I spend a good amount of time checking out various websites, tools, and systems. I’ve built up my own bookmarking system so I can easily find websites and services that seem promising or hold a specific purpose. Today I’d like to share with you my list of social search websites, real time search engines, and new media/social media trending tools.
I should also mention that while this is a pretty big list is it in no way complete. I’ve really focused on providing the top valuable tools out there. I thought about ordering them in some cohesive way but many of these sites are branching out beyond their original purpose, so that became somewhat cumbersome.
I’ve linked to all the sites by the headline and image below. Also if I’ve missed any that you think should be on this list please leave a comment below or reach out to us on Twitter. I will also mention the updates all the way at the bottom.
Real-time social media search and analysis. I am hoping you have discovered this site already. SocialMention allows you to search for terms across a wide array of media types from blogs, mentions, bookmarking sites, comments on blogs, events, images, news, video, audio, Q&A websites, and networks. This is the big real time search engine.
Not only does it allow you a vast array of search locations it also quantifies your results it to some really interesting metrics:
- Sentiment – ration of positive to negative
- strength – likelihood keyword is being mentioned in the social space
- passion – likelihood someone talking about something will do so repeatedly
- reach – measure of the range of influence
SocialMention also further breaks it down by positive, negative, and neutral sentiment rankings. In addition you get the top keywords and top users for a particular search term. This is one of the most powerful search engines in the new media space and should be the top of your usage list.
Like LL Cool J Google Blog search has been here for years. That’s not a reason to count it out though. It’s still the go to source for blog search, blog information, and getting a general rundown on what is happening in the blog world.
If you want to get a great run down on what is popular at any given moment this is the place to visit. From politics to sports Google Blog Search aggregates the top stories and shares with you the top 4 results (or relevant) posts on that subject. This is by far the best way to search blog content… so go search some blogs.
With all the noise every-time The Facebook makes a change to it’s privacy or application access layer you would think that most people would try to make their Facebook profile a walled garden. This thought goes out the window after you’ve done one search on Open Facebook… you then suddenly realize that there are tons of people out there willing to let their business be known.
For instance here is a search of the people on Facebook who have just colored their hair or maybe watch as the devil reveals himself. For more business uses (outside finding out if the devil is a natural blond) you can use this site to find mentions of your company, your products, or general conversations around interests within your target market.
If your into tech or startups (and an Apple Fan) then most likely you already know about the tech aggregator TechMeme.com. This site provides a great roundup of the most popular items in tech but as I mentioned it’s heavy on the Apple/Iphone/Ipad news.
The trending topics here are pretty spot on for those who follow tech but I especially like how for most topics they give related stories. This is a great place to start for tech stories that have multiple dimensions.
Do you want to know what is going to go viral? I’ve found no better site out there that will predict what will be shared or is being shared (in mass) than BuzzFeed. Everything from status updates, pictures, to videos it covers the spectrum. The site contains a very social component (perferct for continuing the buzz) but also let’s you vote on what items are destined to go viral.
Buzzfeed also breaks down it’s categories into a couple main categories: LOL, OMG, Geeky, cute, WTF, trashy, gmes, mobile, and much more. This is a great site to find funny, interesting, and just plain strange things to share. It also contains a pretty robust viral search feature that is a must watch if you or your target market feeds off entertainment or strange news.
Okay well Blekko is not necessarily a real time search or social search engine it’s more of a traditional search engine. I mention it because more and more I am using it as a search tool. First is the results tend to contain less spam (they have anti-spam features built in). Second the ability to easily use what is called slashtags. These are essentially commands you can add to your search to further refine the results.
As I’m writing this the slashtag of the day is /dr-seuss. When you append your search term with a slashtag it will given you all relevant results that contain your term and relate to the tag you enter. The options are endless and you can create your own slashtags. If you are a little confused check out this video that explains how you can slash the web.
Forums no longer get the attention they deserve (I guess they are so two thousand single digits). While traffic to forums have dipped with the rise of Facebook and Twitter they still are a great space to find your target market. What is great about BoardReader is it gives you the ability to search accross community and forum websites. Everything from Mahalo to forum websites you’ve probably never heard of.
BoardReader also gives you a breakdown of trends in a great trending graph. Also the ability to search by posts, topics, forums, and images. They’ve recently added videos, microblogs, IMDB, Yuku, and Lefora. If you want to find what people in the bowels of your market is talking about this is the search engine to start with.
Outside the strange Warriors font for the logo I find this real-time search engine for Facebook and Twitter quick and reliable. A couple of nice stand out features include an auto-update of your search stream with 3 speed options, fast, slow, and halt.
Another nice add-on feature from Kurrently is they give you a one click additional search option to Google, Bing, Baidu, and YouTube.
I admit I visit this site daily. It gives me a great overview of what is popular. This is the Grand Daddy of content aggregators. This is the site to go to if you want a full overview of what is happening in the internet and social web today.
Another great feature is that you can customize the sources that show up in your dashboard. Beyond that you can switch your view from the classic view, topic view, and what is called the river view (chronological first). If you haven’t already I suggest you bookmark this site now.
This site aggregates what is popular from some of the top sharing and popular sites out there. Sites such as Digg, Del.icio.us, LifeHacker, TMZ, Mashable, WikiHow, News sites, and much more. The site also shares with you what is popular on Twitter. This site reminds of the PopURLs though…
I can’t blame you if you have forgot about Google Buzz. Launched with great fanfare (sort of like Google Wave… plus other social excursions) Buzz usage has declined steadily since it was released. There still is a fair amount of interaction that goes on in this platform though.
Buzzy does one simple thing and it does it well… it allows you to search Google Buzz. Another great feature is the ability to translate any language of updates (great if you operate or want to operate in other countries). You can also search by media such as images, videos, and links. If you want to search Google Buzz this is the search engine to use.
TweetMeme allows you to sort links and updates by Channels such as comedy, entertainment, technology, and lifestyle. The only thing that would be nice is the ability to search across these channels.
Blogs and Twitter like two peas in a pod. Twittorati is a Technorati site where the blogosphere and twittersphere meet. In a less spherical way Twittorati follows or aggregates tweets from the biggest authority bloggers.
This service gives you a wealth of options. You breaking down results by channels, top 100 blogs, top links, top blogs, latest photos, and technorati and twitter tags. The search is also a very powerful feature. Great site if you want to reference what is going on in real time and track it back to a source website. I highly suggest this site as a market research tool.
Any good real time search or trending list wouldn’t be complete without this service from Google. Want to know what your country is searching about? Visit here daily to get the top 10 topics and top 10 hot searches.
If you haven’t used this service I suggest you dive in and do a few searches. The wealth of information from charting, news articles, blog posts, and web results will give you a really good feel on a trending topic.
This site is another gem in the real time search world. The vast amount of array of search locations is staggering. What sets WhosTalkin apart is the ability to search across a wide range of networks and networks you don’t ordinarily see.
Networks such as Backtype, Indeti.ca, Indianpad, Plazoo, Plurk, Tpix, Yahoo News, and hi5. The video network search is powerful by giving you the aibility to search within YouTube, Blip.tv, Dailymotion, Metacafe, Viddler, Vimeo, and Yahoo Video. Bottom line is Whos Talkin is a very powerful search network.
I’m not sure how well a rocket built from ice would work (last time I checked ice and fire don’t mix well) but this real-time search engine is quick and fast. For some reason Ice Rocket has a subhead of blog search… but they do so much more.
Search for terms within blogs, web, twitter, news, and images. The one feature that really stands out is the Big Buzz feature. Type a search term and select Big Buzz and you get top 10 results from Blogs, Twitter, Facebook, videos, and news. Even better you can select an auto-refresh rate. Very powerful tool to get a good overview of a term, brand, or search.
Do you want to know what is trending on YouTube. While your basic personal homepage on YouTube usually contains this info the trends dashboard gives you a little more detail. You can further specify by country, age, and gender.
Finally a way to find out what 45-54 year old women are currently watching. The YouTube Trends Dashboard also contains a little known comparison engine. Compare what 25-34 year old men and 45-54 year old men watch and you’ll realize that yes men at any age still watch Lady Gaga.
The LikeButton.com is powered by the Facebook Like (or recommend) button and social plugins. This website gives you a great rundown of what is ‘liked’ across a wide range of websites and categories. From YouTube, Huffington Post, CNN, Slate, and Techcruch.
You can also further drill down by category. The more popular categories are news, videos, pictures, apple, tech, games, and entertainment. Another great feature on this site is to see likes within your favorite sites. All you have to do is add your favorite sites to stay on top of when and what people are sharing on those sites. This is a great feature to set up for your market or your particular niche.
Evri has big dreams. The site focuses on bringing you the latest stories, tracks them, and enables you to curate your own channel. For instance I’ve created a new media channel based on terms such as new media marketing, new media, mobile marketing, and facebook update. Evri takes these terms and presents a pretty good stream of the latest stories.
From there you can add streams, specify by tag, see related content… this is getting closer to the semantic web experience that has been much talked about in the last few years. This site also has some of the largest topic offering from Us & World, entertainment, sports, business, technology, and much more. Now if you have an Ipad it’s likely you already are aware of this app but if you aren’t it is one you should defiantly check out.
Open book is a website parody of Facebook. With the tagline… Facebook helps you connect and share with the people in your life. Whether you ant to or not. The point is that Facebook provides a bait-and-switch and complex privacy settings. This is true.
While the site is no longer maintained by it’s developers it’s still an amazing Facebook search engine. What makes this a stand out is you can sort your results by gender. Check it out.
Let’s say you want to search reviews, or government agencies, or how about a military search. Where would you go? It’s time to visit Samepoint where you can search across governmental sites such as Library of Congress, Health Services, Whitehouse, Census Bereau, FBI, CIA, and NSA. For the military you can search the US Army, US Navy, US Air Force, US Marines, and the US Coast Guard.
It goes further. You can search social media sites such as Nin, hi5, Bebo, Tagged, Okrut, and much more. Plus you can search blogs, videos and music. The results are further broken down by social tone, negative words, positive words, and total mentions. There is also a handy related keywords feature that is great for drilling down even further.
That might sound like a basic thing but the execution is pretty powerful. After you search for a term you are displayed a page with relevant content from Twitter, Bing News, Google Blog Search, Truveo Video, YouTube, Flickr, WordPress.com, Blinkx, Wikio, Twingly, Yahoo Web Search, Friendfeed, Ask.com News, plus a whole lot more. All you have to do is add select “available sources”.
This site is great for a quick snap shot of any trending topic or trending search.
With a main page that looks more like a financial website BlogPulse gives you a rundown of what is hot right now in the blog world. I love the breakdown by Top links, key people, top videos, top blog posts, key phrases, and top news sources.
This site also does a great job of graphing out the trends. The main page slider is a great place to visit to see what is trending within the blogosphere. Another great feature is the real time graph blog pulse live and the blogpulse stats. More importantly it gives you the ability to search within the blog world as well.
Not quite a 49ers fan 48ers was created to help you search for what is happening right now. Yes another real time search engine that gives you results form Twitter, Facebook, Google Buzz, Digg, and Delicious.
I do like the back story of the company name, see the gold rush in Cali began Jan 24, 1848. The early people who made money were known as the 49ers but the first pioneers were known as the 48ers.
Trending tweets with a live update feed. What is great about this site is if you use Twitter you can follow topics live. Another great feature of this site is the trending percentage. This essentially shares with you the increase or decrease of interest around a specific trending topic.
Other great features is a Chrome extension and the ability to login with Twitter.
Localization is the next era for the social space so I expect to see more sites like this.
Imagine you have your own satelite network orbiting around the Earth. You have all these fancy camera’s, gadgets, and measuring device. With this super high tech satelite what would you choose to plug into? How about what is trending on Twitter? Maybe… well how about what is trending on Twitter in your neighborhood?
This is what TrendsMap offers. A overhead map view of Twitter trends in real time. It’s a rock solid website and it’s a great way to see want to see what is being discussed in mass within a nation, a city, or even an individual state. Another stand out feature is when you click on a trending topic on the map a list of the latest conversations show up for this trend.
I find this site is a great way to see local news or local stories in your area. It’s well worth checking out.
Yes another real-time search engine for the social web. What sets Topsy apart is the ease of searching for web, tweets, photos, and experts. It’s the last thing there titled “experts” that is pretty interesting.
Type in a search select experts and it will display experts who mention your search term. Pretty powerful stuff when your looking for influencers around a particular topic.
Omgili (Oh My God I Love It) forum search engine lets you find communities, message boards, discussion threads about any topic. Omgili’s advanced search features make it the best search engine for forums out there.
Omgili also has a pretty cool graph feature. If you are looking to find people talking in message boards and threads then this search engine does a great job.
According to TrendsBuzz nobody talks about them… so I’m not sure if we should continue here. Outside of that this site is a great site for checking out internet buzz in this exact moment and any moment in the past.
What this site does well if give you a high level overview of the top keywords from various sources. Google hot trends, Yahoo! buzz movers, Twitter Trending, Alexa hot topics, Wikipedia trends, Blogpulse keywords, and much more. They also give a great rss feed of what is “catching fire” right now and “hot buzz today”.
This is another site that gives you a wealth of data and graphs. If you are looking for some deep trending information that goes back years this is the place to start.
For each trend, you get a brief explanation of WHY it’s trending (you can edit these definitions as well)
They are currently tracking over 100,000 trends and they provide a great break down by country. In addition you can get all the trends for a given day.
See the news as it happens. It goes further connect your Twitter account and you see all your updates, the highlights, photos and video, and questions. Not only that you get to see some pretty cool trending graphs.
There is tons more… updates per day, updates in the last minute by the number of contacts. If you use Twitter I would suggest you check out this site.
I haven’t used this site much but in the limited time I’ve spent with it and it does look promising.
The first tab allows you to search what people are talking about right now. The second tab, to the right, allows you to search today’s most shared links on the real time web.
Searchwiki or Swicki’s purpose is to bridge the gap between searchers and relevant results. As the web grows and evolves, web search needs to grow and evolve too. Searchwiki technology improves on existing general web search by enabling vertical, community site and web searches to be initiated from any website.
They have been around since 1997 and have kept up with the changes to the web and the social sphere.
What if you want to see what is popular or what your friends are sharing on Facebook? Sure you could visit Facebook and sort by photos, videos, links, and updates. Let’s say you want a cooler layout than that. Yes I said cooler… and yes it’s still the 90’s where I’m writing this.
That aside PostPost will give you a magazine layout of all the things your friends are sharing on Facebook. You can select All or you can drill down by links, videos, and pictures. Why is it on this list? For one it does show you trending topics within your social group but you can also search these updates as well.
Spy allows you to listen in on social media conversations. The interface is minimalist and auto updates. It also allows you to search across platforms such as Twitter, FriendFeed, Flickr, Blog Comments (backtype), Yahoo News, Blogs (RSS via FriendFeed), and Google Reader.
I know your secretly wishing for up to the minute pictures of Justin Bieber and Miley Cyrus–well now you have the site to fill your dreams. NachoFoto is a semantic time-based vertical image search.Yeah so what does that mean?
Essentially this site allows you to see pictures shared in real-time. You can select by 12 month, last month, and this month. You also get a great trending graph and an overview of the pictures. This is a great site for finding out what images or imagery people are sharing across the open web.
Tweetgrid allows you to create a dashboard of tweets in a grid. While not the most visually appealing site out there it is an amazing engagement tool. Another great feature is the ability to do this on the latest trending topics. Plus you can choose your grid type. 1×1, 1×2, all the way to 3×3. This is my new favorite Twitter app.
This site operates as promised. You sign in with Twitter and after a short while you are able to search for terms, images, and news within your follower base. This tool truly does rock and if you use Twitter this by far could be one of your top tools. A feature I’d love to see here is the ability to search another users Twitter followers links, tweets, pictures, and updates.
Sulia is striving to be the best place to get updates from experts on any subject. They do this by bringing together Twitter Lists and updates by experts on specific subject matters. I see it acting as a filter for twitter that aims to give you highly relevant updates on individual subject matters such as sports, politics, tech & science, health, etc… as of this writing they have over 1,000 topics they cover.
This is a good site to start with if you are working on figuring out what is important to a market. With so many lists it would also be good to find what a particular niche is talking about or sharing. Some of the lists I follow are: Advertising and Marketing and Content Strategy.
TweetTrader.net does just that. It strives to be the most innovative forum for stock microblogs. Essentially it searches within sites like Twitter to find out the sentiment around individual stocks. It then breaks it down by what’s hot and what’s not. If you invest in the market or are in any way interested in where the stock market is headed this is one site to watch. Yes a brave new world.
Sites Worth Mentioning
I’ve included this section here because some of the sites I’ve bookmarked or use are in the middle of a pivot or new direction. So as these sites change or update what they do I will add them to the list above.
- http://collecta.com/ – This site and SocialMention (listed above) are my favorite sites… or they were. Collecta has since pivoted but I’m interested to see what is next.
- http://itstrending.com/ – trending engine but it looks broke so it’s hard to say what is happening here.
- http://www.booshaka.com/– Something bigger and better is coming.
- http://facepinch.com/ – Facebook search but to much annoying stuff going on… still thought I’d mention it
- http://digginthefuture.com/– With Digg V4.0 changes this site is waiting for an update so they can be back in action.
- http://almost.at/ – I like the idea of this site but I can rarely get it to work, it tries to give you an overview of text, photos, videos, and links
That’s a long list of sites and I’ll work hard on keeping this list up to date. If I missed any please share below or send us an email or Twitter update at http://twitter.com/YouBrandInc.
- March 5th added: PopURLs and StuffToTweet.com.
- March 8th added: Trendsmap
- March 15th added: PostPost for Facebook
- March 18th added: Spy
- March 21st added: NachoFoto and TweetGrid
- March 22nd added: Postpo.st
- March 25th added: Sulia
- April 6th added: TweetTrader.net