Hashtags are a popular feature on Twitter and across other social media platforms. When you use hashtags on Twitter, your Tweet is automatically linked to any other post with that hashtag on Twitter. Simple enough, right Well, if you want to increase your engagement on Twitter, you can and should be using specific hashtags—but you need to do it the right way.
This article will cover the basics, plus some extra tips and tricks to using hashtags on Twitter, so you can expand your reach and attract a greater audience.
Why are Twitter Hashtags Important?
Twitter hashtags can help you gain new followers with relevant interests and connections in your niche or industry. So, whether you’re an influencer, own a small business, promote a brand for your career, or just want to gain more followers for your personal account, knowing why Twitter hashtags are important is the first step towards gaining more followers.
1. Increase Engagement with Your Followers
When you use hashtags on Twitter, you engage in larger conversations. Joining conversations—instead of talking into a vacuum—will boost engagement. That means hashtags in a Tweet will increase the number of likes, shares, comments, and new followers you gain. Ultimately, isn’t that why you have a Twitter account, to begin with?
2. Build Brand Awareness
You can also create branded hashtags related to your business. This opens up a door for your customers or clients to promote your business. A brand that creates its own hashtag can connect its Twitter ad campaign posts
3. Show Support for Social Issues
Staying up to date on current social issues is essential for a business to thrive in today’s market—but that’s not all you need to do. You should also take part in conversations surrounding social issues and current topics.
4. Add Context to a Social Media Post
If you don’t want to write out a lengthy caption—or if you simply don’t need one—then hashtags can work to communicate your message quickly.
5. Help Your Target Audience Find You
Of all the reasons to use hashtags on Twitter, this one is the most important. When used correctly, hashtags can help your target audience discover your account. Relevant hashtags will help you connect with the right audience—which is what social media is all about.
How to Research Twitter Hashtags?
Now that we’ve covered why you need hashtags in your Tweets, let’s get into how to find the best hashtags for you. It’s easier than you might think—and you might be done after a quick search in the search bar or a few minutes in the explore tab.
1. Monitor Influencers and Competitors
Your competitors are a great source of information—especially big names with experts who run their social media accounts. Don’t copy your competitor’s word for word but do use their posts to inspire your own. Insights into how influencers and other brands in your niche use hashtags will reveal what hashtags you should use and how you should use them.
2. Know Which Hashtags are Trending
When you join a conversation, you want to make sure that people are still talking about it. To avoid speaking to an empty virtual room, be sure to do your research on which trending topics are still relevant.
You can find trending hashtags on sites like:
- Hashtag Tracker
3. Complete a Native Twitter Search
You can also gather information about trending hashtags on Twitter directly through Twitter itself by performing a native search in the search bar or using the explore tab. Head over to the Trends section in the explore tab to get a general overview of what’s popular.
You can also type in hashtags you think might be good for your business in the search bar. Click on ones that seem relevant and look through the posts. Choose hashtags that have many followers and some with fewer followers. Tweets with hashtags that are both popular and niche tend to perform better because the audience reach is higher.
4. Analyze Which Hashtags Were Successful
Once you’ve formed a history of hashtags on Twitter, take your time to analyze the data. Analytics is one of the many Twitter services that you have access to—so take advantage of it.
How to Use Twitter Hashtags?
Now that you know where to find the best hashtags for your Twitter account, it’s time to discover how to use them. You should use 1-2 hashtags per Tweet as a general guide.
If you’re still having trouble coming up with content ideas after this section, think about how you can use hashtags to inspire your Tweets rather than how you can add hashtags to your Tweets.
1. Tweet About Events and Conferences
First, Tweet about upcoming or ongoing events. Are you attending a conference or hosting a special event? It’s the perfect time to use hashtags on Twitter.
Think of events that get the whole nation watching—like the Oscars, Grammys, or Olympics. When using hashtags on Twitter, the key to getting noticed is joining in on current conversations that have people buzzing.
2. Celebrate Holidays and Other Notable Days
Whether it’s a big or small holiday, notable days present great opportunities to use hashtags on Twitter. Tweet a cute or comical series of emojis for World Emoji Day. Tell your audience what you’re grateful for on Thanksgiving. Or promote your brand on a relevant national holiday. There’s plenty to choose from.
3. Promote Brand Campaigns
If you want to use Twitter as a free advertising platform (which you should if you own a business!), then you should be promoting your branded campaigns with hashtags. You can use hashtags that already exist, like #smallbusiness. But you can also create a chain by connecting all posts in your campaign with an original hashtag.
In addition to supporting your own brand campaign, consider how you can promote other brands or partners in your niche. Forming connections is a great strategy on Twitter.
4. Connect with Pop Culture Trends
Going viral on a trend can put your brand on the map—and an iconic Tweet can do just that. Pop culture trends are always changing, and being up to date means that you can participate in conversations that people want to see. Joining in on the most popular conversations is a great tactic if you want people to discover your account.
So, use hashtags when you join in on current trends, whether it’s the hottest video game release, a hit album, or a new cult following. When you connect with pop culture trends, you may also connect with other brands in and out of your niche.
5. Jump on Weekly Trends and Challenges
Pop culture trends tend to last for weeks, months, or even years. But there are weekly trends, too. As soon as you see a trending challenge you can join in on, create a plan to publish content.
Weekly trends include things like #ThrowbackThursday or #MondayMotivation. Whether your post is serious, comical, lighthearted, or inspirational, these simple weekly trends can help your Twitter account reach a wider audience.
6. Join Discussions on Relevant Topics in Your Niche
When you join in on discussions, you’re more likely to convert viewers to followers if you’re talking about conversations relevant to your niche. For example, if your small business sells plants, spreading awareness about the recent upsurge of pests in your area and what to do to protect outdoor plants is a great conversation to join.
If you sell sustainable clothing, you can join conversations about fashion or ethical shopping. Use common sense (and your search bar) to discover trending topics in your niche and join the conversation.
7. Support a Cause
Brands, especially big ones, have power. And people want to see that you use that power for good. One way to gain brand loyalty is to show what causes you support—and you can use Twitter hashtags to do it. Gain visibility when you use hashtags in Tweets that support a cause.
It can link you to that cause so that people browsing the hashtag will discover it. Using hashtags directed at specific causes will also highlight the cause in your Tweet—since hashtags stand out as blue next to black text.
We hope this article gave you the direction and inspiration to get started using hashtags on Twitter to promote your brand. Remember these basics guidelines, and you’ll enjoy the benefits of gaining followers on Twitter by using hashtags the right way:
- Use 1-2 hashtags per post
- Join in on relevant current conversations
- Use the search bar and explore tab to conduct hashtag research
- Adjust your hashtag usage based on past successes
Now that you know how to use hashtags on Twitter, develop your Twitter content strategy with our advice in mind.