Welcome back fellow Googlers. This week, we’re going to get really intrusive. If you thought stalking your ex on Instagram through a burner account was weird, you’ve got another thing coming. Instead of tracking the people in our lives, we’ll be teaching you how to dig through social platforms to find the right information for your research. Let’s get going!
Did you know Twitter is registered as a news app? If you pair that with super intuitive research and colloquial interactions, you’ve got yourself a powerful platform that can help you find proof points for broad observations on consumer attitudes.
Whether you’re searching for a hashtag, a movie or a few words you remember seeing in Tweet, the search bar is great for looking for that specific phrase or word that you input.
Twitter is a master at offering recommendations based on who or what you follow and it offers related profiles. So, this is a good opportunity to follow people who aggregate news and content for you - e.g. Taylor Lorenz @NYTStyles reporter who works on technology, memes, influencers and online culture.
Instagram is a very helpful tool when on the hunt for influencers and brands, and similarly to Twitter provides profile recommendations depending on who you follow. Another advantage of Instagram is that it can be a really good source when looking to quantify if something is popular, as well as providing relevant examples of people talking about certain topics.
A hotspot for finding experts and contributors, LinkedIn is a goldmine for networking virtually and connecting with the right people for your research.
Advanced search tool:
The advanced search tool, in particular, is very detailed (you can specify the country and businesses people have worked for) which can be especially helpful when conducting international research.
When hunting down the right people, observing the related profiles to the right of their profile is usually a surefire win for finding extra candidates.
The weirdest platform on the internet, Reddit may be a cesspit of unfiltered opinion, bizarre niches and a heavily skewed database. But is that such a bad thing? If you’re looking to catch public opinion that people otherwise wouldn’t say to your face, Reddit is where it's at. For example, the /r/parenting subreddit is a great place to go to explore what parents are freaking out and oversharing.
Well done for making it to the end of the second session, we hope you use these tools to bring your research to the next level and beyond.
What’s next, you ask? For the final hurrah, we’ll be taking you to a lighter side of internet research and showing you how to find useful information on them. Think Amazon (yes, it can provide other uses than shopping…) and Pew research.