The Twitter Celebrities We Seek The Most, According To Google

There are plenty of celebrities on Twitter, and it easy to find lists of those who are most popular according to the number of people following them. But here’s a twist. Who are the most popular celebrities on Twitter that people are trying to find, in order to follow them? Below, a top ten list using data from Google.

To compile the list, I used Google’s keyword research tool that shows the number of searches made for any word on a monthly basis. I looked through the top 100 terms that were listed in a search for “twitter,” to find that word being used in conjunction with a celebrity’s name (such as “lady gaga twitter”).

To me, that indicated someone trying to find the celebrity’s Twitter account by using Google. I looked at searches in the United States, made in English. More about the process after the list….

#1 – Demetria Lovato

At 165,000 searches per month, “twitter demi” topped the list of most searched for celebrity. Those are searches for Demetria Lovato,who is @ddlovato on the service.

But wait, couldn’t those searches be for actress Demi Moore (@mrskutcher), who is also married to Twitter celebrity Ashton Kutcher (@aplusk), who has 5.3 million followers?)

Maybe. But number three on the list with 110,000 searches is “demi lovato twitter,” so I think she’s the Demi people are seeking.

#2 – Lance Armstrong

Multiple winner of the Tour de France, Lance Armstrong is also a big winner in the Twitterstakes. At number two, there are 135,000 searches per month for “twitter lance,” which seem to be people trying to find Armstrong’s @lancearmstrong account)

#3 – Ashton Kutcher

Aforementioned actor Ashton Kutcher (@aplusk) comes in third on the list (when the two different ways people search for Demetria Lovato are combined into one), with “twitter ashton” getting 74,000 searches per month. Ninth on the list are another 2,400 searches for “twitter aplusk.”

#3 – Lady Gaga

Lady Gaga’s not just big musically. Plenty of people want to find her, and presumably follow her, on Twitter (she at @ladygaga). At 74,000 searches per month, “lady gaga twitter” ties her for third on the list, though it could be argued that when searches for “twitter ashton” and “twitter aplusk” are combined, Kutcher is slightly ahead.

#4 – Katy Perry

She kissed a Twitter and liked it, and fans want Katy Perry (@katyperry) there, it appears. At 49,500 searches per month, “katy perry twitter” was fourth on the list.

#5 – Drake

Coming in at fifth, with 27,100 searches per month, is “drake twitter” — people seeking actor and singer Drizzy Drake (@drakkardnoir).

#6 – Bill Simmons

Author and sports columnist Bill Simmons (@sportsguy33) ranks sixth on the list, with “sportsguy33 twitter” getting 6,600 searches per month.

#7 – Opie

Talk radio host Opie (Gregg Hughes) of The Opie & Anthony Show came in at seventh, with “opieradio twitter” getting 4,400 searches per month). He’s at @opieradio.

#8 – NASA

Give it up for the rocket scientists. While NASA’s not a person, it felt “celebrity” enough to include, coming in eighth with “nasa twitter” getting 3,600 searches per month. NASA can be found at @nasa.

#9 – Diablo Cody

Screenwriter, author and stripper Diablo Cody (Brook Busey) ranks ninth, with “diablo cody twitter” getting 1,600 searches per month. She’s @diablocody on Twitter.

#10 – David Pogue

New York Times tech columnist David Pogue (@pogue) ends the list at tenth, with “pogue twitter” getting 1,000 searches per month.

Behind The Numbers

As said above, the data comes from using Google’s AdWords keyword research tool. I searched “broadly,” which means a search for “lady gaga twitter” might include some other terms that Google thinks are closely related (such as, perhaps, “ladygaga twitter” and slight misspellings).

This generated a list of 100 top matches, and I pulled out from that anything that contained a celebrity name. Here’s the list:

  1. twitter demi: 165,000
  2. twitter lance: 135,000
  3. demi lovato twitter: 110,000
  4. lady gaga twitter: 74,000
  5. twitter ashton: 74,000
  6. katy perry twitter: 49,500
  7. drake twitter: 27,100
  8. sportsguy33 twitter: 6,600
  9. opieradio twitter: 4,400
  10. nasa twitter: 3,600
  11. twitter aplusk: 2,400
  12. diablo cody twitter: 1,600
  13. pogue twitter: 1,000

That’s 13 matches in all, but for my written list above, I combined “twitter demi” with “demi lovato twitter” and “twitter ashton” with “twitter aplusk.” That’s why those are in italics. There are also some ties. The numbers are all rounded by Google.

Beyond The US

I also quickly generated a list to show top searches around the world, in any language, rather than in English and in the US. Key differences:

  • Demetria Lovato entirely drops from the list, even though people like Lance Armstrong, Lady Gaga and Katy Perry stay on it and with precisely the same figures as when searching for US-only, English-only searches. This tells me Google’s got some issues with its search data reporting.
  • “selena gomez twitter” (@selenagomez) is ranked second with 110,000 searches when looking at the data for the entire world, but only in English. She should have shown up for the more broad query of searches around the world but in any language, but didn’t. I’ll be checking further with Google on this.

More Ways To Find Celebrities & People In General

All the data above comes from Google. Twitter itself offers a variety of ways people might find celebrities (and others) to follow, which have continued to evolve:

Twitter Suggested User Lists: Also called the SUL, this was something shown to new people who registered for well over a year. Those listed on the SUL got huge spikes in the number of people following them. Who Does Twitter Love? Breaking Down The Twitter Suggested Users List is a close look at everyone on the list, including celebrities, from July 2009.

Twitter Suggestions: This took over from the SUL in January 2010, as Twitter announced here. Rather than show one list of people, who were picked by Twitter’s staff, the new system combines staff picks along with some people selected because a computer algorithm had decided they’d be interesting to newcomers on Twitter. People are divided into subject areas.

Being on this list definitely increases your follower count (I know, my @dannysullivan account is included as a tech suggestion). However, the increase is much less dramatic than with the old SUL system.

To browse Twitter Suggestions, when logged into Twitter, click on the “Find People” link at the top of the screen (first arrow below), then select the “Browse Interests” tab (second arrow), then select a category (third arrow):

Twitter Search Results: Do a search when at Twitter.com, and now there are suggestions of people called “Name Results” who may match your query. This feature was added last month (see Twitter Adds Usernames To Search Results) and can help for those seeking celebrities.

For example, here’s a search for demi:

You can see Twitter’s name results suggest Demi Moore’s account (and that little blue icon with a check next to it indicates that Twitter has verified that it really is Demi Moore’s account). On the downside, it also lists a Demi Moore account that is NOT the real Demi Moore. As for Demi Lovato, it lists an account that maybe she used in the past rather than her verified account.

Still, running down the list above, I found searches for top sought celebs like:

All of these generated search results on Twitter that lead to their verified accounts. So anyone seeking celebrities on Twitter should definitely be trying to “twitter it” rather than or in addition to “googling it.”

People Suggestion Tools: There are a variety of third-party tools to help you locate people to follow (see How To Find The Right People To Follow On Twitter), and Twitter’s currently rolling out its own called “Suggestions For You.” See our Twitter Helps You Find New People To Follow story for more about this.

Popularity Tools: Looking for the most popular people on Twitter, according to follower count? Some places to try:

These all draw from Twitter’s published follower counts. And the top celebrities and famous people, according to those?

  1. Britney Spears (@britneyspears)
  2. Ashton Kutcher (@aplusk)
  3. Lady Gaga (@ladygaga)
  4. Ellen DeGeneres (@theellenshow)
  5. Barack Obama (@barackobama)
  6. Kim Kardashian (@kimkardashian)
  7. Justin Bieber (@justinbieber)
  8. Oprah Winfry (@oprah)
  9. Taylor Swift (@taylorswift13)
  10. John Mayer (@johncmayer)

twitter demi ,165000
twitter lance ,135000
demi lovato twitter ,110000
lady gaga twitter ,74000
twitter ashton ,74000
katy perry twitter ,49500
drake twitter ,27100
sportsguy33 twitter ,6600
opieradio twitter ,4400
nasa twitter ,3600
twitter aplusk ,2400
diablo cody twitter ,1600
pogue twitter ,1000

Related Topics: Channel: Social | Features: General | Stats: Popularity | Top News | Twitter

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About The Author: is a Founding Editor of Search Engine Land. He’s a widely cited authority on search engines and search marketing issues who has covered the space since 1996. Danny also serves as Chief Content Officer for Third Door Media, which publishes Search Engine Land and produces the SMX: Search Marketing Expo conference series. He has a personal blog called Daggle (and keeps his disclosures page there). He can be found on Facebook, Google + and microblogs on Twitter as @dannysullivan.

Connect with the author via: Email | Twitter | Google+ | LinkedIn



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