Hashtag Best Practices for Businesses in 2022

It’s 7.30 am. You’re munching on granola and scrolling through Instagram when you spot a post of a competitor’s business with a hundred likes. You scowl and angrily sip your coffee. How could they get a hundred likes on their most recent post when your post only got four? What are they doing that you aren’t?

Chances are that this business uses a hashtag strategy to increase engagement.

Understanding hashtags is a great way to bring in new customers. This article will discuss hashtag best practices – including what hashtags you should use to reach the right audience, how many hashtags you should use, and other tips to help you get the most out of hashtags.

Why should you use hashtags for your business?

On average, 55,000 Facebook posts, 6000 tweets, and 700 Instagram posts are published worldwide every second. That’s a lot of internet clutter to break through. Adding hashtags makes your content more discoverable as people interested in specific terms will search them up and discover hashtagged content.

Common hashtag practices

There are many unspoken rules on what you should and shouldn’t do regarding hashtags. Standard best practices include capitalising each word of your hashtag to make it more readable and tracking your post performance on each platform to see if your strategy is working. It would also help if used a mixture of popular, niche, and branded hashtags to reach a larger audience and have three sets of hashtags on various posts.

Some practices to avoid are using spaces, punctuation, and symbols. You should also avoid creating hashtags with more than 3-4 words grouped, as this makes them harder to read and less discoverable.

How many hashtags should you use for your posts?

Different social media platforms have different optimal numbers of hashtags to use for the best possible engagement.

  • Facebook’s optimal number is 2-3 hashtags.
  • Twitter recommends only using 1-2 hashtags per post incorporated into the main text.
  • YouTube’s magic number is 3-5 hashtags added to your video title or description.
  • LinkedIn’s optimal number of hashtags is 1-5 hashtags used anywhere in your post.
  • Instagram is muddier about the perfect number of hashtags for optimal engagement. Although you can use 30 hashtags per post, Instagram suggests only using three. However, the ideal number of hashtags really depends on your business. To find the best number of hashtags for your business, try using three hashtags, 11 hashtags, and 30 hashtags on numerous posts on your account (you can also re-test this later to see if this changes). You can put these hashtags as a first comment to hide them from the main view.

What are some tips for choosing hashtags for your business?

A great way to get fresh eyes on your content is to use a mixture of the relevant low-tier (under 100,000 uses), mid-tier (100,000+ uses), and top-tier (1 million+ uses) hashtags in your posts. Only using popular hashtags may seem like the way to go, but your content would soon be buried under a media mound.

Niche hashtags have fewer searches, so they will likely reach people more invested in your industry. Therefore, using a mixture of all three hashtag popularity levels is best.

Here are some ways to find hashtags:

  1. Create your own branded hashtags – this could be your business name, motto, or something you are known for. Repetitively using branded hashtags can get your business out there.
  2. Look at what hashtags your competitors are using and take inspiration.
  3. Utilise the explore page to find relevant hashtags (and check how popular they are).
  4. Use a hashtag suggestion tool (you can find these on Google, and they are often built into post-publishing platforms).

How can you use hashtag campaigns to benefit your business?

Hashtags are used in marketing campaigns to improve business awareness, increase the visibility of your content, grow followers, and get more engagement on your social platforms.

There are a few rules you should follow to create a hashtag campaign that has the potential to #GoViral.

  • Create a hashtag that is simple to use and grabs people’s attention.
  • Your hashtag should be unique and specific to your business and services.
  • Create meaningful hashtags that invite a conversation.
  • You can use trending topics, but this shouldn’t be the sole basis of your campaign.

Conclusion

This article has a lot of information to digest, especially for business owners who are new to hashtags. But the more you use hashtags, the better you will get at using them, and the more eyes will reach your content. Here are some of the key takeaways from this article:

  1. Yes, you do need hashtags for your business.
  2. Make sure you are using hashtags correctly to increase your post engagements.
  3. The optimal number of hashtags for your content differs for each platform, so you’ll need to do some testing!
  4. Use a mixture of low-tier, middle-tier, top-tier, and branded hashtags to get your content out there.
  5. Use hashtag campaigns to boost awareness and engagement for your business.

You’ll be amazed at how your business’s profile can rise from a successful hashtag campaign.

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