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How to use Hashtags

Brittany Rohr
Brittany Rohr

Founder and CEO

A Guide to Hashtags for Every Network in 2023

Are you familiar with hashtag usage? How about some hashtag etiquette? Before you begin, read on for all the DO’s and DON’Ts.

One of those exciting social media aspects that can be challenging to comprehend and utilize is hashtags. However, once you master them, the results start to flow in.

By effectively grouping conversations or content related to a specific topic, hashtags make it simple for users to identify stuff that interests them.

Although hashtags can be used on almost every social media site, Twitter and Instagram are where they are most often used.

Use hashtags if you’re using social media to promote your business. Hashtags can increase the engagement and reach of your brand on social media.

However, utilizing hashtags effectively entails more than merely posting on Instagram on #ThrowbackThursday.

A mix of well-liked, pertinent, and branded hashtags should be used in a social media campaign.

This article explains the fundamentals of hashtag usage on social media and the benefits of doing so.

You’ll also discover the following:

  • How to choose hashtags that will work best for your brand 
  • Why it isn’t a good idea to use only trending hashtags
  • Crucial pointers for utilizing hashtags on any social media platforms

Let’s get going.

Summary:

  • What do hashtags mean?
  • Why are hashtags used?
  • The trendiest hashtags of 2022
  • How to choose the most useful hashtags
  • How to use hashtags to enhance organic reach
  • How to utilize hashtags on all social media

What do hashtags mean?

Your keyboard’s pound sign, also known as an octothorpe, was originally used to denote numbers. Like many keyboard keys, their uses have been expanded to our technology-evolving world.

Chris Messina used it for hashtags for the first time in the summer of 2007. He entered Twitter’s offices at that point with a thought. He advised the business to use the pound symbol to put comparable Tweets together due to the platform’s concision.

The hashtag was initially employed in this context:

Since then, hashtag usage, reach, and efficacy has all increased.

Using hashtags, the social media information can be linked to a particular topic, event, theme, or discourse.

They are no longer limited to Twitter. Additionally, hashtags work well on other social networking sites. (See below for more information on how to utilize hashtags for each platform.)

Basics of hashtag

They always begin with #, but if you include any punctuation, symbols, or spaces, they will not function.

A public account should be set up. Otherwise, non-followers won’t be able to see the hashtagged content you post.

Avoid using too many words at once. The best hashtags are frequently brief and simple to remember.

Make use of precise and pertinent hashtags. It will be difficult to find and unlikely to be used by other social media users if it is too obscure.

Use a maximum of a few hashtags. Usually, more is better. Actually, it appears spammy.

Why are hashtags used?

Hashtags may be used for almost anything and are a terrific way to find others who share your interests.

As an illustration, if you run a small business, you might utilize hashtags to advertise your goods and services.

Additionally, hashtags can be used to spark a discussion or bring attention to a subject.

Using hashtags is a terrific method to stay current on news and trends.

Here are a few more justifications for why you ought to incorporate hashtags into your social media plan.

Boost interaction with your followers

Using hashtags in your postings, you can join a discussion already taking place on that social networking site. In addition, it makes your posts prominent in that conversation, which is crucial.

Greater interaction may result from this, increasing your brand’s social media activity through likes, shares, comments, and new followers.

Using branded hashtags increase brand recognition.

Developing a branded hashtag can be useful for business promotion and conversation starters.

Branded hashtags can be as straightforward as including your business name or a phrase in the hashtag.

For instance, JIF Peanut Butter created TikTok history in 2021 with the help of its trademarked hashtag #JIFRapChallenge, which featured rapper Ludacris rapping while he had peanut butter shoved up his nose.

With a little JIF in their grill, the hashtag invited users to create their own video or a Duet with Luda.

More than 200,000 impressions and 600 original movies were produced for this competition.

Another illustration is the hashtag #PlayInside, which was made famous by Nike Los Angeles during the pandemic when people were confined to their homes.

More than 68,000 postings have featured #PlayInside so far, and that number is rising.

Be a supporter of social causes.

It’s possible to rally support for a significant cause or issue by using a hashtag associated with something other than your brand.

For instance, the most retweeted Tweet of 2021 was sent by the K-pop phenomenon BTS with the hashtags #StopAsianHate and #StopAAPIHate.

Give a social media post context.

You don’t have a lot of room to post a caption on Twitter. So exactly 280 characters are used.

Longer captions on Instagram aren’t always the best. The same applies to any platform, including Facebook, Pinterest, LinkedIn, etc. Less is sometimes better.

Without wasting important characters or writing repetitious subtitles, utilizing a hashtag might be a quick method to contextualize what you’re saying.

The British transport police in Lancashire, UK, for instance, used their Twitter word limit creatively to urge communities to remain off train tracks.

Hashtags give context to this inventive Tweet, demonstrating that BTP Lancashire is participating in the World Emoji Day discussion while simultaneously sharing a significant PSA.

Help potential customers in finding you

Users can follow hashtags and other users on LinkedIn and Instagram. So another technique to make your business more discoverable to new people is to include a few well-known hashtags.

If you use the hashtag #travel, for instance, on Instagram, everybody who follows that hashtag will see your most recent post in their feed. This may help you attract new supporters.

six user-generated photographs from the #travel hashtag on Instagram

Identify sponsored alliances

Influencers and brands who collaborate with influencers should use this section.

Influencers must disclose to their followers that a piece of content is sponsored when working with marketers. It’s required by law; in 2019, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) published comprehensive advertising disclosure requirements for internet influencers. High fines may be imposed on the brand and the influencer for noncompliance.

Influencers should always include publicly obvious hashtags about sponsorship in sponsored postings.

When assessing and approving influencer material, brands should be sure to look for these hashtags.

The trendiest hashtags of 2022

The hashtags that are most widely used are only sometimes the best hashtags.

For instance, the hashtag #followme has been used in more than 575 million Instagram posts. Like-begging hashtags don’t engage your followers or give your social media post any additional context.

They appear spammy as well. And that’s not what you want.

Don’t disregard trending hashtags, though. For instance, using the daily hashtags #throwbackthursday, #flashbackfriday, or others can be a fun way for your company to contribute to a larger social media discussion.

These are the top 10 hashtags for April 14th, 2022, on Instagram:

  • #love (1.835B)
  • #instagood (1.150B)
  • #fashion (812.7M) 
  • #photooftheday (797.3M) 
  • #lovely (661.0M)
  • #art (649.9M)
  • #photography (583.1M) 
  • #happy (578.8M)
  • #picoftheday (570.8M)
  • #cute (569.1M)

Of course, popular hashtags vary depending on the social media network you’re using. The hashtags #personaldevelopment and #investment are frequently used on LinkedIn.

Popular hashtags are used in millions or even billions of posts, but they are generally accepted. They are not particular to a field or a subject. And keep your brand’s name to yourself.

Therefore, make an effort to locate certain hashtags that relate to your brand and what it stands for.

How to choose the most useful hashtags

You will need to do a little research to locate hashtags that are particular to your company, your industry, and your audience.

1. Keep track of competitor profiles and social media influencers

Start by conducting a full social media competitive analysis. Obtain information on your rivals and any key influencers in the market where your brand should have a presence.

Take notes of the hashtags they use the most often as well as the number of hashtags they use in each post. This will help you discover new keywords your rivals utilize and how well they perform with your shared target audience.

2. Learn which hashtags are trending.

RiteTag allows you to upload the photo that will go with your caption and put your social media caption in the text box.

Based on your content, RiteTag produces suggestions for popular hashtags. In addition, you’ll see the top hashtags to use to get your article noticed immediately and hashtags to use over time. For a thorough study of the hashtags, click “Get Report.”

3. Purchase a social media monitoring tool.

Using a social listening service like Hootsuite or Mentionlytics, your company may use search streams to learn which hashtags work best for each social network you’re on. Search streams simplify identifying the most widely used and effective hashtags.

4. Look for relevant hashtags

Use relevant hashtags if you already clearly understand which ones are effective for your business. These could be more focused than the trending hashtags you’re currently using, which could help you reach a more specific audience.

After clicking on a hashtag on LinkedIn, you can find additional hashtag recommendations. Clicking the ellipsis will reveal icons that say, “Discover more hashtags.”

Linkedin marketing hashtag with prompts to find similar fresh hashtags

5. Examine which hashtags worked well on earlier posts.

Keep a list of the hashtags you’ve previously used in postings. Then, check to see if there is a trend with the hashtags you used after analyzing which posts have received the most engagement.

Make it a point to integrate the hashtags that frequently appear in the most highly-liked posts in your upcoming ones.

Use a hashtag generator, number six.

It takes a lot of work to conduct all of this research and develop the appropriate hashtags for every post.

Enter the hashtag generator from Hootsuite.

Hootsuite’s AI engine will offer a unique collection of hashtags whenever you’re writing a post in Composer based on your draft; the program examines both your description and the uploaded images to suggest the most pertinent tags.

How to use hashtags to enhance organic reach

When you use hashtags, individuals who are looking for that hashtag can find your post.

If you use the hashtag #weddingplanner, someone who is engaged and looking for your services might see your post.

Utilizing hashtags that are pertinent to your company and industry is the best approach to enhance your organic reach on social media.

By researching which hashtags are commonly used in your sector, start incorporating them into your postings.

Once you have a collection of pertinent, effective hashtags, you can begin incorporating them into your posts.

But be careful—Instagram advises using no more than 3-5 hashtags for each post. This conclusion is supported by our research, which also shows that utilizing hashtags excessively can reduce your reach.

3-5 hashtag postings have a greater reach than posts with 30 hashtags.

Hashtags for TWITTER

Where to use hashtags on Twitter: Hashtags can be included anywhere in a Tweet. Use them at the beginning to emphasize, at the end to provide context, or during your content to draw attention to a particular keyword.

In addition, you can include hashtags in your Twitter bio, responses, and comments when you Retweet.

Also possible

To find hashtagged content, enter a keyword into Twitter’s search field.

View trending hashtags on the trending topics on Twitter.

Here are a few vital Twitter hashtag pointers:

Technically, you have 280 characters to use as many hashtags as you like in a Tweet. However, Twitter advises using no more than two.

Make sure your new hashtag isn’t already being used by using Twitter’s sophisticated search features.

hashtags for Instagram

Usage recommendations for hashtags: 3-5

Do not use more than 15 hashtags, always. All the hashtags will be ignored, and YouTube may even flag your content for spamming.

Where to locate hashtags on Instagram: After creating a compelling Instagram caption, add hashtags. In the comments section, you can also use hashtags when communicating with your followers.

And your Instagram Stories can include up to 10 hashtags. (However, Instagram Stories are no longer displayed to users who follow a tag or are featured on hashtag pages.

This means that while hashtags may not be as effective in exposing your Stories to new audiences, you can still use them to contextualize your content.)

You can also put hashtags in the bio section of your brand’s Instagram profile.

In the Explore section of Instagram, use the Tags tab to search for hashtags.

Observe hashtags. Therefore, if the item uses the hashtag you’re following, it will appear in your feed regardless of the originator.

Here are a few key Instagram hashtag suggestions:

Consider placing your hashtags as the first comment on the post to draw attention to the fantastic caption you’ve written.

You can view Instagram Insights if you have an Instagram Business account. Then, you can see how many hashtag impressions your profile received.

To avoid making your content less accessible to users of text-to-speech readers, avoid including hashtags in the middle of your captions or comments.

Hashtags for Facebook

Where on Facebook to look for hashtags: You can use hashtags in the comments or in any written portion of your Facebook post.

In private Facebook groups, hashtags can be used to organize content according to a theme or subject.

Marketers must keep this in mind, given the continued popularity of private channels like Facebook groups.

Bonus Organic Research Tip

  • Use the search bar to research on Facebook to look up a hashtag.
  • To view a stream of Facebook posts with a certain hashtag, click on it.
  • Utilize the “search this group” bar located under the group’s menu to look up hashtags used in private Facebook groups.

Here are a few crucial Facebook hashtag pointers:

Remember that it’s harder for marketers to track how consumers interact with your hashtags because many Facebook user accounts are private.

Observe the hashtags associated with your company and discover which public accounts contribute by visiting facebook.com/hashtag/____. In the end, add the keyword you want to search with.

Facebook insights, including hashtag impressions

Hashtags for YouTube

The usage of hashtags on YouTube is one of many approaches to direct visitors to your videos. We have 12 strategies that will increase video views for your company.

Here are a few key YouTube hashtag suggestions:

In titles and descriptions, hashtags are hyperlinked so that viewers can click on either to locate further content using the same hashtags.

The first three hashtags in the description will appear above the title of your video if you don’t include them in the title.

To find popular tags on YouTube, enter “#” into the search field.

Hashtags for LinkedIn

Where hashtags can be found on LinkedIn:

Use hashtags wherever you want in your LinkedIn posts. The ideal quantity of hashtags to utilize is 2–5.

Bonus Tips:

  • Use the search box on the platform to look up hashtags.
  • The “news and views” area of the home page will display the most popular hashtags on LinkedIn.

As you compose an update, LinkedIn will recommend hashtags.

Two key LinkedIn hashtag suggestions:

  • A professional platform is LinkedIn. Also, keep hashtag usage professional.
  • To see current posts using a certain hashtag on LinkedIn, follow that hashtag.
Hashtags for Pinterest

Where hashtags can be found on Pinterest:

When utilized properly, hashtags can boost your content, even if Pinterest is thought of as more of a keyword engine.

When composing a Pin description or a written description when repinning, remember to include Pinterest hashtags if you’re utilizing Pinterest for business.

Even when making a new Pin, Pinterest provides hashtag ideas (on mobile devices only).

Here are a few key Pinterest hashtag suggestions:

  • Pinterest can be compared to a search engine. Use hashtags that can be searched for are targeted, and include pertinent terms.
  • Limit the number of hashtags in a Pin description to 20.
hashtags for TikTok

Usage recommendations for hashtags: 3-5

Where hashtags can be found on TikTok:

On TikTok, hashtags can be discovered on the Discover tab or in the video descriptions.

You may view trending hashtags and any videos that are currently using them on Discover.

You can also utilize the search bar to locate hashtags that interest you.

Here are a few vital TikTok hashtag suggestions:

First, utilize both specific and popular hashtags.

Then, in captions, make room for your hashtags.

Finally, create a branded hashtag challenge to engage your audience and increase brand exposure.

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