By now you’ve heard that Facebook Hashtags have been rolled out to many users.
These hashtags link conversations together like they do on Twitter or Instagram, so that your community can go deeper into a specific topic.
How to create a Facebook Hashtag
A Hashtag is simple a tag that links together all content that includes that hashtag. Creating a Facebook Hashtag is as simple as typing a “#” in front of any word or phrase (no spaces).
For example, a Breast Cancer org might use #BreastCancer to link together topical posts.
Hashtags that are created elsewhere but posted to your Facebook Page will be automatically clickable and searchable on Facebook.
How nonprofits can benefit from Facebook Hashtags
So how should you start using hashtags? Here are seven tips to help you begin using hashtags.
1. Listen First - Search Facebook for #hashtags related to your cause (as shown below). In addition to understanding how people are talking about that topic, you will discover which hashtags are used the most, and who is using these hashtags.
2. Create a Hashtag for Your Organization – Creating a hashtag for your nonprofit allows you to easily join existing conversations on Facebook.
3. Extend your Current Campaign - If you are currently using hashtags in a campaign on Twitter or Instagram, start including those hashtags in your Facebook content. This makes it easier to integrate all your social channels as one.
4. Piggyback on Trends – once you discover a popular #that’s related to your cause, use it in your updates. This will enable you to create more exposure for your posts when other Facebook users search through these hashtags.
5. Apply Hashtag Glue – Use hashtags around specific topics so that your community can easily aggregate those conversations with a single mouse click. This would be especially useful for an awareness campaign, or to help an existing community connect with each other in a new way.
6. Use Sparingly – On Twitter, Hashtags can be quite annoying if they are overused. Be selective about the hashtags you use in your page posts, sticking to the ones your community uses the most.
7. Facebook Ads – Like every other piece of data provided by users, Facebook will eventually let marketers target hashtags in the near future. This will give you the ability to promote a campaign to users who have been actively using specific hashtags.
Hashtags will not make you awesome
Keep in mind that Facebook Hashtags are just another shiny object. They will not save your organization if you lack solid goals, a smart strategy, and a measurement plan.
So start there.