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What Are Hashtags and How Do I Use Them?

What is a Hashtag? You’ve probably heard about hashtags, and you may or may not know what they are, or how they work.

What is Hashtagging? Basically it involves tagging a word, series of words, video or picture by using a hash mark (#). For example, #BMW or #Ford. The #sign makes a searchable tag and allows users to search for a particular subject.

Who Uses Them?

 

According to a survey from RadiumOne, “Unlike other forms of social sharing, hashtags implicitly reflect customer sentiment and are one of the most powerful ways consumers have to vocalize their tastes and preferences at scale in a real-time fashion,” said Kamal Kaur, vice president, mobile at RadiumOne. “We conducted this survey to help advertisers better manage their brands by responding to the needs and wants of their client base through winning hashtag campaigns.” Key findings from the survey, which polled the opinions of 494 participants, include:

  • 58 percent of respondents utilize hashtags on a regular basis, and 71 percent of regular hashtag users do so from their mobile devices.
  • 43 percent of respondents think hashtags are useful and 34% use them to search/follow categories and brands of personal interest.
  • 51 percent of respondents would share hashtags more often if they knew advertisers awarded discounts for sharing product-based hashtags.
  • 41 percent of respondents use hashtags to communicate personal ideas and feelings.

Google has just announced they will now allow you to search for Google+ posts by using hashtags. This means users will now be able to search for hashtags like #Dodge and get a list of relevant Google+ posts in the right-hand sidebar.

How Are Hashtags Different from a Regular Search?

You can be found by an entirely new audience. Hashtags let users search through everything that is public. As a result, people who don’t even know your store or your page could find you if you are using the correct hashtags. Use your dealership name and your primary keywords as hashtags. Example: #GothamMotors #Cadillac #Buick #CarRepair. Use them on social media including Facebook, Twitter, Google+, Vine, Instagram, etc.

Hashtag Etiquette

 
Hashtags can be ridiculously annoying; just ask Jimmy Fallon and Justin Timberlake.So make sure you do it right:

  1. Don’t use too many words — ain’t nobody got time for that! #Checkoutthelatesttoyotacamryinyeg is not something people are looking for. If you have to use a couple of words, make sure you capitalize each word, like #FuelEconomy and#FordFusion
  2. Don’t tag every word#We #are #having #a #private #sale is ANNOYING.
  3. Don’t tag something just because it’s trendy, especially if it’s unrelated. “I bet #Miley would love this Chevrolet Cruze! #wreckingball” — NO.
  4. Try to put them at the end of your post. It looks better and is not annoying to the reader.
    We’re having a customer appreciation BBQ. Come on by! #GothamMotors #BBQ #GothamEvents

 

 

Strathcom Tip: If you want to see where a lot of your branded car terms are being hashtagged, check out tagboard.com this awesome site searches all the social sites to show you a list of hashtag results!

Views: 371

Tags: automotive, hashtag, media, seo, social

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Comment by Alexander Lau on October 15, 2013 at 7:09am

Agreed. :-)

Comment by Trish Rowsell on October 15, 2013 at 7:02am

Thanks Tom & Scott! Please feel free to share. 

Comment by Trish Rowsell on October 15, 2013 at 7:01am

Hey Alexander, definitely, this is geared towards my clients, at the dealership level, who are just being introduced to all things online. 

Comment by Alexander Lau on October 14, 2013 at 11:25am

Good article, and although this warrants attention for beginners, for those of us that have been around the block, this is terribly overstated.

Here is a tool that will enable you to search out #hashtags and flip the process in order to convert customers @ #NeedTagger.

Additionally, as much as TagBoard seems credible, you can do this via HootSuite, so why pay for a separate application, especially since HootSuite is terrifically cheap. There's a $1.50 plugin that allows you to do this. Debunks the entire SocialDealer offering as well. Overrated and expensive.

Comment by Scott Empringham on October 13, 2013 at 12:14pm

Sharing now.

Comment by Scott Empringham on October 13, 2013 at 12:13pm

Great article.  Well done. I think I've probably overused the # before. :)

Comment by Big Tom LaPointe on October 11, 2013 at 11:31am

very informative piece.

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