Friendfeed Inflates Feedburner’s Subscribers’ Count

friendfeed followers count

I recently discovered that your Frienfeed subscribers’ counter has a direct impact on your Feedburner’s subcribers’ counter. As you can see below, I have linked a fresh new blog to my friendfeed account, and created a Feedburner URL for the blog’s feed. The results are pretty conclusive: The blog suddenly got a a surge of subscribers (compare to its 0 average), and the feedcount is almost equal to my number of subscribers on Friendfeed:

friendfeed followers countfeedburner friendfeed feedcounter

Why does this saddens me? The Feedburner subscribers’ count gives a fairly good clue on the influence one blog has. Knowing that you can pump up your RSS subscribers’ count by following a ton-load of people on Friendfeed for follow-backs makes it flaky. When I mentioned it to someone I collaborate with, his reaction was: “That’s stupid, it’s like counting Twitter followers as RSS subscribers!” I’m not sure if I agree or disagree actually. Is an official RSS reader subscribers more valuable than a Twitter subscribers? Quite frankly, I’d like to see numbers to be convinced. What do you think?

Analyze Any Feedburner RSS Feed With Feed Analytics

rss feed analytics

rss feed analytics

To better understand the reach of the bloggers I was getting in touch with, I needed to know the number of RSS subscribers they each had. After a little research on the Web, I found satisfaction with Feed Analysis, a Feedburner feed analytics tool hosted by BlogPerfume. Feed Analytics offers the following:

  • Column chart of subscribers per month
  • Line chart comparing subscribers, hits, views, and clicks daily
  • Pie chart breaking up RSS consumption per days of the week.
  • View the past 6 month, or the past 50 months!

Here is the chart for the HyveUp feed:

HyveUp feed analysis

As you can see, above the chart is an estimate of the value of an ad on a blog, and the value of the blog.

HyveUp feed analysis activity

Same here, above the chart are a few numbers that help you understand a feed’s activity.

HyveUp feed analysis days

And again some predictions on a blogger’s RSS subscriptions growth for the months to come. Overall, it is a great tool to get a visual glimpse a one blogger’s RSS network size. My only regret is that this data is not downloadable in a CSV format, this would have been pretty neat for record purposes (or a button to transfer the data on a Google Doc).

How-to Update Your Facebook Page with Your Blog’s RSS Feed Automatically

facebook automate

facebook automate

I recently started to re-focus my attention on the marketing potential of Facebook, and created a Fan Page for my blog to experiment with the features of a Page. What stroke me right away is that using your RSS feed to update your Facebook Page is not that easy to do. There are probably a dozen ways to do this, but here is the one way I adopted, and I can’t complain about it:

First you will need to create a profile for your blog on NetworkedBlogs. NetworkedBlogs is THE application to hook your blog to Facebook and have access to cool features. I actually created the HyveUp’s profile on NetworkedBlogs quite a while ago when the application was still called Blog Networks.

One of the new nifty features of NetworkedBlogs is the automatic blog-to-Page functionality:

networkedblogs hyveup page

Once you click on the “Pages” link on the top right, it will take you to a page where, out of the list of the blogs you follow on NetworkedBlogs, you will check your blog in the column ‘Publish to wall and show on tab’.

networkedblogs publish parameters

Once you did that, make sure to scroll down the page (if you have a long list of blogs you are following), grant permission to the NetworkedBlogs application to access your page, and save.

You are now good to go. A first update on your page will appear saying something like ‘Importing blog feed using NetworkedBlogs’. Give it an hour or two, and next time you publish a blog post, it will automatically update your Facebook page!

Twitter Apps: Twitterfeed vs Tweetbots

tweetbots

When I edited the video How to auto-retweet entries on Twitter, I used Twitterfeed to post tweaked feeds back to Twitter. Unfortunately, I noticed a few days ago that the RSS-to-Twitter service stopped posting tweets on my various profiles. On my dashboard, Twitterfeed was warning me that my feed could not be parsed right. My take on it: Twitterfeed started to block Yahoo! Pipes feeds that seem to originate from Twitter. I see this as a way to keep their service clear of spam, and I understand.

Sidenote – it was funny to notice that for the exact period that my bots were down, the followers’ counter also dropped dead.

My riposte was to turn to Tweetbots. Here is the difference between the two services:

Twitterfeed

Twitterfeed is more geared towards content publishers. The service lets you connect as many feeds as you want to as many accounts as you want. The Website just went through a major design overhaul, and integrated Oauth in the process, something quite annoying if you ask me.

Twitterfeed dashboard feeds

The problem is that if you want to plug two feeds to the same Twitter stream, you need to create two feeds, an inconvenient detail that Tweetbots doesn’t have. In the screenshot above, to the apply 2 feeds to the account ‘xavierv’, I had to create to feed items (‘hyveup’ and ‘screencastpro’).

Twitterfeed dashboard feed details

Twitterfeed gets good when it comes to managing your outgoing feed. You can select to post to a Twitter, Laconica, Ping.fm or Hello txt account. You get to chose how many times the system should ping the RSS server, the number of items it should post for every updates (5 max), it lets you choose your url shortening service (including rev-share url-shorteners like Adjix), you can post a prefix or suffix to mark your feed in your Twitter stream, and apply a filter to the outgoing feed.

Overall, Twitterfeed is a great tool for bloggers looking to auto-update their status with their latest blog post, but as I mentioned above, it can’t handle multiple tasks on multiple accounts. This sets the limit for me.

Tweetbots

Tweetbots is great for online marketers looking to utilize Twitter to extend their communications efforts.

Tweetbots dashboard accounts

Tweetbots lets you easily post to multiple accounts, assign numerous tasks to numerous accounts, and turn on the auto-follow or auto-DM if needed.

Tweetbots dashboard jobs

As you can see, Tweetbots doesn’t use Oauth to identify your accounts (which makes it easier for Web-based multi-accounts management). And you can assign as many feeds as you want to one account.

What Tweetbots desperately misses is a post frequency feature. My feeds generate 5 to 10 items per minute, and Tweetbots posts it all on my accounts, which is way too invasive and unattractive. Tweetbots also doesn’t let you choose a url-shortening service, which would be a logical feature for such a marketing-oriented service.

What both services lack is an interface where users can manage feeds in one dashboard, accounts in another, and simply link feeds to accounts. This way, for example, I won’t have to manually open every account to post a new feed, but I could just link/unlink at my own will.

One last note: Twitterfeed’s Website is always a little slow for me, whereas Tweetbots runs like a charm.

Notify.me Adds A Bar, Slowly Killing The Traditional RSS Reader

notify me bar

Notify.me is this awesome tool that lets you grab any RSS feed and decide on which medium you want that feed: email, chat, SMS, or Notify.me’s Air app. Today, as usual, Notify.me sends me an info that I care about, so I click along and land on this:

notify me bar

The URL, of course, is a notify.me shortener (http://c.notify.me/xkJCBA). Once you log in, the bar becomes a notify.me dashboard with a few basic feed management options.

notify me bar signin

Digg’s move definitely created a micro-craze around bars and url shorteners. Everyone’s got his own, literally. With bars and shorteners, you can:

  • Increase your traffic (significantly)
  • Get extra insights on traffic analytics
  • Develop your brand

SO what is notify.me’s plan? The company’s blog does not mention anything… A Google search is vain. In other words, we don’t know where notify.me is going with this yet. However, it is not hard to match this new addition to their latest Ping.fm integration. A little more social integrations and Notify.me could become a RSS reader killer. Why? Because notify.me is a RSS reader without the hassle of the RSS reader. Users get their feeds through their existing communications outlets, and the notify.me bar adds those social features needed to interact around content. Why bother going to a place where my news are, when it can all come to me? Notify.me’s RSS model is definitely easier, and has the potential to bring RSS to a broader crowd. Tech geeks will stick to RSS readers, but the rest of the Web might just like Notify.me’s simplicity.