Tag: #BeAwesome

#EverythingIsSearchable – How Do Hashtags Work?

If you’re trying to understand hashtags and how best to incorporate them into your social media profiles and posts, try thinking of them as searchable tags or labels. The purpose is to identify the topic so that others who have an interest in the subject can find it. When it comes down to it, hashtags are really just carefully selected words with a pound sign (#) in from of them. They are added to content in order to make it searchable.

History of Hashtags

The use of hashtags started on Twitter where it was seen as a way to group related content to facilitate a search. The use quickly spread to Instagram, Facebook, and Pinterest and they are used in many creative ways. Today, hashtags are widely used to make it easier to find specific information and provide people with a way to find content that is related to a specific topic.

Hashtags in Business

Even though the concept of the hashtag is really pretty simple, when applied strategically they can be pretty darned powerful. There are many great examples of how companies have parlayed hashtags into big marketing wins (#likeagirl, #shareacoke). #Shareacoke, for example, is used as part of a large Coca Cola campaign. Its purpose is to encourage customers to use the hashtag when uploading photos of a bottle with someone’s name.

While you may not have the resources available that Coca Cola does, you can still use hashtags as part of your marketing strategy. When using them, you can create your own or use an already established tag that is topical or trendy.

Why Businesses / People Use Hashtags

The original purpose of the hashtag was to group online conversations together to make updates related to a specific topic easier to find. This is still, fundamentally, why we use hashtags today. Since each social media profile is its own search engine, hashtags are powerful tools for searching for information and for grouping similar posts together. While there are folks that use hashtags for entertainment purposes, when using hashtags for your business – the point is to show up in certain search feeds to increase your online visibility and the chance that users will stumble onto your online content more often.

How to Use Hashtags

Like keywords, you first need to do some research to uncover which hashtags work for your brand. What are other people in your industry or area using? What comes up when you do a hashtag search and is that a search your brand is comfortable showing up in? How many people are already using, and searching, using that hashtag?

  • Businesses use hashtags to show up in general keyword searches such as #skincare for beauty professionals or #marketing for marketing companies.
  • Companies that host events will create a custom hashtag to group all the posts about that event together and make it easier to find.
  • A business owner could also create custom hashtags or their own brand to group their online content together and make it all easier to locate in one search.

You’ll want to make a list of appropriate hashtags for your business so you can recall them quickly when drafting your social media content.

When you create your own hashtags, you want to make sure to include them across a variety of messages and use them consistently. Ideally, the hashtag should be easy to remember and relate to your branding.

Creating effective tags can be harder than it looks. Luckily there are experts you can call on for help. If you’re interested in incorporating hashtags into your campaigns, now is the perfect time to talk with The Social Media Advisor. Right now you can take advantage of our comprehensive social media revamp and management packages that are designed to get you found and noticed on social media.

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Hollie Clere of The Social Media Advisor is a “#BeAwesome” Developer, Social Media, Brand Builder, Content Manager, Trainer and Author in LinkedInFacebookTwitterBlogGoogle+YouTubePinterestInstagram, and the tools to manage them.

Click here for Social Media TrainingSpeaking and Strategy Consultations.

#FreshContent – Monthly Themes for Your Content

A key challenge for social media managers is keeping the creative juices flowing. Even the most imaginative content developer can get caught in a rut from time to time. Fortunately, there are ways to avoid finding yourself stuck. One great technique is to set a monthly theme for your content.

The beauty of themes is that they provide you with a framework for your content and can help you narrow your focus. Even if even if you have no shortage of ideas, themes can help you stay on track so that you post consistently.

So now that you are sold on using themes, how do you get started? No surprises here, you create a plan! Of course, that’s easier said than done. No need to worry though. Here are seven steps you can follow to build a successful strategy for incorporating monthly themes for your social media content.

  • Assess what currently works – Take a look at which platforms work best for you now and the type of content that is getting the most traction. Remember that your objective is to get people engaged. You want to do more of what is working best.
  • Restate your social media goals – It is always helpful to remind yourself of your goals. If your primary objective for social media is to strengthen your relationships with your clients, then a customer appreciate theme is appropriate.
  • Think about your customers – What type of content will interest and help your customers? Do they need information on your products? If so, a monthly “how-to” theme will work well. Could they benefit from getting to know your company better? Try a monthly “getting to know us” theme.
  • Brainstorm – Spend some time documenting a variety of possible themes. Get your entire team involved. Each one will bring a different perspective to the task.
  • Prioritize – Once you have a good list, prioritize the topics according to your goals and what is likely to be most successful in engaging your customers.
  • Decide how you will measure success – Set some targets so that you’ll know whether or not your theme campaigns are working. Useful metrics can include shares, likes, follows, conversions or whatever works with the goals you have set.
  • Rinse and repeatEvaluate your campaigns periodically to see what is working. Revise your plan to strengthen the themes that aren’t quite hitting the mark.

Working with themes won’t just help you keep writing, it will help your customers know what to expect. They’ll appreciate your consistency and come to depend on you for insight, inspiration, or a smile. Themes also give you the chance to incorporate content that is unexpected. One month you may focus on a technical topic, the next you might express gratitude or profile a customer or employee. The point is, you can take advantage of themes to keep your content fresh, engaging, and fun. So get started with themes now!

Be sure to Follow us and Let’s Engage!

Hollie Clere of The Social Media Advisor is a “#BeAwesome” Developer, Social Media, Brand Builder, Content Manager, Trainer and Author in LinkedInFacebookTwitterBlogGoogle+YouTubePinterestInstagram, and the tools to manage them.

Click here for Social Media TrainingSpeaking and Strategy Consultations.

#FreshContent – Time to Optimize Your Social Media Bios & Profiles

If you use social media, then you know that the first commandment is “Thou Shalt Keep Your Content Up-To-Date.” Your followers will stop checking in if they see the same thing over and over again. Though you’re working hard to keep your feeds fresh and appealing, you might be overlooking these important elements of your social media channels: your bios and profiles.

If you have a social media strategy (of course you do!) is optimizing and updating your social media bios and profiles on the list? If not, add them to the top of the list. This to-do is easy to forget, and it’s even easier to underestimate how important it is.

What Your Followers See

What do your followers see when they look at your profile photo? Do they see what you look like right now? If not then it’s a good bet that some of your information may be out of date. Your picture should present a fresh look at your smiling face, and your profile information should be current. Even though you may think the photo looks fine if your hairstyle and fashion sense are dated then your community may interpret that as a lack of interest.

Remember, your profile photo usually has a prominent position so you can use it strategically as well. It doesn’t always have to be a picture of you or your logo. It can be a new product, a special announcement, or something else you are calling attention to. Links must work, and the description of your business should accurately represent what you are doing right now.

What the Search Engines See

You may not have given it much thought, but your social media profile is important to your SEO. Your profile should include the keywords and terms that are crucial to people finding you. What you say should be consistent across platforms, be carefully crafted, and be engaging. Long-tail keywords are particularly important so that your customers can find you.

Each social media platform is viewed a little differently so it can pay to do a little homework on what works best for each. Algorithms have become particularly important in recent years so if you haven’t updated your business description in some time you may not be making the most of it in SEO terms.

Freshen Up!

It’s true that you don’t need to update your profile as frequently as you do your content but your profile should not be neglected. Twice a year may be often enough to freshen things up. The specific schedule will depend on what is happening in your business and your industry. In any case, now is a great time to take a fresh look at both your bios and your profiles.

Be sure to Follow us and Let’s Engage!

Hollie Clere of The Social Media Advisor is a “#BeAwesome” Developer, Social Media, Brand Builder, Content Manager, Trainer and Author in LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, Blog, Google+, YouTube, Pinterest, Instagram, and the tools to manage them.

Click here for Social Media Training, Speaking and Strategy Consultations.

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