Case Study: Love… Tampa Bay

Read our latest case study and see the details of our project with #LoveTampaBay!

“We were approached by the Tampa Bay Estuary Program to develop a new program named “Love Tampa Bay” to boost public awareness of the many uses and benefits of our beautiful bay (and one of the largest estuaries!)”



How to Make a Successful Facebook Event

Making a Facebook Event for your birthday party is one thing. Making a Facebook Event to draw customers into your business… is another. With how much people rely on the social network for the goings-on in their community, it’s crucial to give as many strangers FoMO (the fear of missing out) as possible. Events vary just like businesses do, but here are some basic guidelines for a successful Facebook Event. Read More

When it comes to customers, your relationship status shouldn’t be complicated.

Marketing has changed. Today’s consumers are online most of their day. Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIN, SnapChat, Instagram, Pinterest – are all in the palm of your hand. Literally, on your smart phone.

These social media channels are indeed that – social. Your customers want to get to know you, get to trust you and feel they have a relationship (although in an online way) with you before they are willing to spend money with you. tweet

Many service based professionals like injury attorneys or plumbers are pros you don’t really need until you REALLY need them.

static1.squarespaceIf you’ve already established a relationship with potential customers BEFORE they need you, their journey down your sales funnel just got a lot easier for you both. After people get in a car accident is not the time to start building a relationship and getting them to hire you if you are an attorney – they’ll just do a blind search for the lowest cost. But if you’ve been working that relationship for months, they won’t hesitate to call the professional they feel they know.

Let me explain it in another way, Inbound Marketing is named that because you attract ideal clients TO you (inbound instead of outbound) and they come willingly for non-sales reasons such as:

  • Reading your articles, tips, entertainment, or education on your blog
  • Engaging on your Facebook posts
  • Retweeting your tweets
  • Playing your Instagram contests
  • Sharing your content on their own feeds

After this engagement, when it comes time to move from follower to customer they come willingly. After all, you are now someone they feel they know.

Want to learn more? Contact me today and I’ll tell you more about it over coffee.



When Peer Pressure Results in Bad Marketing.


But everyone else is doing it THIS way!

peer-pressure-edited-9451a5d5fc272af67b69a69e7fb8d7d8_xlYou’ve heard me talk about the use of hashtags and links on Facebook before, however why is it when we have hard stats and facts on results do we still see people, and paid professionals (and they are NOT cheap), continue to use tactics that we know hurt our marketing efforts?

My only conclusion is good ol’ fashioned peer pressure. When we see competitors or big agencies using bad tactics, we think “oh, well they must know what they are doing.” Not so. They are just following the crowd. Following them chasing popularity over profitability.

Let’s review again the facts.

Facebook is not Instagram. 

Use all the made up, crazy hashtags you want on Instagram. They don’t hurt you. Use a ton if you feel the need. Now whether they help you or not is another question. Are people going to like what they see when they click on them? Is anyone following them? Are they used in your local area? #shoplocal #craftbeer #cityname #popularnetworkinggroup #bizneighborhoodgroup #yourpersonalhashtag  are good.

Other things like #thisbeerissoawewsome or #doingitdoingit might be fun. But that’s all it is.

Facebook and Hashtags do not get along. 

Do not repost your Instagram to Facebook. They are unique and need posts written for them. (Twitter too) Hashtags HURT your post.  We know this as fact.

The below results from a study by Social Bakers, which examined how Facebook engagement correlates hashtag use.

Posts with 1 or 2 hashtags averaged 593 interactions
Posts with 3 to 5 hashtags averaged 416 interactions
Posts with 6 to 10 hashtags averaged 307 interactions
Posts with more than 10 hashtags averaged 188 interactions


Link it – or Don’t Cry About Wanting More Customers.

If you don’t have a LINK back to your website at the bottom of your Facebook post, you are simply entertaining your Facebook followers and doing nothing to turn them into paying customers or attracting new paying customers. Your goal is to guide people down a sales funnel. This is business, not personal. Repeat – this is business, not personal.

You Probably Don’t Know What You Don’t Know!

The Education Curve is steep in social media and inbound marketing. It went from something we did for fun to the big boy in profitable marketing in a very short time. Most business owners do not know how it all works or what “great results” are. Unfortunately, a lot of agencies don’t know either and are selling a whole lot of nothing for a very high price!

Sadly, I see people continue to do this for their business even with this knowledge. Posting a pretty photo and 14 hashtags will not get you customers. So what do you want? Popularity or Profitability?



5 Ways Breweries Should Be Using Social Media.
Tampa Bay has become one of the leading areas in the country for Craft Breweries. We at Hashtag Creative love our town and our beer! However, we hate seeing breweries using social media and inbound marketing in a way that makes us scream “omg stop doing that, you are hurting yourself!” So below are a few tips we put together for free, it’s ok, just buy us a pint next time we pop in. [vc_separator type=’transparent’ position=’center’ color=” thickness=’3′ up=” down=”]

 1) STOP IT: Linking to Facebook from Twitter

[vc_separator type=’transparent’ position=’center’ color=” thickness=’3′ up=” down=”]All social media channels are different and must have unique messages written for them. Why are you linking people to Facebook from Twitter? Length restrictions, hashtags and graphics have different rules for best results on both. And don’t forget the main goal – driving people to your website, not another social media channel.

[vc_separator type=’transparent’ position=’center’ color=” thickness=’1′ up=” down=”]


[vc_separator type=’transparent’ position=’center’ color=” thickness=’3′ up=” down=”]2) STOP IT: Don’t just push your Instagram to Twitter or Facebook.

[vc_separator type=’transparent’ position=’center’ color=” thickness=’3′ up=” down=”]This is the most annoying and the most common mistake I see.[vc_separator type=’transparent’ position=’center’ color=” thickness=’3′ up=” down=”]
tumblr_inline_mxk4z5fF1o1s5jo86Hashtags are used very differently on Instagram. You really can’t go wrong in using LOTS of them. Go crazy, it’s instagram and it’s fun. Some help, some do not at all, but they don’t hurt. #beer #craftbeer #omgIloveBeerSoMuch #SundayFundayWithAllMyFriends #ipasRuleForever [vc_separator type=’transparent’ position=’center’ color=” thickness=’3′ up=” down=”]
[vc_separator type=’transparent’ position=’center’ color=” thickness=’3′ up=” down=”]Well that fun can KILL you on Facebook and Twitter if not edited before publishing. First, you shouldn’t use more than two or three hashtags on Twitter.#craftbeer #howlmoonbrew.  On Facebook, leave them out all together.  [vc_separator type=’transparent’ position=’center’ color=” thickness=’3′ up=” down=”]

3) DO IT: Get on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram and use them

[vc_separator type=’transparent’ position=’center’ color=” thickness=’3′ up=” down=”]Don’t just use the one you like best, use them all. All are free services.  Even if you don’t post to them often it allows your fans to tag you. If you post on them often it drives engagement and gets people talking about you and coming into your tap-room.  [vc_separator type=’transparent’ position=’center’ color=” thickness=’3′ up=” down=”]
really - do it

[vc_separator type=’transparent’ position=’center’ color=” thickness=’3′ up=” down=”]4) DO IT: Post tap lists!

[vc_separator type=’transparent’ position=’center’ color=” thickness=’3′ up=” down=”]We live in a robust craft brewery town, knowing what’s on tap will influence greatly where people are going tonight! If I can’t see your tap list, I may skip that stop on my agenda. Free advertising and excitement for your beers is worth a couple minutes of time.  [vc_separator type=’transparent’ position=’center’ color=” thickness=’3′ up=” down=”]

5) DO IT: Hire the Pros.

[vc_separator type=’transparent’ position=’center’ color=” thickness=’3′ up=” down=”]Yeah, your friend’s kid can do stuff on his computer for free. And that usually looks it. Branding is as important as what’s in the bottle. If you’re focused on making the best quality beer you can, spend some money to get the best looking graphics and campaigns from those who know how.  Remember business pages are different animals from personal pages, let the pros help.  [vc_separator type=’transparent’ position=’center’ color=” thickness=’3′ up=” down=”]
A Look Into Inbound Marketing in 4 easy steps.

Screen Shot 2015-08-21 at 6.26.36 PMAn Inbound Example:

I’m often asked to explain how inbound marketing works. Inbound Marketing is marketing that attracts people TO you. It’s content people love so they come to you to see, read, download. A good example is if I own a travel company that specializes in family vacations. Now i don’t want to scream from the mountain top, “hire me!”. Nor do I want to flood the airwaves, phone lines or mail boxes with information on “why you should hire me!” Rather, let’s take the “inbound” approach in 4 simple steps.

1. Blog. We will begin by bogging an article on our website. Your website is your home base and is where you want to drive all traffic. But we will not blog about our prices or our travel packages or why we’re the best to hire. No. We’ll write an article of interest to our ideal buyers. For example, “The top 3 places to vacation with your kids in Florida!”.

2. Promote this article. Now that we have our blog post written and a snazzy graphic to match, let’s use social media to let people know about it. We’ll do this on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Google+ with the proper hashtags of course. Let our social followers know it’s on our site with an easy link to get there to read.

3. Now that our audience is on our website and reading this article (and we’ll use stats to track the activity!) we want to give them a “call to action”. aka Something To Do! Now we’re not selling just yet! Next we may offer something free if they just “sign up” to get it. Sign up meaning submitting their email address. This could be something like, “Get your free ‘must have packing list’ for traveling with kids!”

4. Thank you. We’ll thank them for downloading our free gift and invite them to look around our website.

5. We now have the email address of someone who we can assume has kids, has a desire to vacation with them, and is probably entering the shopping stage of their journey for planning such a trip. And that customer, is starting to view you as a friend and as an expert in your field. At this point, we can email this lead and continue the sales process. The “inbound” sales formula has a 100% higher rate of conversion of a lead to a sale over “outbound”. It’s easy to see why!