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5 Tips for Better Hashtag Use

Is Incorrect Hashtag Use Ruining Your Credibility?


Think you’re social media savvy? Just because you have profiles on multiple social media platforms and consistently post updates that include hashtags doesn’t mean that you’re doing it correctly. In fact, incorrect use might make you or your brand look more like a novice than a pro.

Let’s revisit the reason that the # symbol was implemented on social media: to categorize topics and conversations. This allows people to easily connect via a topic of interest – an interest graph – even with people they do not know.

Miriam Webster notes, “the hashtag can now be a tool for a supplementary coy or witty comment (e.g., #awkward).” And that’s where social shame begins. Social media users are using and abusing this addictive tool.

Here are social media mistakes to avoid:

  1. Posting too many hashtags: Limit your hashtags to three. Posting any more will make you appear desperate for followers and clutter newsfeeds. Be confident in your post and use the hashtags that are most directly related to your message in order to reach your target audience.
  2. Hashtagging every word in the sentence: #You #know #who #you #are. Instead of posting “#birthday #party,” declutter your message and simply write, “birthdayparty.” That’s really what you want to promote anyway.
  3. Using hashtags that don’t apply: If you’re posting about the new beverage you’re trying out, don’t also hashtag the brand of nail polish you’re wearing while holding the cup. Save it for a new post. You’ll have more content and the opportunity to add other tags specific to the audience you’re trying to attract.
  4. Using hashtags on Facebook: Although this search function is available on Facebook, it has never really taken off. On this network, hashtags simply add emotion. If it’s searchability you seek, hashtagging on Twitter and Instagram provide more opportunity to connect with others who have the same interest.
  5. Posting hashtags as sentences. Even celebrities are guilty of this social media faux pas. #Justwriteasentenceinsteadofalargehashtagpeopleneedtofigureout!

When you post mindfully you’ll clean up your social media image – whether you’re managing a brand account or hunting for your next professional home. #winning


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