What’s the most searched story in Oakland in 2018? To determine that, this blogger went to Google Trends to get the answer to that question. Why Google Trends? According to a number of sources, from StatCounter to Business Insider, Google has over a 90 percent market share rate, and not just on web-based searches, but mobile device app searches, too. Plus, Google Trends itself makes it easy to compare and contrast search data. With that, let’s take a look.
A search for “Oakland,” and more specifically any search related to the city itself, as opposed to the Oakland Raiders, for example, and for the last 12 months, reveals the following:
Under “rising” searches, “Jon Gruden” was the top topic, followed by “Mayor”, “air quality” ,“Seattle Mariners” and “Oakland Athletics.”
And under “top” searches, “Oakland Raiders” was the top topic, followed by “California”, “Oakland Athletics” ,“San Francisco” and “Oakland International Airport.”
What is reflects is the importance of sports in determining a city’s national civic identity. Oakland owes its very national image to the Raiders, so the loss of the NFL team to Las Vegas will be reflected in future searches related to Oakland after the year 2021.
Golden State Warriors name makes Oakland top stories analysis tricky, at best.
It must be noted that the reason content related to the the Golden State Warriors isn’t listed here, is the name of the NBA team: if it was called “Oakland Warriors,” everything, from the NBA games to the NBA Finals and the Warriors Parade would be listed here.
But, as you can see, the Golden State Warriors are bigger than the searches related to the City of Oakland, in Google search (you can click on the Google Trends words in case the chart does not fully appear):
Without the Warriors, the results also reflect the fact that the hiring of Jon Gruden to coach the Oakland Raiders was the most searched non-NBA Oakland story of 2018. This demonstrates how important a city’s name is in the question of to what degree a sports team really helps a city. The answer is it depends on the name. This also shows why Oakland elected officials should have moved heaven and earth to get the Warriors to put “Oakland” in the team name. Calling Oakland “The Town” does nothing for Oakland’s online identity.
Without the Warriors, There’s the Oakland Raiders for Oakland’s Identity in Search
The second most searched Oakland story of 2018 was the Oakland Mayoral Race, the national coverage generated by Cat Brooks run for the office, and by Oakland Mayor Libby Schaaf’s landslide re-election win.
The third most searched Oakland story of 2018 was created by the number of people looking for information on the Air Quality Index, and because of the very bad air caused by The Camp Fire.
The number 4 and 5 most searched Oakland stories of 2018 were caused by the Oakland Athletics battle with the Seattle Mariners for supremacy in the AL West.
The top related queries (words related to a primary search topic) were Oakland, Oakland Raiders, Raiders, Oakland CA, and Oakland California. The “rising” related queries (subject to daily but slight change) were “bts oakland”, “nia wilson oakland”, “drake concert oakland”, “jon gruden”, “art and soul Oakland 2018”, “beer baron oakland”, “oakland raiders 2018 schedule”, and “oeste oakland.”
Beer Baron Oakland? Oeste Oakland? What?
Yep. “Beer Baron Oakland” refers to the new eatery and beer drinking establishment at 5900 College Avenue in the Rockridge District. Its the newest of a Bay Area chain that includes venues in Livermore, Pleasanton Santa Rosa and now Oakland. “ Oeste Oakland” refers to the newish bar at 722 Clay Street, across 7th street from the courthouse. Owned by Sandra Davis, Lea Redmond, and Anna Villalobosis, Oeste is said to specialize in Latin-inspired dishes. Not been there yet, but this blogger can’t wait to visit its rooftop.
“Nia Wilson Oakland” Also “Oakland Stabbing” in Google Trends
It must be noted that “Oakland Stabbing”was one of the top searches and “Nia Wilson Oakland” was the related queries search. That marks the top-searched Oakland-related crime in 2018.
BBQ Becky Never Dominated Oakland
While the story of Jessica Schulte AKA #BBQ Becky’s racist harassment of Kenzie Smith, and the subsequent viral video from his now ex-wife Michelle, captured the attention of NBC’s Saturday Night Live, as you can see, it never came close to dominating any search data for Oakland:
Zennie Abraham is the CEO of Zennie62Media