What is a hashtag?

A hashtag is a word or unspaced phrase preceded by the pound symbol used to relate content to a specific topic, such as #MKMarketingStuartFL.  Hashtags are utilized by social media users daily. According to Hashtags.org, the first hashtag is credited to Chris Messina, who posted it on Twitter in 2007.

How do I decide what hashtags to use for my small business?

Hashtags should typically follow a strategic order; some call it a “hashtag sandwich.” The hashtag order typical follows:

Brand (or campaign) Hashtag: Hashtags that relate to your business campaign, and industry

i.e. – #MKMarketing, #MKMarketingStuartFL, #MarketingAgencies, #SmallBusinesses 

Content Related Hashtag: hashtags related to the content that you are posting

i.e. – #MarketingTips, #HowToUseHashTags

Location Hashtags: Hashtags related to your location

i.e. – #StuartFl, #FloridaMarketingAgencies, #TreasureCoast, #PalmBeaches

Be sure to change your hashtags up for every post. Use a combination of popular and targeted hashtags, and do your research to find relevant hashtags that match your niche.

 

Why should my small business use a Hashtag?

Hashtags provide many opportunities to increase the engagement of your content. They allow you to join in on social media conversations, build your brand awareness, and show support for social issues. Hashtags can help you promote your content to a larger audience without your business spending money for a paid post.

Hashtags can also help your target audience find you on social media. Many social media users follow hashtags to find content related to topics they are interested in. For example, if you use #Marketing on your posts, anyone who follows that hashtag will discover your post in their feed. This, in return, could help you gain new followers.

Hashtags can also add context to your social media posts. Since shorter captions are more effective, using a hashtag can be an easy way to exhibit what you are talking about in your post without going over your characters.

 

So what are your tips for using hashtags?

      • According to a recent report from Instagram, hashtags work better when included in a caption, not posted in a separate comment. 
      • You can add hashtags to your bio to help increase keywords within searches. 
      • Avoid adding hashtags in the middle of your captions or long hashtags that are harder to read. 
            • I.e., We love #marketingtips, what about you?
      • Search hashtags in the Instagram Explore tab to see how many other posts are using those same hashtags.
      • Try to use only between 5-10 hashtags per post.
      • Follow hashtags related to your content to find what others are talking about when utilizing that hashtag.
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