Why are we using Hashtags? Really?

Why are we using them? Are they fun? Are the cute? Are they just what we do…hashtag everything?

They were meant originally to help organize conversations, allowing like minded people to connect inside conversations. Now…there is a hashtag for everything…just because.

I see people posting Facebook using 15-20 different hashtags in one post…I wonder…how are they using this after they post this one piece of content. What are people doing with these hashtag initiatives?

It is time to ask ourselves a few questions:
1) Why are you using a hashtag?
2) Are your organizing a chat?
3) Are you trying to organize a community conversation?
4) If you are using a hashtag for a campaign, are you measuring the impact of the hashtag?

Twitter helped create this idea of hashtags and they are even consider dumping support for hashtags. Why…because users are using Twitter to search for content, conversations, and people based on search terms….not hashtags.

Via Mashable earlier this year, Twitter CEO Dick Costolo made this comment during a company earnings call in February 2014:

“By bringing the content of Twitter forward and pushing the scaffolding of the language of Twitter to the background, we can increase high-quality interactions and make it more likely that new or casual users will find this service as indispensable as our existing core users do. And we took initial steps in that direction with the introduction of media forward timelines and in-line social actions in October, and we’re already starting to see early signs that those initiatives are working well.”

Are we using hashtags like they were meant to be used or are we just creating more noise…more Chart-junk? If it is the later…then Tuft would not be happy!

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