Hashtag is a word or phrase preceded by a hash sign (#), used on social media websites including Twitter, to organize tweets on a specific topic. For example, if somebody searches #horse on Twitter, he will see all recent tweets (posts) with this hashtag included in the text. The main function of Twitter hashtags is to help in spreading and organizing the millions of tweets that are published on Twitter every day. Therefore, hashtags can be very useful to help you get exposure to Twitter users that are not your followers but are searching for topics with specific keywords. This is the advantage of hashtags and in general, they can really help in growing your Twitter followers and increase engagement, because tweets with hashtags get twice as much engagement as those without them and 55% more retweets.
However, before using Twitter hashtags, research them to make sure they really are appropriate for the content you want to tweet. Some hashtags have a different meaning than you think they have. You can find them by using Twitter search. Just type symbol # and start writing the word you are interested in. Twitter will automatically show you the hashtags that already are being used on Twitter. One more tool you can use is Hashtagify. It will show you the latest trending hashtags related to the topics you are interested in. Just write your keyword in their search engine and see the related hashtags as well as their popularity index. You can get this functionality free of charge. Make your own Twitter hashtag list and use them when necessary.
7 Ways How To Use Hashtags on Twitter
1. Grow your Twitter followers by following profiles that use certain hashtags. Find profiles that use hashtags with your keywords. You can find them either using a Twitter search engine or the paid app you use, for example, Crowdfire, Manageflitter or similar. When you see the list, select those profiles that look relevant to you and start following them. Monitor the results. After few days unfollow those Twitter users who didn’t follow you back.
2. Increase your tweets exposure. Do initial Twitter hashtag research and decide which of them would be more appropriate for each of your tweets considering their topics. Use Twitter search and tools like Tweetreach, Ritetag, and Hashtagify to find the best hashtags. As more active the community of your chosen hashtag is the bigger audience you can reach with the particular hashtag.
3. Avoid using very broad meaning hashtags, for, example, #advertising, #marketing and other, because spammers often use them and you might end up having fake engagement and followers.
4. Be very specific with your hashtags to get a better-targeted audience and more valuable engagement. Use as specific keywords as possible to reach an audience that would really be interested in your topics. For example, #marketing is a very broad topic, but #onlinemarketing is more specific; although it could be narrowed down even more to #facebookads if it’s appropriate for your article.
5. If you decide to create a specific Twitter hashtag for your brand, remember that it shouldn’t mention your brand name. The goal of the brand hashtag is to represent your brand values and communicate the associations you want with the brand. For example, Lays had a contest with a hashtag “Do Us A Flavor,” but Red Bull had a campaign #PutACanOnIt. If you want to see more examples of successful campaigns with brand hashtags, check out this article.
6. Don’t create complicated and long hashtags. You need them to be easily readable, memorable and usable. For example, #chocolatebuttertoast wouldn’t be a good choice, because of its complicity. #chocotoast would work much better.
7. If you don’t want to see tweets with particular keywords or hashtags, you can mute them. Click your profile picture in the top-right corner of your profile, then go to Settings and choose Muted words on the menu. Enter the word, phrase, emoji or hashtag you want to mute and click Add. Now you will see less spammy and annoying content on your Twitter timeline.