For the past week we've been monitoring the use of hashtags related to marketing in the United Kingdom.
Many Twitter users seem to stick to the traditionally known #marketing hashtag but it's interesting to look at hashtags closely associated with it. Many reveal new opportunities and audiences for increased tweet exposure.
The first thing to make clear is that #marketing remains the dominant hashtag for those in the marketing, branding, advertising and other sectors looking to address an audience with relevant content.
Conversely, those that continue to use the much shorter #mktg tag (we experimented with this directly too) might be surprised to hear it now represents a significantly reduced proportion of overall marketing tweets - indeed in our period of monitoring it has been used on only 5% of all marketing related tweets.
It's when you look at associated hashtags that you start to reveal some interesting, as well as obvious, openings.
In the full week we tested #marketing was used 1,532 times in the UK.
Compare that with the alternatives or associated terms shown below:
Some of the hashtags shown above may surprise readers as unusual in relation to marketing. When you look at the associations laterally, they're not quite as distant as you might first think.
#Business, encompassing marketing in all forms, has always been popular as a hashtag and continues to be used frequently in the UK. It pips the volume of use of #marketing - just, and represents an outlet for widening the reach of tweets.
Whilst #advertising probably won't shock anyone, we were surprised at the fact it labelled less than 25% of the volume of tweets that #marketing did. Yes they're different fields in the literal sense, but there are so many crossovers and points of general interest that it does lend itself to use by marketeers.
We were even more surprised that the volume of #branding has lessened in recent weeks. A mere 226 tweets carried the hashtag in the full week but the influence and volume of retweets on #branding is valued - it is a hashtag of potential to anyone in a related discipline or with content to suit.
Seeing #media in the list may have some wondering what benefit it could be.
With slightly less use than #marketing we would readily accept that it is a very generic term that may be of small advantage. But it is related and we think it has possible value for republished content once a tweets life has expired and you want to extend it to a wider group. Don't use it for the sake of it, make sure the content is relevant, and it could reward.
The next hashtag is even more controversial in its relationship to #marketing - that being #sales.
Different functions, different audiences, we know. We do think there is the risk of missing the link though. Marketing drives sales and the level of #sales tweets at 465 in a week isn't to be overlooked. So we'd advise a degree of flexibility in thinking.
There's a similar argument in respect of #design. Hugely popular on a global basis and with 799 instances in a single week in the UK, we shouldn't have to explain the connection and it's also a hashtag that has a good reputation for retweets. It is commonly used by those in the web trades and some marketeers may find this dilutes the audience they wanted to reach - but the capacity for extended visibility is undeniable.
Now we come to #pr. Public relations has always been a hot topic on Twitter and it's not difficult to understand why. With throughput of 947 directly tagged tweets in the week this wasn't one of its busiest periods. Nonetheless, dual tagging with #marketing and #pr is common and proves successful for many.
On a slight tangent it would seem that #prjobs is a hot hashtag in the UK too with almost a hundred unique occurences this week. It even managed to rack up more uses than #campaign, usually a popular hashtag in the agency trades and especially when associated with retail (it does gather impetus through campaigns seeking charitable support or gathering objection signatures too, so be aware of that).
Finally, though not the shortest or most character-count efficient hashtag you'll find, we have #communication.
With 145 appearances this week it charted well and is commonly used by those in the PR field, but as we've already talked about the close relationship between departments, functions or fields of expertise - it still merits consideration for marketing.
If you've any more suggestions for marketing related hashtags, let us know. We do track and monitor them in a collosal number of disciplines but we're always interested to hear to any you've experienced particular success with.