It's every digital marketer's dream to be present at the exact moment when people begin to discuss your brand's products and services online. It provides a chance to educate, entertain, or solve problems for people within your target persona groups. This is a difficult proposition, however, if you don't know where your prospects hang out on a regular basis.

Understanding where your target personas hang out typically takes a lot of research and exploration. But a recent e-book by Hubspot, the Online Marketing Opportunity Report, can help marketers answer this question by compiling data from conversations in social media, the blogosphere and search engines for 33 different industries.

Overall Online Activity by Industry

Where is the most online activity taking place in your industry between search, social media, and the blogosphere? Using a proprietary algorithm, HubSpot analyzed data for 33 keywords that describe some common industries. These data points were compiled into online activity graphs that illustrate where the conversations are taking place.

Overall Online Activity by Channel


Social Media Activity by Industry

The Online Marketing Opportunity Report breaks up the social media segment into the top four social media platforms: Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, and YouTube. The data is also segmented across the same 33 industries.

How to Interpret the Online Activity Charts

This is very powerful information--but it's only a relative measurement of online activity for any of the 33 industries from the report. These graphs display trends, not exact numbers. HubSpot is also quick to remind the reader that the most active areas for each industry may not always be the most lucrative, as a "road less traveled" strategy may prove more successful in some cases.

Formulate a Strategy for Each Channel

 This is an intense--and probably the most important--chapter of the e-book. The social media section gives strategic advice for each of the big four social media platforms listed in the Social Media Activity graph. The blog section outlines how to target users through search engine results and RSS feeds. The search section is brief and suggests reading the 2011 Online Marketing Blueprint for full details on targeting users in the search segment. 

Industry Opportunity Analysis

The absolute activity figures for each marketing segment (search, social media, and blogs) are provided for each industry in the appendix of the e-book. These data include monthly search traffic, blog posts per month, tweets per month, Facebook fan bases, LinkedIn groups, and YouTube video statistics for each of the 33 industries. Relative competitive measurements (on a scale of 0-100) are also provided for each marketing segment. Combining these data can help marketers find the online marketing channel with optimal mix of activity and competition that works for their specific organization.

I found the Online Marketing Opportunity Report to be very informative. It can be the best fit for digital marketers who have had difficulty locating industry conversations and activity online. Use the findings in the e-book to get the jumpstart you need to find online conversations happening in your industry.