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What to Keep in Mind When Adding Hashtags to your Facebook Posts
Hashtags have been around since 2007, but how important are they in 2023? Read on to learn whether you should still be using hashtags in your social media marketing.
Back in 2015, I wrote about using hashtags on Facebook and Twitter – and I even explained how to create a hashtag by using the “#” symbol! People were only just starting to use Instagram as a marketing tool, so most hashtag use was for posting on Twitter and it was considered cutting edge. Fast forward to today and you’ll find a popular search on Google is “Are hashtags still a thing?”
The short answer is “no – and yes.” Hashtagging has gotten way out of control. People started using way too many of them and in inappropriate ways which badly diluted their power and usefulness.
That said, the smart use of hashtags is still an important addition to your social media marketing strategy. While Twitter has long used hashtags, posts on Instagram and YouTube, which are both mainly visual platforms, also benefit from hashtags. You can also boost your posts on Facebook and LinkedIn with well-planned hashtags.
Why use hashtags
Hashtags add your post to a group of similar posts. Someone who is following a specific topic or who is searching for a specific topic will have a much better chance of finding your post on that topic because you labeled it with the appropriate hashtag.
Kinds of hashtags
There are different reasons to use hashtags and different kinds of tags for each reason. For instance, location is important if people are looking for things happening in a particular area. Think a hotel tagging #MiamiBeach, a concert promoter tagging #StaplesCenter or a wedding planner tagging #Hawaii.
If you are planning an event, set a unique hashtag like #MediaCon2023 and encourage all attendees to use it. People will be able to find news, photos, and other updates quickly in the weeks leading up to the event, during the event itself, and even after it’s all over.
Other hashtags you can use include communities like #doglovers, industry-specific like #photography, or celebration days like #HappyNewYear.
Like everything in marketing, some words are more powerful than others while trends keep coming and going. There are tools that can suggest hashtags and give you statistics on how well they are performing. Hashtagify.me is one such tool, but there are many others at different price points.
You can also use the platform where you are posting to get some general ideas. Just type # and a possible keyword for your post into the search box and see if and how other people are using it. Twitter has a Search Filter to help your research, Instagram will tell you how many posts have used the same hashtag, and you’ll get similar feedback from Facebook and LinkedIn as well. You can also find suggestions in a similar vein that might be better than your original choice.
Doing this research is important! Especially if you are coming up with an event tag because you want it to be unique, but also because you never know what kind of alternative meaning a seemingly innocent word may have picked up in the social media world.
When using hashtags, too many can hurt you, so restrain yourself. It makes sense to say both #weddingplanner and #hawaii, but how the number of tags that are useful and not spammy depends on the platform. Twitter posts perform best with just one or two hashtags, but you can get away with four or five on Instagram. More than that tends to show diminishing returns.
Like all of social media marketing, don’t try to do too much too soon. You are better off starting small and getting really good at one platform before moving on to the next. If you just can’t wait, however, it might be best to call in a professional to take over the task. Give us a call and we’ll put the Sprocket Websites team to work for you now!
Photo by Pixabay
This article is an update to “Things to Keep in Mind: Using Hashtags on Facebook” dated 6/18/2015.
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