AnswerThePublic isn’t a new tool, but it’s a goodie if you’ve not come across it before. The site collates the auto suggested results provided by Google and Bing, for a word or phrase. It’ll search keywords whether you want to look for the name of a product or service, the name of your brand, or your competitors. The clever people at AnswerThePublic also created a way to visualise the data, grouping questions by who, what, where, when, why and how.
In the example on Facebook, you’ll see from a quick scan that Facebook has some work to do on how it explains its privacy settings. You’ll also notice topical questions pop up, like in this example ‘Which Facebook friends like Trump?’, so it’s always worth refreshing this insight on a regular basis.
This search insight is valuable for PR and marketers in many ways – whether you want some prompts in a creative brainstorm or you want to understand how your competitor is being searched for. Also, in the safety of their browsers, people are more likely to express their true feelings and preferences, and you may uncover insights you won’t get from surveys. Often in surveys you get social desirability bias – meaning that people over-stress good behaviour and under-stress bad behaviour. You don’t get that when you’re analysing search patterns.
Search insight is also especially interesting as PR and SEO become more intrinsically linked. Google is constantly tweaking its algorithm to point people to the right answers, so it’s particularly useful to know which are the popular questions associated with your brand and products/services.
So, next time you’re searching Google for ‘is there a tool that collates auto-suggested search results?’ you already have your answer!