Content Radar: What Google’s Top 100 “How To” Searches Mean for Marketers

What are the takeaways from Google's latest worldwide Top 100? Is FB trying to siphon stories from IG? And are your marketing emails giving readers what they really want?

 

Content Radar Word BubbleThis week Google shared a wealth of information with marketers that could have a major impact on your content marketing efforts — if you’re willing to do some homework. Also, Facebook Stories is looking to borrow from Instagram’s success, more people are using social media to access news than ever before, and people want more information (and less fluff) in emails.

Google just released its Top 100 “How To” searches

Any time Google opens up the vault and gives a peek inside the mountains of data it has at its disposal, marketers would do well to pay attention. Thanks to the search behemoth’s release of its top 100 worldwide searches, marketers now have at our fingertips a treasure trove of information to use to improve marketing communication efforts.

You can see a visual representation of all 100 top searches, but for the sake of space, we’ll just mention the top 10 here:

How to . . .

  • tie a tie
  • kiss
  • get pregnant
  • lose weight
  • draw
  • make money
  • make pancakes
  • write a cover letter
  • make French toast
  • lose belly fat

Sure, this information is interesting — but for marketers it is much more than that. Because data like this is only as effective as the analysis that comes along with it, marketers must ask ourselves the following question:

What does this data from Google teach us about what we can do to improve our marketing efforts?

You may be missing customer service opportunities

According to Simon Rogers, Data Editor at News Labs at Google, not only have “how to” searches increased by 140 percent since 2004, but many of those searches are asking about how to fix things. So, businesses that sell items that can break or need repair have an excellent opportunity to create content that allows your customers to solve problems. Do this well, and you can build trust with consumers.

According to Rogers, even if the fixes seem basic, don’t overestimate your audience’s need for help:

“We have become so dependant on offloading, on relieving our brains from keeping certain basic, human information in storage, that we’ve forgotten how to do some fairly basic grown-up tasks.” — Simon Rogers

Your content strategy could use a facelift

Think of your brand’s purpose, then examine how these “how to” searches relate to your goals. For example, think of how many organizations can build content related to the popular “how to impress a girl” search — jewelry makers, cologne manufacturers, greeting card companies, barbers, florists, gyms, grocery stores, publications, etc.

Any of these organizations have a natural tie-in that allows them to create content that answers this “how to” question. In turn, marketers can use a company’s website, blog, email list, and social media channels to promote the content that has been created in support of the “how to” query.

Personalization counts

Google created a visual representation of the top “how to fix” searches from every country across the globe. So, even though “how to fix a toilet” was the top “how to fix” search in the United States, “how to fix washing machines” is the top search in Russia, and “how to fix refrigerators” is the top search in Australia.

The lesson? One-size-fits-all content will minimize your effectiveness. Personalizing and customizing your content and your content delivery will allow you to reach more people in more relevant ways.

Google announced this week that it will support AMP landing pages in AdWords search campaigns. After beta-testing the functionality earlier this year, Google will allow all advertisers to direct traffic from text search ads to their Accelerated Mobile Pages within the next couple of weeks.

Facebook is looking to Instagram to kickstart its fledgling Facebook Stories option. The company is testing out the capability of allowing Instagram users to also publish their Instagram Stories to Facebook. Facebook has not released any numbers relative to Facebook Stories usage, but it is thought to be well below the 250 million daily users Instagram Stories boasts.

A new Pew Research study has concluded that more people are using social media to access news than ever before. The study shows that 2 out of 3 (67 percent) of U.S. adults get news from social media sites — up from 62 percent just one year ago. Nearly half (45 percent) of respondents said they get at least a portion of their news from Facebook.

An Adobe email survey indicates that people want marketing emails to be more informative. In the survey of more than 1,000 white-collar workers, 61 percent said email was their preferred way to receive offers from brands, but 40 percent of respondents said they want those emails to be more informative and less promotional.

Got tips about more news marketers need to have on their radar? Direct message me on Twitter @chadbuleen.
Tags: content marketing, SEO,

Category: Distribution
Chad Buleen

About Chad

Chad Buleen is an award-winning journalist, the manager of social messaging for a large international nonprofit, a digital media enthusiast and father of four. Follow him on Twitter .

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