How to Search Twitter Like a Pro

by Steve Heideman on April 28, 2011

If you are like me, you probably find Google to be lacking when it comes to some areas of search. For example, Google is not very good at finding recent information. IMHO the best place to search for fresh information on a topic is to use the twitter search function. Twitter searches can supply great data on what is happening “now” on a topic, but without knowing the search operators, you are relegated to either searching for hashtags or keywords. Luckily for us, there is a much larger functionality to twitter search. Here are the Twitter search operators and their descriptions:

twitter search containing both “twitter” and “search”. This is the default operator.
happy hour containing the exact phrase “happy hour”.
love OR hate containing either “love” or “hate” (or both).
beer root containing “beer” but not “root”.
#haiku containing the hashtag “haiku”.
from:alexiskold sent from person “alexiskold”.
to:techcrunch sent to person “techcrunch”.
@mashable referencing person “mashable”.
“happy hour” near:“san francisco” containing the exact phrase “happy hour” and sent near “san francisco”.
near:NYC within:15mi sent within 15 miles of “NYC”.
superhero since:2011-04-27 containing “superhero” and sent since date “2011-04-27” (year-month-day).
ftw until:2011-04-27 containing “ftw” and sent up to date “2011-04-27”.
movie -scary ๐Ÿ™‚ containing “movie”, but not “scary”, and with a positive attitude.
flight ๐Ÿ™ containing “flight” and with a negative attitude.
traffic ? containing “traffic” and asking a question.
hilarious filter:links containing “hilarious” and linking to URLs.
news source:twitterfeed containing “news” and entered via TwitterFeed

{ 4 comments… read them below or add one }

Kristi Hines April 28, 2011 at 10:58 am

Local businesses could really put the near:location search to work for them, especially if they save it and can monitor it regularly. Great tips!

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Aaron April 28, 2011 at 10:39 pm

Great blog post, i did one similar but basically covered everything.
I notice the dates and the “?” doesn’t work for me sometimes. Not sure why.

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Steve Heideman May 4, 2011 at 4:57 pm

@Kristi Hines Great idea! Good way to monitor competition and also look for strategic partnership opportunites. I love it.

@Aaron I would love to read it. Can you send me a link?

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CrytalMD November 4, 2012 at 2:08 pm

Nice one Steve. Would you be having a resourceful post like this for hashtags?

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