Hashtags for social media have been used for easy indexing and searching for a particular topic. A hashtag is a word or an unspaced phrase prefixed with the hash character,
#, to form a label. It is commonly used in social media and common blogging sites to bring to notice a particular topic.
So, what is a hashtag?
It is a word or phrase preceded by a hash mark (#), that is used within a message to identify a keyword or topic of interest. The hashtag helps people search for a trending topic because of the hashtag.
What happens when you use a hashtag?
When you use a hashtag in your post, it is automatically indexed by the social network you have used it in and is made searchable for other users. If someone searches for the hashtag you have used, all results displaying the hashtag will appear in the searches. When a keyword, picks up enough momentum, it is known to go viral or trending.
How to use hashtags for social media
Most social media support the hashtags. Facebook was the latest social media to adopt hashtags. Some of the important social media that use hashtags are:
Facebook – Facebook started supporting hashtags in June 2013. It is not as popular as the other media that has adopted to using hashtags much earlier, Clicking on hashtags on Facebook will display a list of posts that contain the same hashtag. The results of people who are not in the friends list can also be seen.
Twitter – the birthplace of modern hashtag. The hashtag is used commonly on twitter and it throws up results for trending topics depending on your tweets. The most trending topics appear on the left side of the twitter screen.
Instagram – a pic says a thousand words and when you tag it right, it reaches so many people in the virtual world. It also helps you gain more followers. Some hashtags were created specifically for Instagram photo challenges — #ThrowbackThursday, a concept where you post cool retro pics.
Google+: Using hashtags in Google+ allows you to search not just for your results but also any related posts with the similar keywords and tags. It displays the results from Google as well as Google+.
Tumblr: Tumblr posts have a special “Tag” section where you can enter tag and the function is similar to that of twitter hashtags. It organizes the posts topic wise.
Pinterest: Pinterest also uses hashtags, but not as extensively as instagram. Pinterest hashtags are used to markand search for content. Some pins will have hashtags and you will need to click on it to display similar results and searches.
YouTube: Hashtag are used in the comments section within YouTube. Clicking on the hashtags will lead you to a page which will display the videos with the searched hashtag.
This is the first post in the series of how to use hashtags for social media. Watch this space for more updates!
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