The hashtag: from humble beginnings to becoming as important as an emoticon to add additional context, the hashtag is pretty omnipresent. You see the hashtag addict (usually on instagram: #selfie #yoga etc.), and you see people who are a little hashtag shy, maybe using it occasionally. You’ve probably even met people who speak in hashtags: “Going shopping, hashtag awesome!”.
The history of the hashtag is an interesting one. There’s a great article on CopyPress that’s worth reading if you want to learn your hashtag history. It’s interesting to note that the Hashtag didn’t just start on Twitter.
According to the article, “The first appearance of hashtags on the Internet was in Internet Relay Chat, or IRC. Created in 1988, IRC is a network where users communicate to one another through channels, signified by the pound sign. #London would be a channel of people talking about London, #singles with single people, and so on and so forth. With the IRC community growing to almost half a million users, they needed a name for the titles of these channels, in which they decided on – you guessed it – the hashtag.”
But with the advent of Social Media, the humble hashtag has taken on a whole new life, and what’s more, can be an effective tool in your social marketing arsenal. I asked the Community Manager here at MarketMeSuite, Allison Davis (@Allison51090), and avid hashtagger (is that a word? well, it is now…), how she takes this fun concept, and actually makes it productive for her role in our business, and she gave me a list of 5 ways she uses hashtags to make her social marketing even more productive.
With different trends on the rise, it’s important to keep an out when hashtags are beginning to trend to jump right into the conversation. It’s equally important to know when they aren’t trending as much. Using Hashtags.org, you can follow all the latest hashtags, and how well they are doing on social. Here at MarketMeSuite, we like to be on top of every hot topic with a social media/small business focus. It helps us keep our fans and followers up to date by providing our ‘Follow Up Friday’ every Friday afternoon!
Best part: You can track your hashtags. Listen and measure in different Twitter conversations while tracking how well your hashtags are doing.
This is one of our newest favorites in the MarketMeSuite office. Not only can we easily track every hashtag and conversation, we can track them on every network! You can interact and engage right from your board on Facebook, Twitter, Google+, Instagram, and Vine.
Best part: Create and customize your own tagboard that updates regularly.
Of course, our favorite in the MarketMeSuite office is our real-time search feature. Real-time search is great to monitor social networks for mentions of your company, name, brand or competitors’ names or brands.
Best part: You can Geo-target your results and search for any keyword, in any location around the world!
Our Community Managers personal favorite! Before Twitter analytics were live, this was our go to Twitter tool. Track and analyze all your best tweets all the way back from when you first started tweeting. They even take it one step further and provide the best days and times when you’re getting the most interactions. This really helps us in the MarketMeSuite office show our progress and learn exactly what our fans and followers are engaging with.
Best part: You can track your top hashtags and even see how many times your fans and followers are engaging with each one.
Whether a beginner or expert, doesn’t matter. We’re all looking for the best hashtag to use! This tool is designed to do just that. Install RiteTag right to your web browser and see the strength of each hashtag you wish to use.
Best part: The extension works on almost all browsers! It will follow you everywhere.
#Hashtag #Awesome #WhatDoYouThink
Do you have any other tricks for effective use of the humble hashtag? That would be #awesome. Please share by commenting below!