How to Make a Twitter Feed

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Learning How to Make a Twitter Feed

Twitter interacts with feeds in many different ways. You can create a feed of your own Twitter posts, which you can then post elsewhere. You can also take feeds of other services, such as your blog, and pipe those into your Twitter account, so that your followers will see the post updates on their own Twitter home page.

Feeding Posts Out of Twitter

Twitter automatically creates RSS feeds for you, and it's very easy to find them.

Getting Your Posts in an RSS Feed

Why would you want to gather your Twitter posts in an RSS feed? There are lots of potential reasons. First, if you post lots of information to Twitter, you can pipe that data into your blog. There are also tools available to create a widget of your Twitter posts that you can have appear in the sidebar of your own blog or website. The sky's the limit!

Here's how to find the feed of your Twitter posts:

  • Log into Twitter.
  • Go to your Twitter profile page by clicking on your own icon.
  • In the far right column, under the block of icons for the people you are following, you will see a link that says "RSS feed of all of your updates." Click that link and enter your Twitter account information in the box that pops up.
  • Once your login information has been accepted, you will be taken to a RSS feed that shows all of your posts.
  • Take that URL and plug it into whatever RSS aggregator you like.

Getting Other People's Posts in an RSS Feed

If you want to be able to check your friends Twitter posts without using a Twitter client, you can easily run your favorite incoming Twitter feeds into an RSS aggregator like Bloglines or Google Reader.To get a feed of your friends Twitter posts:

  • Log into Twitter.
  • Go to your Twitter home page.
  • In the far right column, under the block of icons for the people you are following, you will see a link that says "RSS feed." Click it and enter your Twitter account information in the box that pops up.
  • Once your login information has been accepted, you will be taken to a RSS feed that shows all the posts of the people you follow.
  • Take that URL and plug it into whatever RSS aggregator you like.

Feeding Data Into Twitter

While Twitter doesn't have a built-in RSS reader, there are free services available that will allow you to easily run your blog feed into your Twitter account. This will cause blog posts to pop up as a Twitter post from you, and anyone who is following you will be able to read it.Why would you want to do this? Well, the point of Twitter is to disseminate information quickly, in short 140-characters bursts. Users are able to follow hundreds - or even thousands - of people on Twitter, because the medium is so abbreviated. If you have a lot people following you, then why not make good use of those followers and drive a little more traffic to your blog? Or why not have all of the blogs you love post to your account so that you can use Twitter to keep track of them on a moment's notice?

This isn't just limited to blogs, either. You could easily run any RSS feed into Twitter and have it post to your account.

How to Set It Up

It's relatively simple to set up a feed to run into Twitter. Here are the steps for using a service called TwitterFeed.

  • Go to the TwitterFeed website and create an account. You'll need a valid email address and Twitter account.
  • Click on "My Feeds" and then "Create New Feed."
  • Select "Twitter" from the "create new feed" drop-down menu.
  • Enter the username and password of your Twitter account.
  • Enter the URL for the RSS feed you want to appear on your Twitter page.
  • Edit the setting that indicates how often to update, and how many posts to pull at one time.
  • The next option will allow you to choose the format that the posts appear in your Twitter account:
    • Title only - only the title of the post will appears
    • Description only - a description of the post will appear
    • Title and description - both the title and description will appear
  • If you would like TwitterFeed to create a hyperlink back to the original post, check the checkbox that says, "Include item link."
  • Under the "Post new items based on" selection, leave it on "pubDate" which will pull posts based on the date they were posted.
  • If you would like to prefix each tweet with an indicator such as [My Blog] or *Quote of the Day*, indicate this in the "Prefix each tweet" field.
  • Make sure the "Active" checkbox is selected.
  • Click "Create."

And you're done! TwitterFeed will now pull data from the RSS feed you indicated, and post it on your Twitter account. If you are experiencing problems, you can visit their troubleshooting guide.

If you want to edit, pause, or delete your feed, you can easily do so by visiting the TwitterFeed dashboard. Just click "My Feeds" in the upper right-hand corner of the screen to get there.

More Information

Now that you know how to make a Twitter feed, what can you do with it? People use Twitter for a vast array of purposes. Here are some links that will give you some insight into what the service can do for you:

How to Make a Twitter Feed