Tips for Identifying and Monitoring Trends in Your Business
If you have been on Twitter for any length of time, you will no doubt have noticed the ongoing debate over the term “trending.” On Twitter, a post, word, or topic that gets more attention than others is often said to be “a trending topic” or a “hot trending topic.” Hot topics become very popular both through user driven events or due to an external event, which causes people to discuss a certain topic. So how can one tell if a topic is trending? The answer is simple: use Twitter’s trending list. The list lets you see tweets that others are discussing in the hopes that you might find something interesting yourself.
What is the trending list? It is a collection of important trending content that Twitter users submit to the site. These posts come from a variety of sources and are organized into several different categories. Some topics may appear more than once, while some may only appear a single time. Other trending content may come from user submitted stories and data, such as sales reports or new hires. Some topics, like #blockallfollowers, are banned from the trending area for being spammers.
The first thing you want to do when spotting trends on Twitter is to search for keywords. There are a number of ways to do this, but one option that I find easiest to use is the use of the hash tag function. Simply enter a list of keywords related to your business into the hash tag section of Twitter’s website. When you are searching for trending topics, it is important to note that some business choose words that are less likely to be spammed, such as keywords related to brand names, instead of popular words that are used as spam.
If you find a trending topic with a lot of activity, you should take note of it. Search the trending topic area of Twitter for tweets that are similar to your business’s keywords and send them a private message asking if they are a good fit for your brand. Sometimes you will receive a private message asking for further clarification on the topic; other times you may simply receive a reply that states your brand is not appropriate for that trending topic. If the brand in question fits the trending topic, your brand should be included in the conversation.
You may also find a trending topic that has nothing to do with your product or service. For example, some people will search for trending topics that are related to music. If your brand is related to music, you can take advantage of the trending topics by linking your Twitter account to your website and vice versa. Linking the two accounts together allows your customers and followers to connect the two. This can lead to increased exposure and traffic to both your website and your Twitter account.
The most effective way to spot trending topics is to pay close attention and monitor the conversations taking place around the topic. Do not let these trends go to seed. Act preemptively to grab a potential customer base. As mentioned above, always look at the trends that are happening around the internet as well as locally. Taking advantage of the trending topics before they die down will save you money and time in the long run.