Find hashtags used by readers in your genre/topic

Posted Jun 1 2017, 8:00 am in , , ,

hashtagpostscriptParticularly on Twitter and to a lesser degree on Facebook, hashtags (#) have become a critical shorthand tool to categorize conversations. Beyond the popular #amwriting and #amediting hashtags, however, avid social media users can sort conversations by hashtagging terms that relate specifically to a fiction genre, subgenre, hero/heroine types, book setting, or even key themes. Find those terms, and you’ve found a new audience to engage.

How powerful are hashtags? According to Tagboard, one of the companies profiled below, in 2012, the hashtag was used as a call to action in just 7% of Super Bowl ads. By 2014’s big game, hashtag use in ads skyrocketed to 58%, with some ads featuring the hashtag on-screen for the entire duration of the ad.

But how do you find the hashtags that can lead you to your core audience? These two search tools can help.

Tagboard

Tagboard is a company whose mission is to organize communities through the hashtag, feeding all relevant hashtag content into a single “tagboard” that showcases the media in the format (on air, online, on screen) of the user’s choice. That’s a lot to take in, but for the basic purpose of finding your tribe, the process is pretty simply. Simply go to the site’s home page, and key in a hashtag you think might be relevant to you. Voila! all the recent posts including that hashtag appear, in a format that is a little more user friendly than your Twitter feed.

Hashtags

For the analytically minded, Hashtags.org can give you a snapshot into the last 24 hours’ usage of a given hashtag, along with sample tweets of the most prolific users. With a quick glance you’ll see who’s tweeting and what specifically they’re saying, to give you ideas about how to craft your own posts. For a fee (somewhat of a sizable one) you can upgrade your account to receive more tracking information and analytics.

Both of these tools presume that you start with at least some idea of the hashtags you want to search — and they then give you the tweets/mentions that correspond with those hashtags. But what if you don’t even know where to begin? Two options:

1. Get creative! Make the topic you’d most like to talk about into a hashtag and try it out on one of the above tools.

2. Go fishing! Identify who your top author peers are, and follow them on Twitter. (Twitter is better for this than Facebook, because the conversation is constantly (and I mean constantly) flowing. See what hashtags they use that get the most play.

Postscript Media Services Social Media Snapshot

If you want a birds’ eye view into the conversations of your key author peers, another option is the Social Media Snapshot from Postscript Media Services. For $29, you’ll receive a week’s worth of deep dive information about your own social media activity, and those of your key author peers, including all trending hashtags, concepts, and conversational topics. Particularly if you’re gearing up for a social media campaign, the Snapshot (or a longer-term review/strategy) can help you become a thriving part of the conversation.

 

 

 

 

 

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