Show me a blogger that doesn’t work hard on their blog posts and I’ll show you a child that hates Christmas.
As bloggers, we all put a lot of effort into our blog posts not only to establish our authority but to attract our target audience and encourage them to interact with our content.
Whether we want them to subscribe to your email list, leave a comment or simply share your latest blog post with their network, ultimately we all want to get as much visibility for our blog as we possibly can.
That’s why no matter how hard you work on your blog posts, you won’t get very far without a little promotion. And the best way to achieve this is to use the power of social media.
But, this is where most of us run into a problem.
Most serious bloggers will tell you that running a successful blog equals to a full-time job.
Not only do you have to come up with new content idea, you have to come up with a great headline, create images for your post, work on your content upgrades, participate in a Twitter chat or two, build your community… and the list goes on and on.
Sharing your blog posts is just one of the tasks on your list.
And if you work on your content in advance and schedule it for a couple of weeks ahead, it’s easy to forget your post went live today and completely miss the opportunity to share it immediately and schedule it in your social media manager of choice.
What if you could easily set your posts to be shared as soon as they are published without you lifting a finger?
The good news is that you can.
What you will learn in this tutorial
- How to share your blog posts to social networks automatically in WordPress
How to automatically share your new post with NextScripts: Social Networks Auto Poster
NextScripts: Social Networks Auto Poster (S.N.A.P.) has a free version available from the official repository and makes your life just a tad easier by eliminating one task from your infinite to-do list: it automatically shares your new blog posts for you as soon as they are published.
Let’s jump in and see what this plugin can do and how to configure it for best results.
Step 1: Install and activate NextScripts
To get started, log into your WordPress dashboard and navigate to Plugin > Add new. Search for NextScripts and then click on Install and Activate. Once that’s done, you can click on Settings to configure the plugin.
The free version of the plugin will let you auto-post to Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, Delicious, Digg, and more.
Social networks that require API such as Google+, Pinterest, Instagram, LinkedIn Groups, and Blogger are available with a premium version of the plugin.
In this case, let’s see how to setup Facebook as an example.
Step 2: Select a social network
In the Social Networks tab, select Facebook from the drop-down menu. You’ll see that you can configure the plugin to post to your personal profile as well as your Facebook page or a group you manage.
You can name your Facebook account which is visible only to you and serves as an easy method of distinguishing between your accounts.
Go ahead and give it a name so you can easily recognize it and then enter the URL for your profile, page or a group.
Step 3: Setup Facebook App
Next, you will need to do a bit of legwork on Facebook itself. Thankfully, the plugin has detailed instructions for configuring each and every social media network.
Essentially, you will need to log into Facebook and then navigate to developers.facebook.com.
If you’ve never created an app before, you will have to register as a developer before creating your app. Once you are registered as a developer click on Add New App from the drop-down menu next to your account picture.
In the window that pops up, enter a name for your app and your email address. Then pick a category. In this case, I selected Apps for Pages but you can pick any category.
Once you click on the Create App ID button, you will be asked to solve a captcha image and then you will be redirected to your app configuration page.
Finally, click on dashboard and you will see two fields API secret and API key. Copy those fields over to NextScripts plugin where it asks you for the Facebook API Key and Facebook API secret.
Next, choose the type of content you’d like to share. You can choose between a text post, an image post or a text post with attached link. If you hover over the help tips, NextScripts plugin will show an easy explanation of recommended settings and the benefits of each type of content.
Once you’ve selected your content type, click on Update settings.
Once you have authorized the plugin to post to your Facebook page or a group, you can click on Settings to configure additional settings such as: should the plugin publish the post immediately or use the WP Cron to schedule your post, enter the settings for your preferred URL shortener, verify featured image, and more.
To add additional accounts, you will follow more or less the same procedure: select your network, enter the API Key and the API secret and then click on update settings. Detailed instructions for Twitter can be found here and for LinkedIn here.
After you’ve configured all your preferred social media networks and the settings, your posts will be pushed to those networks immediately as you publish them.
What’s in the Pro Version
I’ve mentioned that NextScripts Social Networks Auto Poster has a premium version which allows you to auto-post to sites like Google+, Pinterest, Instagram, Blogger and others. The premium version also allows you to add multiple accounts for each social network.
You can upgrade to a paid version for $49.95/year. The paid version also includes access to their support.
The paid version is worth the upgrade if you manage a lot of social media accounts or if you want to reach as many people as possible. Considering Pinterest and Instagram are rising in popularity, a $49.95 investment is definitely worth it in exchange for peace of mind in knowing your posts will get the attention they deserve.
Next Scripts: Social Network Auto Poster is a great solution to make sure your posts will be shared across your social media accounts as soon as they go live. However, this isn’t a set it and forget it method.
Sharing your post only once, sadly isn’t enough. Consider Twitter for example. Twitter feeds moves so fast, especially if you have a lot of followers and follow a lot of people. It’s all too easy to miss a post.
Of course, for those we want to make sure to interact and establish a relationship, an easy solution is to create a Twitter list. Unfortunately, you cannot control other people’s Twitter accounts nor can you force them to put you on the list to ensure they never miss an update.
Similarly, with Facebook pages, it’s getting harder and harder to get your content to be seen. And the same can be said for almost every social network.
It’s crucial that you share your post multiple times across various social media networks as well as use a social media sharing plugin on your blog to allow your readers to share your post with their network.
You should also use a tool like Buffer or Hootsuite to schedule your post to be shared several times throughout the week and at least once in the following weeks.
Content promotion takes a lot more work than simply auto-posting your latest blog post to all your social media accounts. If you’re worried that you will annoy your followers by sharing your post multiple times, don’t be.
With the way social media works, your followers will probably catch only one, maybe two of those updates.
And if you are doing it right, they will also see you curate content from other influencers as well as engage with your tribe on a regular basis which will only help position you as the authority in your niche.