Imitation may be the sincerest form of flattery, but when it
) strategy of late, it could very well be the key to raking in
The hashtag, a largely Twitter-associated device, consists of a
word or phrase prefaced by the '#' symbol. As of June 12, the
ability to hashtag has been enabled for a portion of Facebook
users. While ostensibly this looks like a simple admission by
Facebook that Twitter is one step ahead of it, the advertising
value of the hashtag begs for it to be integrated.
By tacking one of these tags onto a tweet, users effectively make
their comment part of a larger overall discussion, not restricted
by online "friendships" or connections, whether it be about a
celebrity, television show, sporting event, or just about anything
This is great for the average social media user because it enables
him or her to see and discuss other people's takes on current
recent Nielsen survey
states that 46% of smartphone owners use their smartphones daily as
a second screen while watching television. For companies, this
makes advertising a cinch.
During the big game, for example,
Domino's Pizza, Inc.
) or a
Yum! Brands, Inc.
) eatery can send out a promoted message with a relevant hashtag
and provide a subtle reminder to all those sports fans taking part
in the discussion online that they offer a delicious and quick
) already supports hashtags as does Facebook's Instagram. While the
hashtag feature that's being rolled out to Facebook users isn't
currently available on mobile, it seems the social media giant is
well on its way to furthering its presence in the real-time
While hashtags have long been a staple of Twitter, Vine is a more
recent buzz-creating acquisition. A video-sharing app, Vine allows
users to record clips up to six seconds long and upload them for
all to see. With over 13 million
) users as of June 3, an Android-friendly version released on that
same date only serves to help Vine remain atop free app sales
With Facebook set to announce a new product June 20, most sources
are speculating that a video adaptation for Instagram will be
The app currently enables users to edit and overlay filters in
order to give their photos a more artistic and professional look,
and the transition to video is a sensible one.
revealing that more Vines were shared on Twitter than Instagrams on
June 7, videos could very well be the thing that Facebook needs to
get Instagram's over 100 million users back on top of the social
Facebook seems to be taking logical steps by providing its own
twist on current Twitter staples. With all borrowed ideas, however,
there is the risk of users retaliating against the 'stolen' idea or
holding off on using these new innovations. As both hashtags and
videos are largely dependent upon voluntary user participation,
this resistance could dull the impact of Facebook's 'new'