Once a simple symbol on your telephone keypad, the # is now synonymous with “hashtags”.
This famous symbol, attached to a word, appeared in the summer of 2007 when Chris Messina (not the actor), a marketer, proposed to group tweets of the same topic by keywords (hashtags). These link words are activated by the # preceding them and display all the publications containing these words. It’s a way to rank content, to quote keywords, but even more so it’s a way for your target audience to find you through the ocean of content.
By posting #words, you are participating in an already existing conversation in a community that shares this kind of content. You appear directly and exclusively on the screens of people who already have an interest in your product or service. Sounds interesting to you, doesn’t it? But how do you optimize your use of hashtags?
Below we’ll answer 3 common questions about hashtags and how to use them. Beyond putting #cats everywhere, it is a very relevant tool for your business when it is present on social networks. See how you can be part of the conversation with #!
How many #words should I put in a post?
It depends on the social network on which you publish. Some networks are designed to promote the use of # (Twitter, Instagram) and advocate more than # (between 5-10). Facebook recommends using only 1 or 2. Beyond the number, your # must be relevant and popular.
When entering your #, most networks will give you a list with the number of subscribers. Try to use a word that reaches more people. In addition, you can find out which words are used the most by tools like Allhashtag.
Make sure your words are carefully chosen and that they relate to your post and your corporate mission.
How to optimize its #?
This is the big question. How do you ensure that the # that you choose to use is as effective as possible? There are several ways to do this, but here are a few:
1. Make it short.
Shorter # works better. That doesn’t stop every once in a while a longer # is super popular, but in general it has to be short. You can use the opportunity to add more various words. For example: #oncuisinedestartesmaisonsledimanche can become #baking #tarteauxapples #recipe #sunday #popotte. You will thus join several communities.
2. Stick to the formula.
Do not use an abbreviation or anagram (unless very popular SAAQ, CEGEP, SAQ …). No accent, space, or symbol (?% $ &). I did not swear, they are symbols, calm down 😆.
3. Get popular Hashtags.
The more people use a #word, the more it goes around. Some # are so popular in fact that using them garanties you some views. However, don’t use them if they don’t add something to your content. «#Love» should not be seen under a mechanic’s hiring post on Facebook.
What can # be used for?
1. Provide context.
If you’re starting a special day or someone you don’t know, you don’t always have enough 180 characters to talk about it. Linking to a Wikipedia page might be a good idea, but it takes a long time. Putting a few hashtags in context can help your audience navigate it without making full sentences. #resume. For example, if you want to inaugurate David Carson, his contextualization could be: #davidcarson #graphicdesigner #RayGunmagazine # 90sdesign. In short, we put Mr. Carson’s career in context while connecting leads.
2. Join a cause.
Use popular hashtags owned by social causes to communicate your values to your audience. This will help you find like-minded people and create emotional excitement in your posts. These # are often campaign related and will get you across some very busy news feeds.
3. Identify products and services on the networks.
This technique is used a little less than search engines, but it is proven in its natural appearance on the walls of your users. By clearly stating what you’re selling, there’s a good chance you’ll find yourself in someone’s post looking for your product or service. For example, you are a snowblower salesperson. Someone who is a subscriber to the John Deer page might see your post if your keywords are: #blower #tractors #paysagement.
4. Talk about partnerships.
If you’re dealing with another business during a promotion or referencing a business in a post, tag it with a # or @. This will link to their page and stimulate conversation interactions. This company can then do the same for you.
5. Bring a humorous tone.
They are short and provide a nice rhythm suitable for humor. Sometimes #s don’t really relate, but they can represent satire or emotion, much like emojis. They add personality and can act like the fall of a joke. Example: There are some who have it easy! #cat #sieste
In conclusion, have fun incorporating hashtags in your posts. They exist as added value and can really contribute to the enthusiasm. Did you know that you can even create custom hashtags on Hashtagify.me? You can then promote an event, birthday or ad campaign and get people to follow #you. Be careful not to take a # that already exists or that could be misinterpreted, for example: a meat smoker that decides to create #ilovetosmoke. #ishh!