Then when a user leaves a new review the review with bit.ly link is automatically added to your twitter account. Pretty Cool and Helpful.
I have moderated reviews so this feature does not work for me. I have to have moderated reviews due to high amounts of spam reviews. Luckily the solution to my problem has already been found. No coding needed, just configuring a few settings.
The solution: Use existing JReviews RSS feeds and a RSS to Twitter service to publish latest reviews/listings/etc to Twitter. FeedBurner by Google and Twitterfeed.com are two examples of this service..
This post will cover:
- The standard JReviews RSS Feeds
- Step by step Feedburner configuration
- Step by step Twitterfeed configuration
- Which is better Twitterfeed or Feedburner
Note: the information in this post applies to any RSS feed that comes from your Website.
All Editor/User Reviews:
All Listings or Review Items:
Any JReviews page can be an RSS feed. Just take the url from the site and append the action param:
&action=xml to the URL
option=com_jreviews&url= categories/mostreviewed& action=xml
Configure Feedburner to Publish Reviews to Twitter
You are probably familiar with Feedburner if not, all you need to know is Feedburner is a great tool to manage your RSS Feeds. At the end of 2009 Google added a new feature called socialize which allows you to post the items in your RSS Feed to twitter. Here is how to configure that service.
1. Log into FeedBurner. http://feedburner.google.com (you will need a google account)
2. Burn a new feed for the Editor/User Reviews or appropriate feed
- In the center of your my feeds page, enter the feed address click next.
- Enter the title and the feed address
- Select the stats you want to track (optional)
3. On the Publize tab go to the pingshot section and enable it. I still need to do some more testing but it seems that this feature needs to be enabled for the automatic twitter updates.
4. On the Publize tab go to the socialize section
- Enter you twitter details.
- Select your formatting options
- Click Save to activate the feed
There are serveral other options here such as additional text, or leaving room for retweets. For my feeds I like to display the title and the body, include the link, no hash tags, and no additional text. For the item selection I keep it at 5, and I do not use the keyword filter. As you make changes be sure to check the preview at the bottom of the page.
5. Test the feed by creating and approving a new user review.
Note it may take a little bit of time for FeedBurner to pick up the new entry to the Review RSS feed and it will take a little bit of time for Feed Burner to publish the new entry to Twitter. Once when I first set up a new feed and enabled the socialize feature it did not pick up my first review but after a I waited about 20 minutes and tried it again, FeedBurner tweeted it for me immediately.
The end result in your Twiiter account:
- You probably already have a Google Account or using Feedburner
- No extra account to create and mantain
- Many other useful features in FeedBurner
- Ability to add Google Analytics tracking parameters to
- At this point not sure how often Feedburner Updates Twitter
More info on Feedburner Socialize:
Twitterfeed is a very popular and configurable service that takes RSS to Twitter, Facebook, etc
1. Create a Twitterfeed account. http://www.twitterfeed.com
2. Create a new feed You will need to enter your Reviews or Listing RSS feed and title, click continue to step two button.
3. Here you will set which services you want to push your RSS Feed to. For our example we only publishid to Twitter.
- Easy to set up
- Will publish to Twitter and Facebook
- Not sure how long Twitterfeed will be around
- Extra Account to keep up and maintain
This is a personal preference. For me I prefer FeedBurner. I was already using FeedBurner to manage my RSS feeds so all I needed to to was enable the pingshot and socialize features. Nothing else to keep up with. FeedBurner is also a google product so you know that the project will not get dropped or abondoned.
Currently Feedburner Socialize can not publish to Facebook, I have no idea if they are planning this feature in the future. If you need to publish your reviews to Facebook there are several options that allow you to publish RSS to Facebook Fanpage.
Twitterfeed can also publish to facebook which is a plus. For my set up I need it to be able to publish to a fan page which I am not sure that it can do. If I had a site where I want to publish to my Facebook user account then Twitterfeed would be much more of an option.
Additionally I am not really sure how twitterfeed is making money or who is supporting them. There has been a long string of Twitter RSS application that have come and gone. Lets hope Twitterfeed is not one of them.
Additional Notes and Thoughts
I would also like to find the best way to combine multiple feeds into one feed and then publish that as a master feed.
Could be done using Google Reader, Yahoo Pipes or XFruits
Did we miss something? Know of another/better way to do this?
Follow me @intownwebdesign on twitter or contact me and we can get it added to the post.
This Post Orinally appeared at Intown Web Design at