Keywords are the foundations of social media marketing- they are a words or phrases which are relevant to topics/ conversations online, they can be put in your websites URL and Meta Tags, anchor text etc.

By choosing specific keywords businesses can create content around this trending/ online activity.

Keywords are useful because:

  • They form the foundation of your websites content.- The keywords chosen should be put into any content/page you own. This allows visitors to your site to be sure  that they are in the correct place by matching your keywords to the one’s they used when searching on a search engine.
  • Keywords can help your page rank higher in search engines.
  • Correct use of keywords improves your sites SEO with link-building.
  • Helps keep your brand “on message” and support your sites SEO.

There are two different types of Keywords; Broad keywords and Long-Tail Keywords. Broad Keywords are short words or phrases that not only apply to your business/industry, they can apply to other companies in your industry or other companies in other industries, for example: Entertainment. However, since they are general you’ll find that there is a lot of competition for these keywords, making them hard to rank for and your site will be less likely to get visitors and turn into leads.

Long-Tail keywords are longer words or phrases that are more specific to your company/ industry, for example: Tailor Made Entertainment packages. Since they are so specific to your business, there will be less competition therefore easier to rank and get traffic to your site and more likely to get visitors to turn into leads.

When deciding on what keywords your company should use, you should follow these tips:

  • Keep your keywords relevant to what people will search in search engines. Think about what you would type in if you were to try and find your business in a search engine- bear in mind that people from around the world may have different names for your product i.e. Chips in the UK maybe fries elsewhere.
  • Include your keywords in content that your business posts. People visiting your site will read the keywords and then decided whether they want to stay on your page to read your article/ watch your video etc.
  • What products/ services does your company offer? If it is handbags for example, come up with a list of all the different handbags you sell. A good long-tail keyword for this for example would be ‘Radley clutch bag’.
  • Are there any issues or problems that your company could answer or resolve? Using the example of handbags again, you could create a list of keywords that matches what a potential lead could be searching for. For example, if you sell handbags that are designed to carry laptops, your potential lead could write into a search engine “Handbags that can carry laptops” or “Handbags that are big enough to carry laptops.”
  • Keep your keywords consistent. Keep your all keywords the same in your branding strategy as well this will make it easier to rank in search engines if you are using consistent keywords.

Hashtags are quite similar to keywords. They are social media tools that are defined with having the prefix symbol ‘#’  before a word or words (more than one word # has no spaces in-between.) For example #socialmedia.  They are used to categorize topics and group them all together, allowing users to easily search for related topics using the search function. Twitter was the first social media platform that introduced us to # and now it is being adopted by other social media platforms like Instagram, Pinterest, Facebook, YouTube and Google+. This is because they are very effective marketing tools as this makes it easier for online marketers to spread brand awareness, allowing them to  gain more followers.

For example Coca Cola used the #Shareacoke  to  spread awareness of their Share a Coke campaign, where they started using peoples names on the packaging of Coca Cola bottles/cans. This was used to invite users to share their discoveries online or virtually share a coke with somebody.

When creating Hashtags, follow these simple rules:

  • Keep them specific to your business or social media campaigns. This can be applied to events or issues aswell.
  • Make sure they are catchy, unique and clear. Search similar keywords to help you see how effective they are or to see what you should avoid when creating your # campaign.
  • Don’t use too many hashtags in one status post. Usually 1- 3 is just enough. Make sure that they are relevant to your social media campaign, topic etc. You want to directly lead your readers to the right conversation.
  • Avoid creating hashtags that are long for example #whykeywordsandhashtagsareimportanttosocialmediamarketing , this would make your post look ridiculous. Keep them short and sweet like #Socialmedia #Strategy.

Hashtags are brilliant for businesses because they can easily monitor and engage with users who are using their hashtag. They are also useful to keep a list of your most successful keywords as they can be re-used and associated with your business. Keep in mind though that hashtags can be more effective on one platform than others.