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In the third episode of the Tech Product Review podcast series, guest expert Andrew Jenkins chats with host Bill Banham about how sales and marketing pros can get much more use from Twitter through it’s advanced search tools.
Listen to the show here.
Sales pros can use Twitter’s advanced search to find the latest news and world events faster. Find popular people, hashtags and photos for any topic you can imagine.
Read the transcript:
Bill Banham: Welcome to another episode from the Product Review series. I'm your host, Bill Banham, and, as always, I am joined by our wonderful, fabulous, awesome guest expert Andrew Jenkins. And today, Andrew and I are going to be talking about Twitter's Advanced Search. Andrew, welcome to the show.
Andrew Jenkins: Let's do it.
Bill Banham: Firstly, what is Twitter's Advanced Search, what does it do, and how does it help companies?
Andrew Jenkins: To me, it's one of the most overlooked tools or solutions that are out there that people overlook or are completely unaware of. They'll see the search field on their Twitter home page, and that's really where most of their search activity will reside or take place. But if they go to search.twitter.com and then click on the words "Advanced Search," which is a hyperlink, they'll be taken to a landing page, or a page where there's a series of fields that makes it ... I refer to it as "dead simple" on how to get more out of your search on Twitter to conduct a more enhanced search.
It enables you to search keywords, complete phrases, you can exclude words, you can look for hashtags, mentions of a particular Twitter account, mentions between respective Twitter accounts in a particular time frame, in a particular language, in a particular geographic location, all either in combination with one another, or you can take a couple different approaches to it.
And, as I said, I often give presentations about social media and social strategies, and I'll bring up search.twitter.com, and I'll ask people, "How many in the audience use it?" And I'm often given a sort of blank stare, because many didn't know it existed. And then, I take them through how it works, and you can see their eyes get wider as they realize what it means to their search capabilities. And I tell them, "You can now search back in time to the very, very first Tweet through search.twitter.com."
Bill Banham: Okay. Awesome. Thank you very much. This is why we do these shows, listeners, so that you can discover not just new tools, but also some pretty awesome features of tools that you may use but you're just not aware of. So, it sounds great, but are there any shortcomings?
Andrew Jenkins: Well, it's still manual. You are having to put in the keywords, kind of doing test, measure, and adjust. One of the other things that frustrates me is when you do put in all your parameters and click "Search," and you don't get the results you want, if you click, "Go back" in your browser, it doesn't take you back to the same fields. And so, it takes you to the home page of Twitter rather than search.twitter.com. So, starting over your search is a little more involved, but that aside, the power that it affords you to search to the beginning of Twitter, get very specific in between ... Trying to isolate a conversation between two accounts, or, "Oh, I heard so-and-so tweeted about something and they included someone." You want to know who said something about someone. It's very powerful to be able to isolate that exact quote, for lack of a better word, as an example.
Bill Banham: Cool. So, it sounds like this might be a completely free tool, but are there paid versions as well?
Andrew Jenkins: No, it is free, and that's one of the other reasons I highlight it so much, is that you've got this free, extremely powerful search mechanism. And even though it pertains to Twitter, the one thing I say to people is, "If I could give you a tool that would send or generate all the information you could ever dream of wanting or needing about a particular topic for your interests, your career, or your objectives, and I could send it free to your desktop or to your phone or your iPad, would that be of value to you?"
And they say, "Well, of course it would." And I say, "Well, that's Twitter." Once you figure out how to search and how to tune it or how to create lists, just how to use Twitter better, it's one of the most valuable, free, or near-free, if you're using any third-party tools, available to you.
Bill Banham: In your extensive experience of using Twitter's Advanced Search, what have been some of the results? Any anecdotes that you could share with us?
Andrew Jenkins: I'll use it ... So, [inaudible 00:05:35] article about someone saying something either ... Like trolling or saying something inappropriate or in a social media sale, and I want to use it as an example in a presentation that I'm giving, then I'm able to go back to that exact example, even if it was, like, a year ago, or years ago, and I want to ... "Oh, I want that Tweet about such-and-such from this person," then I'm able to quickly and easily get to that original Tweet, as one example.
If I just want to get a snapshot of what's happening surrounding a particular hashtag in the last 24 hours, I can drop in a hashtag in the search field, hit "Search," I can look at the top Tweets related to the hashtag, or the latest. And so, if I want to ... For example, if I'm just tracking a Tweet chat or there's a campaign going on that I want to just be mindful of, all of that is made available to me through search.twitter.com.
Bill Banham: So, usually, at this point, we also question here about the competitors. As this is a feature within Twitter, maybe there's no other tools out there that quite does what Twitter's Advanced Search can do because of the exclusive access, perhaps. Am I entirely wrong there? Are there competitors?
Andrew Jenkins: There are ... You're right. It's hard for me to say they're competitors, because these are solutions that Twitter gives access to their API for. So, whether it's a or spread social or whatever, or some of the other social media monitoring or listing tools, you have access to do research and analysis; however, many of these third-party solutions that connect to Twitter's API don't go back to the beginning of Twitter. And this is where search.twitter.com has the advantage. It has all of Twitter's history.
Bill Banham: Awesome. Thank you. So, now for the big question of the review. Andrew, out of five stars, what would you give to Twitter's Advanced Search?
Andrew Jenkins: I'm going to give it a four-and-a-half. And a half being if they could figure out a way so that when I've finished my search, I can go back to where I want to be rather than ... Or, where I came from, in terms of initiating the search rather than making that extra step. It's a small thing. It's not important. It makes me sound like a whiner. But that small thing warrants the half-star penalty. But other than that, it's all good.
Bill Banham: Andrew Jenkins is a tough man, ladies and gentleman. He doesn't let anything fly. Okay. Well, that takes us to the end of this particular review and just leaves me to say, Andrew Jenkins, as always, thank you for being our guest today.
Andrew Jenkins: My pleasure.
Bill Banham: And until next time, listeners, happy tweeting.
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