Branded hashtags represent brands and their campaigns across different marketing channels. In most cases, carefully chosen and well-executed hashtag campaigns can go a long way. Ultimately, they will lead to more attention for your brand and support your e-commerce. Use these three kinds of hashtag campaigns to achieve maximum profit.

The function of hashtags in most social networks is to categorize and collect content under a specific label. In case of Instagram, this means you can search for a hashtag and will be presented with all the content that was tagged with this specific label. Keeping in mind that Instagram users share over 95 million pieces of content daily, labels and categories are necessary if you are looking for a specific kind of content. A special kind of hashtag for business accounts is the so-called branded hashtag. This is a hashtag a brand or business will choose to represent their brand in general or for a specific campaign the brand is running, i.e. a contest or promotion. Usually branded hashtags will be related to the brand’s name or slogan or in case of a campaign will be the name or slogan of the campaign. The key factor is to keep it simple and memorable and most of all, easy to type. Only then, other users will be willing to use it, too.

The benefits of a branded hashtag

Branded hashtags are beneficial for your brand in many ways. First and foremost, the collecting and labeling function all hashtags have in common also accounts for the branded hashtag. Only this way, you will be presented will all content that is relevant for your brand. Coming from a user perspective, for someone who is looking for relevant content regarding your product, a branded hashtag will help them find the content they are looking for. This will make product research a lot easier and in most cases very effective. Ultimately, being able to present users with valuable and powerful content under your branded hashtag will lead to higher conversions.

Additionally, a branded hashtag will help your account and therefore your brand get more visibility and reach more people. Other users can search for the hashtag and find your content among it. Furthermore, your content will be featured in users' explore-section. This is based on interests and similar searches or followed accounts a user has. A continuously used branded hashtag will allow you to reach more people. But not just any people, rather your desired target group and relevant audience. Lastly, your branded hashtag will get you more attention and recognition. Hashtags go viral quite fast, which means a new campaign or promotion will be able to get a wide reach if you execute the usage of your branded hashtag thoughtfully. The following three examples will provide you with detailed information on how to implement and profit from a branded hashtag.

1. Collect valuable, brand-related UGC

Design a specific branded hashtag to represent your brand overall and promote/use it as much as you can. In case of Instagram you can include it in your bio but also promote it on your website or in your online shop. A branded hashtag of this kind should always be in accordance with your brand’s image and philosophy. Best practice case is the German watch-manufacturer PAUL HEWITT. Their branded hashtag is #getAnchored which is directly related to the Nordic origin of the brand. Additionally, it is connected to the prominently used anchor for their watches and other jewelry. PAUL HEWITT and many other brands use their branded hashtags to animate their customers to share their own images featuring the brand’s products with them.

Through the easily trackable hashtag, brands can search for relevant brand related content easily. Promoting your branded hashtag widely will ensure your customers know which one to use when wanting to share their favorite snapshot of your product with you. After assuring you have the media usage rights, the mostly high quality, authentic and very powerful UGC can be re-used for your marketing channels. This includes but isn’t limited to your own social media accounts, e-mail marketing and your online shop. Ultimately, a branded hashtag will allow you to get free, high quality content you can use to very successfully promote your brand and products.

2. Raise attention for your Contest

Whenever you are running a contest on one of your online marketing channels, hashtags will help you get the desired attention and reach. Create a fitting, memorable hashtag that will immediately be connected to your brand and the cause/purpose of the campaign. A contest can also include the collection of UGC, but in this case you will be able to create a separate niche where only the content-relevant UGC will appear. This will make it easier to sort out all actual contributors. A branded contest-hashtag will allow you reach your desired target group and raise attention for your campaign. Your contest will have a catchy and memorable label. This way as many people as possible will be able to respond to your incentive. Ultimately, this will result in wide arrays of (media) attention for you and your contest. This is valuable regarding your advertising measures as well as your e-commerce.

3. Advertise your promotions and sales

Whether you are launching a new product line, are running a sale or are hosting an event: appropriate and connected branded hashtags are of vital importance. You will be able to attract new users and make sure your campaign is getting the desired attention. The branded hashtag can also serve as a point of contact between you and your customers. They can participate, voice their opinion or react to the campaign by using the specific hashtag. This will enable you to receive all responses in one specific spot. This makes it easier for you to filter and respond. The possibility to respond will furthermore show your customers you value their opinion enough to respond or react in another way. In times of the anonymous online world, direct points of contact can separate you from many other brands from the same industry.

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