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Facebook Introduces Hashtags to its Platform

Facebook recently introduced hashtags into its platform. They began the rollout of Facebook hashtags to select users last Wednesday and while many people understand how hashtags work and why they are powerful, many Facebook users are a bit bewildered by this new addition as they are not using other social media platforms such as Twitter and Instagram and don’t yet understand the power of these pesky, odd looking “words.” Facebook hashtags

Facebook Hashtags: Why now?

Facebook explains that their addition of the hashtag feature will allow for an easier way to organize what’s currently popular. Here is what they had to say on their recent blog post announcing the integration:

During primetime television alone, there are between 88 and 100 million Americans engaged on Facebook – roughly a Super Bowl-sized audience every single night. The recent “Red Wedding” episode of Game of Thrones, received over 1.5 million mentions on Facebook, representing a significant portion of the 5.2 million people who watched the show. And this year’s Oscars buzz reached an all-time high on Facebook with over 66.5 million interactions, including likes, comments, and posts. To date, there has not been a simple way to see the larger view of what’s happening or what people are talking about. To bring these conversations more to the forefront, we will be rolling out a series of features that surface some of the interesting discussions people are having about public events, people, and topics. As a first step, we are beginning to roll out hashtags on Facebook.

What Does This Mean for Businesses on Facebook?

The addition of hashtags to Facebook means your content has a better chance of being viewed by Facebook users and there is potential to grow your fanpage as well as have a broader reach with your messaging. Hashtags automatically organize your content, allowing relevant users to more easily access what your business is sharing. But achieving this will require strategic use of hashtags. Simply placing hashtags on all your posts will not be effective. This is where a trained social media manager can help. So much of social media is the subtle art of how to use different channels to join communities and effectively communicate. For companies and brands, this is where a trained manager can make all the difference. You want to join in the conversation, not stomp in and force yourself or your brand on people. Businesses will be wise to step back and learn what to do and what not to do with hashtags and create a strategy that will allow for best use practices. Stay tuned as we will explore some do’s and dont’s for hashtag use in future posts. Sign up now to receive the blog in your inbox by clicking here.

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