GOLD PR’s Social Media Team Breaks Down How To Use Branded & Targeted Hashtags

GOLD PR’s Social Media Team Breaks Down How To Use Branded & Targeted Hashtags

July 22, 2019


The following are top tips by Julie Strong, social media expert in our Southern, CA. office.

Branded Hashtags vs Targeted Hashtags

Some of us first learned this symbol as the “pound sign” on our landline phones or the template for a game of tic tac toe, but a lot has changed since cell phones and social media took over. This symbol, now most commonly referred to as a hashtag, is a vital component for your brand’s social media strategy. If you’re confused about how to use hashtags, which ones to use, and/or when to use them, we’ve got you covered.

Branded Hashtags

First, let’s define the difference between a branded hashtag and a targeted hashtag. Branded hashtags are the ones that you want to “own,” (i.e. #GoldPR) Below are some basic rules for choosing these types of hashtags:

  • Make them unique.
    • These hashtags shouldn’t be generic or already have a lot of other content tied to them (i.e. #beautyproduct or #bestskincare).
  • Make them relevant.
    • Incorporate your brand name, tagline, or your products in a meaningful way (i.e. #poweredbymitoq)
  • Make them easy to spell.
    • The easier it is to spell the more likely customers are to use it.
  • Make it easy to read.
    • Since hashtags don’t use spacing and the words run together, make sure it can’t be confused with another meaning. You don’t want to start trending on Twitter for a hashtag fail!

You’ll want to first choose an evergreen branded hashtag, such as your brand name, then you can continually create new branded hashtags for things like new product launches, campaigns, and events. You’ll then want to share these with your brand ambassadors, influencers, employees, or KOL’s who are posting content related to each specific initiative. That way all of this related content is grouped together under your chosen hashtag. You can utilize branded hashtags on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.

Targeted Hashtags

The other category of hashtags are referred to as targeted hashtags. These are meant to help users find your content in search and help boost the visibility of your content in the Instagram algorithm. Think of these in the same way you would use keywords for SEO. You’ll want to curate a list of these types of hashtags for each specific post. Below are tips for choosing them:

  • Make sure each hashtag is relevant to the post.
    • If you’re posting an image of a beach sunset, you wouldn’t tag #sunrise, but you would tag #beachsunset
  • Use Instagram’s search function to help you find related tags.
    • Type in “sunset” for example and click on #sunset, and you’ll see related tags, such as #sunsetlover, #sunsetgram and #sunsetphotography
  • Use a mix of “popular” and “niche” hashtags on each post.
    • As long as the tag is relevant to your post, it’s ok to use a more popular tag, like #beachsunset or #mondaymotivation. Just be sure to balance it with more specific tags like #lagunabeachsunset.
  • Test and learn the amount of tags that work best for you.
    • You can use up to 30 total hashtags on each post, but you’ll want to ensure they’re relevant to each post.
  • Be careful not to use unrelated tags on your posts.
    • Users can flag irrelevant content, which will end up lowering your reach.

When it comes to posting your tags, you’ll want to include your branded hashtags in your captions, but keep your targeted hashtags hidden by adding them to your first comment. This keeps your captions looking clean and high end, and keeps the focus where it should be – your compelling copy.

The most important thing to remember when developing your hashtag strategy is to be thoughtful about how you choose your hashtags and when and where you use them. Just like the content you create, you want your hashtags to resonate with your intended audience.


GOLD PR’s social media team are experts in aesthetics, beauty, pharmaceuticals, women’s health products, consumer technology, medical technology and medical devices. Offices are located in Orange County, CA and most recently GOLD PR & Social Media opened new offices in New York, NY. To learn more about how we can help you develop a social media strategy please send us a message here. To see how our social media team uses hashtags follow us here.