Custom hashtags are most popular on Twitter but are also used on Instagram, Tumblr, Super, and other social networks. They are unique, an extension of your brand. Best of all, custom hashtags are completely free.
1. Twitter chats.
Twitter chats are one of many ways to connect with customers and potential clients on Twitter. By using a custom hashtag, chat participants can follow the conversation by using Twitter’s search box. For a more professional look and a beautifully designed Twitter chat room, choose a third party Twitter chat provider. Most of them offer free Twitter chats and register the hashtag for you so you can easily track it.
2. Track reach long-term.
Custom hashtags can be used for Twitter campaigns to track results after the campaign has been stopped. For instance, a startup could have a pre-launch hashtag, an all-purpose hashtag, and similar hashtags for specific events such as webinars. If a webinar is advertised on Twitter with a custom hashtag, the reach of the campaign and long-term results can be measured even after the campaign is stopped because hashtags can be tracked free and independently from promotions.
3. Embedded timelines.
Twitter widgets with the latest tweets are common, embedded timelines with custom hashtags. Get ahead of competitors and boost your branding by embedding a timeline that exclusively shows tweets with your own hashtag. Just as with Twitter profile timelines, also embedded timelines allow for link color customization: https://dev.twitter.com/web/embedded-timelines
4. Widgets and buttons.
Improve your blog or website by using widgets that allow visitors to tweet a quote or statement containing your hashtag. Your twitter handle is included by default in the vast majority of free widgets and the tweet itself can be set up manually. Additionally, Twitter offers Tweet buttons with the automatic insertion of a custom hashtag on their developer site.
5. Hashtags help SEO.
Since hashtags are indexed by search engines, using the same custom hashtag on different platforms helps to optimize organic results for your brand or business. Hashtags are one of many ways to tell search engine algorithms what accounts are connected. Ideally, the main hashtag should show up in the profile or page description and in the content but descriptions seem to have the biggest impact on rankings.
Create a custom hashtag that you can use for all promotions. Clients and potential clients will recognize the hashtag and connect it to something great coming their way. Ideas for promotions could be contests, raffles, free shipping, get two-for-one, family night and 10 percent discount on orders over a certain amount. If your business was called Joe’s Burger, your hashtag could be #joesburger10 for ten percent off. Other ideas would be #joesburgerpromo, #jbfamily, #jbcontest, #jbpromo, and so on.
7. Event integration.
Custom hashtags are the ideal add-on for live events. They are a free way to create hype and can be shown in real-time on a large screen at the event itself. Participants will enjoy the public display of their content and often will tweet just to check whether it is a live feed or not. Live hashtag feeds also increase online and offline engagement because guests will take photos of their tweet on the screen and share it with their followers on a variety of social networks. Additionally, the photo sharing rate usually goes up because nothing makes a bigger impact than getting your photo on an oversized screen seen by all event attendees.
8. Live tweeting with video.
Similar to Google+ hangouts on air, Twitter can be used to broadcast a video in real-time. This is often referred to as live tweeting or live Twitter sessions. Business celebrities such as Richard Branson are known for their live Twitter Q&A sessions which help them better connect with their fans. Small businesses can take advantage of broadcasting on Twitter by inviting their followers to the broadcast with mentions minutes before it goes live. Promoted tweets can be used to target followers of competitors.