Branding is important. Maria Elena Duron of The Personal Branding Blog explains that, “Aside from other word of mouth marketing strategies, social media has become an important channel for personal branding.” If you are looking to build your reputation, grow your business, or create awareness about a worthy cause, it is essential to utilize social media because it allows you to reach a wider audience at a minimal cost. However, cutting through the noise is not an easy thing to do, especially since millions of others are in social media to promote their businesses or personal brands. One of the best tools you can use to succeed on social media are hashtags (#). Why? A hashtag categorizes posts across social media channels making them easier to be found.
Here are the best practices in using hashtags to promote your personal brand
Plan and prepare. Many people misuse hashtags thinking that the more hashtags they provide, the more their content can be found. This may help for a while but will hurt your brand in the long run because it might be perceived as spamming practice. Have a clear and specific goal as to why you are using a hashtag. In choosing or creating your hashtag, it is important to consider the industry that you are in. Search for hashtags that are frequently used in your industry and also create your own which readers can associate you with.
It is important to have something uniquely your own if you want to stand out from the crowd
Be strategic. Use hashtags that are relevant to your brand. If you use a hashtag that isn’t yours and you’re using it to connect, it is important that you know the reason why you’re using it. Avoid integrating such hashtags in your posts if you are clueless about the underlying topic. Doing so will have an adverse effect especially when establishing first impressions.
Limit the number of hashtags you use and keep it simple. Using too much makes it difficult for readers to find you. Furthermore, some social media platforms have a limit on the characters that you can use. If your hashtag is too long, people might not want to put it in their posts when they connect with you.
Be consistent. If you created your own hashtag, integrate it in all your social media channels. However, be mindful not to include it in every post, especially when it is totally irrelevant to a particular conversation, or brand.
Hashtags make social platforms easier to navigate if a user is looking to join a specific conversation or for specific information. They allow you to interact with different communities, brands, and individuals who are in the same industry as yours. You can join conversations which help in providing updates and insights about trends within your field of expertise. It is also a great way to connect and gain new followers. With proper use, a hashtag strategy can be of important help in promoting your personal brand and creating great first impressions.