Looking for Something? #Hashtags are #Helpful

Does Social Media Matter- (6)

So, people often ask me, what is a hashtag anyway? Well, it’s really just a convenient way to categorize the insane amount of information and “noise” found on social media. So, that’s the short answer. A lot of people find them adolescent, but trust me, that sentiment is slowly fading now that most businesses are catching onto the fact that they are actually useful.

How should you use a #hashtag? Well, you do want to try and avoid using 50 hashtags on all your posts, because that does get obnoxious in a hurry. However, if your post has something meaningful to say about (for example) Yoga, then yes, you may want to hashtag #Yoga. The interesting thing is, you want your hashtags to be as specific as possible. Because say you are on Instagram and you are looking at #Yoga photos, there are millions! And every second a new one pops up in the stream of #Yoga. So even though you are using a wildly popular hashtag, your 1 in millions post is probably not going to stand out for long. You might try something more specific like #AshtangaYoga or #KundaliniYoga. You get my drift? People want to know what your post is about, and people want to connect with your blog/Instagram/Twitter if you are actually posting about the specific thing that they are interested in. So don’t just spammily (new word?) hashtag every other post with #Yoga. We get it, your blog is about Yoga!

The other thing is, it’s important to make meaningful connections! So when I’m tweeting about a business that’s in Maine, I want other Maine-loving people see it and pick it up and say, hey, this is our home state talking about people in our home state. So I use #Maine to get the attention of Maine-loving people. Even if the post is about web-design, or dogs, or whatever. Especially because Mainers, in particular, like to keep it #local.

So do you see my point here? Yes, hashtags are helpful, but please use them the way you (hopefully) use language: with purpose, with meaning, even mindfully, if you will.

This is a great article I just found regarding how to craft social media posts specifically for Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn: How to Craft Perfect Posts.

And if you found this post interesting but need more detail on the hows and whys of hashtags, this is a really nice explanation and how-to guide: What is a Hashtag?