Tips for Using Conversational Trends to Drive Smarter Content Strategy

Jun 18, 2018

When we approach content strategy at Curiosity, we talk a lot about the three core pillars of content marketing: value, relevance, and consistency. Content can’t be successful if it doesn’t deliver on all three pillars, and to be a great content strategist, you have to know how to consistently deliver storytelling that is valuable and relevant to the target audience and also elevates the brand’s differentiators.

As a content marketer, a big part of my job is keeping up with emerging trends. Being able to anticipate what the audience will be talking about in the future as it relates to my clients’ industries makes our campaigns smarter, bolder and more efficient. Thankfully, I have a lot of tools at my disposal to keep track of what is up and coming, which helps me with content calendar development. Some pull trends in real time based on what people are talking about or engaging with online, like Crimson Hexagon and Ahalogy Muse, while others are periodic whitepapers and reports that capture trends over a longer period of time.

One such tool is the Annual Topics and Trends Report from Facebook IQ, Facebook’s insights unit that was established to help marketers better understand how people are communicating both online and offline in today’s world. The report takes a deep dive into the trending topics of 2017 that are on the cusp of going mainstream this year.

The report is organized by categories, including Beauty and Fashion, Food and Drink, Commerce, and Technology. Facebook IQ has identified two different types of trends that they cover in the report:

1. Topics to Watch: Topics of conversation that have seen consistent growth in 2017. These topics follow similar volume, variance and other measures of conversation consistent with past topics that have displayed long-term growth.

2. Hot Topics: Topics of conversation that drove disproportionately high volume in a particular month of 2017, for example, celebrities in the news, current events and holidays.

Being able to anticipate which trends are up and coming, when they’ll appear in conversation, how long they’ll last, and how your brand can tie into them, is key to developing a content strategy that will speak to your audience’s lifestyles. Tools like this report can really help keep your brand ahead of the curve and make content decisions easier.

For example, if you’re working for a CPG food brand, you can easily tie into a national “foodie” holiday. For instance, if you have an ice cream brand, it’s obvious that you can tie into National Ice Cream Day by running a promotion. However, you can also place your product in the content of the holiday even if it's not a direct connection—a cookie brand can play into National Ice Cream Day because they can be crumbled over ice cream, or used for ice cream sandwiches. Frame up and stage your product in a beautiful way to stand out on feeds and tie into the food photography trend.

If you work on a fashion brand, you can incorporate Empowerment Marketing into your strategy by making sure you’re demonstrating your understanding of modern gender roles and showing women wearing your clothes in a variety of work or home environments.

With this type of data at your fingertips, you can build loyal brand advocates in your content marketing efforts, just by showing that you know and understand what makes your audience tick.

Interested in learning how to apply these trends to your content strategy? Reach out to us today using the form above!