Today Google launched an interactive map that highlights the most popular videos across the U.S. Not only will this give marketers a better understanding of what people are watching, but also where they’re watching it as well.

Introduced in 2010, the Trends Dashboard — part of the YouTube Trends toolset — allows you to compare the most viewed and shared videos across a variety of locations and demographics. The new Trends Map is essentially the same, but it offers a much more visual and contextual representation of that data.

Now you can get a comprehensive view of the most shared and viewed videos in various regions across the nation over the last 12-24 hours. “Views” depicts which recently uploaded videos have received the most views, while “Shares” displays those that have received the most views from sharing platforms — in the same 12-24 hour time frame.

Similar to the Trends Dashboard, the map can be toggled to display what’s popular with men or women, as well as highlight videos trending between different age groups. This information could come in handy for market researchers, as well as any brand or business looking to capitalize on a particular event or product’s virality.

Keep in mind that the Trends Map in no way replaces YouTube Analytics, which provides robust metrics across three sections: earnings, views, engagement. The Trends Map won’t provide specific data about the videos you’ve uploaded to the site, unless one of yours is trending. Even then, you’ll be better off turning to Analytics for a more in-depth performance report.

[Via: VentureBeat, Image credit: NASA Goddard Photo and Video]