Automation in Moderation



I was looking at my “home” stream on my Twitter account this morning, and what I saw was disgusting! Nothing but automated tweets! I only follow a few hundred people right now, and I try to be very discriminating with it to be sure I am following engaging people, I guess I am not!

Automation in Moderation:

The trend has been flowing more steadily towards automating social media more and more these days, and it really frustrates me to the point of not interacting as much on Twitter anymore (luckily Google Plus isn’t like this yet and I find great conversations there daily!).

So, I was looking at my “home” stream (the people I follow, which is only a few hundred at the time of writing this), and the first 10 tweets I found that they came from these services (easy to see where tweets come from using Tweetdeck):

  1. Triberr
  2. WeatherBot (I follow weather updates locally)
  3. Tweet Old Post
  4. Tweet Old Post
  5. Triberr
  6. TwitterFeed
  7. Visibli
  8. Alltop Tweets (Guy Kawasaki)
  10. TwitterFeed
With the exception of Visibli, most all of those were automated Tweets (I could be wrong about Visibli, I am not familiar with it). I went and looked at some of the people that had those tweets sent out, and most of them appear to not be having any real conversations! No moderation whatsoever!

I Have Tried Most Of It:

Trust me when I tell you:

I have tried almost every type of automated social apps available…. with NO luck!

I have used Triberr, TwitterFeed, TweetOld Post, TweetSpinner (for auto following and other follow automation), and more. None of them did anything good for me but create an automated stream that was completely “unsocial”.

I used to use RSS feeds to Twitter and would add my own feeds and a few trusted friends feeds. It wasn’t so bad as long I was still interacting on a daily basis as well to keep the conversations going and not just have my stream filled with automated links to articles I didn’t even read necessarily!

What I discovered was really simple, I wasn’t being social at all! And because of that my audience stopped listening. I even had a few real friends unfollow me because all that was coming from my stream was automated BS!

I Asked My Friends:

I asked a few real people I know on Twitter, which I knew actually use social media to be social, if they used any automated apps for their Tweets, this is my response:


@kbloemendaal I mainly use Tweet Old Post..It tweets new posts once published and also randomly sends out ol… (cont)
Sep 14 via TweetDeckFavoriteRetweetReply


@kbloemendaal @ExtremeJohn I only automate the sharing of new posts. Use @bufferapp which tweets at the best times. Why? So I don’t forget.
Sep 14 via TweetDeckFavoriteRetweetReply


RT @kbloemendaal: Wondering if @mikestenger and/or @extremejohn can help me: I schedule when I know I’m on. I would say 5% automation.
Sep 14 via HootSuiteFavoriteRetweetReply


@kbloemendaal Hootsuite, when I think something is worth repeating at times I can’t get to twitter “live”
Sep 14 via webFavoriteRetweetReply


@kbloemendaal I do agree with @mikestenger, #Bufferapp search Twitter" href="">#Bufferapp has some sweet features for scheduling quick. #Timely search Twitter" href="">#Timely is sweet too.
Sep 14 via HootSuiteFavoriteRetweetReply

As you can see, these guys understand using “Automation in Moderation”. Each one of them use something, but they do it in moderation and are all very active in conversations as well.


I watch businesses try to do this all the time:

Just put some feeds and automated links promoting us and don’t worry about it!

Eh, wrong answer!

You can’t automate being social! What if you went to a cocktail party and all that you saw were robots all spewing promotional tags out? No one would actually have a conversation or get to know each other.

Social media isn’t just self promotion, it’s relationship marketing!

Do you automate? How much and why? Is it working for you?


Keith writes social web in plain english here. Feel free to contact Keith with any questions. Follow Keith on Twitter, connect with Keith on Google Plus. Keith also enjoys web design, community management, and SEO. When he isn't in front of the computer he likes photography, golf, and sunshine.

3 Comments on "Automation in Moderation"

  1. Extreme John says:

    Thanks for including me Keith I appreciate it. The automation of Twitter is really starting to wear down on the value of Twitter in my opinion. Much like yourself I’m finding much more meaningful conversations on Google+ now v Twitter. I’m still a Twitter addict, but cleaning up my following is on my list for this week. More real, less auto.

    P.s. New blog is looking good bro.
    Extreme John recently wrote..Business Blitz: Recognizing The Five Stages of Small Business GrowthMy Profile

    • Keith says:

      I find myself enjoying Plus much more too, but I am determined to stay with Twitter as it has proven to work as a networking tool for me in the past…. just frustrated like you said.

  2. Hi Keith,

    I automate some via Triberr, and I schedule many of my posts (but that’s not really automation, because I add them manually to the schedule I’ve set). Ah, I also use TweetOldPosts.

    The thing I really like with social media is the part where we are social and not just pushing information and our own posts. I try to connect with people by mainly asking questions, and that’s not something we can or should automate. So, I fully agree with you :)

Got something to say? Go for it!

CommentLuv badge