What's the point of Twitter #Hashtags?

I’ve noticed that many of my social media clients who are just starting out on Twitter are completely perplexed by hashtags: “What’s a hashtag and when do I use them?” Here’s a quick rundown:

  • this is a hashtag symbol: “#”

    Academy Award

    Image via Wikipedia

  • anyone can use the hashtag; all you have to do is type the “#” symbol in front of a key word in your tweet, and then that key word will automatically show up as a clickable link within your tweet
  • use the hashtag when you’re tweeting about a specific topic, or a particular event
  • the hashtag will categorize your tweet, so that your tweet shows up in relevant searches: when you click on the hashtag link, you will see a feed of all the most recent tweets in the Twitterverse (yes, “Twitterverse” is a word!) using that same hashtag… you are now part of a conversation!
  • Twitter is all about what’s going on right now, so you’ll find the hashtag most useful when you’re discussing a hot topic: the most popular topics of the moment are called Trending Topics

Hashtags are awesome for promoting an event. For example, The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences has been creating Oscar buzz on Twitter the last few weeks by designating #Oscars for discussion and hype surrounding tomorrow night’s Academy Awards broadcast. You can even post a question for a celebrity with #RedCarpetQA (talk about interaction!). This not only builds excitement leading up to the event, but during the ceremony, anyone will be able to witness or take part in a live conversation on Twitter. Fun!

Hashtags are not just for celebrities, though! Use the hashtag to promote your own business, blog, brand or event.


  1. Mary-Ellen on February 25, 2012 at 5:22 pm

    Hey, Thanks for breaking this down into easy to understand info Nishi. As a newbie in the social media world, I appreciate simplicity. Heck, now I want to send in a question for the Oscar’s tomorrow!

  2. Nishi on February 25, 2012 at 5:43 pm

    You’re so welcome, Mary-Ellen! You SHOULD send in a question, imagine if your fav celeb actually answered! That would be a kick 🙂

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