WordPress Beginner’s Boot Camp – Article 5 – Social Media Madness
Well, this is it.
First and foremost – thank you so much for joining me on this journey! I sincerely hope all the articles helped you create a powerful, productive WordPress site!! As an extra little bonus, once you complete the series you will get a really sweet, super cool badge!. Share it on your site with pride!
In this final session we’re going to take a closer look at Media as well as Social Share options to really spread the word about your fantastic site. Are you ready? Let’s get this show on the road.
So – during our previous sessions, we went over the basics of media; focusing primarily on uploading pictures. For this final piece I’m going to go into greater detail surrounding videos and adding social media components to your posts and pages. Okay – first thing – log in to the dashboard and then open an existing post. You should have at least one from working through our earlier sessions. Once you have opened your post, click on “edit” then “add media” – you should see screen similar to this:
As you can see, on the left hand side there are some cool options beyond simple image uploads. Let’s review how to insert Tweets and YouTube videos. This new functionality is part of the “Media Explorer.” It’s nice because you do not have to leave the WordPress interface to capture and copy content.
Twitter and YouTube:
The Twitter Explorer lets you search for tweets by keyword, hashtag, specific user, or geographic location all in the same window! The example below examines several different search options:
All — search for your term in the content of tweets, hashtags and usernames;
With Hashtag — search for tweets with a specific hashtag;
By User — search for tweets by a certain user (search by Twitter username);
To User — search for tweets that reply to or mention a certain user (search by Twitter username); or
By Location — search for tweets that are “geotagged” with a certain location (the search field will detect your current location, but you can search for any location).
Select the Tweet you want to embed, click “Insert,” and the Tweet will be automatically embedded. This is much more convenient then the “cut, copy and save” method traditionally available. It avoids the step of having to add the “media” to the “media library” and instead simply inserts into the post or page. You can also do this with YouTube – follow the same steps and procedures from above.
In addition, changing your theme can also provide more media flexibility and functionality. Now that you’re familiar with WordPress and have built out your site framework, take a few minutes to look and determine if your current theme still meets your needs. Just a few weeks ago, WordPress recently released a new default theme (Twenty-Fourteen) which comes with some really great features and is worth investigating a bit further.
“The new Twenty Fourteen theme in particular is a responsive magazine style theme that supports two different layouts. You can display articles in grid layout mode, or as a slider on the homepage. The theme uses a dark background and left sidebar..”
This is great news. Since WordPress.com is designed for users without a lot of coding or design experience, the latest theme offers options for media manipulation that were not previously available. For example, while the default color scheme is black/white, you can choose to customize the color for a reasonable fee (approximately $30) and choose from several well laid out options.
If twenty-fourteen is not for you, don’t worry. There are many resources dedicated to WP Themes – here are a few of our favorites:
Another “cool” tool available on WordPress.com sites is “Press This”. It’s a “drag and drop” app that enables you to “grab” content from the web, edit it and easily add to your Media library! Love the built in tools that make managing your site just a bit easier!
Finally – if your theme is compatible – you may want to consider making your site “mobile” friendly. I know the new theme “twenty-fourteen” that we discussed earlier IS mobile compatible. To set it up, head back to the dashboard and click “Appearance” then “Mobile” A screen similar to below should display:
Work through the interface and select the options that will work best for you and your site. With the growing frequency of people searching on their phones you want to make sure you are reaching your audience where they are – and it’s not always a laptop!
Your site just wouldn’t be complete without Facebook, Twitter and all the rest of the social media crowd! Plus – how would you ever get the word out about your fabulous site without social share? So – there are a couple ways to get your site set up with social media. The simplest is to utilize the “settings” then “sharing” option as shown below:
You can then select the different social media you’d like to promote on your posts and site. Please know you need to have an active account already established for these sites PRIOR to connecting or it won’t work. There are additional options further down on the page for where you want the social icons placed (on pages, on posts, etc) which you should set to suit your site needs.
And, just in case you don’t know, Path is an instant messaging tool with a twist – it’s only for private sharing! Per the website, Path “is the beautiful, ad-free place for private messaging and sharing photos, videos, music, and more with the people in your life who matter most.” A nice option for privacy in an increasingly public world.
Widgets are also available within your theme that can help with social media promotion. If you want to promote your Facebook page and get visitors to your website to “like” your FB site, there is a widget for that! Go into the Dashboard, go to “Appearance”, then “Widgets” and simply click on the “Facebook Like Box” feature and a drop down menu will appear where you can then designate the sidebar. There is a similar option available for Twitter Timeline and the process is the same as above.
This wraps up our WordPress Beginner’s Boot Camp series! I sincerely hope you found value in our session and walked away with not only a great sense of pride (cause you are AWESOME!!) but also an incredible web presence!
As always, feedback is welcomed! If you loved, liked or hated our series – let us know – firstname.lastname@example.org.