When embarking on a new app idea, the first thing most teams do is to create a Twitter account. Having a Twitter account can be quite benefitical for building an early audience and potentially converting them into early adopters.
A key component of a successful Twitter account is having relevant and consistent content. The problem with small teams, however, is time—time to source content and post to Twitter multiple times a day. Even if you do dedicate time for Twitter, you want to be spending that time interacting with followers, not coming up with tweets.
There are many tools on the web that can help you achieve Twitter nirvana. The solution is simple—RSS feed and automation tools. Most major content sites and blogs have RSS feeds. Your goal is to find RSS feeds that are interesting and relevant to your followers, and feed them into automation tools like IFTTT and Buffer. Let’s take the example of a fashion account to see how it works in action. Note that this tactic should work for most industries.
For this article, I will be using a test account focused on posting fashion-related content.
Step 1: Grab the RSS Feeds
There are several major sources of content you can go after. The only requirement is that they have a RSS feed. These sources include news sites, independent blogs, Tumblr, Pinterest, and Instagram.
I started with well known fashion sites like GQ and The Satorialist. They all had their RSS links right on the home page.
With a little curation, Tumblr is a huge source of quality content. I used a popular Tumblr called Nerdy Boyfriend for content. To grab the RSS feed, simply attach
/rss to the main url, which looks like
Pinterest is the definitive motherlode of high quality visual content. Start by searching for popular and interesting boards with relevant keywords.
It’s important to find boards with a healthy balance of pins and followers. The number of pins tells you how often the owner updates the board while follower count tells you how compelling people find it. Note that if you choose a board with a high update frequency, it may overwhelm your Twitter feed. In this case, I chose a board with 730 pins and 312,346 followers.
.rss to the end of the board’s URL to get the RSS feed of this board.
People love Instagram, making many power users internet celebrities. Unfortunately, Instagram deprecated its RSS feed, which means you will have to use a third party solution. Luckily, you can use Instagrss to create a RSS feed for any given user. For this example, I picked the fashion blogger camtyox. She has a large amount of photos, a huge following, and great content. Perfect for my feed.
The RSS URL for her profile looks like:
Step 2: Automate!
The best tool for the job is IFTTT. IFTTT allows you to create powerful “if this then that” statements to connect separate web services together. My specific use case here is “if there is new content for a given RSS feed, post a tweet with image to my account.”
Take the recipe above and create a new recipe for each RSS feed you have.
Buffer is the Robin to IFTTT’s Batman. It makes sure you are spacing out your content and not overwhelming your followers. Its main functionality is to literally buffer your posts and schedule them for publication later. Additionally, it provides analytics so that you can see exactly which content source is resonating with your followers.
To sweeten up the deal even more, Buffer offers quality suggested posts. With a click, you can schedule out pre-written posts to further diversify your Twitter feed.
ManageFlitter is probably one of the most robust Twitter automation tools I’ve seen. Among its sea of free features, the Engagement features are similar to what Buffer offers. You put in a RSS feed URL, queue up posts from any items in the feed, and schedule them for publication. Like Buffer, it also has suggested posts, which are almost all tech and business related.
For this example, we are going to auto share posts from a popular Tumblr fashion blog, The Coveteur.
Click on Queue next to any post and watch them magically appear on your Twitter feed later.
Twibble is a combination of IFTTT and Buffer. It takes in an RSS feed and tweets them on your behalf at a specified time interval. It provides many extra features, such as filtering, link-shortening, attaching hash tags, and analytics. Beware that if you use the free version, it will attach its URL to the end of your tweet messages.
Step 3: Profit
Once you finish setting up your content automation workflow, its time to sit back and watch relevant tweets magically appear on your Twitter feed.
Be mindful of the frequency of updates for all of your RSS feeds combined. While relevant shares are great, you don’t want to inundate your followers with tweets. Try to use Buffer for posting if possible. While automated content is great, it should not be the entirety of your Twitter strategy. At the end of the day, nothing will replace quality interactions with your followers.
If you have any questions or feedback, feel free to tweet me at @feifanw or @secretsaucehq.