5 Ways to Use Hashtags Without Being #ThatGuy

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5 Ways to Use Hashtags Without Being #ThatGuy

Hashtags became instantly popular when they were introduced to us via Twitter, and then soon spread across Pinterest, Google+, Tumblr, Instagram, and the holy grail Facebook, to create the hashtag phenomenon that we experience on a daily basis today.

They are such a large part of social media culture today and they aren’t going anywhere, so it is in your best interest to learn how to properly utilize them in your social media without becoming “that guy” who is hashtag crazy.

1. Expand Your Reach Via Hashtags

Look at every major company’s traditional marketing in regards to print and television. You will notice a hashtag within most print ads and hashtags at the end of TV commercials. A very creative hashtag can quickly result in a company gaining an army of new followers.

Here is an example of an advertisement that Bud Light used during the Super Bowl to promote their new Platinum offering. The fact that they are simply displaying the product with one hashtag shows you how powerful they are.

hashtag example

2. Encourage User Engagement With Hashtags

It is no secret that our culture loves using hashtags and is overly infatuated with them. Facebook was one of the last social media platforms to incorporate the hashtag, and it is undoubtedly because the demand was there.

Every business is going to have a different target market so it will take some testing to see how each responds to hashtags. Make some posts without hashtags, some with hashtags, and then some with hashtags along with links in the post. Hashtags are a great way to simply draw attention to a post in order to help improve the click-through rate.

Want to see how common hashtags have become in our culture? Here is a hashtag filled tweet that was just posted to President Obama’s twitter:

3. Help Integrate All of Your Social Profiles Together

Most brands have several social media accounts to interact with and hashtags allow consumers to interact across social media platforms.

Just don’t go overboard with them. Too many hashtags can dilute your message and interfere with your marketing goals. Using hashtags to brand your company or a specific event can be more effective since all of the social outlets recognize hashtags.

4. Deliver Your Message More Effectively

Hashtags are a very effective means of delivering a message across social media. After the bombings at the Boston Marathon last spring, the city of Boston and the Boston Red Sox organization adopted and stood behind the #BostonStrong hashtag that quickly spread across the world. As players and fans began tweeting and retweeting the #BostonStrong hashtag it helped to bring awareness to the tragedy and also to the Boston One Fund, which was set up to help the victims of the attack. The Red Sox ended up winning the 2013 World Series championship and kept the #BostonStrong theme rolling:

5. Gather Marketing & Customer Data

Using hashtags gives you the opportunity to interact with your following and get answers to specific questions that can potentially help improve your marketing plan.

There is an entire army of people out there that are just waiting to engage with your brand and hashtags are the way to their hearts! To keep it simple, let’s assume that you owned an e-commerce website that sold widgets and you wanted to know if the white or red widget were in more demand. Posting a simple tweet such as, “Do you like red or white widgets better? #WhatWidget #WhatWidgetIsYourFavorite #RedWidget #WhiteWidget” will get you the information you desire.

Hashtags are here to stay, so get on the bandwagon and leverage them to help grow your marketing efforts.

Do not become these guys…

Or these guys…

Main image via Shutterstock
Image credit: Budlight advertisement

Jonathan Long
Jonathan Long is the Founder & CEO of Market Domination Media®, an SEO and online marketing consulting firm. Market Domination Media® also offers SEO coaching... Read Full Bio
Jonathan Long
Jonathan Long
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  • Andrew

    Really informative blog ! I hope utilizing hash-tag can helps to engage more online users for small business. Thank you for sharing unique topic.

    • Jonathan Long

      Glad you enjoyed it!

  • Michael

    Excellent information Jonathan! Sometimes people still need to remember when it is appropriate to use the hashtags and when it is overdone. We have even started to see them in the press release distribution industry RIGHT in the titles!

    24-7 Press Release Newswire

    • Jonathan Long

      Yeah, I have seen them in PR’s as well – there is no stopping the hashtag takeover 🙂

  • Arun Kallarackal

    Hi Jonathan,

    You said it right, hashtags are here to stay. Also, it acts as a whole new weapon to market things. So why let such a weapon go unused? I think every Internet Marketer should learn to exploit hashtags the right way, without overusing it.

    I experienced the power of hashtags thanks to a trending topic. Back here in India, a couple of months back, a television actor went sort of mini viral on Twitter and Facebook. Seizing the opportunity, I created a humor post and published it.

    As part of the promotion, I used two hashtags while sharing that post on Twitter and Facebook. And to my surprise, it really worked and helped me get some serious traffic. That was the day I really took notice of the powers of using hashtags the right way.

    I followed it up by using hashtags religiously. I must also admit that sometimes, I used to go overboard, using hashtags. Now, when I sit back and read those updates and Tweets, I realize that too much hashtags won’t necessarily convert into traffic!

    As this article very well describes, hashtags not just help get more reach, but also boasts other advantages like gathering customers’ data, improve user engagement etc.

    I stumbled upon this post thanks to Kingged.com. I’m going to King this post there because I feel it deserves it!


    • Jonathan Long

      Thanks for the feedback

  • Chery Schmidt

    Hello Jonathan, I have been seeing hashtags used all over and never really understood them, Your article really cleared things up for me. I guess I have been on a tweet chat where we would use #mastermind but didn;t know why.. Awesome Information here Thanks for sharing Chery :))

    P.S. I did come from Kingged.com and left a message and shared for you there as well..

    • Jonathan Long

      Very welcome, I am glad you like it!

  • Mitch Ballard

    Excellent post, using hashtags to your main keywords is always a good practice to follow.

  • Satish Kumar Ithamsetty

    Hashtags are very useful to bloggers to interact with site visitors. Here is 5 best points discussed. Thank you and This is very informative blog.

  • Collier Chestnut

    Thank you for those videos!! I love them as much as I dislike hashtags being overused. Great advice. Thanks!!

    • Jonathan Long

      Yeah those videos are great. I would expect Fallon to continue pumping them out. They are def a big hit!

  • Peter

    Hashtags are great, I know what you mean by #thatguy. I really do not like people who overload on their hashtags and it drives me insane! I like to think that maybe one or two is enough to get the message out. The purpose of this is to keep it nice and simple. The great thing about hashtags is that they bring awareness to your company/business. Many television shows have hashtags all throughout the show and this can often get them more viewers/ grow their fan bases.