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THE ART OF (SOCIAL) STORYTELLING

EB’s social media guru, Tanya Gill, O.D., shows you how to hashtag #YOU

Love the idea of a social media makeover for your business?

Send us an email with your Instagram + why you want a makeover to kerri.raimo@pentavision.com by April 15, and six lucky ECP Instagram accounts will be chosen for a personal social media makeover. It’s on the house. Because, #winning.

There are many ways to tell a story on social media. This month, we will learn how to create your own brand hashtag.

But don’t let that last sentence scare you. Creating a brand hashtag for your business and your messaging is easier than you think.

Before we begin, let me answer the most basic question: What is a hashtag?

Initially used on Twitter to highlight specific topics, hashtags have become a part of mainstream culture—in both digital and verbal communication—and are a necessary component to social media storytelling.

Note: You do not need to hire a marketing company. Just grab a pen and let the #hashtagging begin.

When used effectively, hashtags can deliver your message to the people you want to see it.

The numbers speak for themselves. There are 850K Instagram posts looking for #newglasses, posting their #newglasses, and businesses selling #newglasses.

WHY DO YOU NEED A BRAND HASHTAG?

Search the hashtag #optometry on Instagram and you’ll find over 250K posts.

Shopping for #newglasses? Yep, over 850K Instagram posts pop up.

There is an entire world of shops and businesses out there that are telling their brand story with the use of hashtags. They are increasing their business visibility. They are sharing their brand values. They are helping their customers locate them. P.S. You need a brand hashtag.

AN EXTENSION OF YOUR BRAND STORY

At its best, a hashtag can be a major driving force behind your brand story. It can reveal so much more about your brand. Take @ellevest, an online investment platform for women. You would think its hashtag would be only #ellevest. It’s not. In this campaign, its social media hashtag is #disruptmoney. Short, descriptive of its mission, and catchy. I’m invested.

@ellevest sells online investing to women, but with the hashtag #disruptmoney, a social media follower already feels empowered and inspired.

KNOW YOUR VALUES. KNOW YOUR HASHTAGS.

The most effective way to create your brand hashtags is to start brainstorming. With your pen (remember, I told you to grab a pen!), write down as many answers as you can to the following questions. Other than your company name, this list will help you create meaningful, brand-focused hashtags.

Here, I have answered the questions myself for my business to get you started. #Homework.

Why does your business exist?
TG: Because, we love eyes.

What three words or phrases describe your business?
TG: Authenticity, health, laughter.

List three concise phrases that describe what you sell.
TG: Rad glasses, clean eyes, resist bad glasses.

—TANYA N. GILL, O.D.

FREE DOWNLOAD:

Don’t worry, I’ve got even more #homework for you. Download my free worksheet that has additional brainstorming questions to help you #hashtagYOU. Here’s your easy download link: eyecarebusiness.com/pages/socialmediahotlist .