Do you agree that hashtags are a key to success? Does anyone really care about hashtags? For those of a certain age, hashtags are confusing at best and irritating at worst. But like it or not, they are here to stay. In fact, they are now considered key to successful online marketing—so Millennial or not, it is time to jump into the hashtag craze.

Why Hashtags Are a Key to Success

Why Hashtags Are a Key to Success

Are you groaning at that news? We understand, but keep in mind that not all hashtag use incorporating an obnoxiously long list of them in every item posted. There are less-intrusive ways to incorporate hashtags. Plus, once you understand the benefits you offer, you will happily be using them.

The caveat

As with any other marketing element, hashtags are only effective when done correctly. You need to make sure that you are following best practices for the platform you are posting on. You also need to ensure that the hashtags selected are consistent with your brand’s tone and that you are selecting them strategically. If you can tick off all these boxes, you should find that hashtags help you.

The benefits

You can really help build up recognition of your brand name by incorporating it into your hashtags. These hashtags ensure that people are seeing your brand name often and they also make it easy for people to click on a given hashtag and find only content from your brand or about your brand. It also allows customers to participate, sharing their content related to your brand and uniting it with that which you create through the hashtag.

Using a popular hashtag that is not brand specific is also a good way to expand your reach. As you use hashtags to participate in larger conversations, people who are browsing those hashtags are going to take notice of you and click on your content. From there, if they like what they find, they will explore more and hopefully become a follower. You can also take this as an opportunity to learn more about your audience.

There are other possibilities as well, such as hashtag campaigns and competitions. With a creative approach, you can really make the most of your hashtags.

A few tips to keep in mind

Double-check the spelling on your hashtags. Because they combine words in most cases, spellcheck will automatically mark them wrong or just ignore them, depending on the program you use. This means you cannot count on them to notice spelling mistakes.

Never use a hashtag without researching it. The internet—to put it mildly—is always full of surprises. A hashtag that seems completely innocent may actually be associated with something, well, not suited to your brand. Search the hashtag before you use it in your post.

Have someone take a second look before you post. Hashtag fails, while hilarious to browse online, are not so funny when they involve your brand. At best, people will have a laugh at your expense. At worst, you will look completely out of touch with your audience. See: #nowthatchersdead, which was read as Now That Cher’s Dead, but meant Now Thatcher’s Dead.

Worried about confusion? Capitalize the first letter of every word in the hashtag, ensuring it is read correctly. This also makes it easier for your readers to remember and even use themselves.

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July 5, 2018

Why Hashtags Are a Key to Success

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