Facebook Depreciates Hashtag Topics in Groups
“Topics in Facebook groups are going away soon. This means that admins won’t be able to add hashtags to other people’s posts or manage the list of group hashtags. However, anyone can still add hashtags to their own group posts, and selecting the hashtag will show other Facebook posts that use that hashtag.”
This step lessens group admins’ ability to categorize different discussions in the app, which had initially been seen as a means to better sort group conversations.
Clearly, this wasn’t a popular option - which makes sense, as it requires additional admin workload in categorizing each post correctly. The original idea was that admins would allocate a range of defined topics for the group, and members would then be able to use those tags for navigation within each community. But it seems that group members either aren’t using them, or admins aren’t bothering.
You can still use hashtags on Facebook – tap on a tag and it’ll take you to a display of other posts that have applied the same – but due to privacy restrictions, reach limits, and various other factors, they’re just not as effective as a discovery tool.
In terms of general advice, as to whether marketers should use hashtags on Facebook or not, there’s no definitive evidence that we’ve seen which suggests that they drive any reach boost in the app. You would have to experiment to see what works best for you, and your audience.
Facebook says that starting April 3rd, admins will no longer be able to add topics to someone else’s group post, while from May 3rd, admins will no longer be able to download topics that they’ve added to other people’s group posts.
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