Paying Attention to Online Trends

Sarah Jayne Anderson

The Internet moves pretty fast. If you don’t stop and look around once in a while, you could miss the profits that come from it. Popular culture moves more quickly than ever before. Within the space of as little as 24 hours somebody can go from obscurity to national, if not global, fame. For a short period of time they are the hottest topic around until something or somebody else takes over the spotlight. If you keep your eyes open for opportunities, those 15 minutes can translate into profit.

As always has been the case with Internet marketing, identifying targets is the primary key to success. In the past, I would play the long game and use methods such as keyword suggestion tools to determine which sites to build. Google and other search engines took such a long time to reward my efforts that it only made sense. These days though, Google moves just as about as fast as we do and that opens the door nicely to profiting from topics with short but intense shelf lives.

Training yourself to be an online trend spotter is going to lead you to topics with the most potential.

Training yourself to be an online trend spotter is going to lead you to topics with the most potential. We are in a time when we don’t have to guess what people are talking about. Social media has become the water coolers of modern society. Rather than being somebody that complains about hash tags or feeds being filled with repetitive topics be the one that takes notice and does something to make those topics go to work for you.

Countless times my Facebook feed has lit up with topics that hold no real interest to me but which have clearly hit a nerve with the general public. These are the moments when I start paying attention to where and how I am seeing the topic or meme being referenced. When I see it jump from the internet to being alluded to in popular offline media then I know for sure that it is time to take advantage of the hype.

A recent example of this was the rant letter Rebecca Martinson wrote to her Delta Gamma sorority sisters. For a few days, if you went anywhere on social media it couldn’t be escaped. Twitter was buzzing both about the letter and Martinson’s own Twitter interactions. Facebook was full of people passing their discovery of the story onto their friends.

When I knew for certain that it was time to act was a few days later when I was watching “The Daily Show” and they — albeit in a loosely censored way — used the phrase “cunt punt,” which had been included in the letter. When something enters the general lexicon like that, there is no question that people will be filling search engine boxes with related terms.

Once a hot topic is chosen, it is much like any other type of Internet marketing just at an escalated pace. Finding a niche to exploit within the larger topic is often the way to cut through the competition. In the case of the sorority letter, I knew that I would be competing with all the mainstream buzz sites for Martinson and Delta Gamma terms.

“Cunt punt,” however, was being used throughout social media but was going to be too much for most of those sites to touch or they would censor it to the point of not mattering.

A quick visit to a domain registrar and a relevant domain was purchased and a site was up on it by the end of the day. It takes next to no money or effort and if the offer on the page if in some way related to the traffic, for example pushing a sorority themed paysite to Martinson traffic , then it shouldn’t take long at all to see results. The traffic will come fast and most of it will trail off after a short period but if played right that could be a period of high profit.

With so much information flooding social media, it can sometimes be difficult to keep track of why some topics and memes keep showing up. Sites such as KnowYourMeme.com and OnlineSlangDictionary.com are useful tools for when you need some clarification. Twitter trends are probably the area that can result in most scratching of the head. At those times, WhatTheTrend.com is the place to go to help sort the junk topics from those which may have earning potential.

Playing the long game with most sites is still sensible but if you keep yourself alert to what is going on around you, mixing in some short term successes can make a real difference.

Sarah Jayne Anderson is HustlerCash.com’s affiliate manager.