Three Ways to Utilize the Twitter Hashtag for Online Marketing

The “Hashtag” has become such a popular phenomenon on Twitter that celebrities Justin Timberlake and Jimmy Fallon created a video parody that has already received 16 million views on YouTube!

While Timberlake and Fallon joke about how people tend to overuse the hashtag, from a social media and marketing perspective, there are ways to utilize this keyword/topic marker to gauge performance.

1. Campaign Based Hashtag

The next time you’re trying to run a marketing campaign, utilize the Twitter hashtag in a creative way to see whether or not people are positively interacting. Placing the hashtag on your website, social media posts or email signature can help judge just how engaged people are with your brand and content.

If you are at an event, constantly telling people to incorporate the hashtag will encourage the participants to promote the event through their social channels. Additionally, more interaction and communication will occur between the users who are utilizing the campaign-based hashtag. The result? More chatter about your brand or event!

2. Leverage your Advertisements

When it comes to online advertisements, tracking is normally not an issue. If your campaign is more traditional, like television, incorporating a hashtag can help determine the success of a campaign. Twitter sees such a direct correlation between Twitter and television that they’ve teamed up with Nielsen to create “Nielsen Twitter TV Ratings.”

If people are interacting in a positive way about your brand through a hashtag that they’ve seen on television, you know that your campaign has some legs!

SafeAuto Insurance, a car insurance company, created a #DoTheJingle hashtag through a television campaign to get more people talking about their brand. The TV spot featured a musician performing their memorable jingle. This resulted in more people talking about their brand and an increase in Twitter followers.

If you don’t have the budget for a television campaign, advertising directly on Twitter can help create a “viral” type campaign if a hashtag is incorporated. You’ll only pay for the person clicking on your ad, but if they integrate your hashtag, more users will see the keyword or topic and start engaging.

3. Crisis Management

Let’s say an unexpected emergency breaks out at your business (we’ve all been there). Letting your customers know that they can get in contact with a representative and receive a prompt response by incorporating a hashtag on Twitter can be a win-win.

You’ll be able to see the issues that everyone is having and respond in a timely manner. Many times, customers will start helping each other out with their issues by seeing this hashtag and communicating with one another to resolve the issue.   

In conclusion, make your #Hashtag simple, short and unique. This is outlined in Twitter’s best practices for hashtags. Including more than one hashtag in a tweet is probably overkill. If you follow the above-mentioned steps and creatively promote your hashtag, you could be well on your way to a successful marketing campaign with increased engagement.

Jason Parks is the Owner of The Media Captain, a Premier Digital Marketing Company. You can follow him on Google+ and Twitter!