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#Twitter and #hashtag harassment – how too many #s can spoil your message




Do you ever glance at a tweet – and then “move on” because it looks like too much hard work?

I certainly do. Often too many hashtags make a message look uninviting to me. Too hard!


beach SPR #

Hashtags always remind me of those anti-tank obstacles you’d often see in WWII movies and documentaries –  those devices designed to stop or at least delay or detour tanks.

Pas de Calais, Atlantikwall, Panzersperren

Just as these obstacles deter tanks or other vehicles – too many #s at the start of your message can deter your reader from “getting into” your message.


Of course, #s have their advantages in allowing readers to find your messages when they search particular topics.

Many social media authorities give all sorts of hashtag advice – never use more than 2 hashtags – never use more than 3 hashtags.

I suggest that the anti-tank device analogy can help you use hashtags effectively.


1. try to avoid too many #s too close together – especially at the start of your tweet. If you do use some – allow space between them.


Yes, I use #s at the start of this post heading –  the title becomes a tweet when I share it by twitter.


This use  is partly “ironic” AND also because I hope to make this message more findable by people searching for or interested in twitter and hashtags.

2. Place you hashtagged words at the end of your tweet after your readers have got into message.


Those anti-tank devices were often arranged to “lure” to take certain paths (often into mines) or “bottle up” vehicles.


Hopefully, your use of placement of hashtags can lure readers in to your message and then slow them down once they are “inside”.


Just as a point of interest: the anti-tank devices (nicknamed the Czech Hedgehog)  were specially designed so that even if they were blown out of the way by sappers clearing an area – the devices would still land with a solid base.

Note in this photo whichever way you tip or displace this device – it will land with 3 points of ground contact.

Pas de Calais, Atlantikwall, Panzersperren



The devices were designed to have maximum stability and yet provide as little “cover” as possible to infantry or sappers clearing an area.

I always think of the D-Day landing scene in Saving Private Ryan – when I see these anti-tank obstacles.


My main message to you – harness the power of hashtags, but don’t let them be an obstacle for your readers!


TB LL mosaic

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I blog about fun pop culture stuff as well as more serious business communication tips.


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These days, lots of people and organisations need help with how to COPE with too much work, too much information, too many meetings, delivering difficult news, business writing, effective e-mail, e-mail overload, cross-cultural communication etc. I like to help people COPE.




One comment on “#Twitter and #hashtag harassment – how too many #s can spoil your message

  1. efangelist
    December 21, 2015

    Reblogged this on efangelist.

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