Facebook Logo (Karen Bleier/AFP/Getty)
Jon Swartz, USA TODAY
SAN FRANCISCO -- Hashtags are coming to Facebook today.
The feature, made so popular on Twitter to add context and shared interests to tweets, will be clickable on Facebook.
Hashtags are also a staple of Instagram, Tumblr and Pinterest.
When a user clicks on a hashtag within their Facebook profile, they will see a feed of what other people and pages are saying about a topic or event.
"Imitation is the best form of flattery, though this is long overdue," says Teresa Caro, senior vice president of social at Engauge, a marketing and advertising agency. "Facebook has to do this to be relevant among advertisers, especially as they try to reach consumers."
Facebook faces stiff competition on the advertising front -- in particular from Google -- since search is so influential in consumers' purchasing decisions, she says.
"Facebook and hashtags are two words social marketers absolutely must pay attention to," says Michael Lazerow, chief marketing officer of Salesforce Marketing Cloud.
"The door is open for companies to better discover their customers' immediate interests, creating the potential for increased real-time marketing based around ongoing pop culture, sports and other major events," Lazerow says.
Facebook made the announcement in a blog post on Wednesday. It hopes to capitalize on the kind of user activity that generated 66.5 million likes, comments and posts during the Academy Awards this year.
The new feature on Facebook is one of several in the pipeline expected from the social network in coming weeks.