How to use #Hashtags Effectively on Social Media - Part 2

Our blog post on using hashtags effectively last month was very popular so here is the second instalment with even more tips. Hashtags are becoming so popular and so useful that there was no way we could narrow it down to just seven tips like we did in the last post, so here are seven more!

1. Embed your hashtags in your post

Whilst you can chuck a few hashtags at the end of a Tweet or Facebook post and they would still bring your content up in the relevant feed, they can sometimes be hard to read. It can be even harder if you have a picture link and an URL at the end because it can confuse the reader - which are they supposed to click?

A solution to this is to try and embed the hashtag in your post so that it flows a lot easier. For example, which of the two tweets below do you think is easier to read?

By simply hashtag-ing the keyword ‘eCommerce’ instead of adding it to the end, it becomes easier to read. Try it out with your tweets and see whether it improves the flow.

2. Use more hashtags on Instagram, but less on Facebook

In our last blog post, we said to keep hashtags to a minimum of 1-2. Now this is great advice if you’re using them on Twitter and Facebook. But for Instagram it is a different story.

Whilst studies show that the optimal amount for Twitter is 1-2, the optimal amount of Instagram is around 10-12. It sounds a lot, doesn’t it! This might be because Instagram doesn’t have a 140 character maximum so you have a lot more space to add hashtags. Is this news to you? Try it out and see if you get any more engagement!

3. Use a brand hashtag to keep up with mentions

Find yourself a nice hashtag that is unique, intuitive and represents your company fairly. Use this within your tweets where appropriate and encourage your followers to do the same when mentioning your company. Not only does it improve on brand loyalty from your followers, it’s an easy way to keep track of your company mentions.

At Statement, we like to use the hashtag #ThinkHappy where relevant as part of our brand. Do you have anything similar for your company?

4. Check the hashtag before you decide to use it

This is an important one. Most of the time, hashtags are harmless. But there will be some now and again that will mean something completely different than they sound.

The last thing you want is to use a nice simple hashtag such as #FridayFeeling to then find out that the current trend is to use that hashtag in something either inappropriate, discriminatory or cruel. It’s rare but don’t allow yourself to be caught out - trends move so fast and so unexpectedly in the digital world, so it’s important to check.

5. Be careful when using hashtags with multiple words

This is one that is surprisingly harder to spot than you’d think. You don’t want to put spaces in between words in hashtags. We said last time that #Think Happy would not work as a hashtag, but #ThinkHappy would. You have to put words together.

But sometimes two words will combine to make one word and that word could mean something very different. Here’s a link to Susan Boyle’s infamous social media fail that happened in 2012, don’t make a similar mistake!

6. Monitor which of your hashtags perform best

Which of your tweets get the most favourites and retweets? It might be worth investigating whether this is because of the hashtags you had used. If it is, you’re doing something right and working some hashtag magic! If not, experiment with different types of hashtags or the frequency of your hashtags and find out what works for your company.

7. Don’t be afraid to use them humorously

Hashtags are fun! They’re not just a trend-watching tool. Use them humorously. Use popular trending ones or use them ironically. Remember the hashtag #YOLO? It quickly turned into a hashtag used by many in a purposeful manner to one that was popularly used ironically.

Obviously you need to keep in mind your business image, but have some fun with hashtags if you can.

We hope you found these tips useful!

We hope some of these tips will help you use hashtags to their full potential. Don’t forget to share this post on Twitter if you found it useful!

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