As business owners, we are often tasked with the impossible: to get inside the heads and predict the desires of our consumers. Whether you’re dreaming up a new ad campaign or rethinking your digital marketing strategies for 2020, understanding what’s “trending” can have a profound impact on your success.
So, how do we achieve the impossible? How do we learn what’s trending? How do we know what our customers want without employing a Russian troll farm to hack their search histories?
Google Does Everything, Including This
Google Trends (which is 100% free to use) provides immediate insight into what people are searching for on the web. You can browse real-time search trends or search for specific topics pertaining to your business. For instance, an ice cream purveyor looking for new business might search “ice cream” and come to find that “Halloween ice cream” is trending this month, prompting a new “Candy Corn” or “Pumpkin Spice” flavor exclusively for the month of October.
#Tagging on Twitter
Twitter (the birthplace of #hashtags) can also give us keen insight into “what’s hot right now.” On its homepage, Twitter publishes the most popular trends in real-time based on user posts (e.g. #MondayMotivation) and can even personalize those trends based on your location and who you follow.
You might be thinking: How is a pound symbol going to revolutionize my marketing campaigns and save my business? Lucky for you, we’ve answered that pressing question and a few more below.
Why should I use hashtags?
Simply put, hashtags increase your engagement with other users on every platform, be it Pinterest, Tumblr, or Instagram. According to Twitter, brands that use hashtags see 50% more engagement than those brands that don’t. The best hashtag campaigns, like Charmin’s #TweetFromTheSeat toilet paper campaign, can go viral instantaneously. In short, the more you use hashtags (and use them wisely), the more valuable interactions you’ll have with consumers.
How many hashtags is too many?
Experts tell us that the optimal number of hashtags to use is 7 to 10, although it does depend on the platform. On Twitter, 1 or 2 is plenty. On Instagram, aim for 9 to 12. But even more important than the number of hashtags you use is the #relevance and #popularity of those tags.
Which hashtags should I use?
This is where your invaluable research comes in. Use Twitter, Google Trends, and third party apps like Trendsmap to start exploring topics related to your business. Create a hashtag list specific to your industry (which you’ll update frequently), start experimenting with various tags, and see what works (and what doesn’t). Keep learning, keep experimenting, and keep studying your analytics.
And if all of this research and strategizing seems to time-consuming or tedious to take on, have no fear. Branding and marketing agencies like Brand Poets specialize in crafting engaging digital marketing campaigns that capitalize on what’s trending wherever you are in the world. So keep doing what you do best, and we’ll #HashOut the rest.
Article originally published in Community News.
About Brand Poets
Founded by Tana M. Llinas, Brand Poets is a collective of strategists, visual storytellers, and digital artisans crafting smart, poignant campaigns that command attention. Instagram: @BrandPoets — Call: 786.732.7466