Will Facebook Hashtags Help Your Massage Business?

This might be a little obscure information for most massage therapists, but some of the big news on Facebook earlier this summer was the introduction of hashtags for Facebook  posts.

If you are a big Twitter user you know what hashtags are. The are a keyword that is proceeded by a number or pound sign, ex. #spa, #massagetherapy, #whatever. On Twitter they look like this…

hashtags

Using a hashtag is kind of like using the index in a book. You look up the word in the index and it gives you references to all the places its used in the book.

When you click on a hashtag or use it in the search box in Twitter and now Facebook, you get a list of posts that have used that tag.

hashtag results

Companies were very excited about Facebook introducing the feature because it would allow users to find their posts in a completely new way.

How much of an impact have the tags had in Facebook and should you start using them consistently?

The short answer: No.

Rather than helping engagement with Facebook users, a recent study strongly indicates that it does exactly the opposite. Using hashtags on Facebook actually harms your business more than it helps.

Hashtags-not-working-on-Facebook

Using hashtags in Twitter is another story. It does significantly increase the number of retweets. However the bigger question when it comes to Twitter is does Twitter help you get more massage clients. I haven’t had anyone give me any proof of this, so until I see even a handful of therapists showing me some evidence to the contrary I’d have to say that Twitter is not a useful client generation tool.

The hashtag findings are just another example of something I point out all the time. Oftentimes what the things we think work, really don’t. Many massage business experts are well meaning, but they often teach what they think works and not what actually works in the real world.

I am a big proponent of testing and tracking. You’ll see this reflected in the courses I offer all the time. I don’t like testing and analytics, but the numbers don’t lie. So I share the results of my tests as well as those of other therapists who are kind enough to share with me, so you can spend your time doing more fun things, like massage. I’ll take some time to share some examples of counter intuitive marketing advice throughout this month. If you are not subscribed to this blog or the massage marketing tips newsletter, sign up now for notifications.