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Understanding how to use Twitter should be required social media marketing 101 for brands, yet many remain fuzzy on how to use it strategically. And understanding how to search for segments on Twitter tops the ‘must learn’ list. Fortunately, for those brands, we’re here to help! And we have advanced advice to share with the rest of you.

Why Should Your Brand Bother with Twitter?

Searching for relevant tweets can require quite a bit of filtering, as the noise can be deafening – which is what happens when one has 321 million monthly active users, worldwide. So although it may feel like the Wild West on Twitter, partly because it is, harnessing the energy and insight found there is extremely valuable to brands. 321 million users offer an amazing amount of intel, after all, when you know how to find it.

It’s hard to imagine a category this is not represented, in some way, on Twitter, as it has become a household name. Everyone knows what Twitter is – and what tweets are, even if they haven’t used it. Odds are, everyone knows someone who has tweeted and/or participated in a conversation about something someone saw on Twitter. The trick is to get those conversations happening about your brand!

And before we can make that happen, we need to understand what is being said about your brand, and the larger category your brand inhabits – and not only ‘what’ is being said, but also by whom and why.

Don’t Be Basic

Twitter offers a handy, basic search tool that can find tweets, accounts and ongoing conversations around whatever keywords you enter.

But you don’t want to leave things at a basic level, do you? (You don’t.)

Basic search is great for a quick search around a breaking news topic, but otherwise, you’ll often end up with some Top Tweets that could be the result of professional influencers retweeting each other and skewing the results. “Top Tweets are the most relevant Tweets for your search. We determine relevance based on the popularity of a Tweet (e.g., when a lot of people are interacting with or sharing via Retweets and replies), the keywords it contains, and many other factors.”

You can also look at “latest tweets” but the latest tweets aren’t necessarily the most valuable either. So exploring advanced options makes the most sense.

Advanced Search Success

Twitter’s advanced search options streamline basic queries for you, ‘allow[ing] you to tailor search results to specific date ranges, people and more. This makes it easier to find specific Tweets.”

Or, you can certainly create your own API queries with the standard operators Twitter offers to power your search – and then aggregate and sort through them to find insight that matters most.

Beyond quick check-ins though, it’s likely a bit more time consuming that most brands have budgeted for – so many social media tasks, so little time!

And how should it be used anyway – all of these time-consuming searches?

Understanding your search options is just part of the story – applying a precise filter to segment that search, one that is powered by Next Generation Artificial Intelligence (AI), is the critical next step – and it’s one where savvy brands excel.

They use it for customer care, competitive intelligence, brand health, crisis management, ideation and so much more.

Audience Insight

In addition to everything already listed, accurate audience insight about Twitter followers helps brands identify influencers, personalize consumer experiences, optimize content, develop regional campaigns, identify lookalike audiences, and build stronger relationships with these consumers.

Using a social analytics tool allows brands to dive deeper than ever imagined into the data. The question shifts from how to make the data manageable, to how to segment a specific audience, depending on purpose:

  • Geographical location, such as local users
  • Attitudes/personas, such as users who post negatively about your brand
  • Demographics, such as females over 30
  • Brand affinities, such as competitors’ fans
  • Benefits/occasions, such as tapping into a potential market
  • Interest areas, such as authors who blog about fashion

And one extremely relevant example around fine-tuning search involves an over-indexed addition to most tweets: emojis. Brands can:

  • Include emojis to focus in on content containing specified emoji types, emotions, and/or individual emojis.
  • Exclude emojis to omit content that does not contain the specified emoji types, emotions, and or individual emojis from results.

And beyond emojis listed, brands can paste in individual emojis that do not render automatically.

But it’s not just emojis that come in to play when searching for relevant tweets – or even imagery, though that is super important (and captured here) too. The sentiment behind a tweet matters, and this is where understanding sarcasm is key.

Our platform identifies people, brands, attributes, emotions and behaviors, employing human-like sentiment understanding without complex manual system training and fully detecting the relationship between words and phrases to drive true meaning. And sometimes AI does a better job of paying attention to intent than actual people:

With the speed of social, particularly Twitter, making topics – and customer care – beyond challenging to keep up with, having AI in your corner couldn’t hurt when it comes time to search for insight to keep your brand a few steps ahead, hmm? We couldn’t agree more!

Reach out and we’ll run through a few search scenarios with you to demonstrate how NetBase can help identify opportunities you’ll otherwise miss!

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