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Twitter 101: Searching the Twittersphere

searching

Continuing our series on Twitter, today we will look at some of the great features Twitter provides to help us find the information we need. Even though searching can seem like a simple task, Twitter has added some great features to improve your searching results. Let us begin by doing a search for the word “technology”. Log into Twitter, and type the word “technology” in the search box at the top of the page. Here is what it should look like:

 

Twitter Search Box

 

Hit the “return” key, and you should be brought to the search results page. The result page should look like this:

 

Search Results with Tweets Highlighted

 

There are a few things you should note on this page. First you have the top tweets that contain the word “technology” listed in a timeline. Top tweets, are tweets that are popular, and have received the attention of many tweeters in the Twittersphere.

 

Search Results with People Highlighted

 

In the right column, you will see a list of people, i.e. fellow tweeters, who are connected to the word “technology”. Some of these people will be labeled as promoted. Promoted users, and tweets are purchased by advertisers who want to reach a larger audience. If you are interested in learning more about promoted tweets, check out this article on Twitter.

 

Search Results with Images and Videos Highlighted

 

Also in the right column, you will see a Top Images and Top Videos section. These are images and videos that have some connection with the search term “technology”. Most likely the term “technology” was used in the tweet containing this image or video.  When you search on Twitter, the results will be the Top tweets throughout the Twittersphere that contain the word “technology”. You can change this by clicking on the “Top” drop down shown in the picture below.

 

Search Results with Top Dropdown Highlighted

 

With this drop down, you can see all tweets, the top tweets, or only tweets that contain links that use the word “technology”. You can also refine your search, by clicking on the “Refine results >>” link.

 

Search Results with Refine Results Highlighted

 

If you click on the link, you will be brought to a form that gives you the ability to refine your search based on the words, people, places and other parameters. Spend some time trying to refine down your search. The best way to get use to these tools, is to try it out yourself.

 

Refining Your Search

Saving Your Searches

If you go back to the search results page, you will also notice a “Save this search” button.

 

Save this Search Button

 

Twitter provides each tweeter with the ability to save up to 25 searches. This is valuable if there are common trends that you would like to keep up to date on. Since Twitter changes every minute, your results should be different every time.

So as a ministry, what are some of the things you should keep up to date on?

What trends should you be following?

If you click the “Save this search” button, you will notice the button text changes to “Delete this saved search”. If you click it again, it will remove the saved search from your account. Let’s go ahead and save our “technology” search, and I will show you how to access your saved searches on your home timeline. Once you have clicked the “Save this search” button, visit your home timeline. On the home timeline page, you will see a tab labeled “Searches”. If you click on it, you will see a list of your saved searches.

 

Saved Searches Dropdown

 

Just click on the saved search, and you will brought to the search results page.

Other Tips and Tricks

Twitter has also added some advanced features to their search box we used to search for the word “technology”. Here some other ways you can search for content.

  • technology missions – will give you the top results that contain both words technology and missions.
  • “technology missions” – will give you the top results that contain the exact phrase “technology missions”
  • technology OR missions – will give you the top results that contain either technology or the word missions (or both words)
  • technology -missions – will give you the top results that contain technology but not the word missions
  • #technology – will give you the top results that containing the hashtag technology (link to hashtag article)
  • from:MissioDigio – will give you the top results that were sent from the tweeter @MissioDigio
  • to:MissioDigio – will give you the top results that mentioned the tweeter @MissioDigio
  • @MissioDigio – will give you the top results that mentioned the tweeter @MissioDigio
  • “technology” near:”Los Angeles” – will give you the top results that containing the exact phrase “technology” and tweeted near Los Angeles
  • near:NYC within:15mi – will give you the top results that within 15 miles of New York City
  • technology since:2010-01-11 – will give you the top results that contain the word “technology” up to the date of 2010-01-11
  • technology until:2012-01-01 – will give you the top results that contain the word “technology” and sent up to the date of 2012-01-01
  • technology :) – will give you the top results that contain the word “technology” and have a positive attitude
  • technology :( – will give you the top results that contain the word “technology” and have a negative attitude
  • technology ? – will give you the top results that contain the word “technology” and will be asking a question
  • technology filter:links – will give you the top results that contain the word “technology” and contains links to URLs
  • technology source:twitterfeed – will give you the top results that contain the word “technology” and posted via TwitterFeed

As you can see, Twitter has provided a robust tool for finding tweets, tweeters, images, and videos through out the Twittersphere. As a ministry, it is vital for us to keep our ear to the ground in arenas that greatly influence us. For Missio Digio, we need to constantly keep up to date with trends in new technology, and the Christian Mission front. Twitter has given us an invaluable tool for accomplishing that. So how can your ministry benefit from the search tools provided by Twitter?

Welcome to Missio Digio's Twitter 101 series. This is our first series of posts developed by Missio Digio. This series is designed to help you discover new ways to use Social Media in your day to day operations, and strengthen your communication with your congregants and/or supporter base. If you have any questions, please submit them under "Got a question?" or, just add a comment below.

Other Articles in the Series

  1. Twitter 101: A New Form of Communication
  2. Twitter 101: The Power of Social Media
  3. Twitter 101: Signing Up & Guided Tour [video]
  4. Twitter 101: Following & Leading
  5. Twitter 101: Tweeting
  6. Twitter 101: Anatomy of a Tweet Part 1
  7. Twitter 101: Anatomy of a Tweet Part 2
  8. Twitter 101: Anatomy of a Tweet Part 3 (Multimedia)
  9. Twitter 101: Anatomy of a Tweet Part 4 (Location-Based Tweeting)
  10. Twitter 101: Direct Messaging
  11. Twitter 101: Organizing with Lists
  12. Twitter 101: Searching the Twittersphere
  13. Twitter 101: Fresh Coat of Paint
  14. Twitter 101: Text to Tweet