For the longest time, the hashtag was known for the pound sign. The last few decades however, have changed that. It is now known as a hashtag. Hashtags were originally created for Twitter but now used on all social media platforms including Facebook and Instagram.
What is a Hashtag?
A hashtag is nothing more than a phrase of keywords that are spelled without any spaces and have the # symbol in front of them.
What is its purpose?
The purpose of using hashtags is to bring together posts and conversations into a single stream on a particular platform. For example, if you are a dog lover you can go to the platform of your choice and type in the search #doglover and it will bring up posts and conversations from every user of that platform that has used this hashtag in their posts.
When used properly, hashtags are a great way for individuals and businesses to make their posts more visible to their users and increase engagement.
When using hashtags in your posts, you want to make sure that the post is made public. If the post is private then it will not show up when searched for which makes it pointless.
How to use Hashtags properly..
The key is to use hashtags sparingly and only when they add value. If you use them too much or use too many of them on a certain platform, they can be confusing, frustrating, and annoying to other users.
If you're a business you want to use hashtags that are related to your niche. You also want to be as specific as possible to reach your target audience.
Get creative! Using the perfect hashtag has the potential to make a post go viral! Hashtags aren't used for business purposes only, use them for engagement posts as well. Do your research, make your hashtag memorable and be consistent. Keep it short and sweet and use it everywhere!
Don't overdo it. Using too many hashtags just looks spammy. There are certain platforms that like/dislike hashtags.
I don't recommend using hashtags on LinkedIn. This is a business platform and it doesn't look professional. However, when you make a post, LinkedIn will give you some hashtag options. If they fit your post, use them. Do not go overboard here and make sure the hashtags you use are relevant to your posts. Stray away from commentary, jokes, or meme hashtags on this platform.
Instagram allows you to use up to 30 hashtags in one post. Although this looks spammy, it will definitely help you grow your account. I recommend using all 30 hashtags in your post BUT do not put them in the actual post itself. Add a comment to your post with the hashtags in the comment section. This will keep your post nice and clean but still place it with the correct stream of hashtags to help you gain engagement.
When it comes to Facebook, hashtags are limited due to private account users. Remember- the post has to be made public in order for the hashtag to work. If you choose to use hashtags on Facebook, limit it to no more than 5 per post. I recommend using your brand hashtag to get more followers on this platform. Also, they are more effective if used on your business page rather than your personal page. Using hashtags in private groups will only show it to its members and not the public.
The right hashtags when used correctly can help you create positive engagement with your users.
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