Hashtag or No Hashtag! … This is the dilemma!
Needless to say that we all have this question at least once. We often find users of serial hashtags or who, with some attention, use them for each potentially “engaging” word. In fact, in order to maximize performance, the reflection on their use should start from a careful analysis of the most relevant hashtags for their business and the ones closest to the potential audience, which, for example, seek discussions about our key topic.
How hashtags are used on Facebook?
Fundamental is how the hashtags are used in the different platforms, specifically we go to deepen their use on Facebook to understand their real effectiveness.
For this analysis we have to start from 2013, in fact that year, Facebook decided to introduce hashtags because of its widespread use and growing on other platforms such as Twitter. In parallel, a dedicated search tool was created within the platform, the Graph Search, which uses both semantic and conversational parameters.
Although at first it was very much appreciated by marketers, soon came a number of weaknesses in the first place, linked to the question of privacy. In fact, Facebook, unlike Twitter, is a platform that is characterized by the confidentiality of some content, while with the introduction of the hashtag, it aimed to increase its openness so that all the content would be searchable and would favor interconnection among users based on common interests. Additionally, Graph Search has proven to be an inaccurate tool. Only after one year, mobile search functionality was introduced, which also offered search suggestions according to their interests, but anyway, regardless of application development.
You may also like to read: 12 Tips To Local Advertising With Social Media
Hashtags on Facebook are effective
At this point, you have to understand if and how much the hashtags on Facebook are effective. Blogger Kevan Lee in an article highlights that “Facebook posts without a hashtag do better than those with a hashtag.” This conclusion is confirmed by the 2016 report by BuzzSumo and a search by Socialbakers, that posts with Facebook hashtags generate less engagement.
It should be remembered that there is not the maximum number of hashtags on Facebook, so that the scope of content can be expanded to the detriment of engagement, in particular the simplicity and immediacy of the use of a content. In addition, another factor that damages engagement is that often users share the same content with the same hashtags on both Facebook and Twitter, which is worth remembering that this makes the content significantly less engaging.
So, the conclusion at this point is very clear: Facebook hashtags, it’s better not to use them … but right now!
Even in this case, a deepening is needed. In fact, you have to consider your target audience and understand whether this is prone, or not, to use hashtags and behave accordingly. Also, the use of hashtag on Facebook is highly recommended in brand awareness activities, but it’s always good to remember two things …
- Do not use more than two hashtags per post
- Always test their effectiveness through analytics and community feedback
Therefore, even if the overall data reveal that using hashtags on Facebook is even counterproductive, we recommend checking, on a case-by-case basis, the actual potential and their actual functioning.
A.H. Sagar is Operations Manager at CYONWO and author of Local Advertising Journal. A.H. has more than 6+ years of experience in digital marketing. His expertise helps him to be a professional blogger and he loves to share his ideas, tips, tricks and information with blogging.