The Growth Hacker's Guide to LinkedIn Hashtags

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The Growth Hacker's Guide to LinkedIn Hashtags

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Written by Houston
January 26, 2021
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LinkedIn hashtags are critical to growth hacking your posts.

They might seem trivial, but you can use them to get your posts in front of the right audiences.

And, here's what.

LinkedIn encourages their use.

In this extensive guide, we'll show you how to do proper research to get the best hash-tagged keywords, use them to hack your posts, and finally, optimize your company page.

#LetsGo

What Are LinkedIn Hashtags?

LinkedIn hashtags are just like any hashtags on popular social networking sites.

They're built to make sure that particular topics are categorized well and are easily searchable.

On LinkedIn, using a good hashtag strategy is critical in ensuring that the right people get to see the posts that you put out. It would make no sense to put out posts that appeal to a very particular niche if you don't ensure that it gets in front of their eyeballs.

But, here's what.

LinkedIn hashtags do differ slightly from your run-of-the-mill hashtags on other social networks.

On LinkedIn, hashtags can be followed by users so that they can keep track of current events surrounding that particular topic.

We also like them because they allow you to signpost the content that you have on your posts. By putting in a hashtag, people can quickly figure out what your post is about and read more if they find it interesting.

Broad vs. Niche Hashtags

Think of hashtags the same way you think of keywords.

You've got broad or seed keywords, and you've also got niche keyword sets that have less volume but have more intent.

Now the same principle applies to hashtags.

More general hashtags such as #marketing or #b2b will command larger followings because they host a variety of topics under their wing. These are referred to as broad keywords.

If you were to go to something more specific with regard to marketing such as #ABM or #PPC, you'll run into what's called niche keywords. Not a lot of people will subscribe to PPC subjects, but all of the people who subscribe to PPC will follow marketing.

The trick in using hashtags is to use a mixture between broad and niche ones. You can use one broad one, one slightly narrower form of the topic, and your niche. Something like #digitalmarketing #seo #googlemaps.

These play a role in ensuring that your post is correctly categorized on LinkedIn.

How To Use Hashtags on LinkedIn

Where to Use Hashtags

There are two places where hashtags can make a big difference:

  • Your posts
  • Your profile optimization

Now, we'll get to profile and company page optimization using hashtags in just a second, but ideally every post that you put out could use a couple of hashtags in it.

Check out the LinkedIn post templates that are available on the platform, and you'll find that they include areas where you can include hashtags.

LinkedIn hashtags, The Growth Hacker's Guide to LinkedIn Hashtags
Case in point, the template for offering help on LinkedIn. Not only does it have an area to add hashtags, but the post itself starts with one.

If you want to learn more about LinkedIn post templates, check out the ultimate guide here.

This just means that LinkedIn encourages their use so that people can get access to the information that they are interested in better.

Don't waste time using them in LinkedIn articles or on post comments, however. They won't work there.

Placement

I personally like to put hashtags at the very end of my posts.

It looks cleaner and it's becoming the norm for a lot of growth hackers and people that are active on the platform.

Some opt to use hashtags inside the main content of their post. Although I have nothing against that, I advise to use it sparingly because you don't want random areas of your text to be broken up with hashtags.

Well, unless, that's your plan.

As a simple rule, you can never go wrong with putting them at the end of your post.

How Many Hashtags To Use?

The general consensus amongst growth hackers and digital marketers alike is to use anywhere between one to three per post.

LinkedIn hashtags, The Growth Hacker's Guide to LinkedIn Hashtags

And, LinkedIn confirms it with their LinkedIn hashtag best practices guide.

LinkedIn hashtags, The Growth Hacker's Guide to LinkedIn Hashtags

So, why should we keep it to only three?

Well, the short answer is because it looks spammy.

Nobody likes looking at a post with too many hashtags because it seems as if the person posting is desperate to get their post noticed by the LinkedIn algorithm.

We have to remember that this isn't Twitter or Instagram where it's commonplace to see more than three hashtags at a time especially for topics that trend with a shorter decay time.

LinkedIn is still the largest professional social networking platform with a quarter of a billion active users. You need to keep it professional and natural.

Also, think about it, why broaden your targeting when you're trying to hit up a niche market - especially for B2B?

As always in growth hacking, shorter and sweeter is always better.

But, this doesn't mean you should always include three hashtags. There are times where I've just used one because it made more sense to do so, like this post I wrote about an HR-related incident that I had recently.

LinkedIn hashtags, The Growth Hacker's Guide to LinkedIn Hashtags

Researching the Best Hashtags

You need to do a little research before you get going on your road to growth.

Knowing the best hashtags to use - or to follow - will allow you to properly use them to make sure that your posts get in front of the right people.

Looking for Similar Hashtags

On the LinkedIn search bar, you want to start typing out the hashtag or seed word that you want to use. In this exampe, we'll use the hashtag #growth as our seed hashtag.

LinkedIn hashtags, The Growth Hacker's Guide to LinkedIn Hashtags

As you can see, once you start typing out words on the search bar, LinkedIn will start giving you suggestions.

You can further narrow down your hashtag research by adding another word to your seed hashtag.

LinkedIn hashtags, The Growth Hacker's Guide to LinkedIn Hashtags

We tried adding the word "hack" and we got different variations of the hashtagged phrase.

Repeat this with all the hashtags that you intend to use so that you can suggestions on hashtags that you could use. Put these in a separate list and let's move over to the next section.

LinkedIn Hashtag Volume

Your next goal is to determine the volume each of these hashtags has, i.e. how many people follow these hashtags. Ideally, your niche hashtags should have considerably fewer followers than your broader ones.

There are a couple of ways of doing this, but the fastest is to get on LinkedIn and hit up the address bar on your browser.

Type in linkedin.com/feed/hashtag/ then type in the hashtag that you want to examine. In this example, we typed in "digitalmarketing" and hit Enter.

LinkedIn hashtags, The Growth Hacker's Guide to LinkedIn Hashtags

LinkedIn will now display how many followers that hashtag has. In this case, #digitalmarketing can be considered to be broad hashtag because of how many people follow the topic.

LinkedIn hashtags, The Growth Hacker's Guide to LinkedIn Hashtags

To look for the volume of another keyword just type in another hashtag in place of your previous hashtag on your browser's address bar. In this case, we substituted "seo" for "digitamarketing".

You'll find that it has a smaller following, but it's still a large one compared to more niche digital marketing topics.

Using the volume information that you have, you can make an informed decision if you're using the right hashtags for your post.

Say you want to cover a niche topic but the hashtag that you want to use only has 15 followers, it would make more sense to go back to the hashtag suggestions and find another suggestion that has more followers.

Other Tips

Another way to supplement the hashtag research you're doing is to check out the popular posts that come up when you search for a particular hashtag.

This should give you a good idea of what types of posts are associated with the hashtags that you want to use.

Advanced: Creating a Personal Hashtag

Eventually, you want to create a personal hashtag that's just for you or your organization.

This helps with branding the posts that you release and allows you to streamline posts that your organization puts out.

Here are our tips on creating a personal hashtag:

  • Keep it short and memorable
  • Make sure that no one else is using the hashtag
  • You can treat it like a niche hashtag
  • Get people in your organization to use the hashtag for it to gain traction on LinkedIn

After getting a significant amount of posts out using the hashtag, it's time to invite people to follow your hashtag so that you can keep people updated with the stuff that you put out.

However, don't overdo it.

You don't want to send everyone a message to follow your hashtag, it's just spammy.

However, what you want to do is to lightly encourage them if the opportunity arises, say in some of the posts where you're hyping up your personal branding.

Use your personal hashtag the same way you use a niche hashtag, or better yet, use a mixture of broad, niche and personal hashtags when you post to create a good balance.

Hashtags for your Company Page

If you have a company page, you can incorporate hashtags into your profile.

All you have to do is go to your company page settings and click on the "Hashtags" section on the left pane.

LinkedIn hashtags, The Growth Hacker's Guide to LinkedIn Hashtags

You can put in your personal hashtag here along with a broad and niche hashtag just as you would the posts that you have.

Hashtags on your company page - especially personal ones - do a lot to streamline the branding that you have between your posts and the brand that you represent.

It helps LinkedIn associate your company with the hashtag that you're using, and this increases the visibility that you maintain.

Optional: Hashtags for Profile Optimization

We've talked a lot about profile optimization in the past and it's one of the topics that BAMF specializes in.

If you want to, you can opt to use hashtags on your headline and in your summary.

I personally don't use them in my profile and keep them to my posts and the company page.

It might help with your Linked search optimization if you're looking at hitting up a very particular niche on the platform.

Bonus: LinkedIn Hashtags Pro Tips

  • Make sure your hashtags - if they're not personal ones - are placed in using plain text. Yes, you can use capital letters like #BAMF2021, but avoid sticking in emojis or any other special characters.
  • Putting a space in between hashtag phrases like #BAMF 2021 as opposed to #BAMF2021 will cause LinkedIn to only recognize the first part of the phrase attached to the hashtag as the hashtag, in this case, the word BAMF.
  • No emojis in your hashtags! You've got plenty of space in your post to use them and make it stick out.
  • Don't spam your hashtags.
  • Make sure that you make it a habit to follow hashtags that you use and are relevant in your industry. It allows you to keep up-to-date with the latest content and trends.
  • You don't have to use the same hashtags all the time. Switch them up so that you can also take advantage of multiple channels. Multiple channels = multiple eyeballs
  • Avoid using "inappropriate" hashtags no matter how funny or catchy you think they are. LinkedIn is still a professional network that doesn't tolerate that.

Takeaways

LinkedIn hashtags might seem like a minor addition to your portfolio of tricks, but it's an effective way of increasing your reach without having to do anything too big.

You can easily integrate it into any current LinkedIn campaign that you have, and once you do the initial research you're pretty much good to go.

And, here's another thing that we like.

Remember the example earlier on LinkedIn template posts encouraging hashtags?

This means that even LinkedIn themselves are hinting that they should be put to good use.

If LinkedIn wants you to do it, what's stopping you from using hashtags on every post that you have?

Exactly.

#ItsTimeToGrow

About the Author

The name’s Houston Golden. I’m the Founder & CEO of BAMF ― a company I’ve grown from $0 (yes, really) to well over $4M in revenue over a span of 3 years.

How did I do it? Well, it’s quite simple, really. I’ve helped hundreds of business owners and executives get major traction (because when they win, we win). I tell you how on this blog.
Growth hacking is a state of mind. Follow along as I explore and expose the unknown growth strategies and tactics that will change the way you think about marketing.

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