Are Hashtags Still #Relevant for Your Digital Ad Content?
If you’re active on any social media platform, you’ve likely seen (and maybe even interacted with) hashtags.
It’s been more than a decade since the # symbol rose to fame in the social media world. What began as a fun and witty way to describe a situation quickly turned into a powerful digital marketing tool for businesses.
Hashtags have been around for a while, but are they still worth incorporating into your dealership’s digital ad content? Let’s #investigate.
What Are Hashtags?
You’ve seen hashtags used in digital ad content, but what exactly do they mean? Simply put, hashtags are topics.
Just as your company’s blog posts or emails might fall into certain categories, hashtags can be used in social media to organize your content.
When a user clicks on or searches for a hashtag in Facebook, Instagram, or TikTok, content from people and businesses using that hashtag will appear. This allows the user to discover posts from accounts they might not already follow and to educate themselves more about the hashtag topic.
More importantly, incorporating hashtags into your social media and digital ad content helps your business get found by people who are interested in what you’re selling or posting about.
So just how much more engagement is possible when you use hashtags? Here are some helpful statistics:
- Twitter: Tweets from businesses using hashtags see a 33% increase in retweets and improves overall engagement 1.5x.
- Instagram: Posts with hashtags see an improved engagement rate of 12.6%.
- TikTok: 33% of all TikTok users participate in hashtag challenges, and hashtags play a big part in engagement and reach on this platform.
Why Hashtags Are Still Relevant
Hashtags can help your content get discovered.
A good hashtag can drive an entire digital marketing campaign. Here are a few examples of brands that have utilized hashtags in their social content.
Lay’s is always coming up with a new chip flavor. In this tweet, Lay’s decided to join in on the #MardiGras conversation and ask people which flavor they wish Lay’s had.
Lay’s also uses the #Lays hashtag in most of its social content as a way to create a consistent brand message. The #WishFlavors hashtag encourages people to vocalize the flavors they want to see Lay’s create in the future.
American Eagle Outfitters
Hashtags are an essential part of American Eagle’s Instagram marketing. The clothing brand encourages customers to post their own photos wearing American Eagle clothing by using the hashtag #AExME. The brand will often repost customer photos in its own feed.
The #LoveThisLook hashtag, popular within the clothing world, most likely attracts users that don’t follow American Eagle to the company’s Instagram page.
Which Hashtags Should My Business Use?
So we know that hashtags can increase your social media reach — but which hashtags should you use?
Some hashtags just make sense. If you’re a Chevy dealer in Des Moines, Iowa, you’ll likely want to use the hashtags #Chevy, #Chevrolet, and #DesMoines in many of your posts to establish your dealership’s presence in those conversations in your market.
There are also free hashtag tools available online that can help you figure out the best hashtags for the content you’re promoting.
The website Hashtagify.me is great for finding popular hashtags in your industry. For example, I searched the hashtag #ChevySilverado, and Hashtagify.me showed me other hashtags related to this topic:
According to these results, if I were to promote Chevy Silverado content, I should also consider incorporating hashtags such as #Chevy, #StreetTrucks, #Lifted, and #Trucks.
Hashtags also allow you to keep up with local or regional events. If your dealership is sponsoring a college basketball game or other community event, do some research to see if there is already a designated hashtag for the event. If not, make your own to keep up with the conversation!
3 #HelpfulHints for Hashtags
Hashtags are awesome, but you need to know a few things about them before you start #-ing away.
1. Don’t Use Spaces
When hashtagging a phrase, do not separate the words in the phrase. For example, #TwinCitiesCarDealer should not be #Twin Cities Car Dealer. Why? The full phrase will not be counted as a hashtag — only the word “Twin,” which is not relevant to your content.
2. Stick to a Few Hashtags Per Post
We’ve all seen the social media posts that seem to be just a bunch of hashtags and no actual content. Try to incorporate only two to five hashtags per post. This number can be slightly more for Instagram posts, as Instagram is a very “pro-hashtag” environment.
Using too many hashtags in your posts could clutter your copy or look spammy to audiences.
3. Use Hashtags in Sentences
It may be popular to add your hashtags at the end of your posts, but if it fits, try incorporating your hashtags within your sentences, like this:
Visit our #SpringTasticSalesEvent for deep discounts on new #ChevySilverados all month long!
Step Up Your Digital Ad Content Game with 9 Clouds
Social media is constantly developing. What’s #trending now may not be so popular even a week from now.
Worried you’ll miss something? At 9 Clouds, we keep up with the digital conversation to help you stay in the loop.
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