In our social media age, it’s easy to forget that a movement does not rise and fall on the basis of a hashtag alone – @saiidat (in Nigeria Won’t Bring Back The Missing Girls)
I couldn’t agree more. The hashtag is overrated. The success of your / a hashtag doesn’t necessarily mean success of your ‘campaign’ (however you define that). One of the dangers of any marketing or publicity strategy is making the hashtag the goal of campaigns.
Failure is also imminent when you mistake your hashtag as the end and not the means. Hashtags must only be part of the campaign. A hashtag, for the sake of it, (I’m not talking about fun stuff, I’m talking about things that matter) is a week strategy. If a campaign is completely anchored on a hashtag, it will fall apart at its failure.
Always carefully consider what the object of your campaign is. Never give credit to a hashtag than is warranted. There are many case studies of failed hashtags. You know, when hashtags that were supposed to be a great campaign for causes or organisations, became against in most damaging ways.
As with many things, there is always possibility for failure for your hashtag. When you hashtag campaign fails it doesn’t mean your cause is insignificant or unimportant. It just means your hashtag campaign has failed.
Great causes can be undermined because the small thing called the hashtag has failed. Don’t let important things get undermined.
The other side of the coin is that your hashtag succeeds. Keep in mind that the success of your hashtag doesn’t necessarily mean success of your campaign. Don’t be naive. You can have a successful hashtag and a failed campaign. (Of course, just as you can have a successful campaign with a failed hashtag).
Your hashtag has succeeded when it enhances or pushes you toward the desired outcomes of your overall campaign.
Don’t lose focus on what the hashtag means for you and your cause… Don’t place all your bets on the hashtag horse. Find other ways to add value to your campaigns. Recognise and clearly articulate how a hashtag fits into your campaign and its significance.
Win or lose, the hashtag must not be king, but your objectives…
[image by Quinn Dombrowski | cc]
Published via DeskPM