The rumors have become a reality, due to the overwhelming popularity of hashtags on Twitter and Instagram, Facebook has added hashtags to their own site. This isn’t to say that hashtags haven’t been used by users on the site for months, but now the hashtags are clickable.
These hashtags will allow users to add context to a post or let it be added to a larger conversation, much how Twitter’s hashtags work. Facebook’s hashtags will work the same way, as when they are clicked on, it will take you to a feed where you can see what other people are saying about that particular hashtag topic.
Facebook has also made it so that hashtags are searchable in their search bar. Services that are capable of sharing across platforms like Twitter and Instagram, their hashtags will also be clickable in Facebook and will bring users to the corresponding feed page.
According to Facebook, hashtags are part of a bigger plan, “public conversations” which Facebook wants to make more prominent and bring to the forefront of their service. In the next few weeks and months, Facebook will be rolling out more features that are focused around their “public conversations” initiative, this includes trending hashtags (much like Twitter) and a new feature Facebook is calling “deeper insights.” The goal of that is to bring discussions of public events, topics and people to the top of feeds and make them prominent depending on current events.
So what does this mean for your social media management on Facebook? The game has just changed completely as Facebook is one of the last major social networks to integrate clickable hashtags into their service. A hashtag based marketing campaign now takes on a whole new meaning with Facebook’s 500 million+ users as a possible target. As a marketer this is either a dream come true or a new challenge for you and your social media management team.