3 Tools for Twitter People Search
Today’s post doesn’t tackle the “real-time” Twitter search – instead, it’s about search for people on Twitter by words they use in the “Bio” section.
The tools below can have various possible applications: for example, you can find representatives of a business you are planning to buy from or employees from a company you are interested in working for.
You can use any of the tools to ask for quotes, build new friendships or create stats reports (for example, if you’re trying to analyze which brands are making the biggest inroads on Twitter). For more inspiration, I am offering examples of possible searches for each of the tools below:
Twiangulate (find our previous Twiangulate review here) is a very interesting tool in terms of its searching feature. While it has many other options, the “Bio search” hides behind the “Keyword” tab. Whatever you search, the tool will find the matches in user name, bio and city (there’s no way to filter results by bio matches exclusively, as far as I know).
What makes this search app that interesting? Well, as a search geek I couldn’t help appreciating some of its really nice functionality:
1) Meaningful results:
According to their FAQ, the tool aims at giving you meaningful results, i.e. the list of users that look like human beings and are worth following:
We want to focus on meaningful results. @BarackObama follows 740,646 people, and as far as we can tell, their names and distribution is pretty much random. Same for other tweeps who follow 10s or 100s of thousands of people.
2) Stemming support:
Whenever you search for “tech”, words with the same root will be included in search results: “technology”, “Techcrunch”, etc:
3) Support of “boolean” operators:
- Include both of these words: search [word1 & word2]
- Find at least one of these words: search [word1 OR word2]
- Exclude words: search [word1 !word2]
- Find the exact match: search [“word1 word2”]
4) Handy sorting options:
You can sort results by the number of followers or “followees” as well as by name and location.
Interesting search ideas to play with:
- Find fellow club members: search [“club name”], e.g. [“Sierra Club”]
- Find people who are interesting in technology near by: search [tech & city-name], e.g. [tech & boston]
- A keyword used in the bio;
- User locations (yes, you can list many cities separated by comma).
The tool also has very strong advanced and boolean syntax support (including the 4 operators I have listed above for Twiangulate).
Interesting search idea to play with: Do you need some inspiration for writing your own Twitter bio? See what others do: search what people love or hate: [i (love|hate)]
LocaFollow is advertised as a tool to find “Tweeps” nearby but its search capabilities do go beyond that. Using the app you can search by any of (or any imaginable combination of) the following criteria:
- A word mentioned in a bio;
- A word included in the username;
- A word mentioned in his recent Tweets.
Interesting search idea to play with: Do you need a source or a person to interview? Search for people by profession who tweet about your topic, for example, journalists who live in New York and tweet about Technology:
Are you aware of any other cool tools to search Twitter users by their interests? Please share them in the comments!