Reviews, Views and Adventures in Content Creation

Tuesday, June 21, 2016

Middle School and Bullying: A Look at Google Trends

Lately, as I look for opportunities to bring my Alexander Adventure books into the hands of more readers, I've been using the Google Trends tool for some insights into some of the key search terms associated with my stories. If you're not familiar with it, Google Trends allows you to track the search history for given terms, and look at historical trends for that search term going back over ten years.

By studying these trends, I'm hoping to develop a strategy and a timetable for my future Alexander efforts.

I've found some interesting results

Every September, as kids go back to school, there's a spike in searches for the phrase "middle school" as new incoming students attempt to allay their fears.
Every October, as school culture develops,  there's a spike in searches for the phrase "bullying." It's clear that some kids are maneuvering for advantage—and some are losing out.

Cyberbullying (which you will notice has little history as a search term before 2009) has a slightly different result. As with bullying, there's a spike in October, but there's also a second spike in April. We could speculate that spring vacation offered a fresh opportunity to engage in harassment. Curiously, there's no similar spike during winter vacation. Perhaps the "battle lines" aren't as clearly drawn. Or maybe everyone's just enjoying the holiday.

As I develop my plans for the fall, I'll be keeping in mind this timeline. I'll look for opportunities to talk and write about these issues during the critical months of August through October. Alexander is all about facing, overcoming and triumphing over fear. I want him to be there when kids (and their parents) are looking for answers.

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