The hashtag is arguably the most important Twitter feature and is, perhaps, its most unique. That “pound” or “hash” sign makes the keywords in your tweets stand out as clickable links which connect to any other tweets using the same hashtag. This simple feature has opened a whole new field of marketing known as hashtag marketing.
Brand name hashtag marketing
The most common type of hashtags are those made up of your personal or brand name. It won’t take too much to recognize who would use #Pepsi or #StevenKalonzi as their prefered hashtags – Pepsi Inc. and a dude named Kalonzi, in case you’re wondering. These sorts of hashtags clearly identify their owners or users.
Xbox demonstrates this with this tweet:
— Xbox (@Xbox) July 15, 2017
The second most commonly used hashtags involve products or services you offer. These hashtags are often used in instances where you have widely popular products that might outshine your brand name.
For example, everyone knows Oreos. But, how many of us have ever heard of Mondelez International?
— Mondelēz Intl (@MDLZ) July 6, 2017
They are the company that makes the delicious treats. They certainly have a product which is bigger than their name! Let’s assume you’re an eatery that specializes in delicious breakfasts; your hashtag marketing would look something like this:
— Horizon Cafe (@HorizonCafeChgo) July 16, 2017
A combination of both
You are also allowed to use both your brand name and your product if you have a famous brand name as well as several popular products. Using both names in your hashtag will allow for instant recognizability.
Chrysler is known across the world. The 300, one of their more popular cars, is also a vehicle that is instantly recognizable. It make sense for the company to use #Chrysler300 as a hashtag for that particular line. This will distinguish it form the entry level Chrysler 200.
Trending hashtags coupled with your brand or product
You’re allowed to cheat – just a little – when marketing on Twitter by using trending hashtags and incorporating them into your tweets. This strategy would be ideal if you are a business that is just starting out and are yet to achieve an established identity.
The way to go about this is to find a few hashtags that are already trending and attach them to your product, service, or brand name. Here’s an example:
— HCL Technologies (@hcltech) July 17, 2017
HCL is a well known company with offices all over the world. That fact didn’t stop their hashtag marketing team from using the always-trending #QOTD (Quote Of The Day) tag, and the weekly-trending #MondayMotivation, to increase their reach.
An invented word or phrase
This hashtag marketing strategy is going to need a little creativity on your behalf. The idea is to come up with a combination of letters or words to create something that seems legit, but really isn’t.
If there is one person you can learn this method from it is Jimmy Fallon. He has weekly segments where he makes up hashtags for his followers to reply to. #MyWeirdWaiter was one that proved to be quite popular:
— Ruby Uzzell (@rubyred8D) June 13, 2017
Piggybacking on an established brand
Airbnb is an online community marketplace that connects people who are looking for lodging with those that have space to rent. It is a global brand that is recognized in the travel industry. This guy, who is in a similar business, is piggybacking on the larger company’s fame to promote his brand. Have a look:
— Tyler Knudtson 💻🏠 (@LaptopLandlord) May 23, 2017
Anyone looking for the Airbnb hashtag will eventually come across his tweet as their hashtag is included in his tweet. This can help him establish himself alongside a larger brand in a similar industry.
Actually using hashtags in your hashtag marketing
Studies have shown that tweets with one or more hashtags have a 55% chance of getting retweeted. Surprisingly, that percentage declines when you use more than two hashtags. Find two relevant hashtags and stick to them. Or this is what you will be tweeting:
— Ashley Greene (@AshleyMGreene) July 9, 2017
Here is the excessively hashtagged tweet to which she was referring:
— Ashley Greene (@AshleyMGreene) July 9, 2017
She’s right, four is annoying!
Add other media
If you really want to extend the reach of your tweets you will need to include more than text. The best way to achieve this is to include media in them. Some studies have shown that attaching images, GIFs, or videos increase your tweets’ reach by a factor of 3, 6, and 9, respectively. In other words, a tweet with an image attached to it gets three times more engagement than one that doesn’t.
While you’re at it, why not add that hashtag to the image for greater recall?
— Xbox (@Xbox) July 13, 2017
Use links during your hashtag marketing
Another factor that will increase your tweets’ engagement rates is including links in them. The links could be used to send your readers back to your website or product sales page. Nike had people talking about the #2017PeachJam, but they snuck in their product landing page as well:
As seen on court at #2017PeachJam. 🍑🏀
— Nike Basketball (@nikebasketball) July 14, 2017
Of course, a point to remember here is that hashtags themselves are links that lead to related tweets on Twitter. If you want the focus to remain on the links, it would be wise to limit the number of hashtags you use to the bare minimum.
When should you tweet?
You aren’t going to get your message across if the time you send your tweet out happens to be the time when most of your intended audiences aren’t on Twitter. There are many studies that were done to determine when it was that you would have the maximum engagement.
The most useful tool for this is Tweriod. It can help you establish when your audience is on Twitter. It will be up to your tracking to see when they are most receptive to taking action on your hashtags and the tweets they are in.
The advantages of hashtag marketing
Twitter, and more specifically hashtag marketing, can be used to establish and grow your brand online. It is a perfect way to get your brand in front of millions of people without it costing you much time and money. You won’t doubt what brand this tweet represents:
— Dell (@Dell) July 19, 2017
Promotion of events and products
Apart from your brand you can sell your products to potential customers. It is, in fact, the perfect platform for you to get people to any events that you have planned and will have the products on sale or offer, Twitter would be the ideal platform to push the announcement or invitation on. That is because it is real-time and people see your message instantly.
One of the biggest events of the year anywhere is going on right now in San Diego. Notice how they customize their hashtag for their event yearly:
— San Diego Comic-Con (@Comic_Con) July 20, 2017
Announcement of competitions
Competitions and quizzes are quite popular on Twitter. Many established brands use them to draw in fans, customers, and people who simply love winning prizes. If you use popular hashtags like #Win, #Giveaways, or #Competition you will be able to attract a lot of visitors. You will be surprised how much engagement you will get with this strategy:
— Wilko (@LoveWilko) July 14, 2017
Of course, you can gain even more traction in an even shorter time by opting for our proven and guaranteed Twitter Retweets Service. This can do a lot to grab people’s attention during those few brief moments when they scroll by your tweet. Admit that you noticed that the tweet above had over 4,600 retweets, and that this number mattered, to see why the service works.
Engagement, chatting, and community building
You can use your hashtags to draw the attention of people who are looking for them and use it as a chat handle to keep the engagement going. Eventually, you should be able to build or belong to a community that has you and your brand at its core.
Trendjacking or newsjacking
You can consider this method to be the “guerilla” tactic of hashtag marketing. Try and find some of the day’s trending hashtags and see what they have by way of followers or users. Since the numbers will be unusually high, it won’t be too difficult for you two send a tweet or two with the hashtag in them.
Be careful. This is a method that will definitely get you some serious views, but it could turn awry if you’re not aware why the hashtags are trending. During the Arab Spring in Cairo, there were people getting shot and bloodied but Kenneth Cole thought it was something to joke about:
— Siddharth Pandey (@sid_pandey1) October 11, 2016
Examples of great hashtag marketing campaigns
Coca Cola launched this campaign along with the personalized bottles campaign where people would take pictures of their names or those they cared about that were on their Cokes, instead of the brand’s label, and share it with the world. It was successful on a massive scale and sales went through the roof:
— Ashlee Brooke (@ashleebboyd) May 10, 2017
In 2016, Esurance advertised that people would save 30% if they got on board with them by creating and using the hashtag made of their name and “Save30.” They followed that with a sweepstake for everyone that did come on board. Needless to say, they saw a huge rise in the number of followers (261,000) and entrants for the competition (200,000):
— Michelle Richardson (@Michelle83237) February 8, 2016
When the Make-A-Wish foundation took up the case of Miles “Batkid” Scott, they couldn’t have possibly thought they would touch hearts globally. Scott, a cancer survivor, made a wish that he wanted to be Batkid. The call was taken up not only in the real world, but on Twitter with the hashtag #SFBatKid. Even today he continues to inspire and touch hearts with a documentary on his life, “Batkid Begins.”
— patricia s wilson (@pilarwish) April 28, 2017
Have you ever wondered what your pets are up to when you’re not at home? No, this isn’t the script to that kind of movie. This was the theme of Nest’s hashtag marketing campaign of the best videos ever caught on their home security cameras. Here are two of the best:
If you can come up with a campaign that was nearly as successful as these four, you will be well on your way to becoming an online marketing guru.
Use hashtags to execute the perfect hashtag marketing campaign
As we come to the end of this post, you will have gained enough information to go out and launch your own hashtag marketing campaign. The points covered include:
- Creating the perfect hashtag: Come up with a hashtag that stands out.
- Adopting a great strategy: Compose the perfect tweet to grab attention and create engagement.
- Why you need to start your own campaign now: Hashtag marketing can do wonders for your sales and brand establishment.
- A few examples to emulate: Whether it is touching people’s hearts or reaching out on a massive scale, find your thing and implement it for success.
You will need to follow everything we have discussed so far if you are going to execute the perfect hashtag marketing campaign. If you do you will have a weapon that could launch your business to the next level.