Understanding Search Trends in Your Target Audience


Your target audience likely changed gears during the pandemic.

It’s no secret that over the past several months, COVID-19 abruptly changed how you connect with your target audience. It didn’t matter what segment of the market you were trying to reach; as of March they were no longer doing whatever it was they had been doing just two weeks before.

As a result, companies were forced to quickly pivot and make adjustments, if not a complete overhaul, to their approach. For some, it meant simply channeling more investment toward digital marketing. For others, it might mean a quick rethinking of their entire business plan.

Assessing Trends

As you examine the impact that COVID-19 has had on your ability to connect with your target audience, it’s a good time to look at how search trends changed related to your business.

Much like there was suddenly a surge in searches for sourdough starter how-to videos, proper handwashing technique and ideal lighting for videoconferencing, there were probably changes in how searches were done for your industry.

For instance, there may have been an increase in searches for whether your business was considered essential and remained open, whether you required masks for entry, or if your company was taking steps to contribute to a local food drive.

You may have seen a drop in certain searches, as well.

You can access a free tool called Google Trends that allows you to choose a time period and examine how a certain search phrase performed over those weeks or months.

For instance, if you assessed searches for video game systems for November 2019 through May 2020, you would see that inquiries during the lockdown in March and April yielded the strongest interest in consoles beyond even the holiday rush.

Preparing to Pivot Again

2020 provided an important and valuable lesson to marketers: flexibility and agility are survival tools. In order to keep pace with 2020, companies needed to be able to quickly follow trends in customer behavior.

Whether it’s another nationwide safer-at-home situation or some other challenge, recognizing trends as they are emerging is a valuable asset for your marketing strategy.

Understanding changes in search volume requires that you have an understanding of your baseline. In other words, you won’t know what’s unusual unless you know the normal search volume for any given topic.

If you need help establishing a baseline for search volume in your target audience, or if you’re still examining the right pivot for your company, our team at SJC Marketing is ready to get started. We can help you keep pace with whatever trends are shaping the events in your industry.

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