The use of hashtags (words preceded by the pound # sign) is now a commonplace practice in various social media platforms. It was first popularised on Twitter until it is widely used in other social networks as well. How do you take advantage of hashtags to market your business?
Hashtags are presently included in marketing strategies to promote products, services, brands or events due to its rising popularity. Because they narrow down topics for discussion, hashtags make it easier for users to search and sift through words and subject matter. It also increases engagement and visibility for your brand.
To know the right hashtags to use, you can check the trends and topics relevant to your business by verifying analytics and reports from RiteTag, Sprout Social, Trendsmap, or other sites that curate information on hashtags. You can also see the insights from your Twitter, Instagram and Facebook Page accounts to see the demographics of your visitors and the data of your reach.
Popular hashtags for entrepreneurs
A quick look at RiteTag on hashtags related to small business reveal the words that you can use so that your venture can be seen now. These are #business, #marketing, #socialmedia, #entrepreneur, #startup, #work, #seo, #leadership, #success, #media, #facebook, #sales, and #digitalmarketing. But for online users to find you over time, you can use hashtags like #smallbusiness, #tips, #smallbiz, #smallbusinessowners, #sme, #owners, #website, #productivity, #smallbusinesses, #businesses, #ceo, #ideas, #reasons, #today, #infographic, #budget, and #smb.
Finding niche hashtags
If you want to be specific to your niche industry or market, whether it’s food, technology, beauty, travel or real estate, you can use hashtags that are popular in that segment. You can refer to the hashtags that influencers in your industry use so you can get an idea of trendy hashtags people use and follow. Another good tool is Hashtagify.me, which shows related hashtags and top influencers in a particular topic.
You can also use your business name or brand as a hashtag. Others base their hashtag on their tagline, or they create one to generate discussion among their followers and customers.
Other tips in using hashtags
While it is helpful to use hashtags, there is also danger when you overdo it. Limit the use of hashtags, especially on Twitter. On Instagram, the maximum allowable number is 30 hashtags per post. Different social networks have different cultures and behaviours, so you should not copy-paste your post across all platforms. Customise them according to what’s trending in that social media site.
Apart from hashtags related to business and entrepreneurship and anything relevant to your industry, you can also include hashtags popular for a particular day of the week, such as #traveltuesday or #foodiefriday. If there are special occasions, create a hashtag for that as well.
Again, a hashtag is all about trends. There may be a new one the next day. So, keep your eyes and ears open. Do your research on the latest discussions online. Be active on social media. Know the interests of your customers and target market. That way, you can reach out to them and communicate with them better.