From its humble beginnings on Twitter in 2007, the hashtag has become so popular, the word itself is now used as a verb – #hashtagging. There is no denying that the hashtag is now an integral part of every social media platform. While commonly used in the B2C space, some B2B companies have yet to embrace the power of hashtags.
Why Hashtags Should Be Part of Your B2B Social Media Strategy
Targeted, focused and trackable, social media marketing can be an effective tool for B2B companies. When used strategically, hashtags can make content discoverable to your audience and non-followers alike, increasing engagement, attracting new leads, and increasing brand awareness.
Here are five tips to help you harness the power of hashtags:
1. Do Your Research
Your brand has a target audience, and your hashtags should too. Researching industry-related hashtags, along with competitor posts and those of industry thought-leaders, are a great place to start. What is your target audience talking about? What hashtags are they engaging with? Examine social posts with high engagement and see if there are common hashtags included. Hashtag research also helps to identify brand advocates and potential influencers.
2. Be Purposeful
It’s easy to think that simply adding a trending hashtag will get your posts noticed, but the truth is, when hashtags have millions of followers, the chance your post will be seen among the social noise is small. Similarly, a hashtag like #manufacturing is very generic and can be oversaturated. But if your niche is aerospace, including a more nuanced hashtag such as #aerospacemanufacturing may be a better option. Including targeted and specific hashtags can help you reach not only more people, but the right people.
Branded hashtags should also be a consideration. Including a hashtag or two that are specifically created for your company and campaigns can help identify who is talking about your company and provide insight into company sentiment.
3. Think Quality Over Quantity and Plan Per Platform
A commonly asked question is “how many hashtags should be included in our posts?” Each platform has its own recommendations based on its own data. There are a lot of varying answers, which is why it’s important to experiment. What works for one brand may not work for yours.
It’s key to plan per platform – don’t just choose 10 hashtags and cut and paste them into all your social posts. Recent Twitter statistics say 1-2 hashtags in a tweet is ideal, as tweets following this strategy can see up to a 21 percent increase in engagement. On Facebook, where hashtags aren’t as common and may appear spammy, lead with a less-is-more approach. Instagram allows up to 30 hashtags per post, but best practices show that is way too many. It’s important to look at each platform strategically and plan accordingly.
4. Embrace Hashtag Engagement
Including hashtags and engaging with comments on your own posts is certainly important to a successful social presence. But remember that hashtags give you the ability to enter conversations and trending topics too. Follow relevant hashtags and look for opportunities to engage as your organization. Offer helpful tips and tools, industry insights, or words of encouragement to those in related fields. Strategic engagement takes time but can reap rewards by increasing brand awareness, turning those conversations into followers and customers.
5. Follow the Power of Hashtag Data
Compiling a hashtag list is not a set-it-and-forget-it proposition. It’s critical to monitor and measure the performance of your hashtags. Analytics can help you identify the topics that are resonating with your audience, which posts are generating the most engagement and which hashtags might be best left off your list in the future.
Take advantage of hashtag tracking and look at the data regularly to help make informed decisions. If you don’t have the bandwidth to do it yourself, work with your agency partner to leverage the power of hashtags.
We’re Ready to Power Up Your Social Media Marketing
An important note to remember: hashtags should complement quality posts and content. Hashtags aren’t a magic bullet for gaining followers. They may help you get noticed, but content is king – it’s what’s going to get that reader to click follow or like.
As a marketing agency focused solely on B2B, our team understands how to maximize B2B social media opportunities for clients. Connect with us – through our website or social platforms – and let’s start a conversation about the power of hashtags and taking your B2B social media strategy to the next level.
Stifel Marcin – The B2B Marketing Agency
Unlike many advertising and marketing agencies, B2B isn’t just something that we do, it’s all we do. We’ll work to help your brand achieve its goals through the strategic combination of creativity, communication and technology. Our focused client intake processes give us the ability to thoroughly understand your business, products and objectives, working to identify the competitive advantages and opportunities that will grow awareness, leads and sales. We develop innovative marketing plans with strategic, data-driven processes, presenting complex ideas and compelling messages that position your business ahead of the competition. As your cooperative partner, our integrated B2B marketing agency is dedicated to your success. If you want to learn more about how recruitment marketing can help your company, we’re here for you. Our social media marketing services can help elevate your strategy. Let’s get started.