Harnessing The Power Of Hashtags
I’m going to admit something a bit embarrassing here. But you have to promise me you won’t share it with anyone. Are you ready? As totally cool as I am, I was a Twitter holdout until very recently. I know Ashton Kutcher is like this awesome Twitter guru or something but I just felt like Twitter wasn’t for me. I’m more of a Facebook sort of girl. (And before that, MySpace… and before that… LiveJournal… and before that… Xanga… well, you get the idea.)
I honestly kind of avoided all the Twitter hype… in the same way that I’ve never watched the movie Titantic. When everyone starts talking about the same thing, at the same time, it’s kind of a turnoff for me. Not that I’m all holier-than-thou and think I’m cool than everyone else. But well… I’m sort of a big deal.
Trendsetter Plays Catch-up
The thing with being a trendsetter is that it’s a little embarrassing when you discover something AFTER everyone else. So by the time everyone seemed to be Tweeting and Twittering away, I felt like it was better to just ignore it. I mean… how sad to start with 0 followers. And how do people even find one another on Twitter anyway?
Eventually, it became painfully apparent that in order to grow my online business, Twitter, Tweeting, and hashtags needed to quickly become part of my vocabulary. If you’re new to Twitter or if you’re just not sure whether or not you’re “doing it right,” I’ve put together something amazing I’ve discovered about hashtags.
Hashtags help people find you on Twitter.
Twitter is a real-time, active conversation, which is what really sets it apart from other social media networks. In order to join the conversation, and get people to read your tweets, you gotta use hashtags.
What The F Is A Hashtag?
I know, that’s totally what I was wondering too. Hashtags are like keywords. Sometimes they’re just a series of characters (like a secret code for in-crowd). They’re preceded by the # (hash) symbol.
When a Twitter user clicks on a hashtag (or searches for one), they’ll see other recent tweets with that hashtag. Hashtags may be people’s names, company names, ideas, events, groups, topics, or other information that’s trending on Twitter.
Why Use Hashtags?
As I mentioned above, it can be intimidating trying to figure out who to follow and how to get people to follow you. Sure, you add your friends and coworkers, but then what? You can’t follow everyone on Earth and you don’t have time to sort through all of those Tweets anyhow.
That’s where hashtags come in. They help you find people with common interests and they help people find you.
If you’re interested in the upcoming Facebook IPO, you can search the hashtag #Facebook and find tons of thoughts and news about it. If you want to connect with people interested in and knowledgeable about social media marketing, you can search #social media #marketing.
Next time, I’ll take a look at how to use tweets and hashtags to generate customers, so stay tuned…