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  • Writer's pictureMartin Ferrand

Reaching out with hashtags and content

Marketing products and services on the Internet, especially social-media platforms like Instagram, can be confusing and exasperating. Like the nerd culture that gave birth to MySpace and Facebook, these platforms celebrate and reward niche interests, carving out a place, however small, to any topic, no matter how arcane.

Socmed marketers must nestle into a niche that the algorithms can understand and promote to like-minded fellow users. This is fine for hobbyists, but those trying to sell products or services must be able to extend their reach to the widest community. The key factors used to extend the reach of socmed posts are #hashtags and content.

Invented by the online-forum geeks in the early days of the Internet and popularized through Twitter, hashtags are an essential component of any post. Algorithms use hashtags to avoid parsing content for keywords in order to group similar posts. Savvy marketers scour posts to find hashtags that bear even a remote relationship to their own product, then include those tags on their own posts. In this way, users looking for something completely different might be directed to the product, effectively extending reach.

While hashtags are the appetizer, content is the meat of any post. Algorithms place the most weight on written content when deciding placement and ranking on newsfeeds. But those all-powerful lines of code are looking at two, often-contradictory characteristics. The algorithm gauges the similarity in subject and theme to other posts in deciding placement, but how close the listing is placed to the top of the feed depends on originality. To rank high, a post must employ original phrasing and expressions while clearly communicating the core message. In other words, it must be the same as related posts, but different.

Hashtags and content must resemble poetry, where only the precise words are used and each is charged with meaning. To learn more about how you can employ hashtags and content to extend the reach of your Instagram posts

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