A trend is a term used to describe something that has become popular. It can be an event, topic, photo, catch-phrase, App or anything else being discussed on social media. Understanding trends is a key tool to help you plan your marketing campaigns and understand what your audience wants to hear about.

Twitter and Google+ both provide a list of topics that are currently trending. This is a great way to see what is causing discussion amongst users right now, and is often a sign of what’s going to be popular soon.

Typically, trends are created as a result of a major event such as an election or the death of a celebrity. They can also be the result of a cultural phenomenon such as a popular TV show or music album.

It’s possible to manufacture a trend, although it is against Twitter’s Terms of Service to do so. In the past, we’ve seen examples of agencies organising social media workshops where they get a group of people to agree to use an agreed hashtag and tweet about it at the same time. This can cause a sudden spike in popularity and a temporary influx of people seeing your content. However, this is against the rules and Twitter have made changes to try and prevent it from occurring.

Getting to the top of the trending topics can be difficult. Usually a topic will need to have a lot of people using it, and it must be new enough that there’s not already a significant amount of history associated with it. This is why it’s important to plan your trend carefully and make sure that it is a unique hashtag.

To maximise your chances of success, it’s best to try to trend during a day where there are plenty of people online. This will make the algorithms more likely to pick up on it, and will help to ensure that you trend for a longer period of time.

One of the biggest challenges is simply getting people to tweet about your hashtag. It’s not uncommon for us to have to encourage hundreds of individual Twitter accounts to talk about a hashtag in order to achieve a trend. It’s therefore always worth putting the effort in to get your hashtags up there, and we have some tips on how to do this.

YouTube Trends

If you have a YouTube channel, you can check which videos are currently trending by visiting the ‘Trending’ tab. The video that’s in the trending section will have a green tick next to it. YouTube also has a category that lists the most watched videos in different countries and categories.

Having a good title for your video is key to getting it into the trending section of YouTube. You can also add keywords to your video titles, descriptions and tags that will help it rank higher in search results. Videos that are clickbate, sensationalist or that don’t comply with YouTube’s guidelines will not appear in the trending section, even if they are popular.