If you have been on Twitter for any length of time, you have noticed people often use a # symbol at the end of their messages. This is known as a hashtag. Hashtags are commonly used as a symbol to send out messages pertaining to a certain event. These symbols were actually made popular during the San Diego fires in 2007 as a way to group news messages.
Today, just about any subject you can think of uses hashtags in order to follow a particular stream of tweeted data. They are used for promotions and contests, as well as groups of people communicating together. One common hashtag seen on Twitter is #gno, which is Girls Night Out. This group is growing every week and you can join in the fun simply by searching Twitter for #gno.
Your business can also utilize this nifty symbol in order to announce new products or projects, keep customers informed of current events going on throughout your company. You can even build your business by providing clients with a useful way to keep track of you and your brand.
By grouping messages together and providing a common thread to search upon, you and your customers will be able to track any announcements put out by your business on Twitter with ease. Hashtags also force you to keep certain key words (such as #SEO or other searchable keywords) your business might be working to develop as optimized search terms in your text. Since all Twitter messages can be indexed by Google, the use of these key words will also help your business in developing their search engine rankings.
Here are a few things to remember when creating hashtags for Twitter.
Availability – Check places like www.hashtags.org to see if the hashtag you want is already in use. If your term is available, make sure you are following @hashtags and just input the hashtag you wish to use preceded by the # mark, of course.
Relevancy – Make sure your hashtag is relevant to what you are trying to track. For instance, do not use #newyork if you are trying to sell watches in the New York area. Use something a little more specific to your business such as #FossilNY.
Memorable – Keep your hashtags memorable so customers can find them easily. Large acronyms and heavy abbreviations detract from keyword usage and they are difficult to remember. Remember, the longer your hashtag, the fewer characters you will have to use in your actual text. Keep it short, simple and to the point.
Branding – Use your hashtags to help develop a business brand. By using your tags to enhance your search engine optimization terms, your brand will be more visible to customers searching for what you offer. Remember to keep your hashtag in line with your business and business goals.
As you can see, hashtags are a great way to help build your business. Give them a shot and let your customers know you are using them too. The easiest hashtag to use is your business name. If you tell your customers to search for your hashtag they are guaranteed to have the most up-to-date information about what is going on with your business. Happy hashtagging!