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Automatically Share Your Business Blog Content

by: | December 5, 2011

The key to successful blogging is getting people to actually read your posts. Without readers, you’re simply spinning your wheels and not getting very far with the practice. The key to getting people to read your posts is encouraging your readers to share your brilliantly worded prose with their networks. Don’t expect it to simply happen on its own, though. Without a little work on your part, it’s unlikely to just happen automatically.

That “work” refers to spreading and sharing your content diligently. Sounds time-consuming, right? Not necessarily. Fortunately for you, I’ve put together a list of tools to add or connect to your blog to automate some of the sharing responsibilities and make your blog an automatic self-promotion powerhouse!

There are a plethora of plug-ins and services out there, so don’t feel limited by this list. I’m simply going to share the ones I use and trust to automate my blogs.

Social Media Sharing Plug-ins

My favorite blogging platform is without a doubt WordPress. The WordPress community is a crafty bunch and has created several great plug-ins for automating your social media and making it easy for your readers to share your articles. I’m going to share my favorite ones here.

Note for non-Wordpress users: I have very limited experience with other platforms; so if you’re using a different system like Drupal or Joomla, search for similar plug-ins for your particular needs.

ShareThis

This plug-in puts links to social media platforms at the end of your articles and makes it easy for readers to share your content on their social media platforms. It’s one of the most widely used social media sharing plug-ins for a reason– it’s simple to set up and very intuitive.

PingPressFM

When your articles are published, the next step is to “ping,” or alert services on the Internet to your new content. Normally, it takes some time for your content to show up on these services, or you can manually enter it. PingPressFM does it automatically for you.

RSS Feed

RSS stands for Really Simple Syndication. Simply put, it’s a way to list your articles so you can share your blog elsewhere on the web and automatically update your content elsewhere. For your readers, it lets them aggregate all their favorite blogs into a single reader like the one I use, Google Reader. For you, the publisher, it let’s you do things like automatically post your articles to your Facebook page and more. The first step is setting it up and sharing it.

Feedburner

There’s a reason why Google bought Feedburner– it’s quite simply the best RSS feed manager out there.

Here’s how to set it up:

  1. Sign-up for your account on feedburner.com. If you don’t already have a Google Account, you’ll need to set one up.
  2. Connect your blog feed to Feedburner
  3. Use the new Feedburner URL to publish your feed to directories and other services.
  4. Look at your analytics data and see how your articles are doing!

Places to share your RSS feed

Now that you’ve set up your Feedburner account, you can use that URL to share your feed on blog directories. There are a plethora of places to share your RSS feeds. Do a search for “RSS feed directory” on Google, and you’ll find an absolute ton of places to submit your feed. (Here’s a great list of RSS directories)

Here are some very good ones to start with:

Commenting

If you asked me what reader activity is even more valuable than sharing, it’s commenting. When you can engage in a discussion with your readers, you can bring them back again to continue the conversation. That conversation builds trust, interaction, and engagement with your customers. Your blogging platform should come with a commenting engine already, but these two systems extend it even further and shares it with other networks.

Disqus

One of the most popular commenting systems for blogs, Disqus is used by several major blogs, including Marketing Zeus. It gives you the opportunity as a commenter to monitor your conversations with bloggers in one place and subscribe to other people’s activity on other blogs. This is incredibly valuable as a publisher– every time someone shares an activity on your blog, other people can see it, and that brings in traffic.

Facebook comments

One of the biggest values to the Facebook commenting system on your site is how it automatically shares your reader’s comments on their Facebook feeds. It’s also a trusted platform and a service most people are already using.

Automatic Updates

Want to make it even easier to share your content as soon as you write it? Take it out of your hands and make it happen automatically! Connect any of these services or use your Feedburner feed URL to make these automatically populate to your social media networks.

Go to settings -> Services add/edit -> (Miscellaneous) Custom RSS/Atom

Similar to PingPress, but this is where you would manually alert readers to your new content. If your blogging platform doesn’t have a suitable plug-in, this is where you’ll go to set it up.

If you use these services and plug-ins, you’ll create a supercharged blogging machine! You should see deeper engagement from your readers and more sharing across social media, that is, as long as you’re writing good content.

How have any of these services or plugins helped your blog? Let us know in the comments!Marketing Zeus

Posted in: Analytics, B2C, Branding, Content, Facebook, Lead Generation, Link Building, Optimization, Public Relations, Social Networks, Twitter

About the Writer:

Born in England and raised in the U.S., Charles Forster is the marketing director and partner at Vine & Grain, a company that creates management technologies for bars and restaurants. Prior to that position, he ran a graphic design company, Call Me Chaz, in Philadelphia, PA and Orlando, FL. He focused on branding, websites, print, video and marketing for small business clients up and down the east coast. He's a self-prescribed car nut and foodie. He's also the curator for This Is Visceral, a site devoted to poster art.

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