Does your website have a blog or “Upcoming Events” page? If so, you are probably making frequent updates to this area to promote your business activities, such as special events, press coverage, awards, etc. Now that the information is on the website, how will you alert your loyal readership to come and discover your updated site?
There are two effective ways to reach your on-line audience: email marketing and, as we’ll discuss here, an RSS feed. Email marketing works best for those who want to make monthly announcements with multiple topics. An RSS feed requires no additional effort on your part, and gives the reader control.
What is RSS?
RSS (Really Simple Syndication) allows readers to subscribe to your website and receive abridged announcements whenever you post new content. Many people already subscribe to RSS feeds to their favorite news websites so that they can browse the titles of recently posted articles, and click to read only what interests them most.
RSS Subscribers use an RSS Reader, such as Google Reader, that looks like an email system. The folders on the left contain the recent news from any subscriptions and will alert the reader when new articles have been added. If you have a gmail account, these alerts can be integrated into your email system. Google Reader, and other web-based RSS readers are especially handy because they allow you to access your subscriptions from any location with internet access. Promoting your RSS FeedOnce you’ve added RSS to your website, the RSS logo will appear on your website. Further, you may choose to announce to your database that your website has RSS, which will allow them to subscribe to your site and receive announcements about updated information. If your audience is tech-savvy, they are likely already using RSS and will be happy to add you to the list!