Weekly Buzz: Google Reveals Canada’s Hottest Searches of 2023

Welcome back to the Weekly Buzz — our final installment of the year! Our team will be stepping away from our desks for the holiday season, and we’ll be back on January 2 following some R&R.

But before we turn on our OOO alerts, let’s see what’s making digital marketing headlines, shall we? Today we’re talking about Canada’s most popular web searches and the future of video content in 2024. Plus, is X/Twitter making a comeback?

Let’s dive in!

What’s Trending in Canada? From World Cup to Trudeau and Pop Icons, Google Reveals the Country’s Top Searches in 2023

Canadians showed off their diverse interests in Google’s top searches for 2023, mixing up international news with local gossip, sports highlights, and a dash of celebrity buzz. While the rest of the world was busy, Canadians kept an eye on the globe, with Google’s search expert Hibaq Ali noting our knack for looking beyond our backyard.

Top of the list? Sports! The Women’s World Cup and the Cricket World Cup, where Australia snagged the win, grabbed significant attention. Soccer fans also buzzed about Lionel Messi joining Inter Miami, shaking up the usual NHL and NBA chatter.

But it wasn’t all about sports. Canadians were hooked on global issues, too, especially the Israel and Gaza conflict, sparking protests from coast to coast. We had questions like “What is Hamas?” topping our ‘how,’ ‘why,’ and ‘what’ searches.

Back home, the chatter was just as juicy. Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s split from Sophie Grégoire Trudeau got everyone asking, “Why did Justin and Sophie separate?” putting Trudeau in the spotlight as a PM and a celeb. Then there was the curious case of John Tory’s age — a surprise hit on the search charts following his scandal and resignation as Toronto’s mayor.

Pop culture made its mark, too. Movie buffs and Swifties were all over Google, asking about the strange movie combo “Barbenheimer” and hunting for Taylor Swift concert tickets. And let’s not forget about Lil Tay, the 14-year-old influencer who fooled everyone with a fake death announcement.

From the sports field to the halls of power and even the glitzy world of celebs, Canada’s 2023 Google searches had a bit of everything, showing how much we love a good story, whether next door or on the other side of the world.

Check out the complete list of top Google searches here.

Instagram Reels Lead the Pack: New Report Highlights 2023 Social Media Video Trends

Emplifi, a prominent customer engagement platform, recently shared crucial stats on video trends in 2023. After peeking into thousands of Emplifi Social Marketing Cloud brand accounts, Instagram Reels surprisingly emerged as a goldmine for marketers, outshining all other video formats, including TikTok and Facebook videos.

The big shocker? Longer Reels over 90 seconds are racking up double the views compared to the same-length TikTok videos. This trend aligns with other recent industry reports claiming people spend more time watching social videos than any other social media content format

But here’s the kicker: even though Instagram Reels outperform everything else, including grabbing six times the reach of Instagram Stories, brands are still posting more Stories than Reels. 

On TikTok, the length of the video matters less, with views staying pretty steady no matter how long the video is. But on Instagram, the longer the Reel, the more eyeballs it gets.

Facebook’s also seeing some action with Facebook Live videos getting more play than ever before. And just like on Instagram, longer Facebook Reels pull in more views than shorter clips.

Emplifi’s CMO points out a curious trend: while Instagram Reels score big for brands, they’re still not used as much as they should be, especially compared to Stories or traditional Facebook videos. It’s like this untapped gold mine with Reels that brands are just starting to catch onto.

Decoding the Buzz: Is X/Twitter Soaring or Stalling Under Musk’s Reign?

There’s a lot of chatter about X’s performance under Elon Musk, and things are as clear as mud. Some say X’s usage is taking a nosedive, while others argue it’s on the upswing. Without X’s quarterly reports (since it’s a private company now), we’re left scratching our heads, relying on Musk and CEO Linda Yaccarino for the real deal. But even with their updates, we’re foggy about what’s really going down with X.

Musk recently flaunted a chart suggesting X’s traffic is even beating Instagram, as pictured below:

Spoiler alert: it’s not. 

Instagram has over a billion monthly users compared to X’s 500 million. Based on SEMRush data, the chart looks at website traffic, not app usage, where most of the action is for both platforms. Plus, X’s posts are Google-friendly (unlike most of Instagram’s), so more web traffic for X isn’t a shocker.

Yaccarino’s claim about 1.5 million new X daily sign-ups is another head-scratcher. With X’s monthly user count holding steady at 500 million since July, are these new users ghosting the platform as fast as they sign up?

Elon’s also referred to “cumulative user seconds” as the ultimate engagement metric. But critics argue that this might just mean Musk’s hardcore fans live on the app rather than a broader trend.

In a nutshell, there’s no slam-dunk evidence that X is skyrocketing or tanking. What matters for your marketing strategy isn’t if X has a billion users but whether your target audience is spending time there. 

As for the future of Musk’s X project, the lack of a rapid decline in numbers suggests it’s doing okay, but the actual state of X’s performance? That’s still up in the air.

Friday Fun

We hope your holiday also involves some super-cute frolicking in the snow! Unless the cozy fireside is more your vibe, of course.

@kyfow First snow core memories #dachshundpuppy #minidachshund #puppytiktok @Archie the Mini Dachshund ♬ original sound – .
Line drawn peony from Spodek & Co Digital marketing site