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How to run a hashtag campaign

We’ve put together an easy-to-follow four-step process that will get you well on your way with a hashtag campaign to propel your brand’s social strategy forward.

1. Understand your audience

Make sure you know where your audience is and what kinds of content they like to interact with so that you know what type of hashtag campaign to run.

Keeping up with social media demographics is just one part of this. You also need to have a clear customer persona set for your target audience so that you understand their online behavior patterns and can create a campaign that they’ll be most likely to engage with.

2. Define your goal

If you want to create engagement, consider creating a campaign that uses # tags to aggregate information or help you fake fun with your brand. You can also use this as an opportunity to run a photo contest around the # tag.

If you’re looking to increase awareness around your brand, make sure you include at least part of your brand name within the hashtag. Try to come up with a good play on words that you can have fun with on social media.

And if you’re trying to increase sales, keep your hashtag campaign focused on a specific product or service you can promote. Try to get customers engaged by sharing photos of their own experiences with your brand. Like the Uber campaign urging their users to praise their drivers for exemplary service, using the hashtag #BeyondFiveStars.

3. Make participation easy

If it’s difficult to interact with your hashtag campaign, your audience won’t do it. Simple as that.

This means you don’t want to require too many steps. This is the same rule of thumb for social media contests. Don’t make it hard to enter or participate. It should be as simple as posting a photo or writing a tweet and including your hashtag.

When you start trying to add additional steps, like specific guidelines for the types of posts, or asking them to go somewhere for a photo, you’re asking a bit too much from your followers and you’re not likely to see the level of engagement and reach that you otherwise would.

4. Choose the right platform

Your last step is to choose the right platform for launching your hashtag campaign. You’ll likely be choosing between Twitter and Instagram as these are the two most popular platforms for hashtags.

Since these two social networks are very different, deciding which platform is going to be best should be pretty straightforward. If you plan a photo-based hashtag campaign, you’ll want Instagram. If you plan a text or conversation-based hashtag campaign, you’ll want Twitter.

However, you could always launch a multi-channel hashtag campaign as well that covers all the bases and reaches an even wider audience.

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