What is a hashtag and what is it for?

09 June 2021

Wouldn’t it be great to be able to filter the searches we do on social media? So no worries because it already exists and I am here to explain how you can do it … by using hashtags… and what is a hashtag?

What is a hashtag?

The hashtag is a word that is written after the pound symbol (#). And it can be made up of one or more words in a row, without a space. For example:

#newpost #marketingdigital #social or #marketing #Instagram #hashtag

It is used to tag the content that you upload to different social networks within a category. Hashtags are currently used on: Instagram, Twitter, Facebook (although to a lesser extent), TikTok and LinkedIn.

On Instagram, Twitter and TikTok, hashtags are very important and if you use these tags wisely you can make your publications thrive and also:

  • Reach more followers or potential customers
  • Gain more visibility within your sector
  • Make your content go viral

What are hashtags for?

I have already explained what a hashtag is and even included a spoiler about what they are.
Some people use these hashtags excessively without any clear objective, but the truth is that if you use these tags strategically and with sense, it can help you massively improve the results of your social networks.

This social media resource is used to tag content so you can:

  • Search on a specific topic to collect all the information
  • Be easily found by your target audience
  • Give visibility to a specific topic

Take this example: one of the uses of hashtags is to share information about events. Probably you have noticed that each event has its own hashtag, and even some tv programs have them too. This is so that the people attending or the audience can share content with that hashtag.

In this way, the host company or the tv program can know how many people have interacted with them and improve the visibility and reach of their event.

How hashtags are used

Adding hashtags is quite straightforward, but before you get going you need to identify the topic you are talking about on social media to choose the right one.

You can add hashtags:

✅ At the end of the publication 

✅  or integrated within the text

Tips for using your hashtags

You already know what a hashtag is, what it’s for and how to use it, so let’s look at some tips.

  • Use specific words, don’t add the typical unreadable hashtag.

The hashtags have to be short so users can easily follow the thread of what you are writing. For example:

Congress of #marketingdigital vs. #digitalmarketingcongress

  • Use hashtags related to your sector or theme

Don’t fill your tweet or Instagram post with hashtags that don’t make sense within your content. You will only attract an audience that is not really interested in what you are talking about. Create a strategy and publish content related to your brand.

Let’s see an example. If you are a restaurant you can share hashtags such as: #foodie #comida #foodporn. But not hashtags like: #marketingdigital #running or #jazz.

  • Control the number of hashtags you upload for each post.

Try to find a middle ground, neither zero hashtags nor 30. If you add a lot of tags it will seem that you are trying to spam and you will not attract the attention of your target audience. Use a normal number of hashtags so it’s not too unreadable.

  • Search for hashtags with Metricool

If you don’t know which hashtags to add to your Instagram posts, Metricool helps you choose them with the hashtag search engine feature. 

It is easy to use, but you need to be a Premium user. When you schedule your content on Instagram from Metricool, write the keyword to search for hashtags in the Hashtag box. Then, automatically, the platform will display a list with the most popular ones and the number of posts that have been published with that hashtag.

Now you just have to decide which one you want to add to your post. And these are the main tips for you to thrive with your social media marketing strategy,  gain visibility with hashtags and reach your goals. 

If you have any questions I will read your comments, and if you want to learn more terms of social networks or digital marketing, I leave you this link:

Sara Martín Sara Martín , 09 June 2021

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