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BizReport : Social Marketing : April 08, 2013

Hashtags motivate half of consumers to explore new content

Brands on Twitter use a variety of features to give their Tweets stand-out and promote them to other users. One of those features is hashtags and a new survey from advertising firm RadiumOne reveals how consumers perceive, value, and use them.

by Helen Leggatt

Over half of Twitter users in RadiumOne's survey said they use hashtags on a regular basis. Furthermore, 70% of those Twitter users use hashtags from their mobile devices. Of the 494 survey respondents who use hashtags, 71% were female and 41% middle-aged.

While often viewed as a promotion tool, the majority of hashtags in use were primarily for communicating personal messages and information. Secondary to this use is to follow or search for companies and brands.

However, consumers are also using hashtags to explore content with 41% of survey respondents saying they would click on a hashtag to find out more about a product or brand.

"Unlike other forms of social sharing, hashtags implicitly reflect customer sentiment and are one of the most powerful ways consumers have to vocalize their tastes and preferences at scale in a real-time fashion," said Kamal Kaur, vice president, mobile at RadiumOne. "We conducted this survey to help advertisers better manage their brands by responding to the needs and wants of their client base through winning hashtag campaigns."

Twitter continues to tweak hashtag use. In a blog post last month, Twitter software engineer Nick Takayama revealed that improved autocomplete functions within mobile apps for iOS and Android will suggest possible hashtags to include in Tweets.

Image via Shutterstock

Tags: advertising, brand marketing, content marketing, social marketing, Twitter

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