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  • Writer's pictureJessica Morris-McKenzie

Hashtag Guide for SME’s Social Media Posts

There is plenty SME’s can do for free to get the most out of the time they spend marketing their business, with active social media accounts at the front of that list.

But if you’re not a social media user personally, the ‘how-tos’ of creating the best content can seem a bit overwhelming.

At Cornerstone Your Business we’ll create handbooks for you and your staff to use with explanations and best practise to ensure the content you put out gets the widest reach and return on investment.

One of the questions we cover in these handbooks, and get frequently asked by our clients, is how best to use hashtags? So here are a few free tips from our outsourced marketing manager Jessica on using hashtags in your business’s social media posts...

What are hashtags?

Hashtags are essentially a way to add keywords – i.e. words that users search for and algorithms pick up – to your social media posts.

Adding hashtags can put your business in front of social media users who were previously unaware of who you are and what you do, but are searching for your keywords.

Typically Facebook users will click on a hashtag within a post, while Instagram users will search for and follow hashtags using the search function. Because posts are limited in Twitter (where the use of hashtags first started) to 140 characters, users tend to only tag Tweets with one or two hashtags.

How can hashtags support your business?

Hashtags are a free way for your social media content to have a wider reach as anyone searching for or following that hashtag could potentially see your post. Plus you’ll be targeting the right market; those social media users actively searching for your keywords.

Not only that, but they will support your brand image, with the creation of your own branded hashtags enhancing awareness of your brand and showing you have your finger on the pulse of the latest issues and news. Creating your own also means customers or influencers posting about your business can include your branded hashtag to drive recognition of your offering with their followers too.

Using hashtags for a campaign is a great way to increase your social media following and engagement too, such as through a #competition or #giveaway or jumping on the back of weekly hashtags such as #FollowFriday and #ThrowbackThursday.

Hashtag best practice...

There are a few things to remember when creating hashtags for your social media posts:

  • If you type the keywords which fit with what you’re promoting into the search bar of the social media site you’re using, other hashtags and accounts which are trending will show; meaning you can use those with the greatest following, as well as getting your wording correct.

  • Don’t forget that punctuation can’t be used in hashtags – which is important to remember when creating your own hashtags for your brand, as you won’t be able to use ampersands or apostrophes for example.

  • More isn’t necessarily better. Think quality over quantity, using the hashtags you think will be most relevant rather than dozens of less relevant ones.

  • Narrow down your market. If you’re jumping on the back of a trending hashtag, you’re likely to get lost unless you make it specific to your locality or business. For example, instead of #Christmas2021 you could put #CheshireChristmas2021

  • Your business’s social accounts will need to be public for others to see what you’re posting.

  • Using analytics tools can ensure you’re using relevant hashtags, and show you which ones are working best for you.

Of course there are plenty of other tips and tricks for using hashtags that we can support your business with. Give Marketing Manager Jess a call on 07929 905 229 for a free, no obligation chat.


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