Twitter is a very divisive social media platform. It seems people either love it or hate it because they’re confused how it works and how to generate actual engagement and conversations. I’ve got a Twitter power user tip to help you out that many of you may not even know exists!
Regardless of your own opinion of the platform, there’s no arguing Twitter is still popular and important. Whether it’s with a B2C or B2B focus, social media marketers are told to ‘add to the conversation‘ and ‘generate engagement‘ on Twitter.
I’ve finally found the single most powerful Twitter feature to help accomplish that task: the advanced search within Twitter — and more specifically the ‘other’ selection found within the advanced search.
Step 1: Search for something…anything
In this example I’m going to perform a search for Facebook’s Power Editor. One oddity I’ve found is that you can’t get to the advanced search through your Twitter home page. You either have to bookmark the URL directly or search for your topic and hit enter (Step 1 below) where the ‘Advanced Search’ option will sit over in the left sidebar (Step 2 below).
After you click ‘Advanced Search’ you’ll come to the advanced search page where you’ll be faced with numerous fields in which to input or further refine your search. You can target words, phrases, people, companies, competitors, places, dates and timeframes. That might seem pretty standard and I’d agree.
Step 2: Scroll down to the bottom of advanced search to find ‘Other’
The hidden gem on this page is buried at the bottom in a section simply titled ‘Other’. Next to ‘Other’ are four checkboxes: positive 🙂 , negative 🙁 , questions ? and include retweets.
Think for a minute about your business and your expertise. Consider your competition locally or across your distribution area. Are you selling art supplies or offering dog grooming services? Search for those terms using the advanced search in Twitter using the ‘other’ section and check the ‘Question ?’ box.
Hit search and you’ll find Twitter users asking all sorts of questions related to your search. Can you help provide an answer by replying back to that person? If not, can you recommend them a source to go to for more information? See the Power Editor example results below:
Step 3: Save your search for future use
If you get good results and think you might return to the same search over and over again, then go to the upper right corner of the results page and hit ‘Save’ on your search to use it again in the future. You can activate a saved search at any time by simply clicking your cursor in the regular search box at the top of the page. From there your saved searches will appear and you can go directly to them with just one click. BOOM!
As you can see I saved searches for questions about the new iPhone 6 Plus (I’m waiting ever so patiently for my shipping confirmation), negative tweets about my favorite baseball team (New York Mets) and any positive remarks concerning Weezer’s new album.
I could easily jump into any conversation I want knowing that the person on the other end shares the same interest as me and probably wouldn’t mind my help or any positive messages I send their way.
If you can provide value by answering a question you find through the advanced search in Twitter then you’ll position yourself as an influencer, showcase your expertise in your field, and possibly pick up a new customer or at the very least a new Twitter follower.
I only wish I had stumbled upon this feature sooner. Hopefully you found some value in this post and can apply it to your business or even your personal account. I know I’m going to be using it when I have some time set aside to respond and take part in conversations. Nothing’s worse than not responding to a tweet until it’s too late. Best of luck!