How to Promote Your Business With hashtags
With the popularity of social media networking platforms, many businesses have strived to find new ways to penetrate these social settings in order to reach their target audience; who spend a considerable amount of time online.
With individuals and businesses churning out a large amount of content daily, it’s now pretty difficult to go through them all, hence why hashtags have become essential – which makes it a lot easier for users to find content that relevant to their specific interests.
Beyond just filling up sparse spaces in posts, as a business or individual, you can be deliberate about using hashtags. This article will share some very useful ways to use hashtags to promote a business and grow an online audience, but first, let’s dive a little into what “hashtags” are all about.
What are hashtags?
A hashtag is simply a word or a group of words preceded by the hash sign “#”. It is mostly created and used on social media platforms like Instagram, Twitter, Facebook and so on. This simple tagging system makes it possible to group content under a single theme (which reflects the main message of the content). This, in turn, makes it easy for other social media users to search and find information based on various themes that appeal to them.
Hashtags can be created using common terms like #baby #women #happy #America #pregnancy. And it could also be used for more specific themes like #MyMentalHealthStory #PhotographersInAmerica #Travel_To_Africa and so on. Hashtags can also be created to reflect or promote a brand. For instance, #MyCanonExperience #JourneyWithVISA #Mastercard_takes_2_to_tangle.
As shown in the examples above, hashtags can be created using a word or group of words with numbers as well as the underscore symbol “_” which is mostly used to separate a group of words in a hashtag to make it easier for the user to read.
For instance, take a look at this hashtag; #pitchyourbusinessideaandwin1million and then compare with this format; #Pitch_Your_Business_Idea_and_Win_1million. They are both the same theme but one is more readable and easy to understand than the other. Although most hashtags are kept very short, usually two to four grouped words to make it easier for users to search and remember.
Hashtags are quite easy to use on social media, however, some of these social media platforms have a limit to the number of hashtags that can be used in a single post (Instagram comes with a limit of thirty hashtags per post while others like Facebook or Twitter don’t have a specific hashtag limit). To make use of hashtags properly, working with a social media agency might come in useful, however, with great practice, this can be done yourself.
The benefits of hashtags
Now that you understand what a hashtag is and some of those ways it’s used on social media, it’s important to know how using it will be of benefit to your business. Let’s take a look at some benefits of using hashtags.
1. Make a content go viral
Ever wondered how certain content on social media became viral? The key secret is using the right hashtags, in addition to other factors. Hashtags play a vital role in making content go viral and using the right hashtags can make your content more visible; as you’re able to capture vital information in the hashtag used to support that content.
If the content is really good, there is a possibility that it might even go viral on other platforms that it wasn’t posted on. This is similar to taking a viral Instagram post to Twitter or Facebook or taking a viral Twitter post to Instagram or Facebook (as is mostly seen these days).
2. Increase brand awareness
Hashtags can be used to increase brand awareness across social media platforms. If you’re struggling to receive more visitors, especially the target audience, you can raise awareness about your business and what it offers by making use of hashtags.
It can comfortably replace the cost of running adverts on social media platforms, for businesses that don’t have enough funds to run a good online marketing campaign. However, the bulk of the work lies in doing proper hashtag research to build a list of tags that will cover the various interest of users or the various themes their target audience is likely to search for.
3. Reach new target audience
Hashtags are one of the simplest and cost-free ways to meet a new target audience online. Most of the top social media platforms rake in over a million daily users like Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat, Twitter, Pinterest and even Reddit too. Brands can set a daily or weekly reach or impression and creatively use hashtags to boost them.
4. Creatively used to track the performance of a brand online
The help of branded hashtags can also be used to promote a brand like #GoogleAsia #MyMicrosoftExperience and so on. This especially comes in handy when running special social media campaigns where a business requires users to participate. Businesses can track their online campaign performance based on the number of user-generated content that is shared using that branded hashtag.
4 detailed ways to use hashtags
1. Know the hashtag rules on each social media platform
Understanding the posting rules is the first and most important step for using hashtags to promote a business on any platform. As mentioned earlier, some platforms have a limit of thirty hashtags per posts. For Facebook, Twitter and others it’s best to stay within two to five hashtags.
2. Use capitalization
Capitalization is a sleek way to make hashtags readable and appear neater, especially if more than one word is used to create the hashtag.
3. Keep hashtags short and memorable
If you’re creating new hashtags, especially the ones branded for the business, always keep it short and simple enough to remember.
4. Don’t be spammy, use only hashtags that reflects your brand
Don’t be tempted to use a lot of irrelevant hashtags in your post, so as not to appear spammy. Use general hashtags that cut through a wider audience like #baby #man #woman #business and so on. This can be used alongside other specific tags like #WomenInBusiness #WorkingWomen (depending on the focus of your brand) for a more balanced reach.