Have you ever wondered if there is value to adding hashtags to the bottom of your social media posts? Sales and Marketing Manager of Quivertree Digital Hospitality Solutions, Sarah Robertson, looked at a few case studies from the hotel and guest house social media accounts that we manage. She found that the addition of this small symbol can make a big different to the reach of a social media post.
Hashtags were first introduced on Twitter but are now used across most social media channels. By introducing words or phrases preceded by a hash sign (#) at the end of a social media post you can classify, categorise, or identify the accompanying text as relevant to a specific topic.
Making use of hashtags improves user experience. It allows social media users to easily search for content topics that they are interested in. From a digital marketing perspective, they are also vitally important, as they help brands to widen their reach beyond their specific social media followers.
Case Study: Measuring the reach of popular hashtags
We had a look at the practice of using hashtags on social media, pulling stats from the social media handles of a Pringle Bay-based guest house that we manage.
61% of the reach of a #WednesdayWisdom tagged post, where we listed facts about the Atlantic Ocean, were from non-followers. In this instance the use of hashtags more than doubled the reach of this social media post.
55% of the reach of a #sustainabletraveller post came from non-followers of the account. This means that nearly half of the users that this post reached were unfamiliar with the guest house and learnt about it from a general topic search.
43% of the reach of another post, that made use of #WorldEnvironmentDay, originated from non-followers.
It is clear from the above examples that the use of relevant hashtags greatly increased the reach of these posts beyond existing followers of the account. This is a highly effective method to grow social media following.
Tips to using hashtags in your social media posts
Quivertree Digital Hospitality Management’s Social Media Media team share their top tips on how to effectively use hashtags on social media:
As a rule of thumb, you should never add more than 6 hashtags to a post. Overuse draws attention away from the actual copy of the post and results in decreased engagement.
Hashtags must always be written as one word.
Numbers, spaces, and special characters should not be used.
Only make use of relevant hashtags to ensure high engagement.
Make use of hashtag generator tools to research popular topics for your industry. In hospitality we find that #hotels, #travel, #restaurant, #vacation, #holiday, #travelgram, #instatravel and #lifestyle are frequently relevant to our posts.