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Insiders guide to #Hashtag and @Mention

Hashtags are important to the way we communicate online because social media platforms turn any word or group of words (without a space) that directly follow it into a searchable link.  

The magic then happens when searching, as simply a #hashtag helps to populate groups of content; if you click on a hashtag you can see all the content associated with that group of words #hashtag in real time. 

Hashtags originated on Twitter in 2007, and today are used by both brands and people alike, to gain more followers and potential customers.  Not only on Twitter, #hashtags can be used on Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, YouTube and other social platforms.  They can be used to promote specific events or campaigns.  You can search to see what people are talking about / interested in currently, and they provide an opportunity to join a conversation or engage with those having conversations about things relevant to your brand.

How to use the #hashtag

  • Group all your words together, don’t put in a space
  • Differentiate between words with Capital Letters - they don’t change the search result eg. #TgiF will give the same results as #TGIF or #tgif
  • Use numbers if required; special characters and punctuation marks will not work
  • Put hashtags at the end of your post or comment.

Here is an online tool that can be used to monitor your brand online:

Hashtag Tracker

The @mention

The purpose of the @mention symbol on social media is to ‘call out’ directly to someone.  They will get notified that you have mentioned them.  This is beneficial for businesses for a number of reasons, it lets the person or company know straight away, it puts you or your brand in front of who you are mentioning, it can leave a positive impression, and it encourages reciprocation.

The @ symbol had its origins (around 1970) as a connector in email addresses before being picked up by Twitter in 2006, Facebook in 2009, and LinkedIn in 2013. It is now across the majority of large social media platforms such as Instagram, Google+ and Pinterest.  You may have noticed that Facebook is rolling out your company page name in the profile banner area with the @mention at the moment.

It is now common across all social media platforms to have a @username for business and personal profiles. Eg. @omgsolutionsnz


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