Something I thought to touch on today is the topic of how Influencers are driving search intent.
Now, this will be a nice accompanying podcast to my previous podcast, ‘Will the Presence of TikTok Videos Increase in the SERPs?’
If you’re yet to listen to it, I recommend doing so alongside this episode.
When we think of Search, we tend to think of search engines, and in most cases this will be Google.
And this is understandable.
Google dominates in most markets.
Search however, is not necessarily done on search engines.
Websites, for example, have a search functionality to them.
If you were to visit a website, which has a search button, you could seek something from that website using the search functionality.
Of course, the results you get will be from that website, that brand, but many websites find this a useful functionality for their users.
The point is this – search is not limited to search engines, and certainly not limited to Google.
When you think about it, Google itself, is a website!
They operate like any other website, but have a focus on their search functionality.
A website of their size rely on such functionality because it serves users.
You know what other website has a great search functionality? YouTube.
You want to know of another, not owned by Google? Amazon!
Others that I want to focus on are Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and yes, TikTok.
Let me sum-up all of these into one and group them into their bucket – Social Media sites!
Now, search on social media platforms are a little different to search on search engines.
For the most parts, search is via hashtags, and more importantly, profile names.
Profile names are associated with identities, which are associated with real, actual people.
What do real, actual people do? On social media platforms…?
They create content to build up their following.
The more followers they have, the more clout they attain with brands.
And the more clout they attain with brands, the more clout they attain with followers, and the ability to attract new followers.
The typical goal is to be more than just a profile on any one platform, the goal is to improve their ability to influence.
Because this is the currency they need to build up their name, or in other words, their brand.
You see, if we were to look at this with an SEO lens on – the lens we use to look at keywords – because Influencers are brands, their names will be grouped in the branded keywords list.
Now, as an Influencer’s following grows, the interest in them also grows. And this is reflected in search!
You can see this in Keyword Planner.
Take Charli D’Amelia, for example – a huge star on TikTok. If we consider her name like any other keyword, we see the trend of the search demand. It’s grown!
The same can be said for the likes of Jake Paul and Logan Paul.
They have both seen an increase in search demand, particularly because of their recent and upcoming Boxing matches.
Now, as the search interest for Influencers (who, remember, are brands) grow, what does this do to the search interest of the other brands they associate themselves with…?
It also grows…!
This is why Influencers collaborate. This is why, not sharing one’s clout, is frowned upon.
And also why, clout-chasing in itself is a thing!
So now, let’s think about this…
People discover and follow people on Social Media.
They later search for them on Google – and we know this because we can see the search interest rise.
Would people also search for what the people they follow promote…?
This intel is why brands are extremely keen on doing business with Influencers.
This brand association is like referral marketing, old school word of mouth – but digitally!
This intel is what Ben Francis has implemented in his marketing, taking Gymshark to over $1bn.
Being able to drive search interest and to capitalise on it with great SEO is the type of digital marketing worth focusing on in 2021, and beyond.
The way people search continues to evolve.
The days where all research was performed solely on search engines is changing.
This means, the keyword landscape, particularly for branded keywords, is changing.
Changing for the better!
Branded keywords may be expanding. And I believe we’re right at the beginning of this expansion.
The volume of branded keywords may be increasing, driven by Social Media stars.
Just like a ATL campaign drives interest in a brand, Influencers have the power to do so.
This would, of course, be at a smaller scale to…say, a TV ad.
However, the increase in demand will likely be longer lasting.
And you know what the beauty of this will be…?
The demand for Influencers is likely to go through the roof!
If you’re a brand and do business with an Influencer who yields great returns, wouldn’t you want to scale…?
Isn’t this what Gymshark has done…?
Hasn’t this caught the attention of other brands – both competing and in other industries…?
If you’re an Influencer and see how another Influencer is benefiting from a great brand-client relationship, wouldn’t you want to do a similar thing…?
This is exactly what Social Media stars are doing.
And this is going to continue to grow.