By Mark O’Neill
There’s no need to tell you that I am Mr Twitter. You only need to look through the GAS archives to know that. But the one thing that irritated me about Twitter was going through each email that told me that someone was now following me and then going to that person’s Twitter profile, following them, going to the next email, following them… it got a bit tedious after a while. I mean, I get enough email in my day without getting even more. There had to be a way to automate all of this… right?
It turns out there is a way. There’s a website called TweetLater which is marketed as a site where you can schedule Twitter messages to be posted in the future. But you can also tell it to auto-accept people who are following you and follow them right back on your behalf. It will even send an automated thank you message to their Twitter account! So how do you set it up?
I have heard some people complaining in the past about how difficult it is to set it up, but it isn’t difficult in the slightest. After making your account, all you have to do is to give it your Twitter credentials. You then automate the auto-follow part by telling your Twitter account (in the settings) to send you an email notification whenever someone follows you. You then tell your email account to forward those emails, upon arrival, to an email address that TweetLater specifies (you can also tell your email account to then delete those emails so you never see them). If you have Gmail, just set up a filter. It’s extremely easy and it took me two minutes.
TweetLater then does the rest. I’ve been keeping watch on the number of my Twitter followers and on my deleted emails folder and I can say with all honesty that it works perfectly. I’ve also had some nice notes from those new followers thanking me for the notes they received from me thanking them for following me (actually sent by TweetLater but they weren’t to know that!).
This is a great tool if you use Twitter a lot. Right away, you don’t have to respond to “so-and so is following you on Twitter” anymore. Tweetlater will handle those emails for you and will auto-follow them on your behalf. If you have filtered the emails to also auto-delete, then you will notice a nice drop in the number of emails hitting your inbox. It’s one less task for you to do and think about.
This only works though if you tend to follow everybody. If you prefer to vet each follower before following them, then obviously TweetLater isn’t for you.