Your Ultimate Guide To Using Hashtags For Marketing

If you’re a digital marketer, you must be familiar with the hashtags being in use since a long time now. Hashtags, nowadays, are a crucial element in online marketing efforts where a user wish to increase his visibility.Being a label for a type of content, hashtags help users around the world discover content quickly.

It’s rare to find someone who actually know the proper utilization of hashtags. They came into being on Twitter but they could be found everywhere now. The truth is that not everyone uses them appropriately. In fact, some people even use irrelevant hashtags to make their post visible. And this is not a correct method.

So, let me walk you through on how to judge which hashtag is perfect for your business and its optimum usage.

Analysis of Hashtags

Depending upon the nature of your business, you choose a hashtag to interact with your audience. Let us assume that you own a cosmetic brand and you want to make your products discoverable on social media.

To see what hashtag would help you, you can use a tool, for example Hashtagify, to get some trending relevant hashtags around your product. Here’s an example:

Now that you’ve got a couple of relevant trending words, check how much popular they are by searching them on another tool RiteTag. Let’s check #makeup first:

Now let’s check the detailed stats of the same:

So, these stats shows us if it will be useful for us to use the #makeup or not. Let’s take another hashtag and check the stats. I picked up #beauty to see how popular it is and found these results:

Comparing both the results, you can clearly see that #beauty is more popular than #makeup. But that doesn’t mean you should use #beauty and ignore #makeup. #beauty is a general word which could be associated with anything. On the other hand, #makeup is directly related to cosmetics.

When you have so many hashtags available, utilise them well and experiment with them from time to time. #makeup maybe all time popular but keeping an eye on changing trends is beneficial. For example, you must have seen young women uploading their pictures with pretty makeup on. Notice that they use #motd when they upload their pictures. That stands for ‘Makeup Of The Day’.

This tag was nowhere visible in the analysis but people are still using it. So, you can draw a conclusion here that you need to keep an eye on what people are using on social media apart from using tools to analyse hashtags.

Incorporating Hashtags in your marketing strategy

Hashtags are really helpful in building a brand image and in a marketing campaign. There’s a difference between brand hashtag and campaign hashtag. Think of a unique hashtag that people would associate with your brand. For example, KitKat uses #HaveABreak and it is extremely popular. Whenever you listen to #HaveABreak, you recall KitKat. This is the power of Brand Hashtag.

Campaign Hashtags are those which you use when you’re running a marketing campaign on social media. These could be already trending hashtags or a new hashtag made by you to promote your product. For example, you’ve launched a new range of skin care products. You can use an all time popular hashtag #skincare or make a new of your own. This category of hashtag is temporary, till your marketing campaign is running.

Brand hashtags stay with your brand until the end while campaign hashtags exist till you’re running an online campaign.

Now that you've decided upon the hashtags to use in your marketing strategy, let’s put them to use. Before starting with your campaign, you must have planned out all your activities in a calendar. Now, put different hashtags on different days and use them in a tweet or status. Here, you can even use relevant pictures along with your tweet or status. A post with an image reaches to more people as compared to a post with just text.

Now, let’s see how we can use hashtags effectively:

  • Be specific and use relevant hashtags. If you want genuine users to follow you, stick to using only those hashtags which are related to your brand. Using irrelevant hashtags to increase visibility is spamming. Don’t go overboard and spam!
  • Limit the use of hashtags on different social media platforms. Don’t use more than 2 hashtags on Twitter. There’s no character limit for Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn and other platforms but try to keep them minimum to increase readability. Spare your readers and don’t put ‘#’ before every word. 2-3 hashtags on Facebook and Instagram are perfectly fine. Also, don’t keep hashtags more than the words.
  • Create some unusual and catchy hashtags. For example, while launching a new flavour, Frito Lays used a new hashtag #DoUsAFlavour. Along with this, they had put up a contest to guess the new flavour. Focus on creating something engaging so that people genuinely interact with you on social media.
  • Keep the hashtags short and simple. Don’t just stuff a whole line in a hashtag. For example, if you’re posting something related to Breaking Bad, a simple #BreakingBad would do instead of quoting a dialogue.
  • Keep an eye on trending hashtags. If you find something related to your brand, share something using that hashtag. Have a look at how Oreo cleverly used an irrelevant hashtag and aced it:
  • You can use niche hashtags like #MondayMotivation and #ThrowbackThursday too. People use them regularly and such kind of hashtags are safe to use.

Hashtags need to be used thoughtfully. Not every trending hashtag could help you on social media. Before using, just analyze the outcomes of the using a particular hashtag. If you can correlate with an irrelevant hashtag, use it. But don’t stuff irrelevant ones as it’s of no use.

Hashtags have become an integral part of online marketing. But not everyone utilizes them accurately. The one who maps the true potential of hashtags wins the game.

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