In today’s digital age, social media platforms have become an essential tool for small businesses to reach out to potential customers and expand their reach. With the right strategies and tactics, small business owners can use social media platforms like Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook to grow their following and increase their brand awareness. Small business hashtags are an effective way to achieve this.
Hashtags are words or phrases preceded by the “#” symbol, which help social media users to categorize and find content on specific topics. By using relevant hashtags in your posts, you can make your content more discoverable to users who are interested in the same topics. In this article, we will discuss how small businesses can effectively use hashtags to grow their following.
How to maximize small business hashtags usage
Research the Hashtags Relevant for small business
Before using hashtags in your social media posts, it is essential to do some research to find the most relevant ones. You can start by researching popular hashtags in your industry or niche. You can also check out what hashtags your competitors are using and the ones that have generated the most engagement. There are several tools available online that can help you find popular hashtags related to your business.
For example, if you own a bakery, you can research popular hashtags related to baking, such as #baking, #baker, #bakedgoods, etc. By using these hashtags in your posts, you can reach out to people who are interested in baking and increase the visibility of your content.
Create Branded Small Business Hashtags
Creating a branded hashtag is an effective way to increase brand awareness and create a community around your business. A branded hashtag is a unique hashtag that represents your business or a specific campaign. You can use it in all your social media posts and encourage your followers to use it as well.
For example, if you own a boutique clothing store, you can create a branded hashtag like #MyBoutiqueStyle and use it in all your posts related to your store. You can also encourage your followers to use the hashtag when they post photos of themselves wearing your clothes. This can create a sense of community among your followers and help to increase your brand awareness.
Use Location-Based Small Business Hashtags
Using location-based hashtags is an effective way to reach out to potential customers in your area. Location-based hashtags are hashtags that are related to a specific geographic location, such as a city, state, or country. By using these hashtags in your posts, you can focus people who are interested in your business in your area.
For example, if you own a restaurant in Hamilton, Ontario, you can use hashtags like #HamiltonOntariofoodie, #HamiltonOntarioCeats, or #HamOntRestaurants to reach out to potential customers in the city. This can help increase your visibility among people who are looking for local food recommendations.
Use Trending Hashtags
Using trending hashtags is an effective way to increase the visibility of your posts and reach out to a wider audience. Trending hashtags are hashtags that are currently popular and are being used by a lot of people. By using these hashtags in your posts, you can join the conversation and make your content more discoverable.
For example, if there is a trending hashtag related to your industry or niche, you can use it in your posts to increase your visibility. However, it is essential to make sure that the hashtag is relevant to your business and not just jumping on the trend for the sake of it.
Keep Hashtags Short and Simple
When using hashtags in your posts, it is essential to keep them short and simple. Long and complicated hashtags can be challenging for people to remember and may not be as effective in increasing your visibility. It is recommended to use one or two-word hashtags that are easy to remember and relevant to your business.
For example, if you own a fitness studio, you can use hashtags like #FitLife or #HealthyLiving, which are short and easy to remember.
How to use local business hashtags?
You need to be hashtag fluent if your small business is on social media. If you use hashtags correctly, your small business can reach more local customers. However, hashtags can easily be misused with embarrassing results. Although hashtags can be misused easily, they are not difficult to master. You can easily tag others on social media with a little effort.
Different Platforms have different Hashtag Guidelines
You’ll need to think carefully about how you use hashtags across different social media networks. Here are some examples of hashtag best practices across four networks.
- Facebook: While Facebook does support hashtags, they are not very popular or effective. It’s best to use hashtags sparingly when posting on Facebook.
- Instagram: Hashtags are crucial for Instagram marketing. Including between 5-15 hashtags per post can increase your visibility. Tip: Instead of adding all your hashtags in the original post, add some to the comments.
- Pinterest: Smart hashtag use can help increase your visibility on Pinterest searches. Your first four hashtags will be displayed on the network, and you can include anywhere from 4-10 hashtags on each image.
- Twitter: Twitter was the first platform to use hashtags. However, due to its character limit, you can only use one to two hashtags per tweet (or none).
By understanding the best practices for using hashtags on each platform, businesses can use them effectively to improve their social media presence and engagement with their audience.
Hashtags for Local Social Media
For local businesses, national brands’ hashtag strategies may not always be effective. However, here are some clever ways that local companies can use hashtags on social platforms:
- Local Trends: Local trending hashtags appear only to users in a specific location. Utilize them to support local football teams, promote local events, and get donations for local nonprofit organizations. In addition, local hashtags are simpler to use than global or national ones.
- Niche Hashtags: Instead of popular hashtags, local businesses should focus on niche hashtags relevant to their business. This increases visibility and engagement chances with the right people.
- Social SEO: Social media is a popular platform for online research before visiting physical stores. Hashtags can boost a business’s search engine results, especially if used on hashtag-friendly platforms like Pinterest and Instagram. Use the name and product/services of your town/city to boost visibility (e.g., “Get a #CouplesMassage for #Toronto”).
- Franchise Tags: Branded hashtags can be challenging for franchises. Create a brand hashtag for your franchise by creatively combining your brand, core service/ product, and your street address, city, or neighborhood.
Don’t be afraid of using hashtags on social media. They allow you to build deeper relationships with your customers. Although some posts may not receive many likes, they provide customers with a more personal view of your business. So, have fun and get creative.
Let’s conclude by discussing three helpful tips for using hashtags effectively and avoiding any potential embarrassing situations on social media platforms:
- Firstly, it is crucial to be cautious about the content you hashtag. Several companies have faced problems because of using offensive or inappropriate hashtags unknowingly. Therefore, even if you come up with an excellent hashtag, it is essential to ensure that it does not hold any unintended meaning.
- Secondly, overusing hashtags is considered a social media blunder. Instead of bombarding your posts with hashtags, it is advisable to limit your use and maintain a clean and organized appearance.
- Lastly, while using hashtags, it may seem tempting to employ the latest slang or refer to current trends. However, it is necessary to use these terms naturally. Companies that use slang or make references to topics they do not comprehend can receive criticism.
Remember, the growth of your small business won’t kick-start with only hashtags. Manual link building is essential too. Outreach Bee can handle the whole process for you so that you can focus on your social presence. Contact us to get a quote.
How many hashtags should small businesses use in their social media posts?
The ideal number of hashtags depends on the platform. On Twitter, 5-15 should be used per tweet; Instagram offers 5-15 per photo or pin; Pinterest allows for more hashtags per image or caption.
What types of small businesses hashtags should you use?
Small businesses can utilize branded hashtags that are specific to their brand, trending hashtags related to current events or viral content, location-based hashtags and niche keywords related to their industry.
Can small businesses create their own branded hashtags?
Yes, they can! Utilizing elements such as their brand name, campaign tagline, product or service name, or any combination thereof will enable them to craft unique branding for their campaigns.
Can small businesses hashtags assess the success of the campaigns?
Small businesses can gauge success by tracking engagement metrics such as likes, comments and shares on their posts as well as measuring reach and impressions using social media analytics tools. Additionally, these insights offer valuable insight into the performance of hashtag campaigns.
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