Hashtags Implement

7 Rules to Effectively Implement the #Hashtag

The tool that once never existed is now unavoidable in modern society – the hashtag (#). The branding tool that made its name through Twitter, is not only a trademark, but a symbol that represents the power of social media and the digital environment. Those who are not technically minded, or even signed up to social media platforms are aware of hashtags.

As such, they tend to be attached to advertisement campaigns and other forms of marketing content.  With that being said, the general online community (predominately on hashtag friendly platforms: Twitter, Instagram and Facebook for example) frequently use the tool to promote other users content, or to simply be involved within large online discussions, which generate online trends from the frequent and consistent use of the same hashtag, attached to a shareable concept.

When taking into consideration that many are signed up to social sites, there are still others who are still getting use to the social landscape, which can make hashtag implementation within a marketing context a difficult task. As a result, there have been numerous hashtag horror campaigns where a poor understanding of social media turned marketing ideas into an online disaster, with time and money being wasted.

A hashtag is a way in which to organize and advertise an idea. The more appealing the idea, the more likely the hashtag is to be shared, which can greatly increase the odds that social media campaigns on hashtag-friendly platforms will actually see results in the form of conversions for example. To use the hashtag with confidence and generate valuable and meaningful ROI, take a look at the key considerations below:

1. Consistency is key – Hashtags will take time to gain significant traction. However, ensuring that the same one is used when posting and promoting your message (for a prolonged period of time), whilst encouraging online community members to re-post and favourite your content, will help build momentum.

2. Incorporate across multiple channels – By publicly displaying your hashtag in various locations (online and offline), you’ll be able to brand the hashtag’s core idea more clearly with your customers. It’s a proven formula, so it’s definitely worth doing.

3. Capitalise multi-word hashtags for clarity – When hashtags are too long, the primary meaning of the message can be lost. For that reason, the shorter the hashtag, the better. Only on rare occasions will a hashtag include 3 or 4 sort simple words.

4. Use hashtags in sentences – On Twitter, each of the 140 characters are very important and it’s important to make them count. Be as concise as possible and avoid using unnecessary terms. If you can use a hashtag in place of a word without the sentence becoming confusing, do it.

5. Monitor conversations – To effectively keep up with trends within your industry, be sure to monitor hashtags, though it can be a difficult task. Keeping track of conversation will allow you to gain valuable insight into what your competition is doing, what the influencers are saying and how customers are acting and reacting. This will help mold your social media strategy.

6. Informative instead of abstract – Ensure that the term you select for your hashtag is simple and to the point. Over complicating your hashtag can negatively impact your campaign. People will not respond or promote your hashtag if they don’t understand it.

7. Have a back up plan – Just in case unexpected events occur, it’s important to have a back up plan. In the past and even today, many people are not accounting for the messages they send out and forgetting that they’re open for interpretation by thousands, if not millions. Be sure your message is clear and the intent is definitive.

The Rise Of Pinterest

One of the next upcoming social networks in 2014? Absolutely not! It is one of THE most popular social networks. Ranked fourth most popular social network and valued at $3.8 million, Pinterest is not one of those up and coming social networks, it is part of the elite now! But after only being created a few years ago, how has it progressed so much in such a short space of time? 2014 is also being touted to be the “photo year” and with imagine sharing sites becoming more popular such as Instagram and Youtube, Pinterest is leading the charge!  

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Pinterest is a different type of social network compared to Facebook and Twitter, it is visually based but it is different than other visually based sites such as Instagram, Flickr. Pinterest allows users to post photo’s, videos and gifs to collections, also known as Pinboards. Also if users find a pin posted by another user, they can pin it to their wall, essentially like a retweet. Fancy yourself as a bit of a jet setter who loves a bit of good food? Most popular pins include tasty food and places to travel so if you’re a fan of it, Pinterest is for you!

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$500 million. That’s how much revenue Pinterest could generate from placing ads on their site as soon as 2016 according to Michael Pachter, an analyst at Wedbush Securities.  Imagine what you could do with $500 million!  You could buy 2.5 billion Freddo’s, 6 Cristiano Ronaldo’s, the list could go on and on! However in all seriousness, it would be a wise decision to do so, users on Facebook and Twitter have came to tolerate advertisements on their timelines so it is likely that Pinterest users over time would do the same. One advantage Pinterest has over Twitter is that Pinterest allows you to create business accounts unlike Twitter where it is the same type of account for all. Is your business is in the catering industry? It would be recommended to set up an account on Pinterest as cooking and dining makes up 66% of activity on the site!

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But what is in store in the next year for Pinterest? After the progress they’ve made in the past couple of years, would it be right to assume that Pinterest this year will overtake LinkedIn in terms of popularity and users? Will they become the 3rd most popular social network or is too soon for them? Whatever happens, Pinterest won’t be gone anytime soon! 

Facebook Snap Up Whatsapp For $19bn

IN20_FACEBOOK_WHAT_1762743fYesterday evening, news emerged that Facebook purchased the instant-messaging service ‘Whatsapp’ in a deal said to be worth around $19bn.

Whatsapp is the only internet based app that gets more engagement and a higher percent of people, daily, than Facebook itself. Now there’s a fact!
With over 450 million monthly users, Whatsapp is currently sitting top of the tree. Skype, WeChat, Viber, and Blackberry Messenger (BBM) also make up the top 5 of most monthly users.

graphDespite the purchase of Instagram in 2012, this  will be the largest single acquisition Facebook have performed in all of their 10-year history. It seems as though Facebook are going all out though, having also had a reported offer of $3bn for direct photo messaging app,  Snapchat in 2013. This has, in fact, made people question the intentions of Facebook. Rather than internally growing, it is said that Facebook are trying to “buy growth” by purchasing popular applications [such as Instagram].
You can only survive in the Social Media industry if you are creative, innovation and, of course, popular!

Is this a “panic buy”? Have Facebook ran out of internal ideas?

Jan Koun, founder of Whatsapp and former Yahoo engineer is now set to join Facebook’s Board of Directors. The Ukrainian and his employees will also receive $3bn [£1.8bn] as part of the deal.

 

 

 

 

How To Use Instagram To Grow Your Business

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With 100 million monthly users, 40 million posts per day, and a staggering 1,000 comment per second, Instagram has established itself as the most visual social media platform. With most of its users between the age of 18-24 Instagram is predominantly used by a younger audience. The aim of the Slideshare is to show people how business can use this particular social media platform to grow their business.

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10 Questions To Ask Yourself Before You Start Your Social Media Strategy

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Social media is a growing sector on where you can really get in touch with your audience in an immediate and meaningful way but before you start using these platforms, here are 10 questions you should ask yourself before you start.

1. What should my company aim to achieve with social media?

The basis of any social media plan is to have a goal, 95% of businesses on social media do not have an end goal. The reason most businesses fail at social media is without a goal how do you measure the results? There are many aims you can have for your company from gaining exposure for your brand to more commerce, building and sticking to these goals is the basis of a successful social media campaign.

2. Who should set up and maintain my company’s social media accounts?

Would you let the intern go on radio or TV to be the spokesperson for your company? This should be an indication of who should be your spokesperson in the digital world, it depends on the size of your company but your social media platforms should be maintained by someone who knows the ins and outs of your company and industry.

3. Should my company have a presence on all of the popular social-media networks?

Unless you can produce consistent and meaningful content on a social platform then by all means be on as many networks as you can. Find the platforms that you get the most response on and focus on that by looking at your business and see what social media platforms are suited your audience.

4. What are the best social networks for small businesses?

Twitter is a very powerful platform to be on for any size company, it’s also a great place to feed content to and from other social media platforms. If your business needs a B2B presence then LinkedIn is the best network to focus on, Facebook is great to inform and engage consumers. Pinterest is the social platform for e-commerce and has a large female following and Google+ is a growing network which feeds into your search rankings.

5. How often should I post new content on my social networks?

Two to Five times a day is the recommended frequency to post across your social media platforms, this should be enough for your audience to see your message, staggering your posts throughout the day will also increase the chance of you audience seeing your message.

6. What types of content should I post on which social platforms?

Facebook, Pinterest, Google+ and Instagram are more visually based social networks so posts with pictures and videos are better suited to these while Twitter and LinkedIn to share and disseminate news. Make sure whatever you post is interesting and engaging to your audience as your goal should be to interact and add value to your brand.

7. Should I use social media to provide customer service?

Social media is a great way to get immediate feedback from your customers/clients, so providing customer service as a great way to use social media. If it becomes part of the conversation then make sure your company answers in a timely and informative manner even when it is criticisms.

8. How can I convert social-media followers into customers?

Trust, this is the main thing to remember when interacting on social media. If you can gain and retain trust from your audience, about your company they will be a higher likelihood of your social media followers becoming customers, it may sound counterintuitive but don’t try to sell on social media but try to add value to your audience and when the customer/client wants you product or services they will know it is from a trusted source.

9. How can I measure the success of my social-media marketing efforts?

A great measure of success should be if your social media campaign is aligned with your goals but remember the number of followers and likes are great but if there is no engagement with your audience this is for naught, interaction with your audience should be paramount.

10. What is the biggest mistake to avoid?

The biggest mistake in social media is not to be on social media, there is a conversation going on about your company or your sector so join in!

If you would like more free tips follow us on our LinkedIn company page

By Omar Johnson