Like search keywords, popular hashtags are a good indicator of what people are paying attention to, talking about, searching for, and sharing on social media.

But if you’ve ever checked out Twitter’s global trending hashtags, you’d be forgiven for wondering how, exactly, #JustinBeiberComeBackTo1D is useful in your daily life.

Well, forget what’s trending, what about the hashtags people like you are actually using? Search marketing pros, peers, colleagues… even your competition. Now things get interesting!

With that in mind, the Leadtail team analyzed 177,931 tweets from a panel of 482 North American search marketers to see what SEMs talk about and how that social insights data changes over time.

Here’s what we found out:

Social Insights Data: Top Hashtags Search Marketers 2015Popular Hashtags Are Kind of Like the Popular Kids

Month after month, the top hashtags like #PPC, #SEO, #ppcchat, and #marketing don’t change so much as jockey for position.

It makes sense, since the topics around optimizing online content for search engines and pay-per-click advertising are relatively well defined. We all know the lingo – we’ve agreed on the landmarks in this corner of the digital marketing landscape.

So if you want your tweets to reach other SEMs (beyond those that already have the good sense to follow you) include one of these top hashtags on your relevant tweets to make sure the right audience sees it.

When a new hashtag does break into the top 10, it tends to be driven by an event. Which leads to my next observation…

Search Engine Marketing Has Serious Conference Game

Sure, you get some seasonal play around #CES in January, and #SXSW in March, but in a testament to the quality of content they’re putting out, #SMX and #HeroConf keep things hopping month after month, whether there is a live event or not. That’s pretty impressive!

If you’re thinking about which marketing conferences to attend (or sponsor, if you also sell to this audience), these hashtags can give you insights into where you’re likely to get bang for your buck.

SEMs are Talking About a Lot More Than Search

SEMs are still firmly anchored to the technical chops required to succeed as a PPC and/or SEO practitioner. But if you’re part of a digital marketing team, you’ve got to have a working knowledge of more than just the parts you control directly. #Mobile, #Social (particularly #Facebook), #CRO, and #Analytics are redrawing the borders between marketing, technology, and analysis on a daily basis – so it pays to keep up with the latest in these important areas.

Your Turn

What jumps out at you in this list of popular hashtags for SEMs? Let us know in the comments!

This post originally appeared on the SearchForce Blog.