Blog Post

How RSS Feeds Affect My Life & Work

Perkett PR blogAbout a week ago, I posted about Needing a Gentle Intro to RSS Feeds. I mentioned that I would read my RSS feeds through Google Reader over breakfast while my husband reads the paper and would let you know how I fared.

I know it has only been a week, but here are my first impressions about the impact reading feeds is having on my life and work.

1. They make me look smarter. Over the past week, I used Tweetburner to immediately post what I was reading when I was reading it to my Twitter page. On those mornings that I was immersed in feeds, I think I looked smart and informed. Either that or crazy or not busy enough actually getting work done.

2. They give me interesting fodder for breakfast conversation with my husband. Unfortunately “new media” is not his area of interest so he paid me back reading me articles about bears and other wildlife topics.

3. I read more blog posts in one week by Seth Godin than I had in the last several years. I don’t mean to neglect Seth. He’s smart. I like him. I learn from him. But I stray from reading blogs in general because I can’t seem to find the time. Reading feeds over eggs and coffee carves out time to learn from the masters.

Brazen Careerist blog4. I learned about new paths to productivity. Tracking the feed of Brazen Careerist led me to an interesting blog post from Penelope Trunk and one that I need to read again. Productivity is my obsession. The information in her post is like giving a compulsive hand washer more soap.

5. I learned more about Twitter apps which can only increase my Twittering effective. From Twemes to Hashtags to Twidgets, I devoured this short and snappy post and still wanted more. Increasing my Tweet effectiveness is actually important to my work since I use Twitter to source story ideas, to get answers to my burning tech questions within minutes, to market projects (both mine and my clients’), and to connect with my peers on a regular basis.

6. What I read in feeds last week had either a direct connection or impact on what I do every day for work. I discovered some interesting blogs and sites such as: Brand Tags – an experiment in the 1-word associations people make with brand logos (branding is an important aspect of the work I do to market companies and nonprofits online); the post Social Media FAQ#5: How Do I Takl to my Executives About Social Media (always interested in seeing how people communicate social media to non-tech types – helpful in my pitches to potential clients); and Drop the Excuses and Start Participating (interested in the impact of social media on traditional PR as I’ve moved from the traditional to the “new PR” over the last 10 years and into social media in the last few years.)

It remains to be seen if I can keep up with my feed reading over time. In the meanwhile, I’ll absorb as much knowledge as I can to expand my understanding of this ever-changing industry and to improve what I do and how I do it.

What was the latest thing you read via your feed reader that has had an impact on the way you work?

13 Responses to “How RSS Feeds Affect My Life & Work”

  1. Aliza Sherman

    h – Twittering is actually PART of my productivity. I accomplish more things more quickly with and because of Twitter. No reconciliation needed. It is a no-brainer.

  2. ReadMine at allows you to keep a Readlog of the items you spent the most time reading. It also learns what’s of most interest to you simply by waht you read and don’t. Great for only reading the most interesting things and dropping the rest to the bottom.

  3. Given your interest in productivity, you may want to give the illumio RSS feed reader a try. It filters your feeds to show you what news and blogs posts best match your interests.

  4. Hi Aliza,

    Nice post!

    I’ve been a huge fan of RSS feeds for a while now, and I honestly don’t think I would read half as much without them.

    I started using them to help manage a number of blogs and message boards for work — instead of checking 10-20 blogs for new posts, new comments, etc. I was able to get everything in one place, same with the message boards.

    Beyond that, though, it helps me get ideas, keep up on what’s going on in the world, and what my friends are doing.

    I use Google reader as well, and love how I can clump related feeds into a folder to check them all at once, and I love that they’re searchable, shareable and starable (I know, not exactly a word).

    It’s hard to teach people about feeds sometimes, but they can really revolutionize the way you get information and how much you can take in.

    The only problem I have is that with all my subscriptions, if I don’t check them for a few days, the number of new posts can seem insurmountable. Though I guess that’s what the “mark all as read” button is for!

  5. Also, having RSS feeds in my google reader, provides a “forever” library of information. I know that if I read something that I want to go back and reference, I can search for the information and have it almost instantly at my fingertips. RSS feeds are the best. More people need to get keyed into using them, and yet I would say that most people have never heard of them, and those that have heard of them, aren’t using them. What a shame.

  6. Alize,

    I’ve been enjoying your posts and was of course surprised to see a screenshot of our blog on it today! Thank you so much for reading and including us in your overview. I am glad we could provide some value and we’ll continue to try and so so.

    My husband is B-O-R-E-D of hearing about my passion for social media. But I just keep yapping away. Does that make me a total geek or totally cool?

    Follow me on Twitter: @missusP or @PerkettPR