Published on August 25th, 2011 | by charliesaidthat0
Twitter Tips: How to Search Twitter to Find New People to Follow
Spending time finding new people who are interesting on Twitter should be easy, and it is, if you know where to look.
Something I am asked quite often is how to find (relevant) new people to follow. Well, to make your job easier, let’s look at how to search Twitter efficiently, to identify interesting and relevant new people for you to follow.
Find Relevant People by Topic – Search Tweets and Hashtags:
Hashtags on Twitter are used to curate content around a specific topic or event. These are often a hub of activity and can be very useful in finding people who will interest you. The trending topics on Twitter will often include hashtags.
Its easy and quick to search for keywords and hashtags on Twitter (clicking on any of the hashtags will bring up the stream of results that use the hashtag).
To do this simply, type it into the search bar.
(Check out advanced twitter search post I wrote to find out how it can be even more useful.)
Tweetdeck was acquired by Twitter itself and is a really useful desktop app for managing Twitter accounts. If you use it then leverage the power of columns and use Twitter’s search to provide you with realtime updates on the topics that matter to you.
Charts the popularity of trending topics; quite useful to track when things will be (or have been) popular when planning to discuss your topics in the future.
Topsy is a great tool to view tweets about hashtags or topics (you can also search users themselves). Like hastags.org above, it also graphs how popular a hashtag has been over time but has better filter functions (on the left hand side).
Find Relevant people from the info they share in their Twitter Bios:
Currently Twitter doesn’t allow you to search bios, but below are a couple of ways to do just that. Searching users by the keywords in their bios isn’t 100% effective but certainly is useful to discover people who are self identifying as being interested in certain topics.
Now this is quite geeky, but I love this method of finding new followers. Using some advanced search functions in Google you can search very easily for people who are relevant to your niche.
(pro-tip: in advanced search switch off google instant and show 100 results per page + then use data scraper)
Combined with data scraper, this search could be a very powerful weapon in your arsenal. ;)
This site was invented ‘cos lots of you are probably not as geeky as me. Followerwonk’s paid version allows you to download reports as excel or .csv files.
You can also copy and paste the info they supply and use excel macros to tidy up the data. Contact me if you would like access to this.
You can search using “keywords” which seems to largely search bios. I would say Twiangulate does much the same as Followerwonk with less fancy UI (although it is easier to copy and paste information out of!) It also features a much less sophisticated export function than Followerwonk.
A complete pain if you want to copy and paste data due to its formatting (again, it would be possible to sort a macro to complete this in excel, although you are starting to get more complicated here.)
However it has better in browser filtering of results and a handy “extracted entities” filter which starts breaking down companies or brand mentions too.
Find Local People on Twitter with Location search:
Because we all love finding new people that we can meet offline for a beer and a chat.
Twitter’s advanced search allows you to search keywords and the proximity of the location you are interested in. This is especially useful for local companies that can’t deal with leads 300 miles away. Narrow your search down and make the most of what Twitter gives you. See my post for more info about how to use Advanced Twitter Search.
A directory of local tweeps. Can be brilliant at finding those people just round the corner that you didn’t know were tweeting. Sadly it is sometimes hindered by the big names and brands that might not be so personable to go down the pub with you…
If neither of those work out for you, there is this tool. Watch out for the largely irrelevant ads in the premium spaces though.
Find New People to Follow based on the Lists They are in
The best bit about Twitter lists is that they are curated by other people. This is what topics other people think users are interested (or influential) in. Listorious is a fantastic tool that allows you to search through Twitter lists.
By searching lists you’ll be able to find anyone by topic, region or profession. Awesome.