I spent ages looking for third-party solutions that would take my RSS feed or scan my site and send out occasional tweets of my older posts to let my new followers know about some of my good, old material. I should have known that there’s a plugin for that.
It was on advice from Ileane that I found the Tweet Old Posts plugin, which far exceeded my expectations. Not only did it do everything that I wanted it to do, but it also had loads more options for configuring how and when the tweets would be sent.
So first of all, get the plugin installed. Once you’ve installed it, head over to the settings page, where you’ll need to authorise your Twitter account so that the plugin can tweet on your behalf.
The rest of the configuration will depend on what you want the plugin to do. For me, I wanted to send out tweets with my old posts, showing the title and an unshortened URL (so that the URL will be shortened with t.co, rather than bit.ly or another shortener). You can select what URL shortener you want to use from within the configuration, if you want to use one at all.
You can also set how often it should tweet for you. The bit I love about this plugin is that you can set a minimum time between tweets and then set a random interval, which is added to the minimum time between tweets, so that your tweets don’t come out at the same time every day. It helps you to reach a wider audience by tweeting at optimum reading times for different time zones for instance.
You can also set hashtags to add to each tweet, convert certain words to hashtags, or use the categories or tags as hashtags.
Another excellent feature is the ability to set the age limit of a post for it to be eligible to be tweeted. So if you don’t want it to send out your newest posts, you can set a number of days that the post must age for before being eligible to be tweeted. Likewise, if you don’t want to be tweeting about posts that are four years old, you can set a maximum age for your posts, after which they won’t be used. Pretty sweet feature in my opinion!
Then you also have the ability to eliminate specific categories or posts from being included in the list of available posts, which is excellent if you have some posts that were relevant for a week, or a month (like advertising for a competition or offer or something), but won’t be of any use several months down the road.
When configured correctly, this really can be an excellent marketing tool for you. You can send out periodic tweets with your old content which is still relevant for your readers, particularly for those that may have only discovered you since you wrote those good, older posts.
Is this a practice that you’ve adopted? Do you use another method for sending out tweets about your older content? How does Twitter play into your blog marketing, if at all?