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Twitter is a great place for marketing your content and for developing relationships with members of your audience that you want to go deeper with in terms of your content marketing strategy, but it’s also a great place for doing research related to your niche. Here are 5 powerful ways to conduct competitive and content research on your niche.

  1. Hashtags – This one is easy, but so many people miss it. Find a hashtag or two related to your niche and follow them. It’s easy to do in Hootsuite. You just create a stream for the hashtag and any time content is shared on Twitter using that hashtag, you’ll see it.
  2. Lists – Create a list of your favorite bloggers or niche-related Twitterers. You can create a stream in Hootsuite to follow that list. Add and take away Twitter users at will.
  3. Ask questions – One method many professional bloggers and Twitter users use is to ask their audience questions. You’ll be surprised how many of your followers will respond. You’ll likely hear from people you never knew were following you or who wouldn’t normally interact with you. Just ask.
  4. Twitter Search – Did you know Twitter has a search feature? It works much like Google or Facebook’s search feature. You can find information related to a specific topic on Twitter just by using the search feature.
  5. Twitter Trends – On your Twitter sidebar you’ll see a section for Twitter trends. The default setting for this is to target trends based on your geographic location and interests. Did you know you can change that? Click on the “Change” link and you can change your geographic location. You can make it Worldwide or choose a country or region, or even your city. Click on “Tailored Trends” and you’ll see the trends based on what you tweet about the most.

You can use Twitter for more than marketing. You can also use it for research.

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