A Facebook blogging group that I belong to was having a discussion on how to use hashtags for blogs and businesses. The discussion leader was frustrated with others’ use of hashtags on social networks. She had a hashtag pet peeve when it came to their use in marketing.
From her perspective, too many people were using them incorrectly. Oddball or wordy hashtags bother her and seem irrelevant in business. She argued that hashtags are to be used for marketing her blog or her business only.
Using hashtags for anything other than that was a waste because who was going to search for something based on #goalswhoopwhoop (the hashtag was a bit longer than that but you get the gist). Anyone using a hashtag that was too long, uncommon, or silly, wasn’t an effective marketing strategy. She thought it was a waste of marketing time.
The comments were mostly in support of the discussion leader, adding that hashtags were created for marketing, searching, and indexing of content. All valid points but then others myself included, crept in and argued that hashtags are to be used however your brand sees fit to use them.
I don’t disagree that hashtags are a powerful marketing tool. I’m not dissing that fact. If you would’ve asked me how to use them two years ago, you would’ve gotten a very cut and dry answer that did not include making hashtags fun or creative. However, hashtags have evolved since their first use and brands who want to use them would be wise to bend the rules and use them as a creative marketing tool and here’s why.