7 questions to ask when choosing an event #hashtag

# Hashtag – who knew this little symbol could one day mean so much? Proliferated by Twitter, it’s now the facilitator and aggregator of conversations on most major social media platforms like Instagram, Google+, and Facebook.

Hashtag

With a simple click of a specific hashtag, you could pull up all posts or tweets tagged with the hashtag and see what others are saying about your event. It can help you engage with your event’s attendees and create an amplified reach to an audience beyond your existing followers and fans, if done right.

Before getting on board the hashtag bandwagon, ask these seven questions in choosing a hashtag appropriate for your event.

1. Is it unique? Given the commonplace of hashtags these days, there might be a possibility that your hashtag’s already in use. You’ll want to ensure that your content does not get lost in a sea of clutter unrelated to your event. To pre-empt a hashtag hijack, pick your brains to come up with a creatively unique hashtag and search if it’s currently in use on Instagram using the “explore” tab in the app or on Twitter using Tweetdeck or #hashtags.org.

2. Is it relevant? Think about your event’s main objective – is it to amplify your brand or to drive a message home or both? Choose a hashtag that reflects that.

#SGisCreative by CreativeMornings successfully incorporates the event’s brand and message.

3. Is it easy to remember? Keep your hashtags short and simple – long and complex hashtags are a pain to read or remember, a test to one’s patience and memory to type out, and they risk being mis-spelled which defeats the point of having one.

#PWIB13 by Connected Women on the topic “Powering Women in Business” keeps their hashtag short by abbreviating the topic making it easier for recall.

4. Is it conversational? Will it attract the eye of those not currently your fans or followers? Will it get them interested enough to pick up upon and get involved in the conversation you’re trying to create with your event’s hashtag? Does it tug at emotional heartstrings or call people to action in being part of a cause or movement?

#SGisCreative by CreativeMornings rallies people to believe and belong to a movement.

5. Is it for the long-term? If your event’s a recurring one, you should consider choosing a hashtag that’s reflective of both your event’s short and long term goals.

#insideout, the running hashtag for Fashion Revolution Day, an annually held event pushing a global movement to create awareness of and catalyze change against the negative social and environmental impact created by the fashion manufacturing industry. Attendees wear their clothes inside-out and become global advocates for a fashion revolution on social media.

6. Is it sensitive? Be aware of current affairs and hence wary of hashtag wordplay that might connote or evoke negative emotions. Doing so, whether intentional or not, could cause a backlash from attendees and shed a bad light upon your event.

#haventcomeacrossanyyet so don’t be one of them (and #pointprovenforpointthree).

7. Is it better to have more than one? You can choose to have more than one but as the saying goes, “two’s a company and three’s a crowd”. It’s the same with hashtags. Most people can remember one hashtag, at best two, in the midst of having a good time at your event so save them the mental strain and keep it to two at most. Otherwise, you’ll find confused attendees who might mess up the hashtags or not use them at all.

There you go, ask yourself these seven questions in choosing the perfect hashtag to create a social conversation around your event.

Top Image Credit: Flickr

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Claire Ding
Claire Ding is the Community Manager at ticketing platform Peatix in Singapore. She runs a community event for organisers, Backstage Pass , where organisers connect with others and learn tips on event management. Quite the thrill-seeker, Claire's gone skydiving, bungee jumping, and enjoys anything that puts her on edge (quite literally), it's no wonder she's in the business of events with never a dull moment!