Explained via Covfefe, Coke and Netflix

There are trillions of searches done on search engines like Bing and Google every year. The search engines collect a count of how many times each search term or “keyword” was searched in a given month. Tools like Oz Content allow you to mine this search data to help you create content that people are looking for. This is a crucial step to the content ideation process.

Some of these terms are extremely valuable. For instance the search term “divorce lawyers” cost around $37.94 a click on Google Adwords.

Keyword Volume Chart Image

Search marketers use a technique known as keyword research to find relevant terms to target to make sure that customers find their clients’ products.

Inflating Search Volume

The great thing about keyword search volume is that it can be inflated by several factors. You should always have a keyword inflation strategy as part of your marketing efforts. You can turn keywords that have no search volume into ones that do.

Covfefe Example

To clearly see how you can drive search volume around a made up word, you only have to take a look at what happened when President Trump Tweeted the word “covfefe.”

Donald Trump Covfefe Tweet Image

If you looked at the search volume for “Covfefe,” you can see that there was zero search volume for this term before President Trump tweeted it. Our TV sets did the rest because everyone from the news to late night TV hosts were talking about the term and asking “What is Covfefe?”. You can see from the Google Trends chart below that searches and search volume around the word increased drastically. They went from 0 to 100 real quick.

Covfefe Search Volume Chart Image

Inflating keyword search volume is a clever tactic to get more out of your search efforts.

Why Inflate Search Volume

  • Cheaper: Keywords that have no search volume and then suddenly gain some are way cheaper when it comes to paid search.
  • Low Competition: These keywords will have very little to no competition so you will gain all the traffic from them.
  • Easier to Rank: They will also be easier to rank on from an organic perspective.

You can use the following marketing tactics to inflate search volume.

TV Commercials

Use TV commercials to inflate searches. 66% of smartphone owners use their phones to learn more about something they saw in a TV commercial. Make sure you turn on campaigns that directly match your TV spots and run them when you campaign airs.

PR

Use your PR events and stunts to directly increase searches for a brand, product, event or topic. If you have events or are aiming to do a big product launch you can use that moment to inflate search volume around your new product name. Then capture that with paid search ads around the product.

News

Use breaking news like company IPOs and other events to increase search volume for specific topics. Then create paid search campaigns to capture the increase in search demand.

Social Media

Use social media sites like Facebook and Twitter to increase search volume. This works brilliantly if you are spending money on the platforms. You will get more bang for your buck because people will see your ad on the social sites and then search for your product on a search engine. You want to make sure you’re capturing them when they are the most interested in your product.

Netflix is a Joke Example:

Netflix Is A Joke Picture

Netflix is currently crushing it in Out of Home. They are buying Netflix is a Joke billboards to promote their comedy section and searches have skyrocketed for the term.

Here is the search volume increase for “Netflix Is a Joke” on Google Trends.

Netflix Is A Joke Google Trend Chart Image

Coca-Cola Example

Coca-Cola also used TV to increase search demand in the “That Place Where Coke Taste so Good” campaign. They ran a commercial where actress Mindy Kaling told people to search for “That place where Coke taste so good”. Check that video below.

Which of course increased search volume and got a ton of websites talking about it.

Coke Google Trends Image

They then used SEO to optimize a YouTube landing page to rank for the term.

Coke That Place Webpage Image

And quickly ranked number one for the term, capturing the increase in search demand.

Coke Google Screenshot Image

Keyword Inflation Case Study: TripAdvisor

TripAdvisor did this masterfully with their “Don’t Just Search” campaign.

They ran commercials that told people not to just search “New York,” but to search “TripAdvisor New York” when you’re looking to travel for vacation.

This inflated the search volume on Google and they then bid on the terms for less than a dollar.

Conclusion

You don’t have to always target expensive keywords with huge amounts of search volume and competitors. You can be smarter and inflate search volume on brand slogans, new product names and other terms that are not yet in demand. It’s crucial to invest in a search inflation strategy. I’ve used this to help increase conversion rates, increase sales and decrease cost per click for my clients.

Author Bio:

Lavall Chichester is a growth focused digital marketer who has helped brands make millions of dollars on and offline. He made Ad Age’s 2015 40 Under 40 list for turning the search group at Profero into a multi-million dollar business in less than a year. He has 13+ years of developing digital marketing strategies for brands like Apple, Western Union, the NBA, Kaiser Permanente, Vitamin Water and others. Lavall founded adculture.com where he gives digital advertising advice to help people grow their and careers and businesses.