012, the bride and groom can actually find all of the photos after their big day. They will probably never see your photo tagged #wedding #icantbelievetheyarefinallymarriedcongratsguys (seriously, these are hashtags I have seen). Use relevant hashtags that other people are using so they can find your pictures.
Another hashtag don’t is turning every other word into a hashtag. For example, this is the #best #party I #love my #friends. Less is more in this case, use valuable hashtags that will help you connect with others who attended the same party.
Finally, use relevant hashtags in your posts. If you are talking about Apple releasing a new product, you probably don’t need to include a hashtag mentioning Nordstrom’s semiannual sale. This may seem like common sense, but it does happen. Pay attention to the hashtags that are trending. Often trending hashtags are associated with specific campaigns, events or shows. So if you use a hashtag talking about #sochifails and you’re really just talking about slipping in the hall at work, the correct hashtag you are looking for is probably #epicfail.
If you have any questions about your social media or how to properly use hashtags for your brand, contact us today.
-Makenzie Hardy, Social Media Coordinator