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June 01, 2005

Looking for examples of marketers using RSS

By Charlene Li

  • I’m doing a research project on how marketers can/should use RSS and am looking for any non-blog related uses of RSS. For example, Purina has RSS feeds for updated Web content (e.g. dog and cat care advice), and coupon or bargain sites like Slick Deals and TechBargains also have RSS feeds of their sites’ content.

Ideally, I’d like to find examples of marketers using RSS as a substitute/alternative to email newsletters, or using RSS as a way to ensure deliverability of information or promotions.

Feel free to post the examples in comments below, or email me if you’d prefer to share the information only for background purposes.


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Deals on the Web (dealsontheweb.com) - a site for bargain hunters looking for consumer electronics - have an RSS feed for their latest finds at http://dealsontheweb.com/xml/current_deals.xml

I'm sure this sort of use of RSS is going to be fairly common pretty soon if it isn't already.

Stephen Pierzchala

Try Apple's PR Feed -- http://www.apple.com/main/rss/hotnews/pr.rss

I think that ALL companies should distribute press releases this way.


Gary Potter

Both Continental Airlines and Delta Vacations have RSS feeds. I subscribed to Delta to get a feel for what they offer - pretty good content but impossible to find the feed url - a major marketing mistake. Continentals is easy to find.

Amazon has done it again with the http://www.dealazon.com beta


Peter Hershberg

The Corcoran Group -- who effectively dominate the NYC real estate market -- are now offering RSS feeds covering company news, openhouses and newest listings.

Pretty cool, though I suspect that few of their potential customers are taking advantage of it at this stage.


Christopher Carfi

Although there's one level of indirection between the "marketers" and the recipients of the information, Craiglist has done a bang-up job of RSS-ifying pretty much everything on the site.


Lee Odden

My SEO firm is just now testing RSS feeds for a few retail clients to augment email special offers and web site promotions. No urls just yet but I will be happy to send you when we're done testing.

However, I'm not posting empty handed - here's an affiliate program that offers RSS feeds of product offers you might be interested in: Click Bank Product RSS Feed - http://www.ambatch.com/cbrss/

Here's a Public Relations firm that also offers an RSS feed of the press releases they distribute: http://www.misukanisodden.com/client-news/feed/

Denise Hitch

SmartTravelDeals.com is experimenting with distributing travel sales and offers via RSS feeds. In the future, we also plan to introduce destination and/or interest based RSS feeds. If you are interested in learning more, feel free to contact me.


Tech-Recipes.com delivers all of their tutorials in RSS feeds. You can subscribe to all the posts or just the feed from each section. It's a great way to look for new hints and tweaks without having to hit the site multiple times each day.


We use RSS at Luftgrop.se (a Swedish travel comparison site) to distribute travel information. We use it for last minute tour packages and also for flexible travel search where you can select departure city, destination, dates and so on in any combination and get the lowest fares that match your criteria in your feed.

You can see it at:

It's in Swedish so mail me if you have any questions.


PBS is using RSS feeds... in particular, they've been using it for Frontline.


You can see the RSS feed at the bottom of the page... My favorite application of it is within the Frontline "watch online" section, as they are now putting the full versions of their shows on the web. The RSS feed will show you what's the newest show available to watch online, and will take you directly to that page.

In addition, PBS has also enabled trackback on their site. You can read more about that on my site: http://www.randomculture.com/random_culture/2005/03/update_pbs_trac.html

Dave McClure

hi Charlene -

we allow people to save any job searche they do on the simplyhired.com site as an RSS feed, and then when new jobs appear that match their search criteria, they'll see the job listings via RSS.

(similarly, email alerts for the same purpose will be launched later this month).

- dave mcclure

Linda Zimmer

We're a marketing communications company who has been using RSS feeds (rather than an email newsletters) since January to deliver updates of five different categories of our content: our trend briefings, trend tours, new webcasts, and news. We also offer SMS alerts for some content for our international visitors who prefer it to RSS.

We are currently working with a small placement company client who will very soon be offering new job listings via RSS.

Jim Cahill

We started an RSS webfeed a few months back for news about our product, DeltaV. It's an automation system for process manufacturers. The feed complements an news update email which goes out every few weeks.

Given the conservative nature of our business, we see the transition from email to RSS feeds taking a while, so we will continue to both for the forseeable future but watch the trends (Feedburner for RSS webfeed) and email subscriptions for the email newsletter to see when we might discontinue emails.

matthew podboy

Charlene, this is one of the better weather sites on the internet and it recenlty added several blogs. http://www.wunderground.com/blog/index.html

Prashanth Rai

1. A non blog use of RSS is RSS Calender.
2. Another one, Would be an alerting system providing a status update of an order/item.

Karan Bavandi

I see a future were RSS will be used as a standard file attachment to share links plus comments.

As an example a sales person or a marketer, will quickly aggregate links from different feeds and web pages based on very specific client request, add comments to each link and send the result as a file attachment to an email. There is a difference here between the RSS feed generated automatically by a site based on content added to a site and an RSS feed that is generated manually based on very specific needs!

Our product Optimal Desktop already does this effectively. A special RSS folders lets you aggregate links and build and XML files that can be read by any RSS reader.

Me thinks, as RSS becomes a standard feature of all browsers you will see this application of RSS grow quickly.

The following link is an RSS file that I generated manully aggregating various press commentary on Optimal Desktop. Look at it in your RSS reader to see what I mean. I also have a link to this on my blog. (http://www.optimalaccess.com/en/files/feeds/OptimalDesktopPress.xml)



Gallup just kicked off RSS feeds for distribution of their content.


Natasha Robinson

I'm one of those people who has been telling anyone who would listen the virtues of RSS for a while now.

I've recently implemented a RSS feed for my company's site (And, yes I even "rolled it" myself): http://www.officialdesktop.com/rss.xml

I'm still always amazed when I visit a website and don't see a RSS feed; especially if it's a media site. I seriously don't have the time to visit all the websites I read, which is why I love RSS.

When I find my list of cool RSS uses (like the RSS calendar Prashanth Rai mentioned) I've accumulated over the years I'll post them here.

Natasha Robinson

Paul Gibler

Intel is using RSS feeds for 6 different streams (press releases, products, software updates, reseller center, IT operations and IT for classrooms) http://www.intel.com/intel/rss.htm
Paul a.k.a. the Web Chef

Pino Calzo

some examples of company solutions. We draw from the same database NewsIsFree is using, which builds on approx 80% "business-relavant" feeds and 20% "blogs and others". The solutions are manningfold (multi-lingual portal, custom search, product research, market research, brand name monitoring etc). As you might see research is beside marketing the biggest area we see


Pino Calzo

some examples of company solutions. We draw from the same database NewsIsFree is using, which builds on approx 80% "business-relavant" feeds and 20% "blogs and others". The solutions are manningfold (multi-lingual portal, custom search, product research, market research, brand name monitoring etc). As you might see research is beside marketing the biggest area we see


Jochem Donkers

Apple uses RSS feeds for promoting its music store, software downloads and many other things. An overview of all the Apple RSS feeds at: http://www.apple.com/rss/

Ron Martinez


Undergroundfilm.org, a non-profit digital film distribution and online exhibition organization, co-founded with Alex Cohen and Will Hearst, uses RSS feeds to make digital films available across the net.

Find the feeds here: http://www.undergroundfilm.org/xml.tcl

- Ron


USATODAY.com has advertising-based RSS feeds for Travel Specials and Deals: http://asp.usatoday.com/marketing/rss/index.aspx

Scott Quick

Attensa’s network infrastructure is a distinct, competitive advantage for the company.

While Attensa gives businesses, marketers and publishers the ability to track and analyze massive amounts of attention data in discrete communities of publisher-subscribers through Attensa RSS Analytics - they are also creating a macro-level network that spans multiple disparate communities, sites, businesses and software applications.

When attention data is captured and analyzed on that scale, it creates rich, actionable behavioral insights yield innumerable benefits that can be monetized many times over.


Hello Jim, i can't connect to this site http://www.wunderground.com/blog/index.html
Do u have a mirror of this site?


As RSS grows and becomes easier to use and tool for consuming content more and more publishers will move to a subscription model and provide private channelized content that targets specific niches and specific needs of consumers.

RSS is void of the privacy issues and spam issues that email has. Publishers will maintain high quality prospect and customer bases through content and communication that is of high value, honest and targets the real needs.

RSS will rise as co-strategy or alternate because RSS allows speed of business communications that outperforms email. RSS does not have the deliverability issues of email either.

RSS communications are just beginning to see powerful, flexible and creative uses for marketing and publishing online.

I'd say that while e-mail isn't quite dead, RSS is just beginning its life as an effective tool to connect to and communication with consumers online.

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