Socializing on Facebook and Twitter is an important facet of social marketing. Personal interaction with fans aid in developing long-lasting relationships while automation tends to feel impersonal. There are times when automation will work well – and leave extra time available for writing noteworthy articles; and you know – more time socializing. HootSuite provides an ingenious feature that routinely submits articles to Facebook and Twitter automatically. This tutorial will provide steps for connecting an RSS feed to HootSuite, and automating it with Facebook and Twitter. If you give a Hoot, grab a perch and stick around.
Connect Twitter and Facebook
First, you must have Facebook and Twitter connected to HootSuite. If not, read How to Connect Twitter and Facebook to HootSuite.
Step 1: Login into HootSuite.
If not already logged in, visit hootsuite.com. The login form is found on the top right.
Step 2: Go to RSS/Atom
Once logged in, click on the owl on the top left. The drop-down menu will appear. Go to Settings and then RSS/Atom.
Step 3: RSS/Atom
The Settings dashboard for RSS/Atom will appear. Click Add New Feed.
When the Settings dashboard appears, for RSS and Atom, click Add New Feed.
Step 4: Edit Feed
Then the Edit Feed dashboard will appear. The Edit Feed dashboard has a few nifty features including the ability to check for new posts every hour, post multiple tweets at a time, and select multiple profiles.
Review the available options from the Add RSS / Atom Feed dashboard.
Step 5: RSS feed…
Most sites have an RSS feed. To find it, look for the RSS feed icon on your site. If your site does not have one, it’s best to contact your web developer.
Step 6: Grab the URL.
After successfully finding the RSS feed copy the web address.
Step 7: Add the URL of the RSS feed.
After copying the URL past it in the field for ‘Feed URL’.
Step 8: Check this feed for new posts every…
Often times there are numerous daily updates to an RSS feed. If set to hour, HootSuite will post to Facebook and Twitter every hour – unless there isn’t anything new. You can change the settings to 24, 12, 6, 3, 2 or hourly.
Step 9: When new posts are found, tweet up to…
HootSuite can publish a maximum of 5 posts per cycle to Twitter. It might be the same for Facebook – but if your settings push 5 posts every hour than you’re an amazing blogger; or not socializing!
Step 10: Include some post text…
This is optional. At times, the title of the article isn’t sufficient enough to give readers an idea what it is about. HootSuite will add addition text, from the article, to the tweet. In some cases it might make the tweet look cluttered, so use it wisely.
Step 11: Prepend text…
Here you are provided the opportunity to add prepared text to each post. Before each tweet you could say ‘New Blog Posts’ or ‘News Update’ – but be aware that Twitter only has room for 140 characters max.
Step 12: Profiles to send from…
Before saving, you must choose at least one profile. The profiles might be difficult to distinguish between. Look closely for the Twitter or Facebook icon. Click the profile needed and a green checkmark will appear.
HootSuite can post to an individual profile or all of them.
Step 13. Save
Click ‘Save Feed’ to complete the setup.
You may now leap from your perch and soar with the eagles. Congratulations!
When completed, the feed will appear on the Settings dashboard.
How will it appear on Facebook?
Within a short time after publishing an article to your blog, HootSuite will post it to Facebook. A tiny image of an owl will appear below the post. In addition, an Owly (ow.ly) web address will appear – which links to the article on your blog.
How will it appear on Twitter?
Shortly after HootSuite notices the new article it will appear on Twitter. Below the tweet, in light grey, you will see ‘via HootSuite’. Then you know it was successfully posted from HootSuite.
This concludes our tutorial on using HootSuite to automatically submit posts to Facebook and Twitter. At times, automation can be cold and unfriendly; but in this situation, it’s a win-win for both you and your fans. Now you can reclaim lost time and build a better relationship with the fans that were neglected. Good luck!