Shane Barker
January 14, 2021

How to Use Hashtag Tracking to Optimize Your Social Media Content

Hashtag Tracking

Hashtags form an important part of any social media strategy. While brands already leverage them to power up their reach and engagement, it’s also possible to use them to optimize your content.

And how can you achieve this?

That’s exactly what hashtag tracking can help you with. It helps you understand how your content, and consequently campaigns, are performing. These analytics can help you optimize your content.

Before we get into how we can use hashtags to determine your content performance, let’s look at the different hashtag types that you should track.

Types of Hashtags You Should Track

Tracking the performance of hashtags can give you a detailed idea of how you should go about optimizing your content. Here are the different hashtag types you should consider tracking:

1. Content Hashtags

Content hashtags are those that are directly related to the content of your posts. You should track these hashtags regularly as you’d be using them to grow your content reach, engagement, and social media following. Doing this can help you find out which ones need to be a part of your posts.

2. Trending Hashtags

Trending hashtags can play an important role in helping your brand grow as you can leverage them to gain traction.

But why must you track them?

While there are numerous trending hashtags every day, you only need to pick out the ones that are relevant to your brand.

3. Event Hashtags

Event hashtags should be tracked if you’re taking part in a particular event. By tracking these hashtags, you’ll get an idea of the other related hashtags. Also, you’ll be able to figure out what the attendees are saying about your content. You can also identify new topics from these hashtags as you can find out what the attendees are talking about the most.

4. Branded Hashtags

Branded hashtags or campaign hashtags form an important part of branding. These hashtags help you grow your brand awareness and that’s why it’s critical to track them. By tracking them, you can get detailed insights into how successful your marketing efforts have been at growing your reach.

So, now that you know about the hashtags that you need to track, let’s take a look at how hashtag tracking can help you optimize your content.

Steps to Optimize Your Content Using Hashtag Tracking

Here’s how you can use hashtag tracking to optimize your content:

1. Select a Hashtag Tracking Tool

While manual tracking of your hashtags is possible to a certain extent, it’s important to have reliable tools that can help you get access to all the data about your hashtags.

Using these tools, you can find out things like:

  • The popularity of your hashtags
  • Monthly and weekly popularity trends
  • Related hashtags
  • Most popular accounts using the hashtag
  • Audience locations and demographics

Some of the tools that you can use for this are Hashtagify and HashTagsForLikes. To get started with them, you only have to enter the hashtag and the tool will then come up with all the analytics related to it.


Image via Hashtagify

2. Gather Insights

Based on the data that you’ve gathered from the hashtag tracking tools, you’ll be able to come up with actionable insights that can be used to optimize your content. By checking out the popularity and trends of hashtags over a long period of time, you’ll be able to figure out if it’s worth incorporating those hashtags into your content.

Selecting the right ones can help boost your reach and engagement. From related hashtags, you’ll be able to come up with new content topics for your social media posts.

Similarly, in the case of branded hashtags, you’ll be able to figure out if you’ve been able to grow the popularity of your hashtag through your content. You’ll also be able to find if there has been a jump in hashtag popularity after publishing some content. This can help you identify topics around which you can create content more often.

Let’s now take a look at some of the hashtag metrics that you should be tracking to optimize your content better.

Hashtag Metrics to Track

Some of the important KPIs that you should be tracking for your hashtags are:

1. Hashtag Popularity (Current)

This can help you find out if a particular post has helped you boost your hashtag popularity in the case of branded hashtags. For all others, you can figure out if it’s worth incorporating them in your content.

2. Hashtag Popularity

The hashtag popularity tells you about the potential engagement and reach that you can expect for your content. It helps to choose moderately popular hashtags.

3. Number of Posts

This metric helps you find out how many posts are being published using the hashtag. If too many posts are using it, then it’s likely that your post will get lost among the crowd.

4. Audience Demographics

You can figure out if the hashtag demographics match those of your target audience. Based on that, you can decide whether it’s worth using the hashtag in your content.

5. Average Likes

This can help you find out the approximate engagement that you might get on your post. While likes may not be the best engagement metric, but you can use it to gauge the traction your content might get.

Final Thoughts

Hashtag tracking can play an important role in helping you grow your brand. Using it, you can figure out which hashtags might be better suited for your content. At the same time, it’s possible to identify if your content is helping you boost the popularity of your branded hashtag.

What’s more?

Based on the insights you gather from it, you can accordingly modify your content and strategy.

For effective hashtag tracking, you’ll need to follow content, trending, event, and branded hashtags. You’d also need to have hashtag tracking tools to monitor the hashtags and get data on the various metrics related to them.

If you have any questions about the method of hashtag tracking mentioned above, do let us know in the comments.

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Shane Barker

Digital Marketing Consultant at Shane Barker Consulting
Shane Barker is a digital marketing consultant who specializes in influencer marketing, content marketing, and SEO. He is the Co-Founder of Attrock, a digital marketing agency. He has consulted with Fortune 500 companies, influencers with digital products, and a number of A-List celebrities.