By Rex Hammock, CEO

Google Trends is a clever tool that tracks user interest in search terms. The trends can be measured in increments of time ranging from a few hours up to 15 years.

Google Trends can also serve as a reminder that technology and marketing buzzwords have life cycles of popularity similar to the fads and fashions in any industry.

For example, when was the last time you attended a Web 2.0 conference? The chart below shows the rise and fall of the buzzword “Web 2.0” during its five years of fame.

Web 2.0 is a great example of a label that didn’t stand the test of time. However, many of the underlying principles and observations of the Web 2.0 idea (social media, user-generated content) have continued to serve as a foundation for what the web has become—both good and bad.

As you make decisions on how to invest your organization’s limited resources of time and money, it’s important to cut through the short-term buzzwords and focus on the underlying trends, tools and truths that will stand the test of time.

Here are a few examples of what I mean.

  1. Timeless trends tear down walls between marketer and consumer. For example, they remove the licensing fees and technology costs of broadcasting and replace it with tools like podcasting and streaming media.
  2. Timeless trends provide ways to help customers learn how to use your products and services to achieve the goals they had when buying your product.
  3. Timeless trends don’t run out of steam but continue to evolve. This year’s “influencer” becomes next year’s Influencer 2.0.

Bottomline: Embrace change and opportunities that come with new ideas. But don’t confuse business and media buzzwords with the opportunities you have to embrace timeless trends, tools and truths that can truly transform your company or organization.

Image: Getty Images

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