I haven’t been able to get this quite right until about 3 hours ago, and I am now going to set this up for all of the artists that I work with. I have researched for weeks on this topic before, and have been unable to find any all-inclusive solutions for automatically syndicating new blog posts to all of the social networks I use…until now.
I currently have Facebook and Twitter set up to automatically post (via WordTwit and NetworkedBlogs), but I have been manually submitting my posts to places like Digg, Delicious, Reddit, FriendFeed, and others. Not exactly efficient.
Alas, I have finally found some light at the end of the tunnel. In this post, I will talk about two different methods that you can use to syndicate your new blog posts across 30+ social networks at one time. Pretty awesome, right?
There’s a plug-in for that!
If your a WordPress user, I have found a very handy plug-in that seamlessly links your blog with Ping.fm. If you are not familiar with Ping.fm, it’s a free service that allows you to connect all of your social networks together, so that when you post one update (via Ping.fm), it is automatically posted to all social networking profiles that you have added to your Ping.fm account. I used to use it a few months back, but abandoned it because I got tired of manually typing in status updates every time a new blog post went up. Now that I found this plug-in, however, I am hooked once again!
To get this working, you need to first download WPing.fm from the WordPress plug-in directory. You can download the plug-in here. Unzip the file, copy and paste the “wpingfm” folder into your “/wp-content/plugins/” folder, and activate the plug-in in your WordPress admin area.
On the plug-in’s settings page in your WordPress admin area, you can customize the mass update to include whatever you want (links are automatically inserted at the end of posts, FYI…and they are automatically converted to shortlinks, which is nice too!).
Next, you need to create an account with Ping.fm. Head over to http://ping.fm, and set up your account for free. It takes no more than 10 seconds.
After signing up and logging in, you should be automatically directed to a page where you can add various social networks. Start adding the ones that you wish to update with your new blog post announcements. The process is tedious, but really intuitive and easy and only has to be done once. As Brian Hazard likes to say, “set it and forget it.”
After you’ve connected all your social networks, you need to retrieve your API key from Ping.fm so your blog can interact with Ping.fm to let it know when to send out your mass updates.
Click here to get your API key (you must be logged in).
Copy and paste your API key into the respective field on the settings page of the WPing.fm plug-in, located under the “Settings” tab in your WordPress admin area.
Save your API key, then choose what kinds of posts you’d like WPing.fm to update, and save those changes as well.
And you’re done! That was easy, wasn’t it?
For non-Wordpress users
Not using WordPress? Not a problem! There’s a solution for you as well, and all you need is a simple RSS feed (which you should already have if you are actively blogging) to get started.
This method also leverages the power of Ping.fm, but uses another service called TwitterFeed, which connects your RSS feed to your Ping.fm account.
First, head over to Ping.fm, set up your free account, and connect all of your social networks. If you can’t figure out how to do this, read my short directions above.
After setting up Ping.fm, here are the steps to follow to set up TwitterFeed as the middle-man between your blog and your Ping.fm account:
- Go to http://twitterfeed.com and sign up for free.
- Copy and paste your blog’s RSS feed, and click “Advanced Settings” at the bottom to customize how your mass updates will appear.
- Proceed to the next page, and select “Ping.fm” from the list of services.
- Insert your Ping.fm API key in the correct field.
- Click “Create Service” on the bottom of the page.
Voila! Either of these methods should do the trick. Now, whenever you publish a new blog post, you will no longer have to sit and manually update each of your social networking profiles every time.
I’d like to briefly mention that automatically posting your blog entries will not guarantee that people will click your links, or even read your status update. It’s up to you to engage and connect with those people, and get them interested in what you are blogging about. Also, some websites like Reddit and Digg do not sync with Ping.fm, and require you to submit your link. There are other plug-ins to take care of this, but it is usually bad practice on social news sites to only submit links from your own blog. I found this out the hard way on Reddit, and now I pick and choose what articles I will expose to those communities, and try to share relevant links from other websites as well.
I hope this article saves some people a little bit of time so they can focus on other cool shit, like writing music or climbing mountains. Let me know if you have any questions!