Continuing my series of articles about WordPress, today we’re going to learn how to publicise posts by sharing them on the social media platforms that we use.
Why should I publicise my WordPress blog posts?
Using the Publicize feature to share your WordPress blog posts has two main advantages:
1. It shares your content and lets people other than subscribers and people who are searching on the search engines know that it’s there.
2. It adds content to your Facebook page, Twitter stream, LinkedIn profile, etc., without you making any effort at all.
If you’re going to share links to your blog posts on social media, you might as well automate it and save yourself the bother of posting about it all over the place, right?
How do I link my WordPress blog to my social media platforms?
Today we’re going to be spending time in the Settings – Sharing area of the Dashboard:
When you click on Sharing, you will come to this Sharing Settings page. There are two sections: Publicize and Sharing Buttons. We’re going to be talking about Publicize today, and Sharing Buttons next time (watch this space – I will add a link when that one’s live):
Looking at the Publicize section, we can see buttons for connecting various social media platforms to your WordPress blog. What this will do in effect is auto-post a link to any blog post that you publish it, at the time that you publish it, without any effort on your part.
How do I link Facebook to WordPress?
Note that all of the linking is done from WordPress rather than from the individual social media platforms. For example, to link Facebook so that an announcement of every blog post appears in your timeline, click the Connect button next to Facebook. You will be presented with a Facebook login screen. Add your normal Facebook login details and press the Log In button:
If you enter the correct details, your connection will be confirmed:
There are two things to note here. One, you can only link one Facebook account at a time, whereas you can add more than one login to most other social media types. Libro Proofreading … is my business page – for this blog, I have linked posts to that account, and then I pop in and share them onto my personal timeline.
The other thing to note is “Make this connection available to all users of this blog?” This is for a situation where you have more than one person with admin rights over the blog: you can choose, for example, your company or organisation’s Facebook page to auto-post to, and make that option available to everyone who posts on your blog.
Once you’ve chosen the account to connect to and pressed OK, you will return to the Sharing Settings screen, and you can see here that my Facebook page has been added to the page:
You can go on now to connect, for example, your Google+ and Twitter accounts. For Google+, you will be asked to log in then confirm who you want G+ to share posts with:
When connecting Twitter, again, you’ll be asked to log in and then authorise the app. This is all quite standard and doesn’t mean WordPress will do anything odd to your social media – all it will do is post on your behalf when you publish a blog post (we’ll have a look at what that looks like in a moment):
When you return to the Sharing Settings screen, you will see all of the social media accounts that you’ve connected to, confirming which accounts they are:
How do I disconnect my WordPress blog from a social media platform?
If you wish to disconnect any of your social media platforms across all new blog posts, click on the x next to the “Connected as [your name]” message. It will ask you if you’re sure: if you click on OK, the link will be severed.
To reconnect, go through the same process as above. WordPress may remember some of the steps when you do this, such as your username.
How do I manage Publicize in my blog posts?
Let’s have a look at what Publicize looks like in your blog posts.
When you select Posts – Add New and enter the Edit screen, you will see the Publicize section in the Publish area:
Let’s look at that in close-up. You can see that all of the social media sites you’ve linked to are showing here:
Note that sometimes WordPress will become disconnected from one of them for apparently no reason. A message asking you to relink will appear in this area. Click through, provide the details it asks for and the two will be reconnected.
When in this individual post view, you can click on Edit and choose not to promote a link to your blog post to a particular site by clicking on the cross and making the square blank. You can also change the standard text that goes out with the link in Custom Message:
Clicking on Settings just takes you back to the original Sharing Settings screen we were looking at above.
When you’ve written your blog post, click Publish as normal:
What gets posted to my social media when I’m connected to WordPress?
I’m just going to share two examples here, but you’ll get the idea.
When WordPress is connected to Facebook, an entry will appear in your timeline, with any picture that you included in the post (very large in the current incarnation of Facebook!) and a bit of the text, and there will be a link, arrowed here, which will take the reader to the blog post itself.
In Twitter, WordPress posts a shortened version of the full URL as a link and the automatic text taken from your blog heading:
Today we’ve learnt how to use the Publicize feature of WordPress to link it to your social media platforms such as LinkedIn, Twitter and WordPress. Next time, we’ll be looking at how you can enable your readers to share your blog posts through the use of sharing buttons.
If you’ve enjoyed this post and found it useful, do please comment and/or use the sharing buttons below this post to share it with other potential readers who might find it useful. Thank you!
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