Twitter Hashtag Campaigns: What To Do & How To Measure Them {Part 2}

Twitter hashtag campaigns

A few weeks ago I introduced you to hashtags on Twitter and how business can put them to use. Today, I want to go a bit further and discuss some tips for Twitter hashtag campaigns and then go into how to measure them so you can accurately tell the effectiveness of your campaign.

Tips For Effective Twitter Hashtag Campaigns

Before you jump into your hashtag campaign, here are some must-read tips for first-timers.

Keep It Short & Simple

A tweet is only 140 characters long so you don’t want a hashtag that is so long that people can’t really say much else in their tweet. Keep it as short as possible while still making sense.

Also, make sure your hashtag is simple and easy to remember. Simple hashtags work because people are more inclined to use it when tweeting. Think about it. Would you use a hashtag if you had to think about how to spell it?

Real Life Example

Awards ceremonies always get people talking on Twitter. The recent MTV EMA Awards used #MTVEMA as their hashtag to effectively track the conversation surrounding their event. It’s short & simple and perfect for the speedy live-tweeting that occurs during events like these.

twitter hashtag campaigns mtv

Make It Relevant

When choosing a hashtag, make sure it’s something that is relevant to your business and brand. If your hashtag has nothing to do with your promo, you’re probably not going to get much traction from it at all.

A creative hashtag is a great one but you must know how to put that creativity to use effectively. When your audience sees the hashtag, they should have an idea of what to expect.

For example, Twitter (UK& Ireland) is using the #Tweet4Performance hashtag as part of their campaign to get small and business businesses to invest in Twitter advertising.

Real Life Example

The hashtag is perfect for the campaign because it maintains its message relevance by perfectly summing up the goal of their campaign succinctly.

Don’t Get Emotional

Be very careful about stepping into emotional and sentimental territories when creating your hashtags. We’ve seen plenty of big brands completely fail at hashtag campaigns because they didn’t put in enough thought into what people would actually be using the hashtag for.

An old but very relevant example that comes to mind is that of Australia’s national airline – Qantas. A few years ago Qantas ran a seemingly innocent hashtag campaign saying:

Real Life Example

To enter tell us ‘What is your dream luxury inflight experience? (Be creative!) Answer must include #QantasLuxury.

The problem is, Qantas had been experienced a number of issues over the course of the past year. Customers took this opportunity to completely tear down the hashtag and most used it as a way to air their grievances about the airline.

#QantasLuxury? 1. Plane takes off/arrives on time; 2. Baggage delivered promptly. This used to be called #QantasService

My #QantasLuxury experience would be no matter what time or duration of the flight a proper meal is served a cookie is not a meal its a joke.

Needless to say, the campaign didn’t exactly go as planned.

Engage Your Twitter Audience

Once your hashtag is out there, you don’t have much else to do but watch your tweets and see how your campaign is doing. It’s important to keep a close eye on the activity surrounding your hashtag once it goes live.

If your hashtag starts taking off and your customers begin using it, you should make the most of it. Every time someone uses your hashtag, be sure to reply to them. This will start a conversation to make sure your campaign doesn’t fizzle out. Don’t forget to use the hashtag in every subsequent tweet you send in reply too.

Measure Performance with Hashtag Tracking Tools

Once your campaign has ended, it’s time to measure the effectiveness of your hashtag. An effective campaign is one that got your audience talking and helped you meet your campaign goals (e.g. Brand Awareness, Sales etc).

There are a variety of tools that can help you track a Twitter hashtag campaign but here are some that are great for beginners.

Hashtags.org is a great tool to help you track performance. Set up your account to start tracking your campaign. You will see reports on frequency of tweets and also how many times a hashtag has been used.

Tagboard is another useful tool to see the conversation surrounding a particular hashtag. If you’re running your hashtag campaign across different social networks, Tagboard puts it all together and allows you to see text, images, video etc with your hashtag, across all platforms.

Hootsuite allows you to set up a stream focused solely on a hashtag. This will help you keep track of who is using a hashtag and exactly what they’re saying.

If you’re actively engaging with your community, Hootsuite is a great way to keep an eye on tweets and respond to them. Also, Hootsuite gives you great visibility on when a tweet has already been responded to – making it easier for teams to manage responses and audience communications.

Tweet Binder allows you to enter a hashtag and then provides detailed reports on conversation, retweets and anything else that is relevant. There are a number of ways to further categorize your findings. For example, you can filter your report to find influencers within your audience

Successful Twitter Hashtag Campaigns

Need some inspiration to get your hashtag campaign started? Check out some of our favorites from this year (so far).

Domino’s UK

Domino’s UK ran a campaign to reduce the price of a pizza based on how many people tweeted in time for lunch. The hashtag? #letsdolunch.

DORITOS

The #crashthesuperbowl hashtag got Doritos customers talking and created a lot of user generated content for the brand. Win.

NASA

To honor Earth Day, NASA invited…well, the whole world to take a selfie with their #GlobalSelfie campaign. NASA promised to put the photos together in a global mosaic.

Have you ever integrated hashtags into your social media campaigns? If not, are you going to experiment with them now? We would love to hear your thoughts. 

P.S. If you’re brand new to Twitter and can’t figure it all out, be sure to check out our post on getting started on Twitter.