Yet if you talk to most wedding business owners, they spend hours on social media with little or no results.
I’ve recruited some of the social media savviest wedding pros to prove that it IS possible to get free marketing for your business with social media. All of these strategies revolve around the simple, yet powerful symbol known as the hashtag aka “#”.
What is a hashtag?
A hashtag is a phrase preceded by the “pound” sign (#) used on social media to identify messages about a certain topic. When you click it, all posts or tweets that include that hashtag show up in a convenient feed for your reference.
Hashtags are commonly used on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, Google Plus, Tumblr and many other social media sites.
The reason hashtags are so powerful is because brides and grooms use hashtags to search for information on social media.
For example, a bride looking for the perfect wedding gown may search #WeddingDresses to pull up all the Twitter posts using that hashtag.
So what if your website doesn’t rank on Page 1 of Google? You can still get found by the couples searching for exactly what you do with smart use of the hashtag.
4 Ways to Make $$$ With #
#1 – Create buzz with your own unique hashtag.
Charmin, known for its cheeky sense of humor, created a unique hashtag to promote the brand. #TweetFromtheSeat
Less humorous but still effective, Wedding Wire used #WWChallenge to promote an Instagram contest for best wedding selfie.
Use this hashtag to share something wedding-licious every Wednesday. You’ll connect with other wedding pros, not to mention get exposure to brides who are eager for a dose of #weddinginspiration.
#FF – Follow Fridays
This hashtag is used to tell your followers who they should be following. Build relationships by recommending other wedding professionals, bloggers and writers as “must follows.”
#3 – Get free PR and get noticed by bloggers and wedding curators.
Karen Moran is the owner of Sweet Lulu’s Bakery in Charleston, SC. She routinely uses hashtags like #charleston #southcarolina and #CHSonly (the unique hashtag for the popular Charleston Magazine) to get in front of new audiences using these tags.
As a result, she’s been contacted for interviews in the local newspaper exclusively through her Instagram account, and she won the Most Spirited Award (Charleston’s Top Dog in social media) Winning this contest got her over 200 new followers, and she booked two weddings that will bring in an additional $2,000 for her business.
Bloggers and wedding curators also use hashtags to find the coolest new trends and blogs out there. It’s a great way to make it easy for them to find you and increase your chances of getting featured on popular wedding blogs.
#4 – Use keyword hashtags to get leads: they are searchable in Google and each social media site.
Amanda of Amanda Victoria Beauty uses hashtags containing the names of the cities she serves and her type of business to tag the pictures she shares on her Instagram account: #PhoenixMakeup #ArizonaMakeup, #arizonawedding, #mesa #phoenix #scottsdale
Using these keyword hashtags means brides can search Instagram to find her images, and eventually, find her. This works especially well to get leads from couples planning from out of town. One bride from TX was planning a Scottsdale, AZ wedding, found her on Instagram, and ending up making Amanda $1,100!
While it’s easier to stand out when you use a unique hashtag for your niche, using the most popular hashtags can put you in front of hundreds of thousands of couples planning a wedding like Save the Date Originals does with their Pinterest boards.
A few of the most popular hashtags include:
Last year, David Tutera’s television show, My Fair Wedding, was eagerly anticipated by brides nationwide. Koyal Wholesale hosted a contest in conjunction with the TV episodes, using the unique hashtag #koyallovemfw as well as the show’s hashtag #myfairwedding. This gave the company exposure to the My Fair Wedding’s viewing community of 200,000 viewers per week.
If you’re using these social media sites, make sure you add keyword hashtags to your posts so that the couples looking for what you do can find you. It’s a simple step that can turn wasted time on social media into real leads and sales dollars for your business.
Does social media really work to get leads? Leave a comment to tell us what you think!