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