Do you know what a TT or trending topic is? If you use Twitter frequently, surely you already know the term very well, as they allow you to keep up of the latest trends on the internet.
But that’s not all, its use can also help to create better social media strategies, which make it easier for you to viralize your content, get better engagement, and quickly understand a better way and how it behaves in the market in which you operate.
So, if you are looking to know the definition of trending topic, how it works and how to include it in your marketing strategy , then this article is for you.
What is trending topic (TT)?
First we have to start with the basics,
A trending topic —short only as TT—, is a word in English that literally means trending topic, and refers to the keywords that Twitter users use the most at any given time of day
To do this, the Twitter algorithm not only analyzes the use of keywords in tweets, but also searches for frequent hashtags, retweets, likes, among other things.
Although this term was born on Twitter, little by little it was used to refer to all the trends that emerge on the internet, whether in forums – such as Reddit -, Facebook, YouTube, Tik Tok, LinkedIn, etc. Similarly, only the word “trend” can be used in the same context.
TTs can be written in a normal way, but the most common is that they are used with so-called hashtags,
Trending topics on Twitter
And where on Twitter can you find them? How do you use them?
These are found in a section called “Explore”, which in turn is divided into subsections with each of the specific issues of the moment, both globally and locally, and which are also placed in positions – from 1 to 30 – depending on the level of popularity.
Among these sections are:
For you: These are the trending topics that fit your tastes and preferences, depending on the activity you have on Twitter, and the content you consume.
Trends: They are the most popular topics of the moment, which everyone is talking about regardless of the place. For this reason, these tend to be more general than in the other sections.
News: They are those that have to do with the journalistic sector, whether it has to do with political events and social movements, issues of various types of organizations, etc.
Sports: All popular sports news, such as soccer, volleyball, basketball, American football, etc. Here you can find live sporting events, scoreboards with match information, and even things from the lives of athletes. If you want to know who won the match of the day, this is the place to look for it.
Entertainment: In this section you will find all the TT related to the world of cinema, art, video games, music, literature, series, social events, awards, among many others.
COVID-19: It is a recent section, which was created due to all the events that have happened due to the COVID-19 (Coronavirus) pandemic. This arose from the need to keep the population informed about health issues, keeping all the TTs concentrated in one place.
What are trending topics in marketing for?
Trending topics fulfill a basic function, of keeping Twitter users aware of the topics that are most talked about at the moment, but in addition to that, they have a series of very interesting utilities if you are working on a marketing strategy , or if you want to become an influencer.
Here is a list:
Better understand your buyer persona: If you already have defined your potential buyer, surely you will already have some of their preferences listed, and a very good way to compliment this information is by reviewing which are the topics that speak in trend, in order to have a vision broader of what type of content they prefer.
Create better content: Related to the previous point, by knowing what your audience’s preferences are, you will be able to create content with better engagement, both for Twitter and for other social networks.
See what the competition does: How does the competition deal with issues in your sector? How do they converse with their followers? Analyzing this data is very important to make small adjustments to your campaigns, and thus have better results.
Viralize content: In content marketing —and inbound— calendars are always generated with all the content to be published, however, virality often goes hand in hand with the spontaneous. For this reason, it is important to be attentive to trending topics every day, to be able to take advantage of those small opportunities and launch content related to your sector, with many possibilities of it going viral.
Create promoted trends: They work in a similar way to the ads of Facebook Ads and Google Ads , since you have to pay for a TT to appear in the “Explore” section for 24 hours in the selected country. These include the hashtag, the trend description, and the add-on tweets. This is very useful if you are looking for a greater reach than would be achieved organically.
Give a more creative image: Many of the trending topics on Twitter are full of creativity, or at least the tweets that use them are. Therefore, a company that manages to create a trend will excel in creativity with respect to the competition.
With all of the above, you may realize that it is not advisable to have a Twitter strategy that does not include the use of trending topics, since otherwise, you would not have good communication with your audience, so you would not get good engagement either .
What we recommend is that you analyze if your buyer personas are active Twitter users, and if so, that you concentrate all your social media efforts to generate a good strategy around it.
How does the Twitter algorithm work in 2021?
But how does Twitter decide what is trending and what is not?
Social networks work through algorithms, which are rules and instructions that tell the platform what results it should produce , in this case in the “Explore” section and on the timeline.
Before, the Twitter algorithm was based on displaying tweets in chronological order, with the idea that content was consumed at the moment, regardless of whether it was interesting for the user or not.
However, in the last updates that was changed, and now preference is given to tweets — and users — that talk about topics with which you have the most interaction, similar to how the Instagram algorithm works .
To do this, take into account aspects such as:
The tweets that you like and retweet , whether they are from a user with whom you interact a lot, tweets with topics that you like.
The users with whom you interact the most in general , either through mentions, retweets, visiting their profile, answering surveys, watching their videos and direct, etc.
The hashtags you use the most and the sector to which they belong. For example, if you really like watching video game news and you tweet a lot about it, this type of content is most likely the first to come out.
The most recent tweets are more likely to have a greater reach than tweets that have already been on the timeline for more than 24 hours.
The general activity of users , that is, how much they use their account either to create and share content, as well as to consume it. A user who has not used their account for a long time will not have the same reach as one who uses it every day.
That is why it is very important to choose the best time to publish , since this way you will be able to reach the largest number of users, regardless of whether they have a configuration with prominent or chronological tweets.
How to use trending topics in a marketing strategy
Taking the above into account, how can you implement a marketing strategy using trending topics?
We recommend taking the following into account:
1. Do some deep research on current trending topics
This includes reviewing the hashtags that your competition uses , those that are used by users that fit your buyer profile, the most recurrent in the industry in which you operate, etc.
You can use SEO tools to find the keywords that work the most on Google, and give you a general idea of how these topics are addressed on Twitter and other social networks.
2. Do tests
Based on the research you conducted, it is valid to try some of the hashtags to see how your followers react .
If you usually talk about specific topics on a recurring basis, the ideal would be that you create a hashtag to use every time you post something about it, and thus maintain a category-like structure in your account. So you can see which ones have the best chance of becoming a trend in the future.
Remember that in marketing everything must be measured, so try to calculate the engagement of your post with hashtags, to see which ones work the most and make the necessary adjustments.
3. Take care of the Time to Publish
This means that it is best to publish at the perfect time, taking into account the external issues that arise , and that are not part of your content planning as is.
For example, if one day a new update of a tool in your sector is announced, it can be very useful to talk about it that same day, or if there is a social event that has to do with your work, it is also valid to take advantage and show interest .
The important thing is that the posts are informative, that they really contribute to the conversation, that they maintain the quality of always, and that they do not feel forced. That is, they really look natural with the personality and branding of your brand.
4. Create interesting dynamics
Something that is very important in social media marketing – and that many companies tend to forget – is that everything should be a conversation.
This means that it is not about just publishing content and leaving, but you must encourage the interaction of your followers with your brand, that they see you as a human account, and not as a brand that only seeks advertising.
Dynamics are a simple but very effective way to achieve this , and it also increases the popularity of any hashtag that you are interested in positioning.
For example: if you are a company that is dedicated to selling digital products, you can create a dynamic in which you give away the download code for any of these products —such as programs, video games, movies, ebooks, etc.— by complying with the contest rules and use the hashtag you want to rank for.
5. Marketing with influencers
Do you remember that the twitter trending topics algorithm favors the hashtags that are used the most and retweeted in the first hours of their appearance? This is where the help of influencers comes in.
One of the best ways to get reach, traffic and interaction in your publications is with the help of an influencer in your field , to talk about your business and your services on their social networks, or to appear in one of the sections of your content.
In this way you can increase the popularity of your campaign’s hashtags, increasing the chances that it will appear in trends at the national level, and even internationally
Current Trending Topics are key in marketing
Being aware of the latest trends related to your sector is very important , and it is even more important to analyze and understand how they work, and how these topics are related to your users.
As we have discussed throughout this article, it is clear that – to have a good social media strategy – it is a key point to have well-structured buyer personas, defining their tastes and customs both in their daily life and in digital life. This will make it easier to study the trends you follow the most.
In this way, you will not only be able to create your own trending topics, but you will also have a broader vision of how to create your content, using only the topics that really interest your audience, giving it a format that works and publishing at the right time. so that they will fall in love with your publications.
The best of all is that you improve the image of your brand, at the same time that you gain more customers and increase your sales.