What the #### is a hashtag?

For Facebook fans who have been happily living a hashtag-free life, fear not, Facebook’s announcement officially rolling out hashtags this week is not really bad news.  You might even find it to be a good thing, once you get the hang of it, and especially if use them to promote your work or business.

But first, the basics, what is a hashtag?
The # symbol, called a hashtag, is used to mark keywords or topics in a post.  It is created organically as a way to categorize messages or posts of a similar natures.  Examples:  #summer #Oscars #SuperBowl #TGIF

How do I use a hashtag?
People (and businesses) use the hashtag symbol # before a relevant keyword or phrase (no spaces)  so that their posts will be grouped into other similarly “hashtagged” posts when searched upon or clicked.   Clicking on a hashtagged word in any message  will show you other posts marked with that keyword or phrase.  It’s interesting to note these posts will not all necessarily be from your friends (I’m seeing quite a few business pages showing up – methinks that users might clamor for filters in the very near future.)

For those new to the hashtag world, here are some examples of hashtags from Twitter, Instagram and other social media networks that we might see creeping into Facebook:  #ThrowbackThursday #TBT #selfie #nowplaying.

And good news for those of you who auto-post across your social media networks (serious Ninja stuff), the hashtags will be recognized across all social networks.

For more information, background and details about hashtags in Facebook, please check out:
* Public conversations on Facebook – Facebook
* Hashtags finally get support from Facebook – Mashable
* Privacy and hashtags on Facebook – Mari Smith

Have hashtags been enabled in your Facebook account, yet?  If so, what is your first post with a hashtag? 

One comment

  1. Mike Scheu says:

    Brilliant, Nancy! Congratulations on the launch of this newsletter. I’m looking forward to reading more about hashtags on facebook (thanks for the link), and checking out some of your favorite Blogs.

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