What's a Google+ #Hashtag - And Why Should I Care?

Hashtags: What are they used for? - Organization / Finding Stuff
Hashtags: How can I use them? - In Google+ Search
Hashtags: How can I make them? Use the # symbol with a 'word'
Hashtags: How can I find just my stuff with them? - Filter Your Search
Hashtags: Where they do NOT work! - They don't work in comments [edit... they DO work in comments NOW!]
Hashtags: How can I find just my Friend's stuff with them? - Filter Search using Hashtags and Circles

Hashtags: What are they used for?
Hashtags are useful inside Google Plus because they help you Find Posts that use them. They help you Organize Posts that use them.

Hashtags: How can I use them?
Use the Google Plus Search box up top and type a particular hashtag into the search box, then search (press the blue magnifying glass button). Or you can simply Click on a hashtag in the post and it will load that into Google+ Search and start the search for you.

If you follow me, you may see at the end of most of my posts the following type of stuff: O #hastags #googleplustips O

That is my way of helping You and Me find my posts later. Or find other people's posts that happened to use that same hashtag you searched for.

If I write a lot of posts, and I add hashtags to them, then I can easily find them later by searching for my hashtag. For example, I could search for #googleplustips or #youtubetips . These are common ones I use because I post a lot on those topics.

Try it, Search for #youtubetips or #googleplustips and you will see loads of posts that focus on those topics... written by Anyone that happened to use that particular #hashtag in their post. (just click on the blue link)

Hashtags: How can I make them?
Making a hashtag is simple, it requires you to follow 2 rules:
1) Start your hashtag with the # symbol
2) End your hashtag with the space or tab key

Your hashtag can be anything you want it to be. It just has to start with the # symbol and it can not contain any spaces (or some other special characters like the + or the - character are also not allowed). You will know it worked when after you finish typing it, it changes to a Blue Colored text thingy surrounded by a grey box. You did it, you made a hashtag!

Make unique ones Just for you or make more common ones for other people to find your stuff as well. Upper or lower case doesn't seem to matter, so I usually will use only lowercase unless I'm trying to get cute, like when I use this one to represent the Integration of Google + YouTube + Google Plus with this hashtag: #GooTubePlus (I wanted to use the + symbol but it would not work consistently as the + is not always allowed as part of a hash tag, it tends to mess up in edits).

Hashtags: How can I find just my stuff with them?
If I only want to see my own posts (that use a particular hashtag) here's how I can do that:
After I do a Google+ Search for a particular hashtag I can then refine my search results more by filtering those search results. I do this by choosing the 'From You' drop-down choice - after a search has been performed.

This limits (or refines/filters) my search results to show only those that I have posted (From You) and that contain the particular hashtag I searched for initially.

Hashtags: Where they do NOT work!
         [edit: they DO work as a marker in Comments now... ]
They do not seem to work when you add them into comments you make on yours or other people's posts. That is a bummer, because I or someone else may make a profound comment about a #newongoogleplus thing and might want to get back to that comment later via a hashtag search - sorry it won't work! [Glad to say they now work in comments as a 'marker']

Tip: It does work if you go back and Edit Your Post. You can add them later (like you may want to now on some of your prior posts) via the Edit option and once you save the edit, the new hashtag instantly is available for search.

Hashtags: How can I find just my Friend's stuff with them?
This is more of an advanced use of Google+ Hashtags... You can even save your work here and keep the hashtag search for later as a Saved Search.

Just like we talked about earlier, you can Refine a Hashtag Search by choosing options after the search was performed. This time instead of using the Filter/Refinement choice we used above of 'From You'... we will choose to use the option named 'From Your Circles'.

As an example: If you have me in a circle of helpful Video SEO people or YouTube people, and you search for the hashtag #youtubetips , you can further refine that search by adding the drop-down choice of From your circles. If you find that Refined Search to be helpful and you may want to return to it often, you can Save This Search with the Red Button named that way. Then using the Explore option or other ways of finding your saved searches you can easily call upon that particular search at any time in the future.

Please realize that if someone from outside your circles Shared a hash-tagged post made by someone who is in your circles then you may see their shared post because what they shared originated from within your circles... not a bad way of discovering others that share your 'friend's stuff' maybe they are a good candidate to add to your circles too!

Google+ can be a big place. There is a lot of helpful information being passed about, so using hashtags in your own posts or finding posts that others have kindly added hashtags in will help you 'find that post' from that other guy/gal/place more easily in the future.

I hope that this post on using Google+ Hashtags has inspired you to search for them and add them to your own future postings. Maybe you now understand the value of them such that you will go back to some of your more important posts you wrote earlier and edit/add some hashtags to them now, before you forget you wrote them!

Whew - you made it this far... obviously you are interested... here is a link to a valuable update - Google+ Hashtags and Your Privacy... some good news here: https://plus.google.com/108210288375340023376/posts/C3sdr2cVVHi

Please share this post with those you think may benefit from it and Add Your Comments below if you think this post will be helpful to you. Also feel free to add a comment as to how you use or plan to use hashtags in the future.

If you like what I wrote here, and you want more... 1) Add me to your Circles, 2) Click on my most common hashtags: #googleplustips & #youtubetips 3) Sort the G+ Search Results by 'From your circles', 4) Enjoy!

Enjoy Google+ and the Power of The Hashtag!

O #googleplustips #hashtags #hashtagtips O
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