The popularity of Google Trends, which lets users compare the relative popularity of words and phrases based on the quantity of search queries on Google over time, is starting to spawn similar services based on different data sets. Facebook now has Lexicon (launched April 15), which shows trends based on Wall posts.
Twitter doesn’t have an official in house trends product of their own, but Flaptor just released one called Twist. Like the related Google and Facebook services, Twist looks at mentions of the queried terms in messages and graphs them over time. Users can also click on any of the terms and go directly to the recent Twitter messages containing that term.
Flaptor also has a good Twitter search tool, as well as a number of other projects.
Brand owners, researchers and others are always looking for more data, and these tools are very useful for that. Startups like Scout Labs are also emerging to help aggregate and make sense of as much of this data as possible. My guess is we’ll see them integrate as much of it as possible.