Selectively feeding Tweets to a Facebook Profile and Fan Page

While setting up the Fan Page for Pollak Library, I kept racking my brain over how to update the Page’s Status with our Twitter account, which is often fed by our blog via the WordPress Twitter Pools plugin.

Now, your immediate response is probably that I just need to install the Twitter application for Facebook.

My Dilemma

But the problem is that, since I am the Fan Page owner, the Twitter application gets tied to my Facebook Profile.  This posed a challenge on two fronts:

  1. I needed to be able to associate two separate Twitter accounts with my Facebook account: 1) allow my personal Twitter account to update my personal Profile Status, and 2) allow our library Twitter account to update our Fan Page Status.
  2. I don’t use the regular Twitter application; I’ve been using the Selective Twitter Status application for many months so that I don’t bombard all of my Facebook Friends with every single Tweet I send out — particularly since my Twitter activity revolves heavily around my profession.  From my memory of installing the Selective Twitter Status application, it only allows you to feed it to a Facebook Profile, not a Fan Page.

I thought I would document my solution here in the event anyone else runs into this same problem.

Selective Twitter Status Settings

After commenting on a colleague’s blog about my situation, another kind librarian sent me a Tweet advising that the Selective Twitter Status application does indeed allow you to associate one Twitter account with a personal Profile and a second Twitter account with a Fan Page.  So, either I hadn’t paid attention to that feature when I first installed Selective Twitter Status (hey, I didn’t own a Fan Page then), or the application didn’t support Fan Page integration at the time I installed it (which was before the big relaunch of Fan Pages).

Regardless of which is the correct answer, I was pleased to confirm that my new librarian pal is indeed correct, and I was able to successfully modify the application settings to meet my needs.

Access the Application Settings option from your Facebook Settings menu.
Facebook Settings Menu

If you aren’t already using Selective Twitter status, you will need to install it, then access the Application Settings option from your Facebook Settings menu.  If already installed, simply go straight to Application Settings.

The Facebook Application Settins Menu
The Facebook Application Settins Menu

Find the Selective Twitter Status application, and double-click on its name.

The Selective Twitter Status application settings
The Selective Twitter Status application settings

If you are already using Selective Twitter Status for your Profile, just skip this next step.

If you just installed the application, you need to stay on the Your Profile tab and add your personal Twitter account before proceeding further.

Once in the application settings, select the Your Fan Pages tab.  You should see a list of any Fan Pages you administer.  Enter the Twitter username associated with a particular Fan Page and grant permission for the application to connect with this new Twitter account.

Save all changes when done.

If you manually publish all of your Tweets, you’re set to go.  You simply have to designate which Tweets you want fed to your Fan Page by appending them with the required #fb hashtag.

Selective Blog Tweeting with TwitterFeed

But, if you use something like the WordPress Twitter Tools plugin to automatically feed your blog posts to your Twitter account, you will want to switch to TwitterFeed for that task.  The Twitter Tools plugin does not currently support adding the #fb hashtag to your automated blog Tweets.  Disable the plugin setting that handles this function.

TwitterFeed is a free third party tool that will convert your RSS feeds into Tweets.  It will parse your RSS feeds on a regular basis, checking for updates.  I used to use TwitterFeed way back, when it first became popular.  But, for simply automated blog-generated Tweets, I found I didn’t need it if I used WordPress Twitter Tools — until I decided to push our blog posts one step further by using them to update our Fan Page Status as well with the Selective Twitter Status application.

Unlike the Twitter Tools plugin, TwitterFeed allows you to assign the #fb hashtag to each automated blog Tweet.

Add the #fb hasghtab as a Post Suffix to your Feed settings.
Add the #fb hashtag as a Post Suffix to your Feed settings

To do this, you have to open a TwitterFeed account and set up your blog feed. When done with the basic settings, scroll to the bottom and look for the Post Suffix option.  Enter the #fb hashtag here.  As a side note, I like to also begin my blog-to-Twitter-to-Facebook-Page-Status posts with a “New blog post:” Post Prefix.

And that’s it.

Have you found a better, quicker way to auto-publish blog and Twitter posts to your Facebook Fan Page?  If so, please share.

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