“Are you using hashtags?” is one of those questions we typically hear with any conversation regarding Twitter strategies. In case you aren’t sure, a hashtag is really just a way of categorizing your tweets so they’re easier to find in a Twitter search. A “hashtag” is created by putting “#” in front of a word or phrase, without spaces. Pretty simple.
Why Use Hashtags: There is definitely a rhyme-and-reason to using hashtags. At its core, it’s a way to categorize your Tweets and help followers find more information on a specific topic. The real cherry on the Twitter Sundae is that, if you join in on popular conversation on Twitter using a hashtag, you increase the likelihood that you’ll get retweeted. How sweet is that? This is a practice often used during conferences and other events, whether live or online. Attendees make comments about things happening at the event or aha moments during a presentation – followed by the hashtag, so they can promote the event, and people not attending the event can get in on some of the fun.
Creating a List: Again, going back to the “rhyme-and-reason,” you need to have a strategy with your hashtags. We suggest keeping a list of the hashtags you want to use, and be sure to use them consistently. An easy way to find out if a specific hashtag is already being used is to type the hashtag you want to use into the Google search bar. If it is … it will show up. If it is not, Google will say there are no results.
What’s Trending: Ok, so you may know what your top hashtags are, but what about the other top hashtags floating around on Twitter? Try exploring the hashtags in Twitter’s “Trends” option (you will find it on the left of your main Twitter feed page, right under “Who to Follow.” You will begin to notice that tweets tagged with the same hashtag all (or mostly) discuss the same topic. Armed with that information you can create and participate in trending conversations and increase your Twitter success.
You might also want to visit www.hashtag.org, a website dedicated to hashtags, to find out everything you want to know about hashtags and more!