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The Only Tool You Need to Succeed on Twitter

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One tool for Twitter stands above the rest, yet everyone already has access to it. In fact, it's right in front of your face every time you're on Twitter.

If you're a marketer and Twitter is in your toolbox, you can't afford to overlook this tool, which is the gateway into Twitter's data.

The tool that's going to make you a community-building rock star is... Twitter's advanced search. (I told you it was right in front of your face.)

So put on your gloves, snap on those goggles, and don that hardhat because we're heading into the trenches.

How to Use Twitter Advanced Search

Imagine you just opened a cupcake bakery. You want to use social media to build brand awareness and connect to people who love cupcakes as much as you do.

Without hesitation you start several social profiles. Among them is Twitter.

Here's how you should search Twitter to connect to the right people.

First, get to the advanced search page, or you can do a regular search and click on the widget that's located on the right-hand side of the search results page.

You'll land on this page:

Let's go through each item in detail.

All these words: If you type in multiple words (separated by spaces), Twitter will filter in any tweet that contains each word you add.

This exact phrase: If you want to find an exact phrase like "great Twitter tool," Twitter will filter in any tweet that contains that phrase.

Any of these words: Type in multiple words (separated by spaces), and Twitter will locate tweets that contain one, two, or all of the words you include.

None of these words: Twitter will filter out tweets that contains the words you type in.

Tip: add "http" to the none of these words category to filter out tweets with links. What's left are tweets that are more conversational. That's a great way to find people to create a conversation.

These hashtags: Filter in any tweet that contains the hashtags you include.

Written in: Choose a language.

From these accounts: Filters in tweets from a specific user.

To these accounts: Filters in tweets to a specific user.

Mentioning these accounts: Filters in tweets that contain a user. This is a great way to monitor your brand or competition.

Near this place: Filter in tweets by geographic location: for example, if you want to see what people are talking about in San Francisco.

Other: You can filter in tweets with smiley or sad faces, tweets with questions, or tweets that contain retweets.

Putting Search to Work

Now that you know what each category means, here's an example.

Remember the hypothetical cupcake bakery you opened? It's now time for you to find the right people to connect with.

Let's do a simple search.

By inputting "cupcake," "recipes," and "designs" in the any these words category—while having "http" in the none of these words category—we get a ton of results. But I'm going to focus on the first five tweets that came up when this search was done:

The colored boxes highlight the four tweets that you could (and should) engage with.

Now here's the best part.

Do you really want to wow a tweeter and build a raving fan? Check out the orange box. She's jealous that someone got a cupcake recipe book. If you really wanted to knock the socks off of her, you'd figure out how to send a free cupcake book to her.

How many businesses do you think are doing things like that?

If you're serious about creating fans like Apple's, you need to go above and beyond what others are doing. Sending a recipe book out of the blue to someone who wants one is an example of doing just that.

But that's not all. There's more to a tweet than meets the eye.

A Tweet Holds Powerful Information

When a person in your target audience tweets, you should pay attention. Why? Not just because the core tweet itself useful but because of something else that is usually included in most tweets.

Here's an example: The tweeter in the blue box mentions a book about cupcake designs and recipes. Notice the hashtags she uses. Most people would overlook that detail, but not you.

Paying attention to the hashtags your audience is using can help you discover new communities of people who you haven't connected to yet.

Remember, the more you can connect to people without being seen as a marketer, the better your success.

There You Have It

Twitter's advanced search is a goldmine if used the right way. Mastering this tool will help you connect with the right people who care about the same things you care about.

That's the beauty of social, and that's the beauty of this tool.

Now that you know how to use this it, it's time for your actionable task.

Your Actionable Task

Your task is simple. Go to Twitter and try the advanced search using keywords and phrases that are relevant to your company.

Once you've done a couple of searches, come back and in the comments section below let the community know what you uncovered.

If you have any questions or need help, feel free to ask.

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Jeremy Brown is the creator of Plixeo, a website that curates the Web's most educational videos for entrepreneurs who want to be better today than they were yesterday.

Twitter: @SocialJeremy

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  • by Kim Mon Jun 24, 2013 via web

    Fairly new to utilizing twitter for business marketing. How do you engage the tweeter without seeming stalker-ish. Maybe it's my perception, but tweeting the cupcake person who envies a friend and sending them free cupcakes seems odd. Is it just me and I should get over it? I do not want to influence potential customers in a negative manner.

  • by Mark Masters Mon Jun 24, 2013 via web

    Top post to share Jeremy,

    If 10 years ago, someone had said to us that we could listen in to online conversations, have a heap of data and analytics than we can track and measure and be able to contact people and businesses directly, we would gladly listen to how much it would cost per month.

    The thing is, it's all hear and for free. To have so many ways to engage, when you sit back and take it all in, it is such an opportunity for all of us.



  • by Sarah Mon Jun 24, 2013 via web

    Very helpful! Thanks for this article. I understand Kim's concern as well; it's a fine line between being "stalkery" and proactive. Kim, I think folks who participate at the level the cupcake examples are showing their desire to connect with someone who can help. I can't help but think if I were more active on Twitter I would expect folks to engage me and that the comradery between the seekers and the providers would be further enhanced. I plan on trying out this type of "stalkery" just to see what happens. Kim --- I also think that if our intentions are pure we can't possible influence them negatively. I wish us both luck! :)

  • by Karen Luttrell Mon Jun 24, 2013 via web

    Great post Jeremy. Lots of good advice, and I particularly like the emphasis on having conversations and finding opportunities to build relationships, rather than pumping out sales messages. I work mostly with charities and nonprofits, but I think the information you share is equally applicable for them. The Twitter advanced search tool can help causes find and connect with partner service-delivery organizations, potential corporate partners, and people who are already passionate about the issues.

  • by Jason Lombard Mon Jun 24, 2013 via web

    Larger companies with trusted brands are able to connect with fans more easily and not seem "stalker'ish" like one person put it (ref: Morton's Steak at the Airport story: If you're a consultant than no one has heard of and you do it, then yes, it could seem a little odd and off-putting. Use caution with this approach. It may work, but it also may not.

    However, the author is right that this is a great source of data—in what is pretty close to real time. It's also a great way to find people to connect with on Twitter who share common industries or interests as well.

  • by Kim Mon Jun 24, 2013 via web

    Love the feedback and the article as well. Definitely a great source of information that I did not know was available.

  • by Michaela Mitchell Mon Jun 24, 2013 via web

    Brilliant! I'm using trying to use Twitter more effectively professionally and personally - this is the way to do it!

  • by Mike Camplin Mon Jun 24, 2013 via web

    Can't wait to put this to use for an allstar company in Victoria.

  • by Cheryl McCullough Mon Jun 24, 2013 via web

    It need to come across as a conversation rather than "I found you!!!" But everyone loves getting something for free :)

  • by @thehal84 Mon Jun 24, 2013 via web

    While Twitter Advanced search is a great tool, I just can't help but say that adding a second tool to the social strategy is just as critical for identifying socially relevant information that is popular and resonates with people.

  • by Gracious store Mon Jun 24, 2013 via web

    Great tips on how to use twitter to succeed

  • by Sukrit Infotech Tue Jun 25, 2013 via web

    Twitter is part where you can share your suggestion and thoughts and links. But there are only limited 160 character in which you can share what you want. but the hash tag on the twitter allow you to join more people to whom you are not connected yet. Twitter is quit fun place!!

  • by Beth Worthy Tue Jul 2, 2013 via web

    Great post Jemmy. I think you have made a good effort of gathering a whole lot of information about Twitter and its various features and sharing with the reader's group. I am really thankful to you for sharing such an information as this will hep us to make a proper use of twitter.

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