Google recently announced a bunch of new products as part of their media day. One of them is called Google Trends and is very cool.

Google Trends analyzes how many searches have been done for certain terms. Multiple search terms can be compared by separating them with commas. For example, a search for “santa claus, easter bunny” shows a distinct seasonal interest:

Santa Claus vs. Easter Bunny

We feel sorry for the Easter Bunny however, as he appears to be only half as popular as Santa Claus. (We wonder why!)

Google trends also includes a graph that shows the number of times the search term appeared in Google News. Another nice touch is the ability to limit the trend graph to a certain region and to a certain time period. Doing a search for “cricket, rugby” with the region set to New Zealand gives:

Cricket vs. Rugby

As expected (maybe), cricket is more popular in the summer months, but rugby beats it otherwise. (Interestingly enough, cricket appears to be relatively more “interesting” in Australia!)

Google Trends is likely to become the marketing guys’ favourite tool to measure relative “online” brand awareness. Checking out “xtra, ihug, woosh, orcon” gives the following:

XTRA vs. Woosh vs. ORCON

Interesting that XTRA and IHUG seems to be trending up (relatively), where as Woosh and ORCON are trending down.

Google Trends is not yet perfect however. It lacks support for the blogosphere and seems a little bit buggy when searching for shorter time periods. The lack of blogosphere support in particular seems like a real miss.