How To Use Hashtags Properly
by Jon Tewksbury
Twitter. Facebook. WordPress. YouTube. LinkedIn. What do these computer programs all have in common? That’s right: Hashtags. But do you know how to use hashtags properly? Here are 5 rules to maximize hashtag success:
The Hashtag Sandwich
When using hashtags, most people choose the standard format of placing the # before the tag (e.g. #hashtag) but did you know that you can improve hashtag traffic by 50% and increase SEO for your website or blog two-fold by using the double hashtag method? Simply add a # to the end of your hashtag as well as at the beginning.
A+ You Win
Ever look in the phonebook and see all those companies with names like “AA Pizzeria” or “AAA Funeral Home”? Have you wondered why those companies choose such odd sounding names? Well, it all comes down to alphabet order, and on the internet the same rules apply. A comes first, followed by B, C, D, and then E. After that, you’ve got F, then G, H, I, J, K… Then it ends with Q, then R, S, T and U, V, W X, then Y and Z.
Think your #Bayonce tag is going to attract web traffic? Think again. Your tag will just be lumped in with all of the other Twitter and ICQ accounts with the same Bayonce tags.
Solution? Just think about those children’s day care and sewage treatment companies you’ve seen in the phonebook. Bingo! By simply adding an “A” or even an “A A” before your tag, you jump right to the top of the pack!
35% of all internet users are Chinese. (Both in China and Chinese living in other places.) So why does everything you put on the information superhighway have to be in English? You’re losing a vast number of web browsers when you only include English hashtags.
Solution? There’s a website, I can’t think of it right now, but you can type in anything you want and it will translate it to Chinese for you. Then guess what? You simply copy (CTRL+C) and paste (CTRL+V) the Chinese word as a hashtag on your page.
Then just sit back and watch your hits increase by 35%. You’re welcome.
Over 78% of all internet websites are pornographic, and 88% of all web surfers say that they navigate to adult websites either frequently or very frequently. source: Wikipedia. Even if your Twitter feed or LinkedIn account aren’t adult-oriented, you can always garner more views by altering your hashtags to something more sexual in nature.
Say you have a blog that deals with poetry and photography that you have created. You probably already use the tags “#poems” and “#photos” and what have you, but if you want more people to see your blog, you’ll have to think outside the box a little bit. Do you know what a “rimjob” is? It doesn’t matter. All that matters is that you put that as a tag for every single blog entry you publish. It doesn’t matter that your poems are not rimjob-related. The tag will draw in readers, and once they read your works they will fall in love with your blog.
The Magic Flute
What if I told you that there was a hashtag that has only ever been used by the senior computer programmers who program all of the popular social media websites? And what if I told you that the hashtag was a “catch-all” tag that when used properly, triggered every program in every application that utilizes hashtag technology to display the page that includes this tag?
Well, my close friend is a senior programmer at Twitter and is also on the Board of Directors for Google. He is one of the foremost computer programmers in the world and has authored most of the websites and programs that use hashtag keyword technology. One night, we went for drinks at Applebee’s (the bar side) and he got shit-faced drunk. In a drunken stupor, he told me about a “backdoor” hashtag that only senior-level programmers have access to. He said that the tag has only ever been used a handful of times and only for testing purposes. At the time I didn’t believe him, but when I got home I typed this tag:
into one of my blog entries and I literally got billions of hits!
Use this one sparingly, and be prepared for the onslaught of traffic.