Social media trends indicate popular topics or interests of people. Being up to date with social media trends is crucial for content creators to develop appealing content that generates more engagement.
Therefore, opting for trend-inclusive content can be beneficial to achieve successful content marketing.
We could learn about the advantages of social media trends and how to apply them in this article:
- What are social media trends?
- Power content marketing with social media trends
- Staying up to date with the trends can help brands
- Obstacles to following trends
Social media trends are the appealing topics or content that gain high engagement on social media platforms for a significant period. This kind of content is interactive and appealing to the audience.
Trends can come in the form of a topic, discussion, video, meme, etc. They can be discovered in the search bar or on social media feeds. These help people learn what topics are currently popular in their community or country.
Since social media trends are user-generated content, they can help businesses understand consumer behavior. Businesses can also learn the current interests of their target audience. They can take advantage of these trends to reshape their marketing strategy and be relevant to their audiences.
When your contents follow a trending format, it has a high probability of being shared among a group of audiences that have similar preferences. Therefore, social media trends do not just help gain profit but also help in better brand awareness.
Now you may be wondering how to include social media trends into your content marketing strategy.
Here are some examples of social media content from various brands.
1. Popular Brands following social media trends
Example: Pepsi’s logo on the Squid game
Squid game Source: Netflix (Facebook page)
Squid Game surpassed 111 million views in less than a month after its release, becoming Netflix's most-watched show and topping the chart in 90 countries.
Since it became a worldwide phenomenon, people began cosplaying for Halloween and imitating child games from the show. For example, the Dalgona challenge (cutting out the carved symbols on the Dalgona candy without breaking) and the red-light green light. Many videos related to the show have received a million views, particularly on TikTok.
Pepsi’s logo on the Dalgona candy
Pepsi created the Dalgona candy post with its brand logo and the caption "IYKYK" (if you know you know). It shows how Pepsi attempted to gain engagement by associating itself with the trend and staying relevant to its audiences.
2. Participating in the challenge
Example: Broadway pizza with Squid game challenge
Broadway pizza challenge
The show's story revolves around participating in the challenges to win the prize of 45.6 billion won (approx. 38,421,520 USD).
Broadway Pizza introduced a challenge in which three people can compete for a cash prize of PKR 500,000 (approx. 2,794 USD) if they can complete a 5 ft. pizza within 30 minutes.
This example explains how people are more likely to participate if they are presented with a challenge and a prize. The brand can earn free media engagement by having a huge number of shares on social platforms. Furthermore, the brand will potentially attract new customers who have never heard of this pizza before and want to try it.
Example: McDonald’s collaboration with Mariah Carey
Collaboration of McDonald’s with Mariah Carey source: McDonald’s
Mariah Carey is a well-known artist whose song "All I Want for Christmas is You" returned on the Billboard Hot 100 for the holiday season.
"Mariah Menu", a collaboration between Mariah Carey and McDonald's. USA McDonald's announced to give away a freebie every day with a minimum $1 purchase made through the app. The collaboration involved Mariah goods available at McDonald's, including a t-shirt with a photo of Mariah and a Mariah beanie with her signature.
The Mariah menu source: McDonald’s
It is an example of experience marketing in which the brand created a wonderful memory for the customers. McDonald's successfully marketed its product by offering a new freebie from the Mariah menu every day until Christmas Eve.
The collaboration benefitted both McDonald's and Mariah Carey to connect with the customers and fans alongside gaining profit.
4. Update trends
Burger King with NFTs trend
Non-fungible tokens, also known as NFTs, are cryptographic tokens with a unique value. Tradeable on the blockchain network, it can convert digital works of art and other collectibles into unique, verifiable assets.
However, instead of NFTs (Non-fungible tokens), you'll get chickeN, Fries, and Two onion rings from Burger King. This example shows that Burger King creatively took advantage of the trending discussion about NFTs and created a post that gained a lot of engagement.
Zomato is an online food delivery platform that connects customers, restaurant partners, and delivery partners. Customers can use the platform to find restaurants, write reviews, order food delivery, and reserve a table.
Comparison between iPhone12 and iPhone13
Zomato made a meme post about the iPhone 12 and iPhone 13 having two burgers and a cup of sauce. By placing burgers and a cup of sauce, Zomato showed the difference between the two phones.
The post since then has become a popular meme on Twitter, which helped Zomato gain more engagement and enhance its awareness.
A meme post is beneficial for increasing brand engagement, but you must ensure that the content aligns with the brand's personality, image, or value.
1. Increase brand exposure
People discover your brand through the hashtags you use, shares from your followers, and word of mouth.
Social media poses a valuable chance for you to increase brand exposure and eventually gain more customers. People will see your post as they scroll down the feed, and if your post was able to generate interest, they might try to learn more about you.
For example, if an individual comes across your product on its feed and starts following your brand page. They might not buy from you instantly but is interested in a future purchase. In this way, you are not just able to gain a follower but also a prospect.
However, to persuade people to convert, such as subscribe, follow, and purchase, the existing content on your account must be engaging.
2. Engage with people
People engage with your post
People are more likely to respond and engage with your post if it follows the trend. Since people are already interested in the trends, it is an opportunity for your brand to increase engagement rates with more like, emoji, view, comment, or share.
Engagement can be both positive and negative. Positive engagement means more people begin to find your brand credible, and negative means you are losing your brand's credibility.
High credibility proves that people find your brand genuine, and they trust your product and services. Furthermore, your brand will have a better chance of appearing in the suggestion feed because of the high engagement rate.
3. Gain insights
Likes and dislikes of the audience
Staying updated with trends can enable you to understand more about your target audience or followers.
1) Trends describe the current interests of your audience.
2) Current industry-specific topic, or conversation.
3) Likes and dislikes of your audience.
4) Future product development and better customer experience based on your audience's opinions.
A trend-inclusive content can help you build or maintain bonding with your customers and gain insight at the same time.
For example, when you ask them questions in the comments section of trending posts, they will be more willing to respond with their thoughts. If you ask your customers a question in a regular post, the response rate will be expectedly lower.
4. Go viral
People start engaging with your brand
Trends can help your brand in becoming well-known overnight.
If your content is appealing and fresh, it begins to receive a lot of attention, and then either people start sharing it or talking about you.
When you follow a trend or introduce a new one, your brand has the potential to go viral. Going viral can make people know more and more about you. Hence, leading to brand awareness.
Alongside gaining brand awareness, using viral or trending topics for your marketing strategy can help you gain more profit in sales.
Source: Netflix, Vans
For example, Vans introduced the "Squid Game" collection, which redirected the customers to its famous "slip-on" shoe page. Vans stayed updated with the popularity of the costumes from the show and used them to sell its product (slip-on) to the customer, gaining a 7,800% spike in sales.
However, going viral does not imply that you have already achieved success. You must build credibility and begin to provide value with your products and services, or you will be gone in no time.
1. It requires time and effort.
Updating trends across multiple platforms every day requires a massive amount of time and effort.
Wouldn't it be more convenient if you could update it on a single tool?
A social media analytics tool can help you work more efficiently by allowing you to track trends across multiple platforms.
Update trends across multiple platforms on “Mandala Analytics”
For instance, here's an example from a social analytics tool with a trends feature:
The "Cosmos Trends" feature of Mandala Analytics allows you to
● Stay updated with trends on Google, Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and YouTube from various countries.
● Track trending keywords, hashtags, and emojis that people mention on social media.
2. Not all trends are appropriate for your business.
Trends on social media platforms come from varied industries and are influenced by different hot topics. That is why you cannot simply choose trends that are unrelated to your business or industry.
Otherwise, creating irrelevant content on your platforms will harm your brand's image and discredit its credibility.
Mandala Analytics provides market-specific data for identifying "Perfume" trends.
For example, we would like to learn about trends and insights in the perfume industry overall. The keyword "perfume" can be used in social media analytics tools. The information displayed is market-specific and relevant to your search intent.
It is possible to collect trend-specific data related to your industry with the help of social media analytics (especially on Mandala Analytics). As a result, you can gain more in-depth knowledge of your products, services, customers' interests, markets, or industries.
Criteria for selecting the appropriate trends
- Relevant to your business or industry (trends can be used if it is still relevant to the brand in a creative way, such as Burger King and NFTs).
- Match the personality, image, character, and value of the brand.
- Make a difference for a brand by increasing brand awareness, engagement, or conversion.
3. Using trends does not guarantee that your content will be successful.
Just because a lot of people are talking about a trend does not mean using it will make your content successful.
Sometimes brands use the same trend, but not every brand will achieve the same level of engagement (calculate engagement rate: total engagement divided by total followers).
Social media analytics allows you to see post engagement, helping you determine which factors are important in making the content successful.
This is an example of the trend #SpotifyWrapped. Spotify Wrapped is an annual recap of people's favorite artists, genres, songs, podcasts, and minutes listened to on Spotify. So that people can share their #SpotifyWrapped stories on social media.
Meme style source: https://www.instagram.com/p/CW8fmzrN2XV/
Joking of real-life situation style source: https://www.instagram.com/p/CXBuT7rMISL/
Identify people’s pain points and sell the product
Created a poll of customers favorite items
The example pictures above are the content from various brands using this trend.
The above data is collected from a social media analytics tool, Mandala Analytics. By using social media analytics tools, you can apply this tool to
- Gather useful information in a short period.
- Gain insights from other brands.
- Work more effectively based on supported data.
- Save both time and cost.
From all the examples, you can see that different brands created different content styles. They are beneficial in that you could use them as inspiration to create your unique content which does not bore your audience.
With a backup statistic from the tool, you can now ensure that your content will receive positive feedback from your target audience.
The ways to power your content with social media trends
- Use trends for brand-related content.
- Start a challenge to draw customers’ attention.
- Collaborate with well-known people or brands.
- Stay up to date on popular trends to engage with audiences.
- Create memes as a creative joke to increase engagement.
Sign up for Mandala Analytics’ and create effective content based on user data.
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