I posted back in February on how to schedule tweets and why. The main point was that if you read “shareable” content in batches, then you don’t want to overload your twitter stream and end up spamming your followers with loads of tweets in a short period of time. It is far better to spread these updates across the day using a tool such as Buffer.
But what about retweets? When I use tools like Flipboard to process my twitter “firehose”, I often come across loads of information that I would like to retweet – but I still don’t want to overload my followers with retweets either.
So here’s a technique you can use that uses ifttt (if this then that) and buffer.
If you haven’t yet used ifttt.com, then I recommend you visit the site and register.. it is a really great service and so easy to use. It allows you to create triggers that respond to certain events that you can track from a variety of sources.
For this example, we’re going to set up a task that monitors our twitter feed and if it detects a new “favourite” tweet, then it will send it to your buffer queue as a retweet (RT).
1. Register with / login to ifttt.com.
2. Create a new task by clicking on the giant “Create Task” button.
3. We are going to set up the “this” first.. as in “if this – then that”. So click on the highlighted “this” link.
4. Now you are going to select the “twitter” channel.. by clicking on the twitter icon.
5. If you have not already registered (connected) your Twitter account with ifttt, then you will need to do that now.
6. Now select what sort of trigger we want from Twitter – you are presented with a list of options. We want “New favorite tweet” – so click on that.
7. Now we are going to tell ifttt what we want to do – when it detects a “new favorite tweet”. So click on the “Create Trigger” button.
8. And now click on the “that” link.
9. And click on the Buffer icon as below.
10. You may now need to connect ifttt to your buffer account if you haven’t done this before.
11. Select “Add to Buffer”
11. When you are presented with the next screen – which asks you how you want the buffer message to appear, then you will need to add “RT ” before the “@” in the field like this:
12. Now you simply need to name your ifttt task.. and that’s it. done.
Now – whenever you favourite a tweet in a web browser or mobile app, it will automatically get added to your buffer queue and will be put on your twitter stream based on the schedule you have created. Note that ifttt checks for new favorites every 15 minutes and so your retweets are not added instantly to your buffer queue – but they will get there. Once it has been added to your buffer queue, you are free to “un-favorite” the tweet if you like.