After the email, Search is the most important thing on the web. It helps us significantly increases our knowledge base about things that we care for. And Twitter, being the powerful content churning engine that it is, has developed its search feature, making it an important insight gathering activity. But sieving through the data that the Twitter search produces is a time consuming activity. If you use these Twitter Search Tips discussed below, you can save your time and find relevant tweets within minutes.
Use filter: Links to find tweets with links
Often, there will be times when you want to see if your link has been tweeted, or better still, how many times your link was shared on Twitter. Trying to get this information by simply entering your company’s name as the main keyword in Twitter search is sure to give you a headache. There is an easy way to do so, and it is to include filter:links in the search string. When this command is entered, Twitter will only show tweets for a key phrase that has a link in it. The following image will show you what kind of results I got when I used the above command with the key phrase ‘social media.’
Search tweets posted during a set time
Let’s say you ran a campaign that started on 15th of July 2013, and today you want to see how the campaign has fared. You can either manually scan through thousands and thousands of tweets, or use the following command: since:2013-07-15. The result you are going to get will look something like this.
You will notice at the bottom of the above image that only those tweets have been displayed which were tweeted after 15th, but what if we want to find the tweets posted until the 14th of July 2013, when you sent the campaign live? To do this you need to add the following command to your key phrase in your search string: until:2013-07-14. The following image shows you the results.
To make this work, you need to mention the date in YYYYMMDD format (Year, month, and date).
If you want to search for sentiments in the tweets than you just need to include the following commands with your search phrase:
To look for tweets with positive sentiments, use :) to the search phrase, and you will get a result like this (watch for the sentiments expressed and the smileys used:
To look for tweets with negative sentiments, add :( to the search phrase, and you will get a result like this (watch for the sentiments expressed and the smileys used):
To look for tweets that poses question add ‘?’ to the search phrase, and you will get a result like this (watch for the sentiments expressed and the smileys used:
Search for tweets from a specific location
A lot of tweets that go on the web have a location stamp on it. This is a wonderful piece of information for marketers who want to find active Twitter users from a specific geographic location to target. Let’s say I am looking for people near Mumbai tweeting on topics related to social media. To find it, I will add the following before the search phrase: near:Mumbai within:15km, where you can replace 15km with any distance you want and Mumbai with any city. The above exercise will give me a result of tweets from Mumbai and areas within 15 kilometers of Mumbai. See the following image:
Search by source
If you want to check which medium your followers are using to tweet, then you can use the following command before the search phrase: source:txt, and the result you will get will look like the screenshot shared below. In the above command txt refers to tweets posted via SMS, and you can replace it with mobile, TweetDeck, or any source you want.
As promised in the opening paragraph, using the above search tips will save a great deal of your time, which you can use to analyze the tweets you find. But when using the above mentioned commands, keep in mind to add it before the search phrase. It worked better for me than when I added them after the search phrase. Hope this was helpful!