Topsy Lets You Search for Any Tweet in History

If you’ve been wondering what was going on in the Twitterverse at its inception in 2006, it’s now possible to find out. Thanks to Topsy, a San Francisco-based social-analytics company, you can delve into all past public user activity on Twitter. That’s over 425 billion posts that include text, images, videos, links and anything else that can fit into 140 characters.

The practical benefit of this is the ability of businesses to look at the complete history of a particular keyword, phrase or marketing trend. Hashtags, @-mentions and popular topics are all counted by Topsy’s analytics algorithms. Using this comprehensive information, businesses can see how past marketing campaigns fared with consumers and make improvements before launching new advertising efforts. Topsy also provides insight into related terms, trends and influencers for individual topics, making it easier than ever for brands to utilize the power of social media to reach new audiences.

From a political standpoint, the availability of years’ worth of Twitter analytics allows campaign managers to go back and see which tactics generated positive responses from the public and which were flops. They can then use this information to craft future campaigns to better benefit candidates and connect with voters on a personal level.

Individuals can use Topsy’s search functions to locate specific information from their own or others’ Twitter feeds, making it much easier to retrieve data that might otherwise have been lost in the annals of the Internet. These tools are great for bloggers as well. Knowing what’s popular can help determine what kinds of information the intended audience is looking for, thereby drawing a larger audience of readers.

Topsy has been allowing users to search tweets for a while, but previously its archives only went back to 2010. Adding the entire collection of public tweets expands available data considerably. This ability to search every public tweet ever made means that individuals and businesses need to be more careful than ever in what they post. The last thing you need is for your boss to turn up those embarrassing posts from the office Christmas party three years ago.