By now, you are well aware of Facebook and its plethora of cohorts like Twitter, Google and other social media sites. And, if you are an avid user of Facebook, you also know that Facebook is always changing or adding features-some of these are loved, and others, maybe not so much. 😉 But recently Facebook has released a plugin that, as a business owner you will want to take advantage of – the Facebook Plugin for WordPress.
The great thing is that it doesn’t even require you to know a single line of code, so even a non-web programmer can set it up, although we have found some things to be a little buggy, like auto posting to a FB page you own seems to time out and not work. Hopefully an update to the plugin will remedy that soon. The Facebook WordPress plugin has a number of features that are easy to use and apply, thanks to their checkbox format on the Facebook settings page. The features include:
- The ability to post to an author’s Facebook timeline whenever you publish a new WP post or page
- Using the recommendations bar to “Like” content and add what they are reading to the timeline.
- Open Graph Protocol integration
- Customize where on Facebook your WP post are made.
- Mention friends and Facebook pages to your timeline as well as list them on the WordPress post or page.
- Like, Send and Subscribe buttons can be enabled in a click and are fully customizable.
Many of these features can be turned on, on the post page or used via one of these widgets:
- Activity Feed Box- This shows the Facebook user what friends are doing on your website.
- Recommendations Box – Shows the Facebook user some page recommendations they might like based on the activity of their friends while on your site.
- Have your own Like, Send and Subscribe buttons.
While there are sites out there that give lengthy step-by-step installation instructions, it can be summarized in two steps.
- Install via the WordPress.org plugin directory or by uploading the files to your server.
- Once the plugin is activated, you will be asked to set up your Facebook app (http://developers.facebook.
com/apps) and follow the instructions.
Using the Facebook WordPress Plugin:
The Facebook plugin, while simple to use, offers a myriad of uses and gives you the ability to customize the feature on your self-hosted blog. Emeric Ernoult of Social Media Examniner.com has come up with a variety of tips and ideas to make the plugin all that you need it to be. Here are a few of them:
Tips in Creating Your Custom App (as described in the instructions linked to above):
- When designing your app, use your blog’s name.
- Personalize your app logo and icon as it increases your visibility and brand awareness.
- Define your action and object type.
Once you have created your custom app, take some time to configure it to your preferences. One of the great ways to use the Social Publishing feature of the WordPress Facebook plugin is to promote your latest blog post. This is done by activating the automatic publication option so that it posts to the author’s Timeline. Then you can add a personalized description and share your article, by using the Social Publisher. Then, the friends and pages mentioned at the time you published your article will show up on the bottom of their Timelines.
Using the Like, Send and Subscribe buttons for each of your articles is great way to add even more visibility on Facebook. You can adjust so that they appear where you would like, although they are typically located at the bottom of article, where the author’s photo is shown. An additional choice you have, and one that is recommended by many, is to select the “Show Faces” option and to select a font that is similar to the one you use on your blog.
How Can the WordPress Facebook Plug Help?
If you wondering, perhaps, how this new feature can benefit you, then take a few moments to consider these ideas from Govindji Patel of gbpcentral.com:
- You can mention people and pages on Facebook within your posts, which means more traffic to your website.
- Facebook comments are nice because many people are already logged in and don’t have to log in again to post on your article.
- When someone posts a comment on your post, it’s noted in their timeline, resulting in more traffic to your site.
Installing the WordPress Facebook plugin will make a big difference in how you use both your Facebook business page and your WordPress site! Just think of all the beneficial ways you can promote who you are and what you do by using this new plugin. If you need help with using this new tool, give Page Progressive a call. We would love to hear from you!