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Track Topics or Keywords on Twitter

Twitter no longer provides RSS feeds from Twitter Search.

A while back, as mentioned in my list of Twitter SMS commands, you used to be able to ask Twitter to track certain keywords or hash tags for you, just like you might follow a Twitter friend. Twitter has since put a stop to the Twitter track functionality.

You can, however, use FeedTwit to Twitter track. Since FeedTwit can an RSS feed and convert it to a direct message (unlike TwitterFeed, which makes an RSS feed public) all you will need is an RSS feed for the Twitter track you are interested in. That’s simple because Twitter search makes an RSS feed easily available for you.

Here’s how you can use FeedTwit to Twitter track:

  1. Go to search.twitter.com and enter the term, phrase or hash tag you would like to follow in to the search box.
  2. Get the RSS feed from this search by clicking on the RSS icon on the page.
  3. Take the Twitter search feed of the term you want to track and give it to FeedTwit who can take the Twitter RSS feed and send it to you as a direct message.
  4. Keep up with your Twitter track.

CAUTION: this could potentially send you a lot of text messages. You don’t have to use FeedTwit to get text messages, you could also just take the notices as direct messages without asking Twitter to forward your direct messages to you as texts.

This is particularly useful to people who are interested in tracking their brand name on Twitter or if they like to follow a particular hash tag- from an event, for example.

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