In a nutshell

  • Hashtags are essential tools for online video creators to enhance visibility and connect with their target audience across various platforms like YouTube, TikTok and Twitter.
  • Effective use of hashtags involves understanding their mechanics on each platform and differentiating between hashtags and tags to optimize content.
  • Regular research and adaptation of hashtag strategies are crucial for maximizing engagement, with best practices including using a limited number of relevant hashtags and aligning with trending topics for greater reach.

Online video creators are constantly seeking strategies to enhance their visibility and reach. Understanding how hashtags work will give you a valuable advantage on any platform. Hashtags empower content creators to connect with their target audience and amplify their online presence.

Whether it’s YouTube, TikTok or Twitter, employing effective strategies can make all the difference. In this article, we’ll explore the mechanics of hashtags on each platform. We’ll uncover the benefits and provide best practices to optimize the use of hashtags so you can maximize their impact.

So, how do hashtags work?

After a long history of just being a “pound” sign, the concept of hashtags was introduced on Twitter in 2007 as a way to group related tweets together. This allowed users to easily search for content on a particular topic or join in on trending conversations. By 2009, hashtags were fully embraced on the platform, and their popularity took off. They were frequently used for awareness campaigns, fundraising and activism.

When used in your post, the platform automatically turns a hashtag into a clickable link that leads to other posts using the same one. This creates a community of sorts where people interested in the same topic can engage with each other’s content and stay up-to-date on the latest trends. By including relevant and specific hashtags in your posts, you’re essentially placing them in front of an audience that’s searching for their particular topics.

Regardless of which platforms you’re on, the business basics of using hashtags should be managed like any other marketing strategy. Do your homework to find the most popular phrases that are relevant to your content, apply them in the correct section of your post, monitor the results, do more homework and adjust your hashtags if needed. Rinse and repeat.

Uses on YouTube

On YouTube, hashtags play a crucial role in connecting videos and reaching a wider audience. By strategically incorporating hashtags, video creators can enhance discoverability and improve search rankings. This increased visibility can lead to higher engagement and subscriber growth, ultimately expanding your reach.

In addition to enhancing searchability within YouTube itself, hashtags also have an impact on Google search results. When a keyword is searched, the most popular videos within that hashtag are displayed at the top of the search results. This cross-platform visibility enables video creators to tap into a broader audience beyond the confines of YouTube.

To effectively use hashtags on YouTube, place them in the description to highlight the video’s main theme or topic. Use your most important hashtags at the beginning of the description. This ensures that they receive maximum visibility and increases the chances of your content being discovered by the right viewers.

Finding the most popular relevant phrases to use on YouTube requires a little legwork. You can start in the left side menu, go to Explore and then choose Trending. This will give you some wide ideas of what’s getting a lot of attention right now. Then, in the top search bar, just type in a hashtag and a phrase that describes your content, like #asmr, to see the most popular videos. Check out several of them to see what they’re including in their descriptions and find some that will work for your video.

As a side note, it’s important to pay attention to the difference between hashtags and tags in the video description. Tags serve as specific keywords to describe the video’s content. Hashtags function as an additional tool to categorize your videos with similar content. By using tags and hashtags effectively, you can optimize your videos and increase visibility.

Uses on TikTok

Similar to its use on other platforms, using hashtags on TikTok enhances the discoverability of your content. By including relevant hashtags in your video captions or comments, you enable users who are interested in those topics to find your content easily. Utilizing popular and trending hashtags will boost your video’s reach and potential for viral success.

Hashtags on TikTok go beyond discoverability for viewers, though. They also provide opportunities for brands to find your content. By using specific hashtags related to brands or partnerships, you increase the chances of being noticed by potential collaborators. This can open up doors for sponsorship deals and brand promotions, helping you monetize your TikTok presence.

Keep an eye on the latest challenges, dances or memes that trend on the platform, too. Riding these trends enables you to participate in the conversation and gain exposure. By incorporating trending hashtags into your content, you align yourself with the current viral trends and increase the likelihood of your videos being shared and engaged with.

To find the best inspirations for TikTok, here are several avenues that you can conduct your research. Dive into areas like the Discover page, the For You page and the Creative Center to see what’s trending. You can even research to find popular videos being posted by your own audience and competitors.

There are a few limits and best practices to note about how to use hashtags on TikTok. On this platform, captions have a character limit of 300, so you must use them sparingly and prioritize the most relevant ones. According to Sensible, optimal number of hashtags to maximize engagement on TikTok ranges from 3 to 5. So don’t go overboard; use the top three to five best hashtags for your content and cut the rest.

Uses on X

Even now that the Twitter platform has rebranded as X, hashtags still serve as a simple but powerful tool to categorize posts and facilitate content discovery. By adding relevant hashtags to your posts, you can tap into existing discussions. Doing so helps you attract users who are interested in those topics.

Unlike some other platforms, X offers flexibility in terms of where you can use hashtags within your post. Incorporate them anywhere in your content, whether that’s in the caption or as part of the actual text. They can also be used effectively in the comments on the original post. These options allow you to integrate hashtags without disrupting the overall flow of your posts.

The best way to discover which hashtags are best to use on X is really by engaging on the platform and paying attention to what others are using. This will ensure you’re staying in tune with what’s interesting to the people you want to reach. You can also use platform tools like the Explore tab and the Trends For You section.

X also has a unique feature where hashtagged words that are frequently used become trending topics. When a hashtag gains significant traction and captures the interest of users, there’s potential for it to generate substantial engagement for posts associated with it. You should use just a few very intentionally selected hashtags on X so that the conversations on your posts stay focused.

Make the most of your hashtags

Leveraging popular and trending hashtags can increase your online engagement and help you establish a presence within relevant communities on many platforms. By following the principles and best practices here, you’ll begin to amplify your channel’s reach and expand your audience.