Search Trends and The Media

I am sure you have all heard of swine flu by now but had you ever heard of it last year?

Search is heavily influenced by trends and if you can get ahead of the game there is profit to be made. Type in swine flu today and there is a page full of sponsored links – Red Cross, NHS, and more. Clearly search is influenced by the media and fashions. This week one of our customers has asked us to stop selling their surgical masks as they are sold out – hardly suprising with the media coverage of people in masks to protect against swine flu!

Let’s take holidays as another example of how trends and the media influnece search.

In terms of online advertising budget many companies may just spend the same month to month but what should be considered when spending and budgetting online are a few more factors.

For example in travel, when will people book their holiday, when will CPC be cheapest/most expensive, when are your best offers, when are your busy/quiet periods, what destinations are booked to at different times in the year?

In terms of online spend if you are in a busy period you need to consider should you cut down online advertising spend as you are busy or do you increase spend and generate even more business, making hay whilst the sunshines. It could be a case of really pushing online spend when you are least busy to try to get that extra traffic through so that other resources are still busy and balancing business out through the year. You may find CPCs drop when holidays aren’t traditionally booked but as a smaller company you can get to the top when it would have been harder at other times in the year. If there is press and publicity regarding the safety of travel, global warming, CO2 emissions etc people may be searching for info rather than looking to buy their holiday. I imagine “flights to mexico” and “holiday to mexico” aren’t profitable keywords at the moment so it would be time to pull them back.

If you can be on top of these things and first to advertise with quirky adverts you may find yourself gaining rewards where others haven’t reacted. For example in fashion take “that dress” Liz Hurley wore. If you sell those dresses and bid on “liz hurley dress” straight away you could have found a profitable keyword and benefitted from the rise in search. It is all about chasing those profitable keywords at the right time.

As this shows search isn’t static especially over a year so take the seasonal perspective and keep up with the trends to get ahead.