If the song of Annie’s Hard Knock Life came into your mind then I did my job. (If not, I bet your singing it now)

We all know how important the hashtag is to social media life. I swear just the other day I was playing tic tac toe with you…….my my how you’ve grown. Now this has become a phenomenon and has taken on a life of its own.

Hashtags have become the number one way persons use to search for anything on the internet. With the world becoming so consumed with online trends and staying in the know, not having this little once so insignificant item is tantamount to social suicide.

As an entrepreneur, you need to stand out from the clutter and the noise and having a unique hashtag will assist with this. You can develop a catchy one for your own business and use this often. Try using your business name, an abbreviation or your tag line. For my business I use #askcarli, #carlicomm and #wemakeitsimple and I use them whenever I’m posting on my business page.  Persons who need to find me can use any of these options.

Another way to use hashtags is to find out what the industry leaders are using and follow suit.  The reason for this is persons who may not know of you, but are trolling through the internet will happen upon you. In my industry words such as #marketing, #branding, #advertising and #socialmedia are all popular and using these with my posts can ensure that I am among the top results for anyone searching. Try identifying what is relevant to you and your industry.

Usage of common phrases can help as well such as #trinidadandtobago, #westindies to show location or #entreprenuer, #entreprenuerlife to show business status are all clever ways to become amongst the top searches. You can also Google “Popular Searches” to see what is popular that week that is relevant to your industry and use these with your posts. When running a campaign, you may include a catchy hashtag to compliment the promotion; however the idea is to encourage as many persons to use this to elevate yourself to ‘trending topic’ status. This is why many businesses when launching will ask you to comment using whatever hashtag they have attached to the promotion. The more persons they have using it and talking about it, the better.

Now you know what hashtags to use, the question now is how many are appropriate per post. The jury is still out on this but the idea is not to get too carried away. Instagram anywhere between ten and thirty is ideal while on Twitter, two should be acceptable especially given the character limitations. Facebook however seems the most debatable as some experts suggest that hashtags are not necessarily relevant on this platform. I beg to differ and recommend that in order to be more searchable and to integrate all your social media campaigns together they must be used.  I would suggest no less than five per post.

In closing I would like to share a little poem I wrote called “Ode to a Hashtag”

Way back then you loved me so,
I was used for kid’s games, mainly Tic Tac Toe.
Then we both grew up, teenage years abound,
I was no longer a kiddie game, you knew me as ‘pound’.

Mainly on the phone we did lots of stuff,
Then one day you had enough.
We drifted apart, I thought our affair was over.
Then along came the internet, something you called ‘Twitter’.

You used me to talk to persons, both far and wide,
You called it “tweeting’, but to me, I was once again alive.
As time went on, social media grew and grew,
Then along came Instagram, it was life anew.

So as long as social media grows, we will always be together.
Call me Hashtag, you’ll love me forever!

Touching……..If you need more tips on how to truly master your social media platforms, join my free Facebook group The New SMS: Strategic Marketing Specialists and download my eBook which gives tips conquer Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and more. I also invite you call (868) 3551567 to book your FREE 30min consultation to determine how I can help you grow your business, ask about my Social Media Takeover package.