What’s an RSS feed?
Due to the overwhelming amount of spam on the internet, many users are turning from traditional newsletter subscriptions to RSS feeds to get their information. RSS is Really Simple Syndication. Besides connecting you directly to your customers, feeds are advantageous for several reasons:
* They update automatically. Anytime you publish a new article or blog, your readers receive it with no effort on their part, or yours.
* Unlike an email campaign, they don’t force you to contend with costly black lists and spam filters.
* They’re a 100% opt-in marketing tool. Your documents are transmitted in a mark-up language that requires your subscribers to download a reader, like Bloglines or FeedDemon, to translate them. So all your subscribers really want the information you’re providing.
Where Is This Going?–The Future of RSS
Bill Flitter, founder of RSS analytics engine http://Pheedo.com, suggests, in the near future, feeds will become much simpler and more user-friendly. Says Flitter, “Once RSS becomes a little bit easier, I think we’ll see a huge surge in its use.” Firefox and Safari are already RSS-enabled, and Internet Explorer and Outlook will be soon.
Expect to see individualized RSS feeds gain popularity–customized feeds where a user can choose what kind of content comes through to them. Flitter projects, “I think we’ll see…individual subscriptions increase so you can send information that’s more relevant to that end user… like Tivo for the web.”
Another likely change is that news readers will allow you to customize the look of your feed, rather than translating every one alike. You’ll be able to brand your feed, change its style, and differentiate it from every other feed so your customers can recognize it easily.
How Can I Use RSS for My EBiz?
Use feeds to send newsletters, product promos, blogs, and special offers. You can create your content using any blog platform–Type Pad, Word Press, Movable Type. They all generate RSS feeds–your only job is choosing the content. The important thing is to keep your content fresh and relevant to your audience, because with one click they can unsubscribe. Try to balance generating sales with sharing interesting info and useful tips.