Social media integration: keep a website looking fresh without the commitment of a blog

Integrating social media channels on website

Websites that have a regularly updated blog component look lived-in and encourage return visits – however, blogging is not for everyone, and a dead blog is worse than no blog at all. But there are other options! Today I’m going to share a trick I’ve learned which can be very useful if you do have occasional updates and news about your business/brand that you’d like to share online, but don’t want the time commitment that comes with starting a blog.

It’s been about 6 weeks since I helped food personality Anne Thorp develop her online presence with a new website, Facebook page, Twitter and Instagram accounts. In that time, Facebook has really become her stronghold – probably because the demographics of her fan base seem most comfortable with this medium – and since creating her page just 6 weeks ago, she’s recently surpassed 1,000 likes!

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Anne posts updates several times a week not only about new recipes but also about her lifestyle, and people are responding really well with likes, shares and comments. With a brand like Anne’s, the person really is the brand and I think fans are getting a real sense of who she is over social media. 

I’d already embedded Anne’s Instagram and Twitter feeds on a sidebar on her website, but with this success in mind, we’ve decided to try integrating the whole Kai Ora Facebook wall into her landing page. Initially we discussed the possibility of putting a blog component on the site instead, but the short-form style of social media posting seems to really suit this client, and I also think the great levels of interaction she’s getting on Facebook are a good reason to keep the focus there for now.

There are lots of ways to do a Facebook wall integration. At the moment for Anne I’m trying a service called Tint – which if you look hard enough does offer a free option – it’s an out-of-the-box solution which is easy to set up and install on most types of websites, and although in this scenario I’ve just used it to grab the Facebook posts, Tint can do all the usual social media channels too. It’s less customisable than if I were to actually hook into Facebook’s API, but there are plenty of upsides to not reinventing the wheel too: it saves me time and my client money, and in this case, works just fine with the page’s existing styling.

 

Embedding Anne’s Facebook posts into the landing page of her website keeps things looking fresh and also puts any news she’s got to share center-stage.

Embedding Anne’s Facebook posts into the landing page of her website keeps things looking fresh and also puts any news she’s got to share center-stage.

There are so many options available with regards to web content for a brand or business, and there are some really interesting ways different mediums can work together.

A couple days ago I ran into a potential client who has quite an exciting and unusual concept for a site he wants built, which will also potentially involve a social media integration. So that’s top secret at the moment, but watch this space!