Optimizing Your Twitter Hashtags

August 14, 2012

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If you have a Twitter account, then you have undoubtedly seen words preceded by the infamous # or hashtag, as it’s called. Hashtags provide a way for Twitter users to categorize their tweets so they can be found in tweet searches.

Think of hashtags as keywords, and when those keywords are very popular, they become Twitter “trends.”

Use hashtags that are relevant to your business.

It will help your audience find you if you use hashtags that are related to your industry. Consider what they would be searching for and then create hashtags out of those search terms. If you specialize in printing branded material, for example, you might use the hashtag #businesscards or #brochures. 

Use hashtags that are specific.

Whenever possible, use hashtags that have specific terms rather than general ones. For example, if you were an auto insurance agency posting an article with car maintenance tips, instead of #car and #maintenance (which are very general), use the hashtag #carmaintenance because it specifically details the subject of the information that is being provided.

Similarly, if you were posting an article about real estate, the hashtag #realestate should be used rather than #real #estate.

Use location hashtags.

Location hashtags like #denver #halifax or #newyork will increse exposure in those locations. Many tweets will be retweeted just because they are about a certain city, so make sure you are aware of popular and relevant unique location-based hashtags.

Limit the length of your hashtags.

Hashtags are meant to be keywords - not sentences. #doyouknowwhatimean ??? That "hashtag" to my left is not an appropriate hashtag. #printingforeverybusiness - not an appropriate hashtag. #realestateforbuyersandsellers - not an appropriate hashtag. String together at most two words to create a hashtag, and make sure those two words work together as part of a keyword phrase.

Limit how many hashtags you use in a tweet.

Posting a tweet that has more hashtags than other words simply isn't effective - and it detracts from your primary message. limit yourself to two or three hashtags at the most.