Hashtags are currently used and recognized by billions of people worldwide, and they should be an integral element of everyone’s social media strategy.
When launching a campaign, releasing, or marketing a product or service, hashtags are proven to get outstanding engagement.
If you don’t use hashtags, your content will be lost in a flood of tweets. On the other hand, if you use too many hashtags, your content will lose importance.
Hashtags can be a powerful way to promote your brand’s message on Twitter. This guide will discover how Twitter hashtags work, when to use them and other factors that one should consider before implementing them into their social media strategy!
What is a hashtag?
Hashtags are phrases or words prefixed by the # symbol, with no spaces or punctuation. For example, putting the # symbol in front of the phrase “social media marketing” results in the hashtag #socialmediamarketing.
A Twitter hashtag is a way to group conversations and tweets around a topic on Twitter. For example, if you want your post to show people interested in social media marketing, you could use the hashtag #socialmediamarketing.
If anyone searches for social media marketing, they will see all the tweets that mention this hashtag.
It would also allow you to see all other people talking about social media marketing on Twitter. You can also use hashtags to follow specific events, like the Super Bowl or the Academy Awards.
Why use Twitter hashtags?
When searching for a specific topic on Twitter, anyone can quickly find relevant tweets without scrolling through their Twitter feed.
Whenever anyone clicks on or searches for a specific hashtag, they will get all the tweets and profiles mentioned that hashtag.
For example, If I search for a hashtag #socialmedia, I will get many posts that mention this hashtag.
Once you start typing a hashtag, Twitter gives you suggestions of hashtags with the most tweets recently. You can use relevant hashtags to get higher engagement for your post.
Here are three primary reasons why you need to use Twitter Hashtags:
Build brand awareness
If you use hashtags to reach people interested in a particular topic, they may become interested in your brand.
You can create a discussion around your brand and the products or services you offer, encouraging followers to learn more as you promote them.
Many brands are promoting themselves using hashtags to grow their engagement from their followers. You can do it as well.
It is an excellent approach for the brand to participate in online discussions about various themes, allowing them to connect with viral moments of your audience.
Increase engagements and followers
If you share the information with a popular hashtag, it will be seen by a bigger audience than the people who typically follow you.
To take part in Twitter chats, you must target the right audience by using specific hashtags. Many people are attracted to topics that they are passionate about.
Provide your target audience a way to find you
When a user searches for any hashtag on Twitter, it will show the top tweets mentioned that hashtag. In this way, you can help your target audience find your post and brand.
You may also get new followers if you use the hashtags strategically in your tweets.
When should you use hashtags on Twitter?
When referring to a specific topic, you can use a hashtag. Here are some examples:
Places: #Paris, #London
Verbs: #running, #cycling
Things: #table, #coffee
Terms: #contentmarketing, #socialmedia
Additionally, hashtags will be used for Twitter Chats, such as #VChat, etc.
When to avoid hashtags on Twitter?
When running a paid campaign to drive traffic to your site, don’t use hashtags in your advertisements. Ads without a hashtag or @mention generated 23% more clicks, according to Twitter. The company’s best practices state that while writing your post content, you should use the best copywriting practices and not include hashtags or @mentions to make sure your audience doesn’t click away from your ad.
How to use hashtags on Twitter?
Here are a few ways how you can use the hashtags on Twitter:
- You can use a hashtag anywhere in your tweet. As many hashtags as you like are allowed per Tweet, but Twitter recommends not using more than two.
- In a hashtag, do not use spaces. For example, ‘#Organic Farming’ would reference the topic of ‘Organic’ as opposed to ‘#organicfarming,’ which references ‘Organic Farming.’
- A hashtag should not contain punctuation. Despite being grammatically correct, # It’sComingHome will not be recognized. Instead, use #ItsComingHome.
Further Reading: 7 Insanely Effective Ways How to Write Tweets that Drive Traffic
How to find Trending hashtags on Twitter?
If nobody is searching for a hashtag, it is pointless to use it. Use these tools to find trending hashtags for your tweets to get the maximum engagements.
Twitter is the first place to look for trending hashtags.
You can find a list of your personalized Top 5 Trends under your profile on the left-hand side. If you want to see more trending hashtags, tap “Show more” to reveal the top 20.
You will notice that there are some topics in this list rather than hashtags along with a promoted hashtag.
Based on your location and the people you follow, you’ll see trends tailored to you.
By clicking on ‘Change,’ you can choose a new location if you don’t like what you see.
If you are using a mobile phone, Twitter shows the top 5 trends in the mobile app.
In addition to finding trending hashtags, Hashtagify helps you discover popular hashtags as well. It allows you to discover the best hashtags to use on social media, provides you with custom suggestions, and lets you identify your competitors and influencers.
You can also see which countries and languages are using the hashtag so that you can target your messages accordingly. You can also see the latest Tweets using the hashtag on the Tweets Wall.
You can see the latest trends from Twitter anywhere globally by viewing Trendsmap. You’ll see results for a particular location if you click on a word or a hashtag on the map.
An excellent tool for checking both trending and popular hashtags is RiteTag. For instance, RiteTag returns two lists when you type a keyword.
Further Reading: The 21 Best Twitter Tools for Marketing
How to use Twitter hashtags for your brand?
Hashtags can be a powerful way to engage your audience on Twitter, but only if they’re used correctly. One of the best practices is that you should carefully consider the nature and purpose behind each hashtag before using it—just like any other marketing strategy!
Here are some guidelines for how to use Twitter hashtags for your brand:
Holidays and notable days
When commemorating a holiday like (#Christmas) or special days like (#EarthDay) with your audience, use hashtags on Twitter.
Use Twitter hashtags when celebrating a national holiday like (#Thanksgiving) or a special day like (#EarthDay) with your community. There are other lesser-known holidays that you can celebrate, including National Pancake Day and National Emoji Day. Be sure to capitalize on celebrations relevant to your brand.
Get the most of your tweet by using a celebration or special day hashtag that is highly relevant to your product or service.
See how Eventbrite uses the #ValentinesDay hashtag to create a discussion around a particular day event.
Support a cause
Brands must stand up for a cause in an era where consumers are socially conscious. 70% of the Sprout Social #BrandsGetReal survey consumers felt that brands should take a stand on social issues. Use Twitter hashtags when promoting or showing your support for a cause.
Events and conferences
Take advantage of Twitter hashtags to join in on conversations around industry conferences like (#BlockChainWeek) and popular events like (#Grammy). You can also use hashtags to share news about your brand’s participation if it makes an appearance at an event.
Tweeting your content using a hashtag is the best way to promote your brand and products. A hashtag can be used as a part of a marketing campaign or to promote a specific product. To get the maximum benefits from your content marketing efforts, consider creating a branded hashtag campaign to drive more awareness around your brand.
For example, Nike uses its slogan as a hashtag to promote its brand.
Involve into a discussion
Include a relevant hashtag in your post, even if it is about a topic of general interest (#nature, #marketing, etc.). That way, you’ll be more visible to interested readers.
For example, if you are a fashion company based in the UK, you can use hashtags like #ethicalfashion to expand your audience.
Trends and challenges
Twitter hashtags like #ThrowbackThursday, #MondayMotivation, etc., typically involves weekly challenges or trends. If you decide to participate in these challenges, don’t forget to use the appropriate hashtags.
Join a community
Community hashtags connect like-minded users around a specific topic or subject. It is a great way to improve the visibility of your post and gain highly engaged followers from a particular niche. You can also create and grow your community with these hashtags.
Look for brands, influencers, and industry leaders in your niche and find out which type of community hashtags they use.
Here is how a cafe effectively targets vegan users using the hashtag #vegan in their tweet.
How to find the relevancy of a hashtag?
Inserting irrelevant hashtags in your tweets can lead to spam. For example, if you use a trending hashtag like #tokyoolympics, but if your post has nothing to do with the Tokyo Olympics, you will not get the proper attention and audience. If people complain about it, your account may get blocked in worse cases.
So it is essential for you always to use relevant hashtags in your post. Here are the two ways to check the relevancy of your Twitter hashtag.
Look for the hashtag description: If you are unsure about the meaning of a hashtag you want to use, check the definition in TagDef.
Check the hashtags used by influencers: If a hashtag is used by multiple influencers and brands in your niche, then most probably it is relevant to your brand.
How to create your own Twitter hashtag?
- Be mindful of the value you wish to provide. Like, try to give value through a helpful or exciting hashtag.
- Be clear about your intention. Your hashtag needs to be relevant to the subject of your post. Do not use broad terms like #marketing. Use more specific terms.
- Before creating a hashtag, check if it has already been used.
- You should check to ensure that your hashtag doesn’t have a negative or Twitter hijacking meaning. You can conduct your search with Twitter Search, Hashtags.org, and Tagalus.
- If it is truly unique, you can add your hashtag to Tagalus and other hashtag tools.
- Start using it! Don’t spam people to check if “it’s working.” Make sure people understand what the hashtag means.
- You can receive email alerts whenever your hashtag is used by setting up an automatic email tool. Tools like Twilert will help you.
Hashtags will continue to be an essential part of social media content planning and publishing strategy for years to come. They can help you reach new heights on Twitter if you use them wisely.
To get the best result for your brand, make sure you’re using only relevant and trending hashtags. Create your hashtags, but make sure you include some popular hashtags as well. For inspiration and ideas, see how other brands create new hashtags and make them viral on Twitter.
Ranjit Singh is a web developer and blogger at AppsTale. He loves to write about social media marketing strategies and eCommerce conversion optimization techniques.
Hero Photo by Gary Butterfield on Unsplash