In the previous article, we touched on the importance of social media and how the “Share and Follow” WordPress plugin is very useful in this regard. Not surprisingly, it is far from being the only option when it comes to integrating your blog with the various social networking channels that are out there on the Internet.
The world wide web, as it were, is more connected and more social than ever. That’s why it is positively essential that you make good use of the right WordPress plugins to drive social media traffic toward your blog. More and more people are spending large amounts of time on sites like Twitter and Facebook, so it’s important that you reach out these audiences in whatever way you can. This can help the growth of your blog greatly, as well as develop an increasingly large group of loyal readers.
So, what plugins should you consider? Here are a few that are definitely worth noting and, yes, all of them are free to download, install, and use.
- Twitter Tools: This plugin creates complete integration between your WordPress blog and your Twitter account. This works both ways. The plugin can pull the tweets that you send out and create new blog posts, but it can also send out Twitter updates each time that you publish a new post too.
- Wickett Twitter Widget: This plugin will display the latest tweets from your Twitter account as a customizable widget on your blog’s sidebar (or anywhere else you use widgets). You can customize the number of tweets displayed, filter out @replies, and more.
- Tweet This: Want to make it easier for your readers to share your blog posts with their Twitter followers? This plugin will insert a “Tweet This” button in your blog posts, making the sharing process as simple as clicking a single button. This can also be used to tweet out new posts on your own account, using your choice of URL shortening services like bit.ly, su.pr, and TinyURL.
- Facebook Connect: Facebook has millions of users, so how can you get them onto your blog? This plugin checks to see if the person already has a WP profile that corresponds with their Facebook email address. From there, they’re able to connect to your blog with their own account. This plugin also includes a sidebar widget.
- Facebook CommentsTNG: On the one hand, you want to encourage people to interact with your Facebook fan page, but you also want to capture that content for your own blog. This plugin will automatically pull the comments from your imported Facebook notes back into your blog.
- Share Post: In addition to allowing your readers to quickly and easily share your blog post on their social media accounts, this plugin can offer a real-time count of the Facebook likes, Twitter tweets, and Diggs associated with that post. People like to follow other people, so proudly displaying high “like” and “tweet” counts can be very advantageous.
- Smart YouTube: You may have noticed that when you try to embed a YouTube video in your blog posts that, while they show up fine on your site, they do not appear in your RSS feed. This WordPress plugin fixes that problem. This is partly because it uses xHTML valid code, allows for full-screen viewing, and is iPhone compatible.