Category Archives: Social Media Marketing

Social Media

Using Hashtags on Social Media

hashtag: n. A word or phrase preceded by a hash sign (#), used on social media websites and applications, especially Twitter, to identify messages on a specific topic. Oxford English Dictionary

In the world of social media, the hashtag is likely the most popular means of categorising content on social media. It makes your own content discoverable and allows you to find relevant content from other people and businesses. The hashtag also allows you to connect with and engage other social media users based on a common theme or interest.

Knowing how to use hashtags is fundamental to your success on social media.

Here are some #toptips to help you achieve success.

  1. A hashtag used on a public account is discoverable by anyone who does a search for that hashtag. If you’re using hashtags for discovery, keep it short don’t string too many words together under a single hashtag as this is not how they are designed to work. Be specific, the more specific you can get with your hashtag, the more targeted your audience will be—and a targeted audience generally means better engagement.
  2. Users can now follow hashtags, and in turn they can also unfollow them. Don’t use irrelevant hashtags although it’s not a known fact it’s a reasonable assumption that this will have a negative impact on your organic content. For example, using a well-known travel tag such as #wanderlust on your new product release will have a negative impact on your ranking.
  3. Don’t #spam #with #hashtags. Avoid using too many within a single post. Don’t have more hashtags than words. Just because Instagram allows up to 30 on any single post this does not mean you have to add 30! Try to limit this to under ten for Instagram & LinkedIn and approx. 1-2 for Facebook and Twitter.
  4. Format your hashtags. No spaces are allowed but #YouCanCapitaliseToImproveReadability, do not use punctuation marks or this will break the tagging.
  5. Branding. Don’t go too long or too clever, in general, if you’re creating a branded hashtag you should try to keep it short and simple or else it will never be found or used by your target audience.
  6. Post Ideas. For upcoming hashtag holidays and to look through daily trends the Hashtag Holiday Calendar Here Is a very handy tool to have to hand.
  7. Cater hashtags to the social network you’re using, see Hootsuite’s Blog on this for more info about:
    1. Instagram
    2. Twitter
  8. Do your research. To try to calculate the popularity of a hash tag you can use hashtagify.me. They will also suggest alternatives and accompanying hashtags. For current trending hashtags pop over to Twitter where there is a top trending of the day list.
  9. Track your success. If you have an Instagram business account, you can now see the insights for each for your post as well as the number of views that came directly from the hashtag.
  10. Keep an eye on your competitors. As within all elements of business it’s always smart to keep an eye on what the competitor is doing, and social media is no exception. Check out some of their hashtags for popularity and if they are relevant to your business too.

A Retailers guide to Organic Social Posting

What should I post on social media?

This is the recurring question asked time and time again to our digital marketing team. Your social media platform should represent your business both professionally and personally. Many businesses forget the “social” part of social media and constantly advertise products.

When promoting your business, focus on the solution you provide, not the products you sell. It’s essential to add value to your customers and build on your brand image. Never underestimate the fact that your most important asset (and downfall) on social media, is visual content.  Be sure the images you upload reflect the image you want to portray for your business. Video is highly engaging and the recognised way forward. 

A guide as to what to post

Are you owl 1, 2 or 3? Owl 1 eyes completely shut oblivious to the world of social media, Owl 2 Half an idea but not sure what or where to post? Or are you owl number 3? Eyes firmly on the prize?

Rule of thirds from Hootsuite

  • ⅓ of your social content promotes your business, this includes product promotion & special offers.
  • ⅓ of your social content should share ideas, pictures and stories from like-minded and similar businesses, this is content about your business but not product related.
  • ⅓ of your social content should be based on personal interactions within or indeed outside of your business and build your personal brand.

Even with these guidelines keep in mind that you should add to the ‘Social’ aspect of the post. Instead of taking a screengrab of the shoe on your website,  how about a staff member puts them on their feet, goes outside and take a quick boomerang video of the product? This approach is guaranteed to gain more interest than another picture of a still motionless product and takes minimal time, effort and zero money.

What you need to remember when trying to figure out what to post is that…… People are nosey!! Even a simple picture of a delivery in your stockroom will gain traction, you would be surprised the majority people who have never worked in retail and  really do think its Narnia out there! A hidden world of all the best products that we are keeping all for ourselves. No, we promise we aren’t hiding all the stock on you and yes, we promise if we had what you’re looking for we would most definitely sell it to you! Make your customer feel special by showing them sneak peaks into your business and as an added bonus this will build the personal side of your business.

Ideas & where to find them

Another extremely common question is what content do I post? I know how to, but I can never think of anything to post.

A very simple way around this is to get organised, get yourself a content calendar! Start it off with adding all the national holidays this can feed fodder for numerous posts during the year. Next, add your colleague’s birthdays. Now you can just do a generic Happy Birthday post but if you’re really organised, you’ll get regular cake’s out of it too!

This ties nicely into my next point -take your camera/phone out, no screen grabs or borrowing other people’s images/content use your camera and get photos of the people behind the scenes. I have seen time and time again that photos with actual people in them gain higher level of traction then those without.

For an added level of timeliness, look through daily trends and hashtag holidays for 2019 days here: Hashtag Holiday Calendar. This can be so much fun to do & to make a personal twist on it, see our own post for #LoveYourPetDay here

And on the note of #hashtags if you want to calculate the popularity of a hash tag you can use hashtagify.me

Bank of memes

This is a term I like to use for your stash of funny content you find when browsing your social media channels, when you see it, save it and bank it for when you need good content to post. Trying to find/trying to think of content on the fly can be very hard and will make the job of social media posting far harder than it should be! Posting funny, relatable content that’s relevant to your business or brand can encourage fans to tag their friends – this helps to spread brand awareness without feeling overly promotional. Also, by a person interacting with your post they are more likely to be shown your posts in the future.

When to post

Finally, the all-important decision to me made at the end of all this when will I post it?

Well to be honest If I knew this, I wouldn’t be writing this blog! The best logical way to keep track of your previous posts and engagements and schedule content for the optimal time for your audience specifically, but if time is short use your Facebook page insights to see when your followers are online as shown below: