When IS the BEST Time to Share? (The Big Social Media Controversy + Sample Schedules)

Clock Image by Stuart Miles

People share things on social media all the time.

Big shock. This is not news!

Nor is it that some times are better than others for posting updates and sharing blog posts on social media.

The big controversy, however, is what those BEST times ARE, and whether it’s even important to have a social media posting schedule at all.

Hint: It’s Important!

Of course it’s important. You want others to read and view your stuff, don’t you? 😉

Today we are going to look at some reasons for having a social media posting schedule, what the suggested “best times” are — and for what — and figure out this whole scheduling controversy once and for all.

The Benefits of Having A Social Media Posting Schedule

There are many benefits of having a social media posting schedule, with the main one being: more eyeballs on your content.

Others include:

  • social shares
  • likes
  • +1s
  • reTweets
  • re-pins
  • comments
  • links to your work

Suggested frequencies, however, are not requirements for success. But they help. 😉

[Tweet “Learn the benefits of having a solid posting schedule. #blogginglikeaboss”]

A Proposed Schedule

Buffer posts according to this social media frequency schedule: Read More

Help Me Determine if We Can Eliminate Spam Forever!

This is a picture of a stick man I created who I like to call Gimpy. He's frustrated because he doesn't know what is going on! He's trying to comment on my blog, but can't.

Are you sick of spam? I know I am, and want to eliminate it once and for all.

Akismet just isn’t cutting it, so I’ve switched to Anti-Spam. It might have to do with the current commenting system I’m using (as Connor Rickett points out in the last half of his video), but I’m just not sure.

Anyways, these are both FREE WordPress plugins, but one seems to be better than the other!

So far, Anti-Spam is doing the trick, and there is NO spam in my spam folder, but I’m not sure how it is going to affect people who want to comment on my posts, so I need your help!

My Commenting Plugin Experiment

I experimented with this in the past, but for only a few days. I wasn’t sure if I lost commenters. I know that Akismet sometimes classified a couple of my commenters as spam (a couple of times Adrienne Smith was considered spam, and I know for a fact that she is a real person), but, I’m tired of hunting for such commenters in my spam folder. Wading through spam comments is a time-waster, and my time is better spent elsewhere. I’m willing to bet yours is, too.

A New Commenting Problem

The problem that I’m facing now is wondering whether or not my commenters are going to make it through the filtering process. I’m afraid I’m going to lose commenters. I actually activated this plugin about 10 days ago, and so far have had no problems (that I know of) with peoples’ abilities to comment on my last post… so this post might be a waste of time on my part… but I don’t think it is.

At the very least, it will teach you about the Anti-Spam plugin!

What to do if you cannot comment on Wording Well

It’s no secret that I moderate comments on this site. I do this for three reasons: Read More

Benefits of using “about.me” (+ how to get FREE social media buttons for your blog)

the about.me logo

Have you heard of the site called about.me?

Do you use it to help brand yourself and your website?

I do, and I really like it. I also like the numerous benefits I get from using this completely free service. I learned about this service when I first started blogging, and today I am going to share several things with you about about.me.

the about.me widget and what it looks like

Definition + Some Benefits

Simply put, about.me is a free service that lets you create a beautiful one-page website that’s all about you.

About.me makes it easy for people to learn about you and find your content on the web.

It is also a great place where you can:

  • meet new people
  • gain new readers for your books (if you are an author), and/or
  • potentially get new clients (if you are a freelancer).

You can also enhance your online presence by utilizing this service. Note that anyone can use about.me. 

The Biggest Benefit for Bloggers: FREE Social Media Buttons

If you are a blogger who uses WordPress, you can also get free social media buttons for your blog, which is one of the reasons I like this service. About.me integrates with WordPress and allows bloggers to enable a particular widget on their sites. 

If you are a blogger who uses Blogger as your blogging platform, don’t feel left out just yet; I’ve included steps you can take, too. Please find them below, under the heading “For Blogger Bloggers.” 🙂

How to Get the Buttons:

In order to get the social media buttons to show up on your blog, you need to:

  1. Create a page on about.me (if you don’t already have one!)
  2. Add all of your social media profiles to it using the instructions shown in the following image:screenshot of the about.me apps with instructions for how to add them
  3. Add the about.me widget to the sidebar on your blog
  4. Add the URL of your about.me page to the appropriate field
  5. Check the box that says “Apps”
  6. Click “Save”

I have included a screenshot of the widget settings below for your convenience.

about.me widget options

How to Add the about.me widget to your WordPress Blog

It has occurred to me that you might need a few more instructions to get set up, depending on which form of WordPress you use, so I have also included the steps you can take to add the about.me widget to your blog, and have included a screenshot of what it looks like in your blog’s back end.

For WordPress.com users:

  1. Log in and go to Widgets in your Appearance section.
  2. Drag the about.me widget to your preferred Widget Area.
  3. Add your about.me username and configure your widget.

For WordPress.org (Self-Hosted) users:

If your blog is self-hosted, download the widget.

how the about.me widget looks in WordPress via a screenshot with important sections highlighted

For Blogger Bloggers:

I know not everyone uses WordPress. So, if you are a Blogger user, don’t worry! You can use these instructions for embedding your page. I’ve prepared some screenshots for you, too, because the “Embed Page” is hard to find. 🙁 You may find more answers on the about.me support page, too. You can also customize the embed code.

Steps to get the Embed code:

1. Click the “share” arrow while viewing your about.me page.

2. Click the “Embed” button on the window that pops up.

3. Select the blogging platform from the given choices.

4. Copy the code and then paste it into your blog post OR widget text box.

The following screenshots outline these steps for getting the code:

screenshot of first two steps to take to get the embed code for about.me

screenshot of next two steps to take to get the embed code for about.me

My Experience with about.me:

When I first started blogging, I did so on WordPress.com and, in fact, still have my poetry blog there.

Once I knew what widgets were, I started to “decorate” my blog with them, emulating other bloggers and other websites.

Now that I’ve been blogging for a while, however, I have learned that other options for social media buttons exist, and because this site (Wording Well) is a WordPress.org site, self-hosted using Abivia (see the hosting guide for more information), I don’t have the widget enabled on it because I am currently using a widget called SocialFans Counter, which I purchased via a place called Code Canyon. (They have many products to choose from, so you can check them out if you don’t mind spending money.) 😉

I’m a big lover of all things free, so I wouldn’t blame you for opting for the free service from about.me instead! 🙂

I’m also a big lover of all of my readers and fellow bloggers, and when someone asks for help, I tend to listen. This post is proof, as Dale Furse, an indie author, left me a comment. When I visited her site, I noticed that she had no social media buttons anywhere! I then replied to her comment, letting her know that I would write this post to help her and whomever else has no social media buttons but wants them!

Proof that About.me Provides Exposure (another Benefit!)

I get email notifications when people view my page, which I actually updated while creating this post. (You can adjust the settings on about.me to suit your preferences.) I also have been thinking of doing a post about this service for a while, too, and have been saving some of my emails to provide you with proof that one of the benefits of using about.me is exposure to other people.

As you know, exposure to others is important for indie authors (and other professionals, too) and using about.me can help you reach new audiences!

screenshot of my gmail about.me notifications

Other Benefits: Using the Paid Version

I cannot personally speak to the benefits of having a premium about.me account because mine is free. However, you can upgrade to a paid account and, apparently a new service is coming where you can also pay for promotion of your page if you want even more exposure online. There are a few other promotional tips that they offer you that you can use in the meantime, like adding a link to your email signature and a link to your about.me page to your other social media profiles.

I try to maintain a steady image and include all of my links in all of my profiles. On my Google+ page, for example, you can see the same links that are found on my about.me page. Branding yourself online takes time, but is ultimately worth it.

So, what I would like to know is this: Are you going to join about.me today? I sure hope so!!! 🙂

Or do you already use it? If you do, do you have a paid account or a free one?

Share your thoughts and experiences with it and about it in the comments!

Learn To Be A Better Tweeter (and grow your followers!)

twitter followers as of October 18

Twitter is one of the most widely used social media networks, and I’m learning to be a better, more frequent Tweeter, thanks to Joanna Penn, who encouraged me to use SocialOomph, and Max Christian Hansen, who put together an ebook that’s super-helpful.
I more than doubled my followers in less than two weeks using Max’s guide, and even tried used the free version of SocialOomph to schedule some my tweets. (The free version runs on a two-week trial period.) I didn’t particularly like scheduling my tweets, but I thought I’d try it. I discovered that I much prefer tweeting on my own, although I can see some benefit to scheduling SOME tweets.

I have also used Ashley Faulkes’ advice, which is to improve the quality of your tweets, and I used  ManageFlitter to help “unfollow” people who have no interest in following you back. These strategies should be used in conjunction with Max’s guide.

The results: Read More

Google+ Circles: The Unanswered Questions, Answered!

pic of Google logo

It seems that I am becoming somewhat of an expert (ha!) regarding certain things in social media.

How do I know this? Google said so.

I heard Google speak her voice (yes, Google is female!) when I viewed my blog stats and took a look at the search terms used to send people to my blog posts – in particular, my post about Managing Google+ Circles.

She said, “Hey, Lorraine, I think you should write a post and inform these people of what they want to know regarding Google+ circles!”

Okay, so maybe I’m exaggerating. But, it seems that Google loves me. . . even though I don’t know much about SEO (Search Engine Optimization). Why else would she send these people to my site?

I think it’s because I’m helpful, and talk to both a specific reader and the general masses. 

When people are continually asking for information and are being sent to ME, the proud non-techie (yes, I am now proud of this fact), I feel like it is my duty to respond to them. I can see that there is an obvious need for a post to be written about this topic.

You see, when people talk, I pay attention. This quality has made me many friends and a great teacher. When I taught high school, most of my students loved me. I spoke on their level. I imparted my wisdom to them. Now I am going to continue this trend on my blog. I have to.I cannot disappoint my new buddy, Google. 

I think I might even call her “Googs” for short. 😉

The Many Questions We Have

As someone who had to learn many things on her own, I gotta figure that there are tons of others out there who are just like me — filled with questions.

The questions people have about Google+ circles include the ones listed below, which have been copied directly (spelling errors and all!) from my stats page on my blog. I will answer them to the best of my ability.

(Note that I have included my ranking for each, too. Yes, I had to check each one out individually.)

  1. how to tell what google+ circle someone has added u in (ranking is #1)
  2. how do i know who in google+ has put me in there circles (ranking is #2)
  3. what is different between in her circle and have her in circle (ranking is #2)
  4. when someone puts you in their circle how do you get yourself out (ranking is #2)
  5. what does it mean when someone adds you to a circle on google+ (ranking is #3)
  6. why can’t i add people to my circle on google+ (ranking is #5)
  7. can someone just add you to their circles on google plus (ranking is #5)
  8. google plus added you back vs added to circles (ranking is #7)

The Answers

Read More