For part 4 of this tutorial it is time to make sure there is a constant stream of relevant information flowing from your Twitter account – the sort of stuff that you think your followers will find interesting and useful. At anytime of any day there is always breaking news and we are going to take advantage of that.
Quick Disclaimer: I wouldn’t class myself as a social media expert, and I’m not looking to sell you social media services. In this series of articles I’m sharing with you what works for me and how to get quick results with Twitter for very little effort.
This is a seven part tutorial and it’s important you follow them in the correct order. If you haven’t read parts 1, 2 & 3 then do it now.
- Why Use Twitter?
- Tweet Your own content several times a day
- What is the purpose of Direct Messages?
- Auto-tweeting others’ content
- Maximise your followers
- Avoid the ‘twitter ratio’
The first thing we need to do is locate some news sources, probably stuff you already like to read for yourself. For example, I’m a big fan of TechCrunch Europe. What we need to do now is locate their RSS feed. Have a quick look at their website and you’ll see an RSS icon over the right hand-side of the page, it looks like this:
Click on it then you’ll see a list of topics. Your favourite news source may take you straight to the RSS feed rather than have this intermediate page. Click on ‘Startups’ and it takes you to a page of their news items on Startups in RSS format. Note down or copy the URL of this page.
Next sign up for an account at Twitterfeed. This is the tool we will be using to auto-tweet about news stories from elsewhere. Follow the on-screen steps for adding a new feed using the RSS URL we obtained earlier. Use the advanced settings to decide how often you want it to tweet the content and what you would like it to tweet. You may want to play with this to decide what works best for you. Here you can also add some filters, for example, you might not be interested in everything that TechCrunch says about startups, and wish to limit it to ‘Clean Tech’. Here you can look for keywords to match, or even keywords to exclude so that you can really refine which stories you will tweet about.
On step 2 you can then select which social media accounts you want this information to go to. It’s not just Twitter – you can use this tool to update your LinkedIn and Facebook status updates with the same content.
And that’s it! Repeat this for all your favourite news sources and you’ll begin tweeting about useful information and news with links back to the original articles. All of a sudden your twitter account becomes a collection of relevant, useful and breaking news for your followers.
This is a great way of making your twitter feed interesting if you are struggling to generate your own content, and is also great at generating retweets and gaining you exposure on Twitter.
I’ve glossed over the details a little in this post, but you should be able to complete it in under 30 minutes, then tweak it a little over the coming days to get the results you want. Once you are happy, you should never need to touch it again.
Are you enjoying this series? Let us know about your efforts to improve your business Twitter strategy.