Hashtags – The Basics

Today, I want to introduce you to hashtags.  If you are a new blogger you might be wondering what they are and how you should be using them to help your blog.  If you are a more experienced blogger you might be wondering how to up your hashtag game and while I won’t spill those particular beans in this post, I can set the scene.

Hashtags the basics

So, what is a hashtag?

A word or group of words preceeded by the # symbol.

Which networks use hashtags?  

Hashtags were made famous on Twitter, but now some other networks have adopted them, namely Facebook, Instagram, Google +, some with more success than others. Use of hashtags on Facebook is picking up, after a slow start when they were first introduced.

How do they help you?  

Hashtags are really powerful.  They can connect you to likeminded people instantly, by putting your content in a focused stream.  They also allow you to give information in real time, e.g. tweeting at an event.  Tweets with hashtags get two times the engagement than tweets without.

How do they work?

Hashtags can be put anywhere in your tweet, not just at the end.  Hashtags make your content visible to people outside your following.

How many is too many?  

Twitter officials state no more than two hashtags per tweet.  Any more than two devalues the impact of the previous hashtag.  Some experts say more than two drops engagement by, on average 17%.  Experts on Instagram seem to favour around five hashtags, but the stats show interaction is higher on posts with 11+ hashtags.

What is a Twitter Chat?

These are group chats or Q&As around a theme, using a specific #.

Which hashtags should you use?

A popular hashtag might seem like a good one to use.  Just bear in mind your tweet/status or picture may get lost in the huge stream.  Focus on hashtags that make sense, not just random words tenuously linked to your tweet/image.  Explore the hashtag before you use it.  Make sure it leads to what you think it will lead to and there are no nasty surprises!

Do you use hashtags?  On which networks?  Do you have one that always works well for you?

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12 comments on Hashtags – The Basics

  1. Amy @ Mr and Mrs T Plus Three
    August 28, 2015 at 10:12 am (3 years ago)

    This is so helpful! I did not know that about the IG # thing…I suppose mathematically speaking the more # the more views a picture is likely to get as it increases the chance of people looking at that particular #. Interesting stuff, thank you xxx
    Amy @ Mr and Mrs T Plus Three recently posted…The Style Edit: Storksak Autumn/Winter collectionMy Profile

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  2. Random Musings
    August 28, 2015 at 12:33 pm (3 years ago)

    I just did a post on hashtags too, how weird! I know when I first started out on Twitter it was one of the things I struggled with. I used them, but not correctly. I tended to use jokey ones rather than focused ones. #thelist
    Debbie
    Random Musings recently posted…Guest Post: My Experience of the Blogosphere by HMy Profile

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  3. Alice Megan
    August 28, 2015 at 4:23 pm (3 years ago)

    I’ve been experimenting with hashtags on instagram to decide whether to use apps or not and I’ve found I much prefer picking one or two hashtags myself than a full comment of random tags, I get less engagement but it is more targeted and reaches people that want to see my post
    Alice Megan recently posted…Autumn bedroom wishlistMy Profile

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  4. Ryan Biddulph
    August 30, 2015 at 7:50 pm (3 years ago)

    Hi Aby,

    Excellent tips 😉

    I use ’em on Facebook here and there; yes, HTs are getting more popular on the network. Hashtags seem to work well on Twitter and Instagram because each network’s audience vibes with the marketing tactic.

    Thanks for sharing!

    Ryan
    Ryan Biddulph recently posted…Meet the Inspiring Danny FloodMy Profile

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  5. Alison
    September 2, 2015 at 7:58 pm (3 years ago)

    Very handy, thank you. I’m just starting to experiment with hashtags a bit more on Twitter, starting with #pbloggers and suchlike. Interesting that more than 2 decreases engagement; I guess it makes people’s eyes glaze over. #thelist
    Alison recently posted…Meal Plan: 31/08/15 – 05/09/15My Profile

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  6. Kristen
    May 24, 2016 at 12:35 am (3 years ago)

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    Kristen recently posted…KristenMy Profile

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