Have you ever looked at a social media post and been turned off by the number of hashtags used? We have too but this doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t make the effort to understand exactly what it is these little grammar newbies can do for you and your business. People often ask us, ‘How many hashtags should I use?’ but, in truth, they are asking the wrong question. It isn’t the number (and definitely not the size) of hashtags that matters, it’s how you use them…
So what are hashtags for?
A clever hashtag will make you #laughoutloud but these little #wordfriends aren’t just a fun way of playing around with vocabulary. They are searchable terms that can bring more traffic to your social media page. In other words, use the right hashtags and potential customers will come looking for you.
Can I use any old hashtag?
In the world of hashtags it pays to be both #cleverclive and #popularpeter. A few sparky hashtags of your own can be great for reader enjoyment but, just like at school, the ones that really matter are the popular ones. Finding and using hashtags that are significant for your niche and popular with your audience is the key to successful social media posting.
Which hashtags are right for my business?
The easiest way to find hashtags to get you noticed is to find out which ones other people are using. Use a search to look for popular influencers (people who have lots of followers) in your niche and keep an eye on which hashtags they are using. If they are popular they must be #gettingsomethingright!
Should I use trending hashtags?
Trending hashtags are those which are being used the most at any point in time. Sometimes these can be predictable (e.g. #halloweenfun) but sometimes they are unexpected and in response to news events (e.g. #brexitcancelled). Keeping an eye on hashtag trends (and the meaning behind them) and using them in your posting can bring in unexpected visitors but don’t rely on trending hashtags alone, your niche responders are your most important ones.
Can hashtags ever go wrong?
Most things can go wrong, especially if they are digital, and hashtags are no exception. Before you post a new hashtag check your spelling but more importantly, check that you haven’t inadvertently included anything that might offend. Anyone who has been following the Chester Literature Festival might understand what we mean!