# Hashtags or Pound symbols? Let’s get the low down on when and why to use them.
The Break Down, What is it?
Hashtags or the Pound symbol is a word or phrase that is preceded by the hash or pound symbol used to help identify specifics when searching topics on social media.
Why to Use Them?
Hashtags on social media help find content quicker then conducting a general search. Example, when the tragic loss of Kobe Bryant and others occurred, everyone used #Girldad to help identify that specific post with others around the nation. Using hashtags can help your post gain popularity by people who are 1. Either searching for a product, person, or category and 2. Building a solid community with your peers for recognition and credibility. Consider this your brand!
Do I Have to Commit?
It is not necessary to register a hashtag but claiming ownership of a specific hashtag could be integral to discussions around trademark, logo, promotional campaigns, and other types of events.
Too Much Can Ruin a Good Thing
When using hashtags its important to know that if you create a hashtag that no one is using your post is going nowhere fast in terms of “community”, so be mindful when typing to be concise with your tag. Too many hashtags can look spammy and be hard on the eyes if overused. General rule would be no more than two hashtags per post, but if they are short and sweet you can get away with using more. Why you ask? Some people have an aversion to hashtags and it drives them away because they don’t understand them or they would like to use share your post, but not your hashtags which basically means do a little extra work and editing the content.
The Take Away
Don’t forget to use your branded hashtag whenever it makes sense! Try looking for ultra-niche community hashtags that are specifically relevant to the content you post. It’s not a bad idea to use Saved Captions to build multiple hashtag lists that are organized by theme or category.