Social Media Tip: Using Hashtags in Facebook for Business
While Facebook is not as reliant on hashtags for content discovery and promotion as other social media platforms, such as Instagram, they can still be a valuable tool for brands to use in establishing a consistent presence.
A few best practices apply to all channels when it comes to using hashtags in organic posts:
- Using them sparingly and with purpose.
- Don’t use trending hashtags unless they fit your business or the content you are posting—trying to game the algorithms just for more visibility doesn’t build your brand position.
- Hashtags aren’t a substitute for well written copy and quality images.
- Track your social media analytics to focus on which hashtags work best on your pages to achieve your social media goals.
- Stay on brand while considering locality, niche markets, your customers’ lifestyles and interests and themes.
(Learn more about using hashtags for business on four other social media platforms in our Business Hashtag How-To Guide.)
Facebook users—both individuals and brands—use fewer hashtags than are typically seen in Instagram posts and tweets. One reason is Facebook’s more private nature with an emphasis in its algorithms on connections with family and friends rather than business pages. However, it still has potential for using hashtags to categorize content and identify brands and campaigns, especially when encouraging user-generated content.
You can encourage followers to not only tag your business in posts, but also to use your hashtags, increasing exposure. By introducing them on Facebook, they become a part of your brand identity and are then familiar to users who may later encounter them on Instagram, Twitter or other emerging platforms. Many retail brands, especially those serving niche markets, build a strong relationship with users by encouraging them to share their experience with the products using brand-specific hashtags. Check out this example of posts by SkirtSports and by a customer who included #skirtsports in her post.
The brand’s own post keeps the hashtags minimal and focused on brand-building and the niche community of “women who move,” while the customer’s post provides extra visibility and continues to link SkirtSports to other hashtags that further build the brand identity and sense of community.
Hashtags can also be used to localize your content, whether your business has a single location or you want to emphasize individual locations or events for a brand that serves a larger area. This simple post from an art-based business includes hashtags that tell both what you can do (#paintyourownpottery) and where (#lacrossewisconsin).
Hashtags, of course, are only one piece of the social media puzzle. Learn more about best practices for creating organic social media content that gets seen in this comprehensive blog post: Your Complete Social Media Guide: What, Where, When and How Often to Post.
What common mistakes do businesses make with social media? One of the biggest mistakes is treating social media as separate from the rest of their content marketing strategy. Download our problem/solution paper to learn more about the importance of connecting social media with your business website and the rest of your marketing content.
If you are ready to talk about Facebook, hashtags and how social media complements an inbound marketing strategy, schedule a time with one of our agency leaders for a consultation.