No HASHTAGs in your #Aerospace tweets? Three Reasons to Reconsider August 13, 2014Posted by ludozone in Aerospace, International Business Development, Internet Marketing, Social Media, Twitter.
Tags: Aerospace, eBusiness, International Business, Marketing, Social Media, Twitter
As the statistics for the recent Farnborough air show demonstrated, the aerospace industry is finally warming up to direct online communication using Twitter. But as companies activate their accounts, many don’t seem to bother learning how to use this tool effectively. In particular, I am shocked at how many professionals misuse or simply don’t use hashtags in their tweets.
What is a “hashtag” anyway? Well beyond its technical definition, or this great guide for beginners, hashtags are a way for your tweets to reach people that do not necessarily follow you. This is particularly important for small companies or any aerospace company just starting on Twitter. At the beginning, no one knows your company is one of the over 230 millions accounts on Twitter. The chances that people you want to talk to follow you are very slim. Hashtag are a way to “tag” your tweets with a particular topic so that people interested in these topics will see your posts.
THREE REASONS TO USE HASHTAGS IN AEROSPACE
- TRADE SHOWS: Most of the aerospace events will select a hashtag to facilitate online communication. For example, Farnborough used #FIA14, and the upcoming MRO Europe show will use #MROE. You can find a list of all the major aerospace event hashtags on this dedicated page. If you want to participate in the conversation and reach people that are interested in the show, you MUST include these hashtags in your posts. I was surprised to see major news and corporate organizations posting at a recent show WITHOUT the hashtag. I don’t know why they even bothered as what they posted was missed by the majority of people interested in the show.
- AREA OF EXPERTISE OR INTEREST: It is important to try to have at least one hashtag in every tweet you post. But the tags have to be relevant and meaningful. For example, the tag #AVMRO has been used consistently to identify posts related to aviation maintenance, repair and overhaul. You can find a list of the most common aerospace topical hashtags on this dedicated page. What if you have a topic for which there is no hashtag? Well, feel free to make one up. Search Twitter to make sure it is not already in use, and then start posting it consistently. You can add it to this list, and it will start to spread slowly. You can also use some “flavor” hashtags to punctuate your tweets. For example, #AVgeek or #FAIL are popular tags to put at the end of a tweet to indicate, respectively, a post that aviation lovers will dig or something that should not have happened. Finally, the tag #FF (for Follow Friday) appears every Friday to suggest accounts worth following. It is used with a list of accounts and usually a reason or topic for the recommendation.
- NEWS TOPICS: as opposed to the hashtags above that are more “permanent”, sometimes there will be news items or topics that are generating online conversations relevant for a few days or weeks. A recent example was the destruction of the Malaysian Airlines aircraft over Ukraine. Discussion around this subject, which reached way outside of the aerospace industry, was tagged with #MH17 after the aircraft call sign on that flight. If you have something to contribute to this conversation, you MUST use the hashtag to be heard.
In conclusion, please always use at least one hashtag when you post on Twitter. The only exception would be if you post something directly addressed at your followers, a specific user or a group of users. It is OK to replace words by hashtags to save characters, but it is NOT OK to overuse hashtags for no good reason.
Do you have questions or comments about the use of hashtags in aerospace or in general? Please feel free to start a discussion below.
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