How To Find Current Trending Topics: A Comprehensive Guide

By: Leaman Crews on January 16, 2024
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Every business that leverages digital marketing to reach its target customers needs to maintain a steady flow of fresh, engaging content. The most effective way to create top-tier content is to cover current trending topics. These include the stories and events that are currently capturing people's attention.

Popular platforms like YouTube, Google News, and X (formerly known as Twitter) offer easy access to current trending topics that you can use to customize your social media posts, company blogs and other forms of web content.

Here's a look at what trending topics are, how to find them, and how to use them to generate content that can attract your company's target customers.

What are trending topics?

Trending topics are the stories and events currently popular in online discussions. You can check viral hashtags and trending news stories as they indicate what's now commanding people's attention. 

Social media platforms and news sites typically feature a way for users to view current trending topics. These collections of current trending topics can be an excellent resource if you are looking for inspiration for blog content and social media posts. Some platforms allow you to find trending topics by location or industry, giving you ideas for more finely targeted content. Some platforms that can help you generate engaging content include Google Trends, YouTube, and other social media apps.

How to find trending topics using Google Trends

Google Trends is one of the best resources to find current trending topics. Google uses its wealth of search data and user analytics to pinpoint the most trending news stories and the newest pop culture trends in one place. 

To get started, visit the Google Trends homepage at ‘https://google.com/trends.’ You'll find several current topics in your country highlighted on this page. Click on any of them to see what people say on news sites, blogs, and popular social media posts.

Screenshot of Google Trends homepage

How to use Google Trends to find trending topics by country, region, or industry

The Google Trends homepage offers a general look at the top stories in your home country, but you can dig a little deeper and customize your trends search. Click the ‘Explore’ tab at the top of the page to customize a trends search.

Screenshot of customized search on Google Trends

Here, you can add a search term and use the pop-up menus to filter by location, date, and categories, such as a specific industry. You can also search by source, including web search, image search, news search, or videos with a YouTube search.

You'll be presented with graphs showing the areas of interest for your search, including results by region.

Screenshot of graphs showing the areas of interest for your search, including results by region

Scroll down the page to see the trending topics that match your search criteria.

Screenshot of related topics on Google Trends

How to find trending topics on social media

All major social media platforms feature a way to explore the topics that currently interest their users. This is usually found via a link on the platform's home page or menus. Hashtags also serve as a way to drill down into specific topics, providing a way to customize your social media trends search.

How to use social media to find trending topics by platform and hashtag

X, the social media app formerly known as Twitter, allows you to easily find the platform's current trending topics. Firstly, you have to click the ‘Explore’ icon (a magnifying glass) on the left side of the screen. Next, click the ‘Trending’ tab under the search bar to see X's current trending topics in your country.

Screenshot of 'Trending' on X (formerly known as Twitter)

You can also click on a hashtag in any post to see what people say about a particular trending topic.

Screenshot showing how one can search about a trending topic by clicking on its hashtag on X.

To find YouTube trending topics, you can use Google Trends as described above, filtering results to YouTube Search in the ‘Explore’ section. There's also an ‘Explore’ option on YouTube's home page, with a ‘Trending’ tab to see the latest videos on current trends. 

While hashtags are used less frequently on YouTube than on other social media platforms, their functioning is the same as X and Facebook's hashtags. You just have to click on one in a video description or a comment to see other videos on the same topic.

Other tools for finding trending topics

Several third-party tools are also available to help you find trending topics on the web and social media platforms. While these apps are not free, they offer detailed analytical features that help you understand where and why specific topics are trending. This can be helpful if you want to cover topics narrowly targeted to your audience or location.

How to choose the right trending topics for your content

Not all trending topics will make good content for your blog and social media posts. From a digital marketing standpoint, only the topics that appeal to your ideal target audience are worthy of exploring in your content. Here are some tips for selecting the right trending topics for your content.

How to evaluate trending topics to see if they're relevant to your audience and niche

Content of general interest is not helpful in a business setting, but you need to know who you're trying to reach. Here’s how to evaluate topics to see if they are relevant to your company’s audience and niche:

  • Define your target audience. Include location, age, and buying preferences to narrow the list of current trending topics and align it to what's most relevant to your customers. Finding specific data will help you better define and match the attributes of your ideal customer.

  • Choose topics that align with your business goals. Look for your industry's success stories and new developments and highlight them in your content. This way, you can position your company as an industry leader that is up-to-date on the latest trends.

  • Study the trending topics that your competitors are covering. Your competitors have evaluated the current trending topics with an eye toward the ideal customer and business relevance.

  • Evaluate topics for relevancy. If your keyword research tools correlate with topics covered by others in your industry, that's a good sign, and you should be covering similar material.

Tips to create content around trending topics

While researching your competitors' trends, avoid copying what they are doing. Your content should be original, offer a unique viewpoint, and be SEO-friendly. Here are some tips for creating compelling content that covers trending topics authentically and engagingly.

How to create content around informative, engaging, and SEO-friendly trending topics

Creating distinct and compelling content starts with understanding what will engage your audience. You chose a trending topic for its relevance to your customers and industry. Now, you need to figure out how it relates to your audience. Start by asking yourself these questions:

  • How does the trending topic relate to your ideal customer? 

  • What information and solutions can your company offer in relation to these topics? 

  • How does your company fit into these trends?

Answering these questions will help you find a unique take on your content. Next, follow these tips to help guide your content creation process:

  • Use the available marketing tools to help define which topics your audience is interested in. For example, keyword research tools will give you an idea of the terms and phrases that are relevant to search engines. 

  • The content you generate should tie into the trending topics through keywords while providing informative and helpful answers for the reader.

Trending topics: A tool to generate content and find customers

The internet witnesses a rapid shift in trending topics, depending on the changing audiences’ interest. News stories and educational and entertainment topics often remain in trend for a short period of time. With the right tools, you can harness the trending topics to create relevant content and attract the right audience. This will help you grow your business and establish it as an industry leader.