Martin Luther King Jr. was a trending topic on Monday as searchers browsed the web for information about the civil rights activist.

With SEO among the main goals of any content marketing campaign, working trending topics into articles, blog posts and the like can help improve search standing. Monday’s Martin Luther King Jr. Day holiday is a prime example.

At press time, “Martin Luther King Jr.” is the No. 1 trending topic, according to Google Trends. Two of the other top 20 trends dealt specifically with the civil rights activist.

For marketers, working trending topics into content can be difficult. However, considering the effect a certain topic has on an industry and developing content around that issue will help drive traffic. For instance,, a blog that deals with recipes and tips for gatherings, stands out toward the top of blog results for a search for Martin Luther King. The company effectively uses this trending phrase by pulling a quote about MLK’s favorite foods (which include “soul foods,” such as red beans and rice, apparently) and encouraging people to give food to the less fortunate today in honor of Martin Luther King. The content is both relevant to TheKitchn’s target audiences and shares information about the man (and hot search) featured some of Dr. King's favorite recipes on Monday.

Looking ahead to upcoming potential hot searches, Valentine’s Day and the Super Bowl are other events that businesses can create content around to attract readers and prospects.

While these events can be used days prior, breaking news regarding popular topics can help companies drive traffic. Brafton reported in October that the death of Apple founder Steve Jobs was an especially hot topic on the web, among both search and social users. Businesses using sincere tributes to Jobs and talking about his impact on their industries likely appealed to website vistors and other prospects mourning the loss of the innovator.

Joe Meloni is Brafton's former Executive News and Content Writer. He studied journalism at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst, and has written for a number of print and web-based publications.