Most business owners know about Google’s keyword planning tool, which allows you to identify keywords to use for optimized content marketing and SEO. But there’s another Google tool that gets a lot less glory, yet has just as much potential: Google Trends. If you haven’t yet been introduced, allow us the honors. Here’s a little more about this free tool and how you can use Google search trends to fuel effective and creative marketing ideas. 


Reveal What’s Relevant

Google Trends is extremely intuitive to use. You start by entering a search term, and then you can see how that word or phrase has risen and fallen in popularity over time, as well as the locations in which it has trended most. You can also scroll down to catch a quick glimpse into what is currently popular in the world, outside of your own search terms, in case you need inspiration for an ad concept or want to piggyback off of hot trends. 

To give you an example, here’s how a nutrition company might use Google Trends.  Let’s say you just launched a new superfood tea, and want to target consumers who are interested in such products. You type “superfood” into Google Trends to see if it’s a word that’s being searched often. You may find that, although it’s had some peaks and dips, its popularity has stayed mostly consistent over the past year. Scroll down, and you’ll see that interest has been highest in Hawaii, Alaska, Oregon, California, and Colorado. All of this tells you it’s a good idea to use the term “superfood” in your ads, and to target those states in particular. 

By showing interest levels and regions, you can get a good sense of what’s relevant to your target buyer. If you dial into the trends in Arizona, for example, you may see that, yes, there’s some interest in “superfood” but there’s even greater interest in “matcha.” So when you create ads that will run in Arizona, you know that “matcha” will be more relevant (and therefore more effective) to use in your copy. This helps you speak the same language as your consumers, and reach them more quickly and successfully. 


Timely Targeting

In advertising, timing is everything. Fortunately, you can use Google Trends to take advantage of this as well. First, you can review data to see when demand is at its highest for a particular product or service. When does interest tend to max out? This can guide you to invest more ad budget into those time periods, and scale back during others. Doing this could result in the same yearly spend, but a far greater return on that spend.  

Second, you can also tap into seasonal trends. If there’s a big industry conference that happens around the same time each year, you can look at past performance and identify the timeframe in which search booms around that event. This helps you plan marketing initiatives to coincide, like a related ebook or a targeted webinar. Get it ready in advance and then launch it in time to capitalize on the expected surge in search, and you’ll be looking at much better results.

Google Trends is a really cool, and highly underutilized, tool that can help you better plan your advertising budget and message. Need help incorporating it into your marketing arsenal? Give us a call!