The importance of hashtags
Updated: Aug 8
Struggling to grow your audience and lacking engagement with your followers? Then hashtags are your new best friend.
With constant changes to social media algorithms, implementing the right hashtags can help to improve your viewer interaction while keeping in line with growing consumer trends. Businesses can improve their engagement levels across their social platforms, expand their customer base and attract new users, all through the strategic use of hashtags - but how exactly does it work?
Why Hashtags Matter on Social Media
Hashtags are key in discovering a new audience. By populating specific hashtags with regular content, you can give your business the best chance to be seen in recent search queries. Many online users will discover new accounts by searching under hashtags they are interested in. By using business-specific hashtags, such as #BrandingAdvisor or #MarketingPlanningTips, people will stumble over your posts and potentially become your next client.
Undoubtedly, with a new audience comes more interaction and engagement. By implementing hashtags into your captions, stories or live-streams, you naturally strengthen your online presence. Flooding hashtag streams with consistent new content can reward you with increased likes, comments, shares and followers - a vital part in building brand awareness on social networks. Remember to embrace a trial and error approach with different types of hashtags, in order to see what works best for your platforms.
Types of Hashtags
Before you begin adding hashtags to your future posts, you need to determine what type of hashtag will be best suited to your content.
#1: Branded Hashtags
Branded hashtags are unique to your business. They may be based around your brand name, products or slogan, e.g. #KopyKatUK, #KopyKat or #MoreThanJustAnAgency. This type of hashtag is a particularly powerful way to popularise your brand; once you gain a large enough audience, your supporters will begin using them too! Not only is this a clever marketing strategy, but it will umbrella all your business content under personal hashtags.
#2: Campaign Hashtags
If you want to promote a personal or business campaign for a new service or product, campaign hashtags are the perfect choice. Find inspiration by experimenting with names of seasonal events, products or even collaboration partners. Although you may want to add a personal touch, keep the hashtag broad enough to attract a wide range of people, e.g. #KopyKatMarketingSurgery for the introduction of a new marketing service or #12DaysofKopyKat catered to the Christmas period.
#3: Community Hashtags
Community hashtags are brilliant for connecting users to your business through similar hobbies and interests. This may be tailored to the industry you specialise in, daily reminders like #MotivationalMonday or an online movement. I particularly love using hashtags for special days in the year, e.g. #InternationalWomensDay or even something fun like #NationalPieDay! It’s a great excuse to create some exciting content for your feed while keeping up-to-date with current events.
How to Research Hashtags
With the right tools and resources, hashtag research is simple. Here are the top questions you need to ask yourself when delving into the world of hashtag research.
Who is my target audience? - Don’t assume - take the time to find out exactly what your clients are searching for online and how they search for it. This will allow you to generate the most relevant hashtags which will attract new customers to your platforms.
What are my competitors doing? - Have a look at your industry leaders and how they best utilise hashtags to their advantage. By understanding how they successfully engage their audience, you can adapt these findings to your own social media marketing strategy.
Am I maximising my other social media tools? - Apart from just adding hashtags to your content, make sure to utilise the other space available on social networking sites. Add clickable hashtags in your bio to educate new visitors and check your analytics so you can evaluate the success of your hashtags.
Are my hashtags niche enough? - Using community hashtags with a low search volume (1000 to 10,000 posts) can generate some of the most loyal and interactive users to your page - they acknowledge your efforts in reaching them! Mix it up by blending hashtags from small and medium-sized groups to grow audience discovery.
As social media continues to evolve, hashtags may feel outdated. But, never underestimate the engagement they can bring to your social platforms! They have proven to be an incredibly effective tool in growing an online presence while improving follower interaction.
Sometimes, a simple, hashtag strategy is all you need.
If you would like to discuss your social media strategy or would like some advice, get in touch