6 Hashtag Mistakes to Avoid.
Hashtag mistakes are easy to make! What seems obvious to use is often not the hashtag that will help your post gain traction. If you want to grow and maintain a large following on social media, hashtags must be an integral part of your strategy. It’s important to learn how to use them effectively. The concept is simple enough, but it’s easy to fall into committing these 6 common hashtag mistakes.
What is a Hashtag?
A hashtag is a label for content in the form of a short, clickable link starting with the pound (#) sign and written as a single word. These labels for topics help social media users find content that interests them. Users can search using these terms or use them in their content so that others can find them easily.
Hashtag Mistake 1: Too Generic
Don’t choose a term that’s too generic like #marketing, #freelancewriter, or #eyeclinic. While the term might be relevant to your niche, there will be too much competition and no one will find your post by searching for it.
Choose something specific to your post and long enough that it won’t be overused. You can use few hashtags for most social media posts, so choose specific keywords you’d like to target.Hashtag Mistake 1 - Making your hashtag too generic. There will be too much competition and your post won't be found. #HashtagMistakes Click To Tweet
Hashtag Mistake 2: Yesterday’s Hashtag
Another common hashtag mistake is to use outdated hashtags as terms come and go as trends change. One that was popular just last week might be completely out of use today.
You can find out what’s trending by searching on Twitter or Instagram. Before you use one, search for it to see if others are using it. It will show you as well as suggest other hashtags that are popular right now.Hashtag Mistake 2 - Using an outdated hashtag, yesterday's news! Check what's trending on Twitter or Instagram. #HashtagMistakes Click To Tweet
Hashtag Mistake 3: Too Complicated
For a hashtag to be effective, it needs to be memorable otherwise it won’t catch on. If you’ve created one that’s too long and complicated, it won’t stick in people’s heads and get shared.
An easy hashtag is relatively short and says directly what it wants to. It shouldn’t have any punctuation and make sure it doesn’t sound too much like any other one.Hashtag Mistake 3 - Making it too complicated. An easy hashtag is relatively short and says directly what it wants to. #HashtagMistakes Click To Tweet
Hashtag Mistake 4: Hashtag Spamming
You might feel the urge to bombard your followers with hashtags everywhere you possibly can or find one you like so much that you use it for every single post, whether relevant or not. This is a big hashtag mistake! It’s possible to be spammy with your hashtagging so you need to be careful not to do this.
Always think about each hashtag you use, make sure it’s relevant and attracts the right people. If someone sees that every one of your posts has the same hashtag, this will be off-putting.
However, sometimes it does make sense to use the same hashtag. As a Canva Champion, I always use #Canva Champion for my Be Your Own Graphic Designer posts as that’s the hashtag Canva has asked us to add so they can easily find what we’ve posted.Hashtag Mistake 4 - Hashtag spamming. Bombarding your followers with hashtags everywhere you possibly can. #HashtagMistakes Click To Tweet
Hashtag Mistake 5: Not Promoting Your Hashtag
Hashtags don’t usually take off by themselves. You have to get out there and actively promote your hashtags to get others to use them. Do this via social media but also use them for offline promotions. You can print your hashtag on offline promotional materials and ask people to use it if they post/mention your promotion.
Hashtag Mistake 5 - Not promoting your hashtag. You need to actively promote your hashtags to get others using them. #HashtagMistakes Click To Tweet
Hashtag Mistake 6: Not using capital letters
Although there are a lot of benefits to using hashtags, one of their downfalls is you can’t include punctuation or spaces. This can make them difficult to read or even completely misinterpreted! One of the best ways to make your hashtags easier to read is by capitalising the first letter of each word in your hashtag to make your message clearer.
Examples include the hashtag #nowthatchersdead. It was interpreted as the singer Cher had died but should have been read as #NowThatThatchersDead which was a political comment about the former UK Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher. Another example which caused great hilarity on social media was #Susanalbumparty to promote the singer’s new album…I leave you to decide what it says, however, it was rapidly changed to #SusanBoylesAlbumParty.Hashtag Mistake 6 - Not using capital letters. You can’t include punctuation or spaces but this makes them difficult to read or even completely misinterpreted! So, capitalise the first letter of each word #HashtagMistakes Click To Tweet
Avoiding these six hashtag mistakes will help you attract the right audience for your social media posts.