Every popular social media platform has a Trending feature that helps people discover the hot topics. While some (read Facebook) has been slow to add the feature, others (read Twitter) have been using it from time immemorial. The feature is obviously a boon for users but what does it mean for marketers?
The answer is it means A LOT.
Another interesting fact is that Trending feature of every social media platform varies in nature, relevancy, and impact. And only few deserve your time and efforts.
After listing the channels with most effective Trends feature, I will tell you exactly what to do with them for generating branding and business benefits. Let’s start with popular social networks with super Trending functionality:
As we said, every social network looks at Trending functionality differently. To shortlist topics for Facebook’s Trending Topics section, the website algorithm considers your friends, location, liked pages, age, and various other factors.
Use Facebook’s Trending Topics if you are interested in:
- Headlines of the day
- Personally relevant content
- Categorized stories
Engagement around a topic and its rise on Facebook play crucial role in determining top topics.
Unlike Facebook, Twitter’s Trending Topics are real thoughts, opinions, and musings of everyday people. Twitter Trending result pages carry richer content (textual tweets, images, gifs, and small videos) and are updated very frequently.
Use Twitter’s trending topics if you want:
- Almost real time updates
- Diverse short content
- Public commentary
Twitter has its own way to determine Trends. Followers, location, popular topics, and various other factors come together to identify trends. Because hashtags don’t come with additional insights, it sometimes can be difficult to make sense of them. Except that, Twitter is a wonderful platform to make your business trend.
The popular question-answer site has named its trending section ‘Trending Now’ and it is very much in harmony with Quora’s core. Clicking on a Trend opens a page which gives a brief understanding about Trend on the top followed by questions about the topic.
Quora uses details like question follows, upvotes on answers, topic activity, and recent additions to decide what’s trending. This makes the channel more relevant for digital marketers and brands.
Have a look at Quora’s Trending Now for:
- In-depth topic insights
- Post views related data
- Public opinion
Google Plus may not have made its mark as a social network but it has done praiseworthy work with Trending feature. In addition to the main hashtags that have the maximum hype on Google Plus, it also shares other related tags once you click it. This means more insights about what people are using to ‘mark’ their posts.
Keep an eye on Google Plus Trends if you require:
- Detailed list of keywords and hashtags
- Diverse media
For marketers, Trending feature of social media channels can generate vast range of advantages. However, most are unaware how to utilize it. Read on and you will not remain one of them.
Using Trends for Marketing and Business Gains
Now that we have familiarized you with the best platforms to gather Trending insights, let’s list what it can accomplish from marketing point of view. If you are a business owner and want Trends to work for you, here are some points to get you started:
Gather audience insights
Every business has a target audience, and it pays greatly to know what they care about. Studying trends on social media channels can give phenomenal insights about topics and content that motivates, inspires, and interests them. These insights can play pivotal role in creating social media marketing strategy.
Best channels for the job – Twitter and Google+
Post planning and brand conversations
For marketers and content creators that truly believe in social interactions, Trending section can turn out to be a goldmine of ideas. Keeping a watch on social trends will help in quickly becoming part of trending stories with engaging and relevant posts. Because the buzz is already there, there is a bigger chance to capture eyeballs.
Best channels for the job – Quora
Other channels can also give post planning insights but Quora is perfect because you can see what has already been covered, and plan accordingly.
Invest in paid mediums
Facebook, Google+ and Quora don’t presently help brands in gaining business mileage through trends. Twitter being the front runner of this feature however does. Marketers who want their campaigns and brand to get instant recognition can invest in promoted trends. This is the easiest way to benefit from Twitter Trends and capturing the eye of your target audience.
Discover influencers and active users
Every social media channel has some highly active users that have a big following and can change opinions. Connecting with such influencers and making them part of your brand pitch can be valuable on social media. Trends feature can be used to discover opinion makers of your industry and mutually beneficial conversations can be started.
While there are ready tools and solutions like Klout and Traackr for discovering influencers, there is nothing better than firsthand discovery.
Collect advanced insights with Twitter
Sometimes, businesses are based in a different region, and cater to an audience located in the other end of the world. This means spending more time to find trends relevant to you. Twitter has solved the problem by making provision of filtering trends on the basis of location. Simply go to the Trends section and change the location and you are good to go!
Twitter clearly is winning the game with trends but others don’t lag behind either. With sub-hashtags, Google Plus is also giving unique perspectives to marketers.
Plan quick action strategies
When it comes to social media, quick action on trending topics can be highly rewarding. This not only makes you part of a hot thread but also establishes you as a brand that cares about social media conversations. Big organizations have dedicated budget and team for this. Most of such impromptu actions happen on Twitter with Facebook on its heels.
Trending topic discovery
Social media channels start buzzing with updates as soon as something noticeable happens. If you follow the right people, there is rare chance you will miss an important update. This is the reason social platforms are a hit amongst publishers and bloggers. It can be beneficial to your brand for the same reason.
Trendy end note
Generating marketing advantages from social media trends is less about money and more about the combo of speedy planning & execution. Dominating Twitter through Promoted Trends is easy but creating an engaging campaign around that trend is highly challenging.
If you haven’t seen Trends feature from marketing point of view yet, then, your first job is to understand how trends work, and what your followers care about. Only after that it is wise to engage in branding and marketing through Twitter, Quora, Google Plus and Facebook Trends.