Have you felt like hashtags are suddenly everywhere? Whether it’s on your mother’s Facebook post or a stray TikTok, they have a solid presence that sometimes even compliments a caption of a post. In fact, their rising importance has made them inseparable from the essence of what social media really is. Regardless of whether individuals choose to use them or not, they are everywhere. And as a business, hashtags are your essential tool to continue relating with your audience.
With that being said, it can be difficult to understand what exactly they are and what they do in digital marketing. If you have ever been scared of asking about hashtags to your teenager, we have your back. This is where we can step in and tell you everything you need to know about hashtags and how to effectively use them for your small business. Some of the glaring questions that you could have might be about whether you need to know how to use the best hashtags for certain social media platforms and your small business, while managing to avoid becoming the next social media horror story.
So, what are hashtags?
To put it simply, hashtags are metadata tags which function as labels for different kinds of content. It is a way of categorizing different topics in an accessible format that makes it easy for users to find content on any topic they want information on. When it comes to social media, the hashtag is used to draw attention, organize, promote, and connect. They initially began on Twitter as a way of making it easier for people to find, follow, and contribute to a conversation. The popularity of hashtags, however, quickly spread to other social media platforms. Whether it came from angry tweets on Twitter or inspirational posts on Instagram, the sign was well on its way to being a pop culture symbol. Beyond its growing popularity, however, is a handy sign that is quickly becoming essential to any social media marketing team.
The best part about hashtags is that anyone can make them. You don’t need any special software, coding experience, or a college degree to create a hashtag. Using hashtags for social media is also a fairly simple task to do if we look at it technically. All you need to do is think of a word or two to summarize a topic and write it after the “ # ” sign. However, keep in mind that you cannot use spaces between words or between the topic and the hashtag. Hashtags should also be composed of at least one letter, although using numbers in tandem with words is okay.
Smart use of hashtags in social media marketing can give any marketing team an edge over its competitors. In this blog, we are going to be taking you through a detailed guide on how to use social media hashtags for business in 2023 and how to crack the code for social media optimization.
Hashtags serve as valuable assets in social media marketing campaigns, enabling brands to enhance visibility, increase engagement, and foster a sense of community. Through the innovative use of branded hashtags, trendjacking, campaign-specific hashtags, user-generated content, product launches, event promotion, and niche hashtags, marketers can effectively leverage these tools to drive their marketing objectives. By adopting these strategies, brands can connect with their target audience, inspire conversations, and establish a strong online presence in the competitive social
Creating a Unique Hashtag
If your business wants to build a unique hashtag for its brand, there are a few things that you should keep in mind. The first is that the best hashtags are easy to remember and catchy. Although longer hashtags do exist, shorter ones allow a more efficient method of categorizing your brand among broader topics. This can lead to more exposure and a wider reach over time. The number of hashtags you use should also be optimized based on the social media platform you use; while Instagram allows up to 30 hashtags in a single post, only 1 – 2 is advised for Facebook.
Your hashtags will also land better with the audience if the tags align with the primary content. Remember that the sole purpose behind hashtags is to declutter and organize data on social media, which can be taken advantage of while marketing. By making sure that your hashtags are relevant to your content, they will be far more relatable to the audience while remaining easy to find.
One innovative strategy is the creation of branded hashtags. By devising a unique and memorable hashtag that encapsulates the essence of a brand or campaign, marketers can encourage their audience to employ the hashtag when sharing content related to the brand, its products, or events. This practice not only fosters brand recognition but also enables efficient tracking of user-generated content, thus nurturing a sense of community and engagement.
Luckily for small businesses, there are tons of online tools that can help find trending hashtags and analytics of previous trends. By mapping the general trajectories of hashtags in specific topics, your business will be in a better position to predict future trends and keep pace with the constant changes.
Analytics about how other businesses use hashtags for social media marketing can give you good ideas and can be easily accessed from websites like hashtag.org and ritetag. They give you real-time inputs and segregate search results based on region, demographics, age, and time period.
Tools like Sprout Social, Hootsuite, or Brandwatch provide features to track and analyze hashtag performance. These tools enable brands to monitor the reach, engagement, and sentiment associated with specific hashtags. By gaining insights into the effectiveness of hashtags, brands can make data-driven decisions to optimize their hashtag strategy. They also provide information on the popularity, trends, and usage of specific hashtags. By utilizing these insights, brands can select the most effective hashtags to reach their target audience and enhance the discoverability of their content.
Keyhole is also a great tool with a search function that provides in-depth data about how current hashtags are received. Social listening tools are yet another great way of keeping track of what users are talking about in 2023 and adapting your hashtags for social media marketing accordingly.
Understand the Many Faces of Social Media
Each social media platform has different rules and regulations that a business must abide by if they want their marketing to be successful. By going against certain trends and guidelines, your business could risk accidentally shadowbanning its own content. This would limit the reach and would continue to impact conversion rates by the time you notice the shadowban.
Whether you use Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, YouTube, or even LinkedIn, you will not only be expected to stay familiar with the policies of all of them, but you will also have to be able to target the primary audiences of each platform. For example, over 80% of the users of Snapchat and Instagram are below the age of 30, while a majority of the active users on Facebook are above the age of 30. The regions that you would be targeting will also be an added parameter that could complicate things. To hit the nail efficiently, remember to thoroughly research and plan out your content based on who the customer is and what they want.
For an impactful product launch, using dedicated hashtags can spark something to generate excitement and anticipation among the target audience. Teasing the audience with sneak peeks, behind-the-scenes content, and timely updates using the hashtag fuels curiosity and encourages followers to actively engage with the brand’s content. This approach effectively builds momentum and creates a buzz surrounding the launch. These campaign-specific hashtags, catchy and concise, encourage audience participation by using them while engaging with the campaign, participating in contests, or sharing related content. Such an approach fuels excitement, strengthens brand-consumer relationships, and increases campaign visibility.
Know Your Hashtags
Beyond using tools to help you out with hashtags for social media marketing, collaborating with popular influencers would also tremendously impact your reach. Not only will they offer valuable insights about what people want in their niche, but their promotions of a business’ hashtags will instantly boost its popularity. Many businesses now consider it crucial to collaborate with influencers to stay relevant in an ever-changing space because they have loyal audiences that keep coming back for more.
Knowing how many hashtags are appropriate for each platform is also important. As mentioned earlier, platforms like Instagram can allow as many as 30. Just in case, however, avoid using over 15 – 20 hashtags to maintain a neat visual appearance. Where you place them also matters. While posting hashtags in the comment section is something many brands do, Instagram has confirmed that they are far more effective if placed in the caption.
Identifying niche hashtags that resonate with the target audience and industry is also a powerful way to reach a more engaged and targeted group of individuals. Integrating these relevant hashtags into content allows brands to tap into a specific community or interest group, maximizing the impact of their marketing efforts. Staying informed about emerging trends and popular industry-specific hashtags ensures that the brand’s content remains relevant and current, paving the way for better social media marketing for a business.
The last point would probably be to keep in touch with local businesses in your area through social media! Using the same hashtags for a virtual conference would open up new channels while collaborating with other businesses online will increase your pool of customers. This is a great way of tapping into industry knowledge while making steady steps towards growth. Remember to interact with your followers on social media platforms as well. This alone can make a lasting impression and can build a reliable and friendly image of your brand.
Attending or hosting industry events also presents an excellent opportunity for social media marketing. By using event-specific hashtags, brands can effectively promote their participation. Sharing updates, highlighting speakers, or offering exclusive offers using the event hashtag enhances visibility, connects with attendees, and facilitates networking opportunities. This approach amplifies the brand’s presence and reinforces its position within the industry.
In the realm of social media marketing, using hashtags have emerged as a powerful tool for enhancing content visibility and engagement. By categorizing content and enabling easy discovery, hashtags play a crucial role in amplifying brand messaging. Through the innovative use of branded hashtags, trendjacking, campaign-specific hashtags, user-generated content, product launches, event promotion, and niche hashtags, marketers can effectively leverage these tools to drive their marketing objectives while achieving peak social media optimization. By adopting these strategies, brands can connect with their target audience, inspire conversations, and establish a strong online presence in the competitive social
While there are far more nuances to using hashtags, these are some of the top tips for social media optimization. Implement these social media marketing strategies today and watch your business flourish with the latest hashtags from 2023.
To learn some of the best tips for boosting your business, check out our other blogs here.