Jumping onto popular trends is a great way for brands to engage with their followers on social media.
However, although this can be a clever tactic that brings great results such as engagement, interaction and audience reach, it is also a tactic that should be approached with caution, and with care, as things can easily go awry, especially surrounding sensitive or controversial topics.
The idea is to involve yourself in conversations surrounding your brand or industry, and reacting to current trending topics.
So, in order for you to jump on trending topics, here are some tips on how and when to join in the conversation:
1. React to relevant trends
This may look like a no-brainer, but the thing is you need to always be on top of every new trend on social media, so do searches, read the news and set up alerts that will tell you the latest trends.
Why? Because you need to choose which ones to use or and which ones to steer clear of. Some may seem appropriate and related to your targeted audience and your brand, others may just seem a waste of your time. There is nothing more obvious, and more irritating to everyday social media users than brands jumping on the back of trends that are completely irrelevant to their products or services.
If you have to stretch something too far to make a connection with a trend, then you are better off not trying. Trendjacking doesn’t always have to be extravagant and outside the box, it can be something as simple as an online department store who sell tea sets tweeting about #nationalafternoonteaweek, a subject matter very relevant to their brand.
2. Get a second opinion
Maybe you spotted a great trend that is relevant to your brand and has come up with a dynamic set of tweets and Facebook updates that will quickly react to the trend.
In the world of social media, trends come and pass at lightning speed. However, it’s always a good idea in this instance to first ask other people to have a look into your ideas before it gets published, for example, someone else from the marketing team. As mentioned above, you need only to join in conversations and trends that are relevant, or you will lose your audience.
3. Stick to your brand voice
It’s important when using a trend that you still keep your brand voice and messaging to your target audience. You need to remain identifiable to your audience; brand voice and identity are crucial to your branding, it is not worth sacrificing this for the sake of a trending topic.
If you get this tone right your reference will be much more subtle, and will gain higher respect from the audience you are trying to reach.
A great example of a brand jumping on a trend successfully is KrispyKreme, when they used the Twitter’s hashtag trend #IOnceHadABossWho, and came up with the tweet “Raise your hand if you can say this? #IOnceHadABossWho Gave me doughnuts.”