Mastering the hashtag in your next social media marketing campaign.
Hashtags are like the air we breathe, always present and indispensable. It’s the hashtags that will make your next social media marketing campaign tremendous and memorable.
Think about hashtags such as the #IceBucketChallenge, #PutACanOnIt, #CocaColaCreations, #DoMeAFlavor, and #LanguageLearning. All of these hashtag campaigns have been highly successful for their brands.
In the following article, we’ll look at creating a successful social media hashtag campaign by focusing on:
What Are Hashtag Campaigns
Why Hashtags are Essential for Your Social Media & Marketing
How to Run Your Hashtag Campaign
How to Track Your Results
Choosing the Right Hashtag for Your Campaign
The Benefits of Hashtag Campaigns
Be sure to check out our article Is Using 3rd Party Social Media Posting Tools Killing Your Engagement? If you’re focusing on improving your social media presence this year!
1. What Are Hashtag Campaigns?
Using a hashtag as the main focus point in a social media campaign can significantly increase brand awareness, assist with building a community, and generate a lot of user content. The hashtag you choose is typically brand-specific.
Rather than simply using hashtags as search keywords, you focus on a hashtag that will resonate with your brand and target audience. For example, instead of using simply #RollsRoyce, you might use #RollingWithRoyce as the main hashtag for your hashtag campaign.
It’s funny, relevant, and includes the brand.
The trick is to use a hashtag that not only resonates with your audience but is also one that’s easy to use and will be fun and exciting to engage with. A hashtag campaign is a great way to launch a new product, service, giveaway, or special event. It’s just one of the ways that you can help your content to go viral.
2. Why Hashtags are Essential for Your Social Media & Marketing
The most significant benefit of creating a hashtag campaign is to help raise brand awareness. The great thing about a successful hashtag campaign is that if it’s successful, and you do it right, user-generated content will feed the campaign and help it to grow.
If you’ve done it right, users will want to engage with the hashtag, creating content, spreading and sharing the hashtag with new users, and helping it build excitement. You want something exciting, fun, and catchy. A hashtag or challenge that users seek out.
"Hashtags are the cornerstone of successful social media marketing. They're not just about increasing visibility; they're about creating a movement. A well-crafted hashtag campaign can transform passive viewers into active participants, building a community around your brand. It's about striking the right chord with your audience, making your message not just seen, but felt and shared. At 6 Degrees, we believe in the power of hashtags to not only extend reach but to also foster genuine engagement and create memorable, impactful marketing experiences."
Think about how quickly the #IceBucketChallenge spread and how many people got involved with dumping buckets of icy cold water over themselves. It was started to raise awareness for the ALS Association, and they didn’t even start it! At its peak, the #IceBucketChallenge was getting 70,000 tweets a day, with over 3.7 million videos shared on Instagram, 28 million likes and comments, and ultimately engaging with over 17 million people.
The benefits of the right hashtag for your campaign include:
Increased reach and impressions on your content and brand.
Assist you in attracting influencers to your hashtag who will use their reach to promote your hashtag.
Allow you to leverage user-generated content as part of your campaign.
Build a community while increasing community engagement.
Be sure to check out this article on How Social Media Marketing Can Take Your Business to the Next Level!
3. How to Run Your Hashtag Campaign
In the development stage of your hashtag campaign, when you’re determining the goal, ask yourself the following three questions:
What are my audience’s pain points?
What am I hoping to achieve with this hashtag campaign?
Does my hashtag suit my social media campaign?
Once you have a relevant, memorable, and catchy hashtag, collaborating with influencers could be an effective way to jumpstart the campaign. The goal is to get people excited enough that they can’t afford not to jump on board and join the trending hashtag.
The three most popular platforms to focus on for a hashtag campaign are X-Twitter, TikTok, and Instagram. Think about the content you want people to engage with and react to when choosing the platforms to start your campaign on. You could choose to do one, two, or all three platforms simultaneously.
Plan ahead. Create a schedule of your posts ready to go. Also, invest in creating some alternate posts if you need to pivot quickly. If one style isn’t working, you’ll be prepared to pivot to something else to ensure you don’t lose momentum.
Red Bull’s 2014 campaign, #PutACanOnIt, encouraged Red Bull customers to take photos of Red Bull cans on regular objects and then shear them. It was such a success that drink companies like Pepsi and Perrier jumped on board and participated.
4. How to Track Your Results
Understanding your analytics is crucial in determining the success of your hashtag campaign. The key metrics to focus on include:
Video or photo views.
Engagement includes likes, comments, and shares.
Demographic data about the audience, including age, gender, and location.
By looking at what’s working, you’ll be able to identify what’s not working and make the necessary adjustments to your posts. If your post is getting likes but not comments, then what’s stopping people from engaging, and what do you need to change?
Every piece of data gives you clear insight into the different aspects of the campaign and what is and isn’t working.
The 2011 #ShareACoke campaign by Coca-Cola encouraged drinkers to find a Coke with their name or the name of a friend and share it with them. They started with 250 names, then later expanded to over 1,000, and ultimately ended up expanding to common nicknames.
According to data collected by Study Smarter, Coca-Cola’s campaign hashtag #ShareACoke was included in over 500,000 social media posts and photos and led to an 870% increase in website traffic. It was so popular that Coca-Cola ran it again and switched it to Share A Song with.
5. Choosing the Right Hashtag for Your Campaign
Choosing a hashtag for your campaign is similar to choosing SEO keywords.
Keep in mind the following points:
Your hashtag must be unique.
Keep it short and simple, 3-4 words works best.
Write in Title Case.
Make it easy to spell.
Make it easy to remember so it sticks.
Use your service, brand, or product name in the hashtag.
Your hashtag has to be easy to spell and easy to identify, and you want it to stick in people’s minds like one of those catchy jingles that seem to pop up out of nowhere. If you want people to participate and use the hashtag, you must give them a reason.
"In the B2B landscape, choosing the right hashtag is a strategic decision that goes beyond mere visibility. It's about creating a narrative that resonates with your business audience. A successful hashtag in B2B marketing should encapsulate your brand's value proposition and speak directly to the industry-specific conversations your clients are engaged in. It's not just about being catchy; it's about being relevant and meaningful to the professional community you're targeting."
Are they doing it for charity, to win a prize, or to be part of a movement? If they’re doing it to win something, then make it easy. Please don’t make them tag twenty people, follow nine accounts, comment, like, and answer questions. Quick and easy will ultimately get more engagement and reach a wider audience. Using the hashtag in whatever they do is a must if you want it to gain more visibility.
6. The Benefits of Hashtag Campaigns
The benefits of running a successful hashtag campaign include:
Increased brand awareness.
Fuel additional growth around your brand and social media presence.
Expose your brand, products, or services to a potentially new audience or market.
There’s no guarantee that your hashtag campaign will be a massive success despite following all the steps, researching, and creating a killer hashtag. However, taking time to plan and prepare will give you the best chance of success.
Interestingly, Audi’s #WantAnR8 was a massive success, and they didn’t even develop it. Joanna McVoy continually posted on their social accounts for months and months with no response. One day, she got a response, and ultimately, Audi gave the lucky lady her dream car for her effort.
The following year, Audi leveraged the #WantAnR8 hashtag and offered 8 free Audi to lucky customers, ultimately ending up growing their social media presence by over 200% and increasing customer engagement by over 50%. Not to mention over 100,000,000 impressions on their social pages and thousands of user-generated posts related to the hashtag.
The Perfect Hashtag Social Media Campaign
Creating a successful hashtag is never easy, but it’s not impossible either. All it takes is a little hard work and, most importantly, a lot of planning. If you spend the time researching, planning, and creating valuable content before the campaign, you’ll give your hashtag campaign the best possible chance of success.
If you need help with your brand, business marketing, or social media, please don’t hesitate to reach out to us at 6° Media & Marketing. Our experienced and professional team not only understands the importance of online marketing, but we can help you grow your business organically.
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