The New Social Media Search Tool – Hashtags

June 27, 2013

social media, hashtags, blog, keywords, keyword research, hashtag

The New Social Media Search Tool – Hashtags


Are you using hashtags on your social media platforms, including Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Google+ and  Pinterest?  If not, you need to start today!

What are hashtags?

A hashtag is simply a phrase or keyword with a the pound sign (#) placed in front of it. I know, it seems so simple but don’t underestimate the power it contains.

Once you hashtag a word in social media, all account users can see it. It goes into the world of hashtags. This allows users who are not following you to see your tweets and content that you put out on various social media platforms. So to keep it simple, you are only one hash-tagged word away from possibly being seen by thousands, if not millions of people through social media.

How do I use hashtags?

There is definitely some hashtag courtesy that you need to be aware of.

  • It is recommended that you only use hashtags for 1-3 words per tweet or post. If possible, 1-2 words is better. You don’t want to flood your tweets and posts with hashed words that make your brand or business look like spam. You want your tweets and posts to be simple and filled with content to direct the user back to your blog or link that you are promoting.
  • The hashtags you use inside of a sentence should flow naturally and be words you want to be connected with. Here is a good example:
Considering #licensing your #art? Read this first!

and here is an example of what not to do:

#Learn about #art #licensing with Teresa #Kogut. Read her #articles for #insight into the #licensing #industry.

  • You can type your hashtags after your post instead of inside the post, example:
Considering licensing your art? Read this first! #art #licensing #artlicensing

  • Don’t use hashtags with every post or tweet. It really isn’t necessary. Save them for promoting your articles, webinars, and other news about your business.
  • Don’t do this #readmyarticlesaboutartlicensing. This will be unrecognizable in a search and won’t do you any good…..and it’s a little annoying to try and read.
  • Don’t be a spammer by using hashtags in comments on someone else’s page.
  • Research a hashtag before using it. Research your top 7 keywords to see if other people are using it and what they are saying. Do your keywords attract the attention and people you want to connect with?

How do I know what keywords to use with a hashtag?

Start with your own blog’s tag cloud. What words do you consistently use in your content. This will give you a jumping off point. Then research, research, research. Use the keywords you use in your blog and type them in Twitter’s built-in search tool. You can use their Advanced Search to look for anything you want and include or exclude things like retweets, etc. so you only see the data that is useful to you.

Dashboard Twitter tools like HootSuite also let you set up streams for particular keywords to help you continuously monitor the Twitter conversation on your topic.

Google+ has a great built-in search function, too. Use the search box at the top of any Google+ screen to run an initial search, then filter your results for groups of people or geographical location using the drop-down menus on the search results page.

To do a search on Facebook, run your search using the search box at the top of your personal Facebook page (your fan page won’t have a search box). You can use hashtags or not. After you type in a keyword, choose from the search filters in the left sidebar. Choose public posts to see who is talking about it or pages to see what your competitors are up to.

The time is now! Start posting on all your social media platforms using simple and relevant keywords with hashtags keeping in mind all the above dos and donts.

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