Reaching out to a global audience is essential for brands to thrive. One smart and cost-effective way to do this is by having an active social media presence. While most brands are already there and posting actively for their audience to engage, they might not be doing it all right. One question that most businesses ponder about is the relevance of certain social media practices in the evolving scope of online marketing.
As a continually evolving stream of marketing, social media has experienced a lot of changes over the past decade, one such trend that had it's the origin on Twitter and went on to become relevant on all platforms is the #Hashtag. But do the hashtags remain relevant even in this new decade in 2020, and what's the future of hashtags in marketing?
Before we begin, let's understand what hashtags, how you could use them, and their relevance in 2020 is.
What Are Hashtags?
Putting it in the simplest terms, hashtags are nothing but topics that are grouped across social media patterns. This is similar to how all the products, services, and marketing campaigns are grouped for ease of access and future reference. Marketers use hashtags to group topics together.
When you continue to post on all the social media platforms using the same hashtag, it helps the user find all the topics in one place. Imagine you go onto a social platform and click or search for a hashtag like #nature it would help you see posts on the subject from across the world, and from users of various demographics in one place.
When brands adopt this mechanism in their marketing, they make it easy for their users from across the globe to find the product or service based on the hashtag.
Creating an Impact Through Hashtag
When businesses use hashtags consistently across platforms, it creates an engaged userbase of the audience, promotes conversations, and increase engagement for the brands. Here are a few interesting statistics on the impact that hashtags create on various platforms.
Twitter: Tweets with a hashtag have a longer life than the posts without a hashtag.
Facebook: Over 122 interactions happen on a post that has two or more hashtags.
Instagram:Posts with hashtags have 12% more engagement than those without hashtags.
And the relevance of hashtags only keeps increasing. This is the best time to start using hashtags in your social media post if you've not been doing so already! The Relevance of Hashtags in 2020
According to recent research, over 70% of a brand's social media content is ignored or goes unseen. In such a scenario, it is vital for brands to stay relevant by using the right hashtags and grouping their content in a way that it's easily discoverable to their target audience.
How to Use a Hashtag?
While it is essential to use a hashtag to stay relevant, it is also vital to make sure the hashtag is relevant to your post, product, or service. But does it make sense to use hashtags that are just about your product or business? If you answered yes, think again. Because your customer is probably not looking for your hashtag, and even if he is, they already know about your brand, and you are not reaching out to a prospect, but only engaging with your existing customers.
Does that mean you should use random hashtags that are just popular? Well, the answer is no again. Confused? Well, the explanation and approach to this are simple. You need to do a combination of Industry Hashtags, Product Hashtags, and Product Hashtags to get your post out there! Here are a few tips on using hashtags in your posts.
Don't Overuse Hashtags!
Use only a few relevant hashtags. When you overdo hashtags, it takes away the focus from your core content.
- #facebook - Don’t do this!
Use Sensible Words or Combinations
Also, make sure you do not use random words that are hashtags. The power of a hashtag is only when a lot of people continue to use it, or even you could use it over and over again.
#Nobody #likes #a #post #that #looks #like #this. #So #avoid #doing #it
Develop a Brand Hashtag
Build a hashtag that is unique to your brand and continue to use it in all your posts. But get creative and create hashtags that are more than just your brand name. Your brand hashtag should be something that will encourage all your audience to use it themselves in all their posts.
Few brands that got it right
- #ShareACoke - Coca Cola
- #LikeAGirl - Always
- #ThisGirlCan - Sport England
Future of Hashtags in Marketing
If data and trends are to go by, the popularity and significance of hashtags will only continue to increase in relevance in 2020 and beyond. So, make sure every campaign, every communication, and every online presence of your brand is with a hashtag that engages your audience. Here's how Hashtags will help your brand in 2020:
Makes Content Discoverable
The right hashtags help your content reach to a broader range of audience as social media platform's algorithms group your hashtags with similar content and share it with an audience who have consumed content of this pattern in the past.
The right use of hashtags increases engagement and conversations among your target audience and other businesses.
Increase User Engagement
The right use of hashtags will encourage users to create communications and conversations among their users. Brands can use this as a great PR mechanism along with helping build a conversation at times when they're going through a fierce face or bad reputation.
In short, Hashtags are here to stay, and the right use of them can not just help you reach out to a broader base of the audience but also tap into new avenues that you might not have thought of before. Ensure you start incorporating them in all your social media posts and watch your online brand presence increase significantly.