Not so long ago we ran a story entitled ‘How to make the news come to you‘. The basic idea being to help our readers, clients, and passers by better make use of all the Internet has to offer when it come to researching potential angles to use for a new public relations campaign.
One of our top recommendations was a relatively new service that only joined the legions of iOS apps over the summer. Nevertheless, it has already made such a huge impact to the way many of us go about our daily business it’s any wonder we managed without it all those years. OK- so If This Then That is no Google, but still, thanks to the way this little system works it’s the most useful way of searching for ideas we’ve found in some time.
Mashable clearly agrees, hence its article ‘How IFTTT is Changing the Way We Work‘. Despite such acclaim, though, thanks to the sheer number of new digital platforms launching each week, we realise there are many people that won’t have cottoned on to the benefits here, even though it could significantly reduce the hours they spend digging around for inspiration and relevant news events.
Developed by a guy called Linden Tibbets, a chap that gamers may be interested to learn started out life at software giant Electronic Arts, the principle is simple. If This Then That allows people to set up so-called ‘recipes’ for alerts. Linking up with multiple social networks, the result means we can specify an ‘If’- for example if content is added to BuzzFeed relating to professional photography- followed by a ‘then’- then send an email to my inbox.
In short then, by using this handy, incredibly easy to set up application along with our other accounts (currently Facebook, Diigo, Dropbox, ESPN, email, Etsy, Evernote, RSS, Feedly, ffffound!, Flickr, Foursquare, Gmail, Google Calendar, Google Talk, Instagram, iOS and Android contacts, JetSetMe, Last.fm, LinkedIn, Pocket, Readability, SmartThings, SMS messages, and SoundCloud can all be synced, to name but a handful), we can receive up to the minute information on any device, regarding new content relating to our industry. Or indeed interests.
One of the most interesting aspects of the service is the fact it can be linked to non-smartphones. By syncronising a text alert, as oppose to email or social media, it’s possible to be aware of what’s happening online, even when you don’t have a web connection handy. As such anyone that uses a replacement handset for travelling overseas, or indeed when you’re in an area without sufficient 3 or 4G coverage, should already have an account then.