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Hashtags: The Do’s and Don’ts

Ah, hashtags! Who’s confused by them? Do you love using them? Who has found how to successfully use them? Who has that one friend that makes up their own hashtags? I think we all fit into at least one or more of these categories, but really…what is all this hashtag business about?

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Before we get into the do’s and don’ts, let’s talk about what a hashtag really is!  A hashtag is the pound (#) symbol attached to words or phrases to tag or identify content within social media.  It can be used to find people with similar likes as you or a way to find information about a specific place or thing!  A few examples:  #TravelIowa, #cyclONEnation #KOAcamping

So, what are some of the do’s and don’ts of hashtags within social media?

Know the Platform – Make sure to be aware of the social media platform you are using and what role hashtags play.  For example: Instagram thrives on hashtags and using 5+ different hashtags.  This is not only accepted, but a great way of getting your photos “exposed”.  On the flip side, it’s recommended to use 3 or less hashtags on Twitter.  Facebook has slowly started using hashtags, but traditionally it’s not as successful or easily tracked as the other platforms.

Familiarize Yourself with Hashtags – If you’re going to start using hashtags on a regular basis, familiarize yourself with existing ones.  Research ones that will be effective for the content you are sharing.  For example, if I want to share photos on Instagram of some fall leaves, once I start entering a hashtag, it will give me some examples of ones that have already been used and how many times they’ve been used!  Popular ones are great to piggy-back off!  This will help ensure that your post is seen by as many people as possible.

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Don’t Make up Hashtags – I say this slightly tongue in cheek, but really…don’t make up your hashtags.  We’ve all seen that one friend, right?!

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You may be giggling, but you know someone who does this!  Yes, sometimes people do it for comedic purposes, but there are people using hashtags for the purpose that they were created and this just clouds the air!  So, don’t…just don’t!

So, that’s it!  It’s pretty simple!  And if you’re wanting more juicy tidbits about using hashtags in social media, visit this post from Social Connections, LLC: How To Be A Social Media Rockstar with Hashtags!

2 thoughts on “Hashtags: The Do’s and Don’ts

  1. Sara Broers says:

    I have stopped using Hashtags on Facebook for business purposes, as it’s nearly impossible to figure out any impressions, etc.

    1. Katy F. says:

      I am the same way!

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