Why do hashtags matter, and why should artists use them? Guest blogger Andrei Taraschuk explains.
Before we jump in, let me briefly explain what a hashtag is. Hashtag is a word or phrase preceded by a hash or pound sign (#) and used to identify messages on a specific topic. Twitter, Facebook, and many other social networks use hashtags to categorize content.
Hashtags are a must-have when you want your shared artwork to be discovered. In fact, according to this research, tweets with hashtags get two times more engagement than tweets without. Take a look what comes up on Twitter when you search for #abstractart or #fineart. Play around with different hashtags to see if your art shows up. In the meantime, here are some strategies to get you started:
Two hashtags per tweet. The numbers we are seeing on Off The Easel confirm Buffer’s research that the optimal number of hashtags per tweet is two. In fact, as soon as you add three or more hashtags, the engagement actually drops 17%.
Own your name. Make sure your account shows up when people search for your name or click on the hashtag with it. Also, Twitter recommends user accounts for specific hashtags, so be sure your Twitter account is recommended for your name. E.g. #kandinsky #stucky
Anchor to a location. Your physical location is important, even in the virtual world. People want to connect and support their local artists. Be sure to use location-specific hashtags like #coloradoart #denverart
Avoid high volume hashtags. Although popular hashtags like #art #painting and #drawing might yield some immediate traffic, their long-term value is quite low. In other words, you are trading long-term content discoverability for an immediate hit.
In summary, use two hashtags per post, specify your name and hop on existing trends. Enjoy!
Andrei Taraschuk is the founder of an art marketing app, Off The Easel, which is used by hundreds of artists to automatically share their work across social media.