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Social media: hashtagging away

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#Hashtags #are #everywhere! #But #why? #Is #there #any #point? Well yes, whilst hashtags may appear frustrating, annoying and irrelevant, you can use these previously innocent symbols to maximise your business’s presence through social media marketing. Apparently, tweets with hashtags receive twice as much engagement as those without.

Hashtags are mostly relevant on Twitter and Instagram, although Facebook has recently tried to get in on the act. Essentially hashtags are used to group conversations and mark keywords or topics. They help people to relevant tweets and engage in conversations online. You can get involved in established hashtags (such as #TBT or #traveltuesday), or create your own for a marketing campaign. We’re going to give you some hashtagging tips so that you make sure you don’t make any fatal errors.

  • Don’t use overly long phrases. These defeat the objective of concise tweets and are difficult to read and understand. If you do use more than one word, make sure that the first letter of each word is capitalised so it’s quick to read ie/ #ICanReadThis rather than #icantreadthis
  • Don’t piggyback on hashtags that aren’t relevant just to try and increase the number of people viewing your tweet. People that are following that conversation aren’t going to respond well if you interrupt their conversation with something irrelevant.
  • Do some research into the relevant hashtags in your industry or location. There are lots of ‘hours’ out there ie/ #DorsetHour #bizhour. These let you network with local businesses or similar businesses so have a look for which ones might be relevant to you.
  • Don’t use too many hashtags in one tweet, apparently 1 or 2 is the optimum number. Buffer’s research shows that tweets with one or two hashtags have 21% higher engagement that those with three or more, which actually show a 17% drop in engagement.
  • But if you’re on Instagram, apparently interactions are at their highest when you use 11 or more hashtags. One tip for Instagram is to post your picture with the comment and a couple of relevant hashtags and then write a comment with the rest of the hashtags you want to use. This helps to keep your picture caption tidy when it appears in people’s newsfeeds.
  • Search for hashtags and join in on relevant conversations, Twitter is designed to be a conversation starter so make sure you use it!

Hopefully that’s helped to get you started in the world of hashtags, use them appropriately and you should be able to maximise your presence on Twitter, Instagram and other social media sites.

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