We often get asked about hashtags, what they are, why are they used and how are they used. That’s what peeked our interest when we first saw the Ultimate Guide to Hashtags infographic developed by QuickSprout.
Don’t dismay if you don’t know what a hashtag is. A hashtag # is simply a social media tagging system that categorizes the content.
|This is what a hashtag looks like:|
Pretty simple, right?
How are Hashtags Used in the Real World?
We have all seen our friends and those we follow using hashtags for Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and Google+. Hopefully now you understand why.
Hashtags are useful in discovering content for content curation as well as having your content be discovered by relevant audiences. In fact, many users search for information by hashtag.
Others use hashtags to listen or participate in an online dialog as is the case in a Twitter chat. Think of sports events such as The Olympics or The World Cup and how spectators, sports casters and even athletes will use hashtags to connect.These global conversations can even span across multiple social networks with a simple hashtag as the unifying component.
Like with everything in marketing, each social channel has its own nuances. For example, the quickest way to get called to the Social Media Principals Office is to use a hashtag in a LinkedIn post. Doh!
Other guidelines include how many hashtags are acceptable for each specific social network. It can vary from 1-2 hashtags per tweet and Facebook post, to 11 or more on Instagram. In fact, on Instagram, posts with 11 or more hashtags demonstrated the highest engagement level.
Whether you use hashtags for research or content curation, sharing reactions from your favorite TV show, it really helps to understand the hashtag etiquette of the specific social networks that you are using. This is especially true if you are concerned about your content being discovered and reaching a broader audience than just a portion of your fans and followers.
These days, especially on Facebook, organic (non-paid) reach is driven in many cases by engagement. Learn and apply these hashtag best practices to drive impact and ROI from your social media investments.
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