On Social Media, Hashtag Can be a Big Marketing Tool

Online Contests with interesting and quirky hashtags catching the attention of customers


NEW DELHI: Hashtag this: "#SkippedBreakfastBecause" read a trend last month. A day later, the same hashtag was converted into a clever marketing technique on Twitter reading #BreakfastWithTropicana. Cadbury Dairy Milk chocolate tweets a contest with #FreeTheJoy, #SilkCaramello and #LetsPlay while #JabongBeYou is the latest hashtag contest for fashion website Jabong.


Digital agencies say social media is being used to kick off contests with interesting and quirky hashtags to catch the attention of customers. "Tag 3 friends and tell us the reason why you would like to invite them for a donut treat in the comments section below! 3 lucky ones win a box of 6 delicious donuts!#TripleThursdays," reads one such contest. Dunkin Donuts tags all its contests and tweets with 'DD' in them to have the continuity of the brand name.


Major Brands, which has brought highstreet brands like Mango and Nine West to India, has a "#shoefie #contestalert. Social media companies say by engaging with followers this way, companies are both able to get new customers as well lure existing clients to buy more in the future.


They can also monitor the success of the contest almost instantaneously. The FeminaBelieve Twitter contest for instance, on the day of the contest, saw 2,100 interactions with users. #Feminabelieve was mentioned 1,500 times in people's comments.


And the content received 4.72 lakh impressions in a single day.


L'Oreal India is currently running a #KhoobsuratMoments contest while Oriflame India has a #ConfessionsOfABeautyholic contest.


This effort is worthwhile for most brands.


"Tweeting and posting contests can give up to a nine-fold increase in social engagement and up to a 400% increase in conversions," said Ahmed Aftab Naqvi, chief executive officer of Mumbai-based social media agency Gozoop.


@Samsung_IN is hosting a quiz on #AsianGames where 50 winners get .


Rs 1,000 vouchers by hashtagging #OurGamesOurPride. Companies are increasingly using contests on social media to build up fan bases and step up engagement. For consumers, it's generally a win-win too. It's an easier way to participate by replying to Tweets or Facebook posts. This is unlike even a decade ago, when contests were announced on television and responses had to be mailed back to a post office box.


Social media companies say this way companies are both able to lure existing clients to buy more online and monitor the success of the contest almost instantaneously.


Vinish Kathuria, chief operating officer of social media agency Digital Quotient that manages the social media presence of companies such as Karbonn Mobiles and Tropicana, said brands are becoming keener on engaging with customers.

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