Facebook announced last week that hashtags will become a reality. Twitter users have been able to use hashtags for years and have been on the wishlist of many Facebook users for years.
Hashtags are simply keywords that are proceeded with was a hash or pound symbol (#). Hashtags allow you to tag a post with specific keywords allowing other users to find related posts by others simply my clicking on the hashtag. For example if you post something about Pet Stores and ad the hashtags #dogs #cats, someone who clicks on #dogs can see other posts that have been posted with the hashtag of #dogs.
For marketing purposes, many businesses use hashtags to define a brand or marketing campaign. For example CoCo Cola might use the hashtag #coke and encourage others to do the same. Then when you click on #coke you will find your way back to CoCo Cola. Additionally it allows you to remember the brand.
Television and news also use hashtags often to determine statistical information on how much a topic is being discussed.
Hashtags coming to Facebook opens up a whole new level of marketing opertunities but also comes with risk of disgruntled consumers or competitors hijacking the hashtag to create negative content. Like any social media marketing, careful monitoring of your social networks and what is being said about you will still be required.