Let’s talk hashtag tracking. In the social media wonderland, hashtags help us (brands and people) navigate through the content abundance to find what is interesting – relevant content that we can engage with, influencers we like, funny tweets, and so on.
However, social media analytics don’t allow us to monitor the performance of hashtags. That’s why hashtag tracking is a tricky process even for marketing geniuses.
But it doesn’t have to give you a headache. You’ve just discovered a complete guide to help you.
Let’s get started with the basics.
Table of Contents
What is a Hashtag?
A hashtag is a way to label social media content. Hashtags can help in connecting your content to a specific topic, conversation, theme, or event.
When you share a post that includes relevant hashtags, others can search for that topic and see all posts with the same hashtags. That way, it’s easier for social media users to find relevant content.
Each of the mainstream social media channels is suitable for different hashtag campaigns. For example, Instagram is better for hashtags relevant to personal experiences, like #photooftheday. On the other hand, LinkedIn is the best for hashtags relevant to our professional life, like #workfromhome.
In fact, we can’t imagine social posts without hashtags. Can you?
Furthermore, hashtags provide a way to express your sentiments. In this way, you let others know where you stand in terms of major events, like the hashtag #istandwithukraine.
When it comes to natural disasters, like hurricanes, hashtags help you learn about what’s happening. Sometimes through hashtags, you can learn what’s going on even in real time.
Also, from the digital marketing standpoint, hashtags play an integral part in social media strategies. Their value to content creation is undebatable. It’s impossible to think of a social campaign today, without a dedicated hashtag.
When working in social, from running social media campaigns to building personal brands on LinkedIn, hashtags can help you bring better results.
Here are some Hashtag Ground Rules you should keep in mind:
- Hashtags don’t work with punctuation, spaces, or symbols;
- Your accounts should be public; otherwise, your content with hashtags won’t be visible to non-followers;
- Effective hashtags are short and simple to comprehend and remember;
- Use specific and relevant hashtags. If their meaning is obscure, it won’t be used by others;
- Don’t pile too many hashtags in a post. It’ll look spammy.
What is Hashtag Tracking?
Hashtag tracking is the process of monitoring the performance of various hashtags across social media. The main benefits of tracking hashtags are:
- It helps you identify the best-performing hashtags for every social network in terms of engagement, popularity, reach, and other key metrics – so you can plan your content accordingly.
- It measures the performance of your hashtag marketing campaigns.
- It gives you clear directions on how to optimize your organic social media strategy to increase visibility and brand awareness.
Unfortunately, social media analytics can’t help you with hashtag tracking. Also, monitoring hashtag performance manually could take forever! It’s not easy, and surely not practical.
No, you need a tool for that. Luckily enough, there are plenty of good -and in many cases- free tools available, to experiment with.
Below you’ll find a thorough analysis of the best hashtag tracking tools out there. But first, let’s see some basic steps you should take to evaluate these tools and decide which of them is worth a try.
5 Steps to Choosing the Best Hashtag Tracking Tool for Your Business
Before entering the game of hashtag tracking, there are 5 small but crucial steps you should take, to help you clarify what you’re looking for in terms of features.
Step #1: Establish your social media goals
Think about your marketing strategy in the long term.
For example, now you use only Instagram and Twitter for your brand. But what about next year? Perhaps, you’ll need to add TikTok or LinkedIn to your social media mix.
In that case, if you know that your strategy will expand to new networks, then you should pick a hashtag tracking tool that covers at least the most popular social media platforms.
Step #2: Decide if you need global or local search
Or maybe both!
Even if you run a small, local business you can track global hashtags to come up with new ideas for your business strategy.
However, local search may help you identify potential customer intentions and needs.
Step #3: Figure out what metrics you’d like to track
Truth is that there are many metrics to determine the success of your hashtags. Above all, we highly recommend keeping an eye on interactions, reach, users, and of course, popularity. Let’s explain why:
Posting your content with hashtags that get users to retweet and share your posts will increase your campaign’s reach and your brand’s visibility.
In fact, in Mentionlytics you can see the sentiment analysis of the interactions and understand how the audience perceives your social media marketing.
How many people really see the hashtags that you use on your social media platforms?
To select the right hashtags for your posts, you should know the number of users that your content will reach with these hashtags.
Who are the people that are using your hashtags? Are they your target audience?
Knowing the users will help you create impactful messages and great content for them.
The king of all metrics. Popular hashtags tend to be the ones that are most searched. So, it goes without saying that including them in your posts will boost your reach and engagement.
But remember, you don’t have to spam your followers with unrelated, yet popular hashtags just to get more likes and shares.
Step #4: Decide whether you need to track other brand mentions as well
Surely, hashtag tracking can provide you with valuable data about your brand’s social media performance and the latest industry trends.
Nevertheless, the social presence of your brand goes beyond that.
Many of the tools that you’re going to see in this guide do more than just hashtag tracking.
So, if you need complete online reputation management, you have to select a tool that shows not only hashtag performance, but also all your brand mentions across the web (social media and websites), competitor analytics, etc. The more the better!
Step #5: Sign up for free trials and product demos
Luckily, most of the hashtag tracking tools out there offer free trials. Mentionlytics, too.
Our advice: Don’t purchase a premium version of a hashtag tracking tool, before trying it. First, have a walk-through of the tool without wasting your budget. This will help you understand how it works, and see if it’s trustworthy.
Top 10 Hashtag Tracking Tools
There is a great number of hashtag tracking or hashtag analytics tools out there. With a quick search, you can see with your own eyes what we’re talking about.
To save you some time and effort, here you’ll find the 10 best hashtag analytics tools on the internet. Let’s go!
Mentionlytics is one of the best social media analytics and brand monitoring tools. You can take advantage of the platform to get detailed hashtag performance reports with just a few clicks!
Multinational companies, start-ups, PR agencies, and even public figures like politicians use Mentionlytics for hashtag tracking. You can also use it for complete online reputation management, lead generation, competition analysis, and more.
The definitive advantage of Mentionlytics is the Social Intelligence Advisor (SIA). It analyzes your brand and your competitors to give you specific advice on how to optimize your social media performance. It’s perfect for building a social media community around your brand and for crisis management.
Mentionlytics offers a free trial without asking for your credit card details!
- Social Intelligence Advisor (SIA)
- Social Media Analytics
- Free Social Media Report Builder for custom reports with all the metrics you need to track
- Intelligent Sentiment Analysis in 24 languages
- Social Media Publisher
- Advanced Boolean Search for result filtering via keywords and hashtag combinations
- Real-time Alerts, Tags, Labels, and Task Assignments for all team members
- Review & Competition Monitoring
- Basic ($49/month)
- Essential ($99/month)
- Advanced ($199/month)
- Pro ($299/month)
- Agency ($450+/month)
- Enterprise ($950+/month)
RiteTag is a widely used platform to track the performance of hashtags. It allows you to find trending hashtags and use hashtag suggestions to increase engagement. Additionally, you can find out which hashtags can enhance the reach of your content, and which ones are losing popularity.
The best features of RiteTag include trending hashtag alerts and real-time analytics of a hashtag.
RiteTag offers a 7-day free trial to explore the platform and see its value.
- Trending Hashtag Alerts
- Hashtag Monitoring
- Influencer Identification
- Virality Mapping
- Sentiment Scoring
- Annual ($49/year)
Keyhole is another social media analytics tool that you can use for hashtag tracking.
It’s great for real-time monitoring hashtags on Instagram and Twitter. You can have an in-depth report on impressions reach, the number of posts, users of a hashtag, and more.
Keyhole allows for account-level analytics and optimization features. That makes it convenient to identify high-performing hashtags. Moreover, the tool makes suggestions on how to strategize posts and optimize them for more engagement.
You can, also, have a free trial of Keyhole.
- Reports & Dashboards
- Social Analytics
- Monitoring & Listening
- Data Management & Analysis
- Influencer Tracking & Analytics
- Profile & Competitor Analysis
- Hashtag Tracking & Analytics
- Social Publishing
- Standard Plan ($99/month)
- Team Plan ($199/month)
- Enterprise Plan for custom pricing
Hashtagify is another hashtag tracking tool loaded with plenty of useful features. With this, you can find information like hashtag popularity, related hashtags, impressions, and more. Also, it offers a complete timeline of hashtag usage and how it will be used in the future.
While using this analytics tool, you can switch between the “Advanced” mode wherein you can get deeper insights into related hashtags, or the “Table” mode, which will show the hashtag trends.
Also, Hashtagify offers a 7-day free trial.
- My Hashtags
- My Users
- Personal ($29/month)
- Business ($86/month)
- Enterprise ($311/month)
5. Tweet Binder
If you are new to social media management, then you should use Tweet Binder. This tool can give you a complete overview of your hashtag’s performance, with comprehensive reports.
Tweet Binder will show you how your hashtag is performing, who is engaging with it, and more. In addition, the tool offers an overall analysis of tweets related to your hashtags and their retweets.
Tweet Binder offers you a free report.
- 7-day Hashtags and Cashtags
- Follower Tracking
- Excel & PDF exportation
- Twitter Live reports
- Twitter Historical reports
- Twitter Account reports
- Starter ($79,99/month)
- Advanced ($349,99/month)
- API Premium for custom pricing
Talkwalker is another tool to track hashtag performance with a complete overview of all key metrics in one dashboard.
You can measure the success of your hashtag campaigns with a wide range of hashtag tracking metrics. Additionally, it helps you determine the sentiment towards a hashtag, measure its evolution over time, and identify who’s talking about it.
Also, this platform can help you compare the performance of your hashtags with your competitors.
You can ask for a free demo to see the platform.
- Reports & Dashboards
- Social Analytics
- Platform Monitoring
- Monitoring & Listening
- Data Management & Analysis
- Different pricing plans upon request
BrandMentions is a social listening tool that offers a free hashtag tracking feature. It allows you to manage social media profiles and sources to measure and analyze the sentiment of online conversations.
With BrandMentions’ hashtag analysis you can easily get results for the performance of your hashtags. Nevertheless, if you need more detailed reports, you’ll need to purchase the tool.
BrandMentions offers a 7-day free trial.
- Brand Monitoring
- Reputation Management
- Competitor Spying
- Media Monitoring
- Business Intelligence
- Data Analysis
- Data Management
- Enterprise Plan ($499/month)
- Company Plan ($299/month)
- Growing Business Plan ($99/month)
Brand24 offers a good hashtag tracker, where you can sign up and start leveraging hashtag analytics.
It provides you with a practical dashboard to browse and analyze posts containing hashtags. It helps you track contests and campaigns based on hashtags, measure social media reach, and count the number of posts for a specific hashtag.
Also, you can download raw data for your further analyses.
Brand24 offers a 14-day free trial.
- Mentions Feed
- Discussion Volume Chart
- Mention Analytics
- Influence Score
- Sentiment Analysis
- Data Exporting
- Individual ($39/month)
- Team ($99/month)
- Pro ($149/month)
- Enterprise ($249/month)
9. All Hashtag
All Hashtag is a free and simple-to-use hashtag analytics tool. You can insert your hashtags and see the popularity and ranking of each one easily. It’s perfect if you’re new to hashtag marketing, or if you want to experiment with such tools.
Furthermore, All Hashtag gives you insights into the top 100 hashtags used on the internet and offers you the chance to generate your own hashtags.
- Hashtag Generator
- Hashtag Creator
- Hashtag Analytics
- Top Hashtags
- Hashtag Counter
- All Hashtag is free to use.
10. One Million Tweet Map
The One Million Tweet Map is our last pick. It’s a free and straightforward Twitter analytics tool that visualizes real-time data from Twitter on a world map.
To use it, simply type a hashtag and let the tool search Twitter for current tweets. It’ll show you where in the world people are talking about it. For the results, this tool gives you the option to choose between cluster view or heatmap view.
Then, just drill down to find each tweet with the hashtag you searched for and see more info. This tool offers filtering options for your search, some basic analytics, and sentiment analysis of the tweets.
- Regular Search
- Hashtag Battle
- Cluster View
- Sentiment View
- The One Million Tweet Map is free to use.
So, that was the list of the best hashtag tracking tools. Just keep in mind that all tools have their strong and weak spots.
That’s why we recommend you stay focused on the 5 steps to choose the right tool for you.
Now, let’s see what types of hashtags you should track to make the most out of your social media marketing!
3 Hashtag Types to Monitor for Best Results
There are many different types of hashtags in social media. Event hashtags, community hashtags, industry hashtags, geographical hashtags, and the list goes on!
What type of hashtags should you track in order to get better results from your social posts and campaigns?
The answer is trending, branded, and content hashtags. Let’s dive deeper.
1. Trending Hashtags
Trending hashtags are the perfect way to leverage viral content and popular conversations to drive awareness and make your brand look human and responsive.
A heads-up though: You should only include hashtags that are relevant to your brand or the content you create.
However, using trending hashtags alone won’t certainly get you the desired results. It’s not the right strategy, as you will only get shares or likes from bots.
On the other hand, tracking popular hashtags can offer valuable insights into the competition.
2. Branded Hashtags
Branded hashtags are effective when it comes to directing traffic to your account, and increasing awareness around your brand.
A good, branded hashtag is concise, specific, and relevant.
Before creating a new hashtag, do a little research, and make sure that it isn’t already prevalent on social platforms as it’ll damage the outcomes of your campaign.
Pro tip: Track hashtags with your brand name. For example, Twitter users can naturally use your brand name as a hashtag without you knowing it. So, look out for the hashtag with #yourbrandname, especially if you want to see user-generated content.
Tracking branded hashtags is an effective way to know how many people are interested in and talking about your brand.
3. Content Hashtags
Content hashtags have to do with the industry you’re working in or the social media you’re using. These hashtags aren’t essentially popular or trending, but are frequently used.
For this reason, they increase the reach of your content as users search for certain topics. Location hashtags are great examples of content hashtags, as they’re effective if you want to engage with a local audience.
For instance, if your company is based in Paris, you can leverage a hashtag like #BonjourParis to let the locals know that your brand is there.
Content hashtags can also help to create hype for an event like live tweets for the launch of a product.
Tip: A social listening tool like Mentionlytics helps you determine the engagement levels of event hashtags. You can see if the event has generated buzz around your brand and increased your follower count, reach, and more.
In conclusion, if you keep track of these 3 types of hashtags, you can rest assured that you see the bigger picture of your social media presence. Additionally, it’ll help you be up-to-date with what’s going on in social for your industry or niche.
Also, having insights into the performance of these hashtags can help you optimize your content.
A heads-up though: don’t incorporate too many of these hashtags in your posts, hoping that it’ll work miracles.
To find out the optimum number of hashtags per post for popular social media, scroll down to the next section!
Hashtag Tracking Best Practices for Tweets, Instagram Posts & More!
For every social media platform, the optimum hashtag number per post is different. Most social media publish their own hashtag guides to help users.
But what’s the perfect number of hashtags to use for each social network?
Here is how you can use hashtags for Twitter, Instagram, TikTok, Facebook, and LinkedIn.
Magic number: 1-2 hashtags
Tweets with hashtags may get twice the engagement as compared to tweets without them.
When you think of Twitter, you instantly think of hashtags. They made it easier for you to search for specific topics. Typically, hashtags focus on a trending topic or a specific event.
You should use at most two hashtags for your Tweets. More than two hashtags can actually decrease the level of engagement. So, you don’t want that! Stick with this simple rule of two.
Magic number: 3-5 hashtags
Hashtag usage on Instagram has significantly increased in the past few years. Interestingly, an average post on the platform contains around 11 hashtags.
However, Instagram allows users to add up to 30 hashtags to their posts.
Be careful though: make sure you use only relevant to your content hashtags. Otherwise, irrelevant ones can trigger spamming content. That way, you can lose followers and damage your image.
Specific hashtags maximize engagement and reach. We highly recommend using 3 to 5 hashtags genuinely relevant to your post.
Magic number: 3-4 hashtags
TikTok is a social media rising star, especially among Gen-Z, which absolutely adores it. However, it has started to expand also to millennials and older generations. It’s really fun after all!
TikTok hashtags work basically as in any other social network, e.g. categorizing content and showing it to other users that may like it. And again, as in all the other social media, you shouldn’t use too many hashtags. It’s confusing not only for the algorithm but also for the people.
So, try and use 3-4 hashtags per video. These can be trending hashtags or content hashtags. For better results, mix them up!
Magic number: 1-2 hashtags
Hashtags never truly gained much popularity on Facebook. Although, using them can help your posts gain visibility, and appeal to new audiences and customers.
So, the best approach for hashtag usage on Facebook is to keep it precise with 1-2 hashtags that are genuinely relevant to your content.
When Facebook followers go for a hashtag search, they want to discover the latest trending posts. So, even though hashtags aren’t really popular on this platform, using them can help your brand awareness.
Magic number: 1-3 hashtags
Hashtags on LinkedIn have been more and more popular among users and company accounts. Surely, you have noticed the abundance of posts with #workfromhome during the pandemic.
Including up to 3 hashtags in your LinkedIn post can help people discover and engage with your content better and faster.
That’s it! You’re now ready to go and conquer the social media world with your amazing content!
Don’t forget hashtags are important and the right mix can make a big difference. However, the true miracle worker for enhancing your social media performance is great content that people can relate with.
Now Over to You
Without a doubt, hashtag tracking is vital for every social media strategy. Knowing the performance of your hashtags and how to use them wisely can help you in optimizing your social media management and expand your community.
Key takeaways of this guide:
- Define your needs in terms of hashtag tracking and focus your search there.
- Every social network demands a different hashtag approach. Plan your content accordingly.
- There are many hashtag tracking tools available, most of them free for a certain period of time. Don’t be afraid to invest time in trying some of them.
Mentionlytics is a great starter! Try it now.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Q1. How do you track a hashtag?
In order to track a hashtag you should access a hashtag tracking tool, like Mentionlytics. Then, add any hashtag to your dashboard. The platform will show you the total hashtag mentions, its reach and engagement, and other useful info.
Q2. What is the best hashtag tracker?
The best hashtag trackers include:
- Tweet Binder
- All Hashtags
- One Million Tweet Map