Tip: Automatically Push Your Latest Blog Posts Across Twitter
I know Twitter isn't for everyone (even though David Pogue on the New York Times recently praised Twitter's ability to quickly gather information from your followers.) But if you have a blog, you'd be crazy not to provide a Twitter feed for it. On my blog, I give people three main subscription options: RSS, e-mail, or Twitter. Granted, with Twitter they also get other microthoughts, but they also get my post titles.
It's generally a poor practice to use Twitter only to syndicate your RSS feed. But having some information on Twitter is better than nothing. Here's a simple way to automatically set up Twitter to publish your latest blog posts:
- Make sure you're routing your RSS feed through Feedburner. This isn't essential, but you'll kick yourself later if you neglect Feedburner, since you'll have no ability to track your followers (nor change your feed if you change domains).
- Sign up for Twitter, of course.
- Go to Twitterfeed.com. To get through the Twitterfeed door, you need an open ID (because they're too cool for regular username and password signup). The myvidoop open ID service is most amusing, as it allows you to has you choose images as passwords. However, if you already have a Yahoo login, use that.
- Click the Create New Feed link in Twitterfeed's simple interface.
- Enter your Twitter ID, your blog's RSS feed, and how you want the post titles sent across Twitter.
- On your site, provide users with a "Subscribe to Twitter" option.
That's it. Now once you're on Twitter, occassionally toss in a thought or two that you have throughout the day. As Pogue counsels, don't tell us what you just did, if it's something as mundane as eating a peanut-butter sandwich. People aren't so interested in the mundane details of your life, but they are intrigued by your unique perspectives on those details.
About Tom Johnson
I'm a technical writer / API doc specialist based in the Seattle area. In this blog, I write about topics related to technical writing and communication — such as software documentation, API documentation, visual communication, information architecture, writing techniques, plain language, tech comm careers, and more. Check out simplifying complexity and API documentation for some deep dives into these topics. If you're a technical writer and want to keep on top of the latest trends in the field, be sure to subscribe to email updates. You can also learn more about me or contact me.