Twitter users originally used hashtags to categorize and identify their tweets. It became so popular that Twitter decided to integrate it into their platform and improve upon it.
Hashtags are now used to categorize tweets, to help twitter users find tweets on certain topics, and to identify trending themes. They are also a great way to get your tweets noticed.
If you didn't know yet, a hashtag is a word or phrase that is written without any spaces and prefixed with a '#' symbol. Like so: #example
With hashtags used in almost every tweet how do you make sure your tweets stand out? Here are a few tips on using hashtags in your tweets to catch fellow tweeters attention.
Follow Basic Hashtag Etiquettes
Don't use more than two, maybe three, hashtags per tweet as it can make your tweet seem spammy.
It is understandable that you want your tweet to show up in as many search results as possible on Twitter but your tweet will have little value if you use up most of the 140 characters for hashtags.
Also, you need to use hashtags that are relevant to your tweet. There may be trending hashtags and you may want to use them badly in your tweet but you will end up annoying your followers and other Twitter users with unrelated tweets.
Use Hashtags That Are Obvious
Sometimes Twitter users end up abbreviating names and using them as hashtags but the abbreviation may not always be understandable. As a result, numerous tweets often get published on the same topic but the hashtags never trend as people end up using variations of the hashtag in their tweets.
Create and use hashtags that are easy to understand so that anyone else tweeting on the same topic can understand and use your hashtag easily.
To make your hashtags more comprehensible avoid writing the whole hashtag in lower case. Use upper case characters to give more sense to your hashtag. Example: #BigEvent
Find The Right Hashtags
Sometimes it is best to use an existing hashtag instead of creating your own hashtag and waiting for it to trend. Finding trending topics is a difficult task even for long-time Twitter users.
Twitter does display the most popular hashtags but how do you find the hashtags that are just beginning to trend?
Some of the most popular tools to identify trending hashtags:
Tracking hashtags can help you find and choose which hashtag to use in your tweet.
Tracking a hashtag can give you an idea of how popular the hashtag will be and there are various tools that help track hashtags.
Real time tracking is offered by these tools:
Hashtags are best used when promoting events, conferences, etc. Many events take place every month or year; using the same hashtag for every instance of the event is a great way to build a buzz around events. Take for example #SXSW, which represents South by Southwest Interactive, Film and Music Festival that takes place every year. The organizers use the same hashtag every year and it creates a lot of buzz almost instantly.
Use the hashtag that you have chosen for your event on other social media platforms too. Although hashtags may not mean much on every site it will help people identify your hashtag when they log into Twitter.
Remind followers about your event by using the hashtag frequently in your tweets.
Use Hashtags Offline
Hashtags are universally recognizable and smart companies are using them off the web too.
Using hashtags in print advertising will make people want to get on Twitter and find the hashtag.
Some hashtags have even been painted on the pitch by sports teams so that even people watching the sporting event on their televisions will be aware of the hashtag.
Create Q&A Sessions
Hashtags are a great way for users to ask you questions and it is one of the easiest ways to build a buzz around your brand. Many celebrities and famous personalities have used hashtags to answer questions from fans and answering questions hardly takes any effort or time. Users can ask you questions by using the designated hashtag in their tweets and you can use the hashtag to find their questions.