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Twitter Hashtags – introduction, popularity, tips, ideas and resources

By October 1, 2014October 14th, 2014All members, Social media, Twitter

The hashtag symbol look like this: #

The # symbol is followed by unbroken text. This can be one word, i.e. #book or a string of characters: #photography

Hashtags have only been around since 2007. They were invented by Chris Messina:

Hashtags are used to tag social media posts with relevant keywords. Therefore, a good place to start is with your alphabetical list of keywords / keyword phrases, which I recommend you print out and display in your office (if you have an office, that is!)

Social media websites use hashtags to track the popularity of topics (AKA ‘trending’ within Twitter) and users can use them for search purposes. Some marketers ride on the back of successful hashtags and embed them within their Tweets (I think that this is OK if the hashtag is actually relevant to your brand).

Visit to find out what is currently trending on Twitter:

As you will see, this site has a search box at the top. The results cover the last 24 hours. Note that you can use for free (and there is a lot on offer for free). However, their analytics come with a fee.

An alternative is  …this site allows you to search amongst millions of Twitter hashtags and find the most popular ones.

Here are some tips:

* Include hashtags within a reasonable proportion of your Tweets (personally I would say use them in less than 50% of the time)

* Take a look at how your competitors use hashtags

* I recommend that you have a hashtag for your brand

* You could launch a competition using a hashtag (Audi did this using #WantAnR8 and it went viral)

As someone who provides social media marketing training and consultancy I talk about the use of hashtags during seminars, talks and client meetings. The Marketing Compass website is hashtag enabled (by all means use them within your activity updates).

Twitter provides useful analytics via:  Hint: login to Twitter before you click on this link and you will see something like this: Twitter analytics





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