Although LinkedIn has been around since 2003, the platform didn’t allow the use of clickable hashtags until 2016.
Social media platforms like Twitter and Instagram have been promoting the use of hashtags for years to allow users to connect with their communities. They even offer analytics that content creators and influencers can use to gauge their impact.
Now that LinkedIn has fully embraced the use of hashtags, so can brands.
Let’s dive into the basics of using hashtags on the platform and explore how to find the most popular in your industry.
Do hashtags work on LinkedIn?
Yes, hashtags work on LinkedIn. You can add them to your status update, published article, and company page to reach an audience outside of your network. You can also browse hashtag feeds to see what conversations are taking place on these topics.
How to use hashtags on your LinkedIn status update
There are several ways to add hashtags to your status update.
As the GIF shows, you can add a hashtag by:
- Enter the number sign followed by the word or phrase. As you enter your hashtag, LinkedIn automatically generates hashtag suggestions based on trends and popularity.
- Click the “Add hashtag” button in the lower left of the box.
- Select one of the associated hashtags next to the “Add hashtag” button.
Tip: Do not add spaces or symbols to your hashtags as they will no longer be clickable.
How to use hashtags in your LinkedIn article
Currently, users cannot insert clickable hashtags into the text of their articles posted on LinkedIn. However, you can make it discoverable by adding hashtags to the item description field.
How to use hashtags on your company page
If you have a company page on LinkedIn, you can associate it with relevant hashtags. This way, you are at the center of the conversations around these hashtags and can connect with relevant audiences. Here are the steps to add them:
Start on the home page of your company page.
Click the “Add” button under “Hashtags” in the lower right corner. A smaller page will open.
Click on “Add hashtag” and choose up to three hashtags.
Should I use hashtags on LinkedIn?
The short answer is, yes, hashtags are a great way to reach audiences beyond your direct connections on LinkedIn.
Let’s say you only have 200 connections on LinkedIn. You are posting an article about SEO and you are not using hashtags. To have any significant impact, you will need a lot of post-engagement from second and third degree compounds.
Why should you set such limits on your content? By using hashtags, you maximize the reach of your post. If the SEO hashtag has 100,000,000 followers and you are using it, your post engagement can easily triple what it was without hashtags.
With that in mind, here are a few things to keep in mind when using them:
- Don’t go overboard – Pete Davies, former senior director of product management at LinkedIn, recommends sticking to three hashtags. That should be enough to target the main keywords without looking spammy.
- Hashtags do not replace Copy – Hashtags don’t provide context, they should only be used to improve your visibility. You should still have descriptions in everything you post.
- Mix the popular with the niche – If you only use popular hashtags, your content could be lost. If you go too niche, you may not reach enough people. If you use a little of both, the balance is perfect.
Once you become comfortable with using hashtags, you can determine which ones will produce the best results. You may find that some lead to higher engagement rates than others. If so, these are worth reusing.
How to find top LinkedIn hashtags
There are three types of hashtags that LinkedIn recommends to its users based on their network and industry: Recommended, Popular, Trending. The LinkedIn Discover More page is the first and best place to check out which hashtags to use in your posts.
To access this page, do the following:
- Click the “Discover More” button.
- In the mobile app, this will be shown when you click on your profile picture in the top left corner of the page.
- In the desktop view it is at the bottom of the left sidebar.
- This page shows you trending pages, recommended links and pages, and hashtags at the bottom of the page.
As a marketer, LinkedIn recommends a lot of marketing-related hashtags like #digitalmarketing, #seo and #contentwriter. However, this list varies from user to user.
LinkedIn trending hashtags
In 2020, LinkedIn published data on the most popular hashtags for the first quarter of 2020.
In January and February the list was practically identical. However, talks shifted in March when the pandemic began. Searches for topics related to remote work have tripled, and the hashtag #remotework has started to set trends too.
The best way to optimize your hashtag usage is to refer to your recommended hashtags and analyze their performance on your posts.
How to follow hashtags on LinkedIn
The following hashtags can help you see what other content creators are posting, how users are responding, and get ideas for future posts.
- Go to the search bar and enter the hashtag you want to follow.
- Choose an option from the drop-down menu.
- This will take you to the hashtag’s feed, where you can see all of the content published with that hashtag. At the top of the page, click Follow.
See the GIF below for the steps in action.
After you’ve followed the hashtag, it will appear under “Hashtags Followed” in the left sidebar when you browse a computer. If you’re using the LinkedIn mobile app, the hashtags you follow can be accessed by clicking your profile picture in the top left of the window and scrolling to the “Hashtags Followed” drop-down menu.
Hashtags are an integral part of the success of your content. By relying on LinkedIn’s hashtag recommendations and your analytics, you can ensure that your posts are reaching the right audience.