Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB) launched its hashtag feature last month, which was similar to that of Twitter’s, but at that time it was not known how it will prove good for marketers. There was not much information from Facebook’s side on the feature, but it did say that there will be no Hashtag related advertising. Despite this, many marketers went ahead to try the feature, says a report from Mashable from Todd Wasserman.
Colin Sutton, director of social media at OMD has estimated that around 75 percent of OMD's clients have already tried hashtags on Facebook. OMD is a media buying firm having clients like PepsiCo, Inc. (NYSE:PEP), Levi's and General Electric Company (NYSE:GE). In the United Kingdom, 61 of top 100 brands have already used Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB) hashtag.
One of the issues is that it is very difficult to ask customers to make their hashtag-enhanced status updates public. According to a Consumer Reports around 28 percent of the Facebook users make all their posts public. In case of Twitter, every Tweet is public, but it’s not the case with Facebook.
To overcome the issue, marketers will have to request the users to make their status public if they want to use hashtags for their good. For instance, Cable net BET did the same thing while trying to increase viewers of its BET awards last month.
Twitter vs. Facebook
Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB) also has one disadvantage, unlike Twitter. In Twitter, if a status is hash tagged then searches can be made through that, while in Facebook, a hashtag will only show the related status and will not make searches. This means that the results produced by Twitter on search will be better than those of Facebook.
“The reasoning is that you are the one that should control whether your post is in the feed, not someone who added a hashtag as a comment”, according to a Facebook representative.
Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB) however, does not limit its characters during interaction, which enables users to give more details about them.
Lisa Pomerantz, Michael Kors' SVP of global communications and marketing said that it is not necessary that long statements will give more information than the shorter ones. She added that it is the emotion that matters more.
Ad agency Droga5's director of social media strategy, Gerard Crichlow said that users will need some time before they casually use hashtags. However, for marketers and brands it is a significant search tool to collect information, pitching on new clients and enter into bigger conversations.
He added that for breaking news and important discussion people opt for Twitter but for shows like Game of Thrones they chose Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB) as a medium of conversation. He said that there were only 367,000 posts on Twitter related to the show Red Wedding out of 5.2 million viewers, whereas on Facebook 674,242 discussed the series Game of Thrones.