Entering the world of social media is both exciting and overwhelming. One of the biggest battles in social media is understanding the effective use of hashtags. Hashtags are vital to the success of promoting your message and getting noticed, but can make you look like a spammer in an instant.
So what exactly is the hashtag’s purpose? The hashtag allows people to search and filter content. Hashtags can also be a powerful research tool to find out what is trending in the industry and to make waves on social media and stay relevant.
Coming over from a professional writing arena or being over the age of 25, using # before words is a painful task. We get asked all the time, “are hashtags really important?” The answer is #absolutely.
As with all social media and content marketing, you will be faced with a lot of trial and error. Hashtags have a shelf life of about three days unless it is a broad topic and the chances of staying on top and being discovered is about the likelihood that you will live on Mars.
Hashtags are the secret to getting your content and message in front of thousands, possibly millions of people and they shouldn’t be taken lightly. Hashtags are a necessary evil to modern writing, annoying, but absolutely necessary.
Once you add the # to your message or word you open up the door to every user, on every site, all over the wonderful world wide web. If you play your cards right with tagging content, your message could spread faster than Kim Kardashian’s sex tape.
Hashtags are great to get your content into the industry news, get discovered, shared and picked up by search engines. Hashtags are great for promotional use and special events to get users involved and spread the word.
Don’t get all #crazy now that you have been enlightened, the hashtag has boundaries. As we all know from Justin Timberlake and Jimmy Fallon, hashtags can be really annoying. Try and keep tagged words at 2-3 per tweet or you will set yourself up to look like a spammer or distract readers from your actual content.
Be simple, be to the point, and be relevant. Be sure you are focusing on content and not hashtags. The objective is to drive traffic to your website and link not make hashtag your second language.
Research hashtags to get your content seen, don’t throw them out randomly. As mentioned, hashtag shelf life is very short so be sure to discover what is trending and model your content to fit. Be sure your content matches the hashtag. Look for tags that can help your content go viral. Good luck!