Much of this I have discovered through trial and error and I am still learning but there are many professionals out there who can take this further for you such as Mark Shaw and Ivor Kellock who can be easily found on Twitter. So please don't hold me to task!
Ok. So how do you start to automate your Twitter account? There are three main components: 1. Send regular updates and feed relevant content to your account 2. Find an application that helps you find those you want to follow 3. Manage your microblogs to update other social media sites
In this blog I am going to explain point 1
Many of you may have seen the little orange box that looks like this :This indicates that there is an rss feed available on this page. This stands for ‘real simple syndication’ (I think!) and I am no techie but what it does is provide a code for the page that can be embedded into another site or page which will pull off new information as it updates. In other words, if you set up an rss feed from a website with regular updated content, every time there is something new it will automatically update on your site, or in this case your twitter account. It is important to choose something that is relevant to your interests or business and that will be of interest to others who are in your line of work or possible prospects for your business or service. If these are the people you want to connect with and they are searching on twitter (or other applications you may set this up with) regular updated relevant content on your Twitter account is more likely to catch their eye and cause them to follow you and connect.
When you log in you will be confronted by a ‘Feed Dashboard’ – click ‘create new feed’. You can give it a title for your reference such as in my case it might be ‘financial markets’ etc and then you need to have the URL of the site/page that you want to use ready to put into the box ‘RSS FEED URL’
As an example go to http://thorntonholmes.blogspot.com/ and hold your mouse over the orange rss box on the tool bar at the top. This will bring up a new page which asks you to subscribe. If you do this it will simply place an icon in the favourites of your browser. What you actually need to do is COPY the URL of this page from the tool bar and then PASTE IT into the box in your account with twitterfeed (RSS FEED URL).
Now click – test rss feed. It should read ‘Feed parsed OK’
Next go down to advanced settings.
You now have a number of options. My recommendations are : Update frequency : Every hour and up to 5 posts - too much can be boring and overwhelming and switch people off. Post : Title only Shorten link through : TinyURL Post Prefix : put your name here Post Suffix : leave blank
Then continue to step 2
You can then choose ‘Twitter’ and also ‘Facebook’ to automatically feed updates from your chosen site to these applications.
Click ‘All Done!’ and it will take you back to your Dashboard where the feed will be displayed and you have an option to delete or edit.
You can now add as many feeds as you want from many different sites or pages and your Twitter or Facebook account will update automatically making you more visible to others AND search engines!
Hope this helps and next week I will show you how to use an application to search for relevant contacts, follow them and have them follow you back – automatically! Contact me if you need help…