Marketing Entrepreneur. Day Trader. Business Contrarian.

How to Cut Through the Noise on Twitter

Posted on Mar 23, 2016 in Marketing Estimated reading time: 3 minutes


I have no doubts there are many marketers who have encountered this scenario before. You open your web browser, head to Twitter Search, and search using a phrase in hopes of finding a bountiful list of people engaging with each other about the topic so you can create new relationships and provide value to others in the form of information and content you feel qualified to speak about.

Now I’m going to wake you up from that dream. At 3:00am. Now you’re grumpy because I woke you up at 3:00am, but you’re even more grumpy because in reality, your list of Twitter search results looks like this.


At this point, you’re probably asking yourself how you’re supposed to cut through this noise and find the people talking about your topic without all the self-promotion and without needing to spend hours doing it. Rest easy, my friends. Fortunately, there’s a much easier way of filtering Twitter in a way that produces a much more meaningful list of results, and it can be done all from one nifty tool – TweetDeck. If what you’re about to read seems easy, that’s because it is. Even so, I found myself stumbling upon this solution one evening when I got frustrated because I found myself scrolling endlessly to find only one tweet that I could respond to every 5 minutes.


Step 1

Once logged into TweetDeck, create a new column based on a search query. Edit your search as indicated below. Start by entering a short, relevant phrase you want to find conversations on. I always like to add word exclusions in this section such as job, career, hiring, and # (to exclude hashtags). Remember, we’re looking for real conversations. I chose to filter English tweets only, and to exclude retweets to keep the results cleaner.



Step 2

In this next step, I choose to view all users. This is where you can have some fun. You can opt to choose only verified users if you wish, but note that these will typically comprise of influencers and company accounts. That may be what you’re looking for under certain circumstances.



Step 3

In this last step, we’re going to adjust the engagement filters. There’s no one size fits all here either. I typically like to start by only showing tweets that have at least 2 replies. Under some scenarios, I’ve increased this minimum to 5.



Once your filters are set, don’t forget to click the blue “Add Column” button at the bottom to save the column. You can always adjust your settings later if you wish. Below is an example set of columns that I personally use on a daily basis.



In the second column from the right, I left the filter settings expanded to show you another option that’s available – geotargeting. If you only want to see tweets within a certain location, input the latitude and longitude coordinates of that location followed by a radius in kilometers. Here’s an example: geocode:33.635821,-117.781458,25km. To get the latitude and longitude values for a location you’re interested in, head over to Google Maps, click on a location, and the coordinates will populate at the bottom.



I hope this helps you find more meaningful conversations as you execute on your social engagement strategy and build your audience. I’ve found this isn’t a 100% perfect solution, but it does do a good job of cutting out most of the noise by taking advantage of some advanced search capabilities not available in the native Twitter platform that would otherwise go unnoticed by most people. Enjoy! Do you have other tricks? Let me know if the comments below.

  • Luis Andres

    Tweetdeck is a great choice to get to the heart of the matter in what you are interested in seeing but how do you deal with the api limitations from your home timeline? For example an api call to your home timeline will not return more than the last 800 tweets. If you follow a few thousand people that could be an hour or two of tweets from your home timeline. So if you are not on Twitter every hour you are missing out on the tweets that matter. Tweetdeck also has this tweet limitation. However you can use twitter search to search for key terms of interest and then filter by the people you follow so you can see these tweets that you would have not seen in your Home Timeline. But searching keyword by keyword is a tedious task and not the best way to view a topical timeline feed.