social mediaYes, Hashtags are supposed to show the way and help users find content easily. However there is a tendency to over use hashtags to the extent that they become irrelevant. Moreover, the purpose of hashtags is sometimes misunderstood and therefore used inappropriately. Here are some ways by which you can use hashtags effectively on Facebook, Twitter and on their social media platforms.

Understanding Hashtags

Hashtags are probably the most misinterpreted tags going around the social media space. Essentially any word preceded by hashtag sign is a link to all the Tweets or Facebook messages which are tagged with the same word or keyword. For example if you were to encounter #aliens on Twitter and by chance click on it, you will witness a long list of Tweets with aliens. It’s not that aliens are the most appropriate example of a successful use of hashtag, but the message is obviously clear. The next question which is sure to popup in your mind is how to use hashtag effectively?

Do’s and Don’ts of Hashtag usage

Twitter has comprehensive guidelines for use of Hashtags. One of the primary concerns is that hashtags are used indiscriminately and as a result some Tweets consist of merely Hashtags. It is recommended that not more than two hashtags be attached to one Tweet. This is a good practice and deters users from becoming a nuisance. Putting Hashtags at the end of a message or Tweet can be more effective than placing them at the beginning or the middle. The logic is clear – when a message precedes a hashtag, the reader understands what it means and can take an informed decision whether to click on the link. A meaningless hashtag will usually remain unclicked, unheard and unwept.

There is no limit to the number of hashtags you can use and thereby lies the problem. We tend to misuse the hashtag feature because it doesn’t come with a price tag. But abuse of this feature can be counterproductive. If those receiving your Tweet were to constantly encounter a piece of trash after following your Hashtags, they will soon ignore them altogether. Obviously this would be a tragic event for you. Be conservative in the use of hashtags. Hashtag words on trending events attract more audiences.

On Facebook, hashtags have a limited scope. If you were to click on a hashtag word, you will only be able to view posts that are shared with you. You can still use the hashtag to pool your posts which are relevant to a keyword. This is a nice way to categorize your posts.

Conclusion

Hashtags can be used in multiple ways. It can be utilized to group, classify or categorize your Tweets or posts on Facebook. To be effective, hashtags must be sparingly used and only when you want to attract the attention of your followers to a specific event or subject. Hashtags can be effectively used both on Facebook and Twitter and have the same effect of linking Tweets or posts.