WP Tweets PRO User`s Guide

WP Tweets PRO User`s Guide
WP Tweets PRO - User's Guide / v. 1.8.2 / 3/31/2015
WP Tweets PRO
User's
Guide
Contents:
1. Installation
2. Configure WP to Twitter
3. Basic Settings
4. Advanced Settings
5. WP Tweets PRO Settings
6. Strategy Tips
WP Tweets PRO - User's Guide / v. 1.8.2 / 3/31/2015
Installation
WP Tweets PRO is an add-on to the WordPress plug-in WP to Twitter, so the first step in installing WP
Tweets PRO is to install and configure WP to Twitter. If you already have WP to Twitter installed and
working, you can move straight on to the next step!
Install WP to Twitter
WP to Twitter is most easily installed using the built-in installer on the WordPress plug-in dashboard.
Navigate from your main dashboard to Plugins > Add New, and search for “WP to Twitter”.
For more information about installing plugins, read the article from WordPress on Managing Plugins.
Configure WP to Twitter
After installing the plug-in, you'll need to connect the plug-in to Twitter via an authentication method
called OAuth. This authentication method doesn't use your username or password, which means that
the system is more secure, because it limits access to your account, rather than providing full access to
the account. However, it is also more work to set up.
There are detailed instructions in WP to Twitter indicating how to set up your Twitter application to
receive data from the plug-in, so I won't repeat those here, but I do want to emphasize the importance
of following the instructions very closely – the order in which you do each step does matter.
1. Register your site as an application on Twitter's Application Registration page
1. Be sure to log-in to Twitter first.
2. Your application name cannot include the word 'Twitter'
3. The web site and callback URL should be your web site.
(https://apps.twitter.com/app/new/).
2. Switch to the "Permissions" tab in Twitter apps.
1. Select "Read and Write" as the application type
2. Update the application settings
3. Switch to the API Keys tab and generate new API keys, then create your access token.
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Be sure to follow these instructions in the order they appear!
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Install WP Tweets PRO
Because WP Tweets PRO is not hosted in the WordPress.org plug-in repository, you can't use the
automatic installer for your initial installation. You'll need to either install it via the plug-in uploader or
install it using an FTP program to upload the files to your server.
WP Tweets PRO is a completely separate plug-in from WP to Twitter, and needs to be installed
separately. It is not a replacement for WP to Twitter, nor is it something that should be installed inside
WP to Twitter. Treat it the same as you would any other plug-in.
Start by navigating in your WordPress admin dashboard to Plugins > Add New. Then select the link to
'Upload Plugin' next to the Add Plugins header on that page.
Illustration 1: The WordPress plug-in uploader interface
Again, I recommend the WordPress Codex article “Managing Plugins” for assistance in dealing with
uploading, installing, and uninstalling plugins.
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Basic Settings
While the usage of WP Tweets PRO is fairly simple, there are many options available to configure, so it
can be valuable to have an understanding of what they all are and why you might choose particular
settings. I'm just going to run through all of the settings for WP to Twitter and WP Tweets PRO,
starting with the standard WP to Twitter options.
URL Shorteners
Selecting a URL shortener is at your personal preference. In practice, all URLs of any kind are
shortened by Twitter's own shortening service at http://t.co. Your shortened URL may display instead of
the t.co URL, but this is highly variable. If you do not shorten your URL, it's more likely that the t.co
URL will display.
The advantages to shortening your URLs are largely about statistics and branding.
Branding: Using a service like YOURLS or Bit.ly, you can define a custom short URL domain that
relates to your web site. For example, I could use http://jdlsn.com/ to produce short URLs for
http://www.joedolson.com. There's no character savings, since the t.co shortened version of my URL
will be 22 characters no matter what I do, but the jdlsn.com domain is slightly more likely to be
displayed to the user.
Statistics: Using services such as Bit.ly, Su.pr, or YOURLS, you can gather statistics on the
clickthroughs for each link you've submitted to Twitter. These aren't gathered by WP to Twitter, but by
the services used to shorten links. This can be helpful for determining how many people are actually
clicking through from Twitter to your site when you post. However, it can be labor intensive to gather,
and there are other ways to gather statistics of this type.
Your choice of a URL shortener has no impact on how long your URLs will be on Twitter or how many
characters you have available to write your Tweet.
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Template Settings and post types
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WP to Twitter includes support for custom post types, so you can Tweet from any special case content
created by plug-ins or themes that uses that API. These are very common, and are used to power FAQs,
lists of testimonials, events, and many other special features. For each post type (which includes 'posts'
and 'pages' by default), WP to Twitter allows you to define the text to be sent on the initial publication
of a post or when a post is edited, and checkboxes to indicate whether you want these fields turned on.
If an option is enabled (checked), but there is no text in the template field, then you'll see the WP to
Twitter fields when working on a post in that context, but will only send a Tweet if you fill in the
'custom Tweet' text field.
The Tweet texts are templated, and can support a wide variety of fields:
#title#: the title of your blog post
#blog#: the title of your blog
#post#: a short excerpt of the post content
#category#: the first selected category for the post
#cat_desc#: custom value from the category description field
#date#: the post date
#modified#: the post modified date
#url#: the post URL
#author#: the post author (@reference if available, otherwise display name)
#displayname#: post author's display name
#account#: the twitter @reference for the account (or the author, if author settings are
enabled and set.)
• #@#: the twitter @reference for the author or blank, if not set
• #tags#: your tags modified into hashtags. See options in the Advanced Settings section,
below.
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
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•
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• #ref#: An @reference to either the author of the post, or to the main site's Twitter account,
depending on what account sent the Tweet. (Only available for PRO with Co-Tweeting).
You can also create custom shortcodes to access WordPress custom fields. Use doubled square brackets
surrounding the name of your custom field to add the value of that custom field to your status update.
Example: [[custom_field]]
Filtering by Categories and Tags
In addition to setting your Tweet templates, with WP Tweets PRO you can filter on all taxonomies
attached to a given post type. By default, the Posts post type has support for categories, tags, and post
formats – you can filter on all of these.
You can toggle each category so that you're either filtering inclusively or exclusively: so that the
checked categories are either the categories you do want to post, or so that they are the categories you
don't want to post.
When you're filtering positively (checking categories that you want to Tweet), then if any checked
category is found, that post will be Tweeted.
When you're filtering negatively (checking categories that you don't want to Tweet), then if any
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checked category is found, that post will not be Tweeted.
With multiple filters – if you're filtering on both tags and categories, for example, then any blocker
found will stop that post. It may be in only approved categories, but if it's in a blocked tag, it will be
blocked. If there are no terms in a taxonomy (e.g., you haven't added any tags), then that taxonomy
will be ignored, and will have no impact on filtering.
With shared taxonomies – a taxonomy that has been applied to multiple custom post types – the same
filters will be applied for all post types. If you assign or edit the terms allowed for one post type, and
another post type uses the same taxonomy, then the same filters will be automatically applied for the
second post type, without needing to update that post type separately.
Tweeting Links
With the removal of the link manager from WP 3.5, tweeting links may not be available in your
installation unless you install the 'Link Manager' plug-in: http://wordpress.org/extend/plugins/linkmanager/. If you do have the link manager available, you can use these fields to configure Tweets when
you add a link to your blogroll or another list of links. Because links don't use the same meta data that's
available for posts, the template tags are different. You can only use #title#, #url#, and
#description# within link templates. Your link will be shortened using the same URL shortener
you have set up for your post Tweets.
URL Shortener Account Settings
The required URL shortener account settings are straightforward, but vary depending on what shortener
you use. Su.pr does not require any account information, but you can add it in order to get information
about your links. Bit.ly and YOURLS require account information to function.
Su.pr
...is very easy to set up, if you can figure out how to get the API key. The path to find the key is not
easy to follow.
First, go to http://su.pr
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Then, log-in. But don't use the obvious 'Login to your account' at the top; use the “Have a
StumbleUpon account? Login” near the bottom of the page.
Once you've logged in, you can click on the 'Settings' link and get your API key.
Bit.ly
Is also quite easy to set up, but you have to be sure to get the right API information. Once you have an
account, if you go to https://bitly.com/a/your_api_key, you can see the correct Username and API key
to use for your account.
YOURLS
Because YOURLS is an application you need to set up yourself, it's quite a bit more difficult to use. I
can't provide a tutorial on installing YOURLS, but you can read up on that here:
http://yourls.org/#Install.
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Yourls can be set up for WP to Twitter either as a local application or as a remote installation. As a local
application, you need to know the file path for your hosting environment, so that WP to Twitter can
find the configuration files and access YOURLS code. As a remote application, you just need to
provide the URL that points to the YOURLS API file. That will general be in the root directory of your
application, on whatever server you've using.
For either method, you need to provide your YOURLS signature token in order to create shortened
URLs. The YOURLS signature token can be retrieved from your YOURLS administration pages.
Additionally, YOURLS supports a few different options within WP to Twitter for how short URLS are
created. They can use the post ID (which may look like http://your.ls/7328), they can use a custom
keyword (that you assign when you create the post), or they can use the YOURLS default URL
generation system.
jotURL
The jotURL shortener is a high-end shortener that applies a variety of safety checks to the content
you're linking. This is helpful if your sharing and following audiences need a higher confidence than
normal that the content you're sharing is safe, secure, and up to date. Configuration is much like any
other shortener, requiring a public and a private key pair obtainable here:
https://www.joturl.com/reserved/api.html
It also allows you to add custom parameters to your long and short URLs for whatever purposes you
choose.
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Advanced Settings
There are many miscellaneous advanced options, loosely grouped by topic.
Tags
WP to Twitter can convert the tags you add to your posts into Twitter hashtags. On Twitter, hashtags
must be cohesive sequences of letters with no spaces, so WP to Twitter will replace any spaces in your
tag with a character you define. If the field is blank, WP to Twitter will simply remove all spaces. In
the past, the default was an underscore character, and [ ] was required to strip spaces.
Because hashtags have specific searchability characteristics on Twitter that are different from the needs
on your web site, WP to Twitter allows you to change the nature of your tags significantly. Removing
all non-alphanumeric characters will take out any punctuation characters in a tag, so that your tags only
included the letters from A-Z and the digits 0-9. Using the tag slug instead of the tag name means that
you can define specific translations between the tag visible with your post and the hashtag sent to
Twitter. The tag slug can be edited at Dashboard > Posts > Tags.
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In addition to changing the slug of a tag for use in your Tweets, you can alter whether a tag will be used
as a standard hashtag (#tag) or as a cashtag ($tag), primarily used to represent stock ticker codes, or
choose that this tag will always be ignored.
If you're using WP Tweets PRO's autoposting feature, you can check the box 'Don't autotweet this term'
and exclude any tag from being selected for Tweeting in the autoposting feature.
The number of tags to include and length of included tags are controls to detail which tags should be
sent. With a 140 character limit on the length of a Tweet, you probably don't want to include every tag
on your site in your Tweet. These rules let you dictate how many of the tags will be included, and what
the max length of those tags should be.
To give an example of usage, let's suppose you check the option to use the tag slug as the hashtag
value, then restrict your maximum length in characters to 10 characters. You then edit the tag slug for
an event tag that you want on your site as “Fabulous WordPress Conference 2013” to the hashtag
“fabWC2013”. Although “Fabulous WordPress Conference 2013” is too long to be posted, the actual
tag that will be sent is only 9 characters – and will go out as the specific tag you are using to track
event information on Twitter.
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Template Tags
Some of the template tags you can use in your Tweet templates can be configured to suit your needs.
The #post# template tag grabs an excerpt from your post, but you will want to specify how many
characters it uses. If you're using any of the date template tags: #date# or #modified#, you probably
want to control how that date is displayed – that 140 character limit can hurt if you're putting dates as
“September 30th, 2013 at 2:15 am”.
The custom field for an alternate URL is a good way to handle imported data or special events where
the most important goal for the Tweet is to send people somewhere other than the post you're writing.
This field will replace the value used in the #url# template tag with whatever value is in that custom
field.
The two “custom text” fields are for adding common data to all Tweets – if you want every Tweet to
include the hashtag “#mysite”, then you can add it to one of these fields, and save yourself the need to
enter it separately.
Template Tag Priorities
If the content of your Tweet adds up to more than 140 characters, WP to Twitter will start to remove
information. You can control what information is the first to be shortened or removed from Tweets.
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Special Cases for Tweeting
Don't want to Tweet every post? Setting these options will help control when WP to Twitter sends a
Tweet. Not posting Tweets by default means that Tweets won't be sent unless you check the option to
Tweet that post. Not posting Tweets by default when editing means that your original publishing will
send normally, but Tweeting on edit will require you to check that box.
How is this different from disabling Tweets in the basic settings?
If you disable Tweeting on edit in the basic settings, you will not have any option to Tweet when
editing. If you disable Tweeting using this option, the fields for Tweeting will be present, but will be
disabled unless you indicate you want this edit Tweeted.
Allowing status updates from Quick Edit means that you can use the quick editing or bulk editing
feature in WordPress and it will send a status update. You should use this with care – if you're doing
bulk editing, you will end up sending a Tweet for every post edited at once!
Google Analytics
If you're using Google Analytics, you can configure your URL shortening to include identifiers to track
visitors from your WP to Twitter posted links to your site. The static or dynamic identifiers are
indicators for how your Analytics data will be grouped.
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Author Settings for WP to Twitter
In the free version of WP to Twitter, allowing custom author settings simply means that authors will
have a field for their Twitter account. There are a few other associated settings, but basically it means
that you can use the #account# template tag to provide an @reference to the author of the post.
Other options include the ability to exclude a specific account from being provided in the #account#
template tag and to specify that the @reference should include both the author of the post and the main
site accounts.
User Permissions
For multi-author blogs, you may want to customize which authors have access to various capabilities.
You may not want to allow certain groups to customize the Tweet template or toggle the Tweet/Don't
Tweet options. This is easily controlled by granting user groups specific permissions. Each role can be
granted a discrete set of permissions depending on what you want to allow them to do.
1. Can send Tweets: Posts published by this user may be Tweeted.
2. See Custom Tweet Field: This user can author a custom Tweet, overriding the template.
3. Toggle the Tweet/Don't Tweet option: This user can alter the default setting for the Tweet.
4. See "Tweet Now" button: This user can Tweet previously-published posts using Tweet Now
5. Add Twitter Information: This user can add their own Twitter information, including
authenticating their account to be a target account for Tweet.
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Error Messages & Debugging
Miscellaneous options. If you don't use the Twitter Feed widgets, you can remove the stylesheet
associated with it. You can also enable Debugging Data sent from the Oauth connection, useful if
you're having difficult with WP to Twitter.
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WP Tweets PRO Settings
With WP Tweets PRO Settings, you'll have a whole new panel of settings that are specific to WP
Tweets PRO. You'll also have pages added to your dashboard for viewing the archives of your past
Tweets, any Tweets that failed to be sent to Twitter, and the currently scheduled Tweets.
The License Key field is pretty obvious – enter your license key, received in your purchase email (and
also available by logging into your account at http://www.joedolson.com/articles/account/) to start
using WP Tweets PRO.
Delays and Re-posts
The key functionality for WP Tweets PRO is the ability to delay and automatically re-post Tweets.
Delays are calculated in minutes, re-posts in hours. This is because the normal usage for this is
expected to be that you give a few minutes – maybe 15 – between when you publish a post and when
you want it to reach Twitter, and this is your delay. It's your opportunity to fix typos or back out if you
published a post by mistake.
Re-posting should generally be further apart – I recommend 15.5 or 39.5 hours as a good default. This
number is specifically chosen to ensure that your posts will consistently happen at very different times
– thereby reaching different audiences. The worst choice for a re-post cycle is any multiple of 24 –
people tend to use Twitter at roughly the same times on any day; so posting at 24 hour intervals means
you may be putting your posts in front of the same people over and over again.
You can re-post each Tweet up to 3 times.
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Differentiating your re-posted Tweets is extremely important. Twitter blocks duplicate Tweets, so if
there isn't some degree of difference between your re-posted Tweets, they will not be posted to Twitter.
Twitter will sometimes accept duplicate Tweets if there's a sufficiently long gap between them, but this
is not a published interval, so you're on your own to figure out how far apart Tweets need to be for that
to work. I recommend using some kind of short, noticeable phrase to indicate your re-posted Tweet.
WP Tweets PRO offers two alternate methods to differentiate your re-posted Tweets – either by
appending a custom prefix to the beginning of each Tweet, or by providing a custom template for the
re-post. If you use custom prefixes, be sure to keep them short, as this will make your Tweet longer. It
will be truncated to accommodate the extra text, but you don't really want to lose too much of the
original content.
For custom templates, remember that this will be the same template regardless of post type – you may
have different templates for the initial Tweet of each post type, but the re-posts will have to use the
same template.
Twitter Card Support
Twitter Cards are a great feature for enriching the content of your Tweets. On Twitter, if you have
Twitter Card support your Tweet can look like this:
This is a 'summary' type Twitter Card, which will include the title of your article, an excerpt, and a
small image of your choice along with your posted Tweet. This is a great way of making better custom
use of your Tweet text, because the article information will be included separately.
Twitter Cards can also use the 'photo' format, which will be more focused around an image, rather than
an article title and summary.
WP Tweets PRO supports both the photo and summary card formats, and will use your post's featured
image to provide the relevant image. WP Tweets PRO does not support video formats, as there are
many installation-specific issues that need to be met in order for support to be possible.
Twitter Cards support is not automatic – turning this on in WP
Tweets PRO does not enable Twitter Cards on Twitter.
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Twitter Cards used to be kind of a pain to enable, but Twitter has made this vastly easier in the last year.
You need to be logged into your Twitter account to do this, but it's a simple validation, otherwise.
Go to https://cards-dev.twitter.com/validator and enter the URL for a page on your web site that has the
type of card you want to validate. With WP to Twitter installed, that means any post for a "Summary"
type Twitter Card; or any post specified as a "Photo" card to validate the Photo card format.
You have to validate each format of card that you intend to use.
Co-Tweeting
If you have individual author accounts enabled, then you can allow authors to set up their own
authorizations for their Twitter accounts. This allows posts to be sent to that author's Twitter account
instead of the main site account. If co-Tweeting is enabled, then the posts will be sent to both the
author's account and the main site account.
Co-Tweeting can be locked to just two accounts. This allows you to set up the main account and one
secondary account, and have all Tweets sent to those two accounts.
In the post publishing meta box, you can select which users to Tweet to. The default is as described
above, but you can send to more accounts if you choose on a per-post basis.
Hashtag Filters
While WP to Twitter includes the ability to add hashtags as a replacement for the #tags# template tag,
WP Tweets PRO allows you to filter the text of your post titles and excerpts to replace terms with
hashtags. The replacement is pretty simple: if a term is a match for the tag value, it will be replaced
with the appropriate hash tag.
Tweeting Comments
When Tweeting comments, you should exercise caution. There are some potential issues with Tweeting
comments, although WP Tweets PRO is carefully set up to minimize these issues.
First, know that Twitter sets a strict limit to the number of Tweets an account can send in a period of
time. Twitter does not disclose the exact limits, because it is variable by time of day, context, and other
issues – but in general, it's estimated to be around 10-20 Tweets in 15 minutes. The stated limit is 1000
per day, but the division of this thousand Tweets is variable. If your site receives a lot of comments,
you may not wish to Tweet comments.
Second, you should consider that all Tweets must be different to be published by Twitter. Identical
Tweets will almost always be blocked. (WP to Twitter does some checking for duplication, but does not
check as much of your history as Twitter does.) This means that you need to use a variable template tag
in your comment template in order to have it reliably sent to Twitter. The only two variable template
tags available are #commenter#, which posts the commenter's name, and #modified#, which posts the
post modified date (which will be the date the comment is left. Either of these will take up characters –
and posting the commenter's name field is a gateway to allow somebody to spam your Twitter
stream. If you have this enabled, I can not take responsibility for the consequences.
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Tweeting comments is only available in WP Tweets PRO, and is tightly controlled. It will only be
possible to enable Tweeting comments if you either moderate all comments or if you only allow
registered users to make comments.
If you choose to moderate all comments, you will have the option to either approve and Tweet
comments or to approve the comment without Tweeting it. You'll be shown the Tweet that will be sent
before you send it. If there's no Tweet saved for a comment (which should only happen if this option
was not enabled when the comment was made), then nothing will be Tweeted when you approve the
comment.
Upload Featured or Attached Images
WP Tweets PRO provides the ability to upload your featured or first attached image to Twitter. By
default, it'll attempt to upload the medium sized version of the image, to avoid significant delays in
publishing your post (uploading a 3Mb file to Twitter can really take a long time.) With some setups,
that's not easily possible, in which case it will upload the full-sized image.
A few notes about uploading images:
1) If you're uploading images for a Tweet and re-posting it, the image will be re-uploaded each
time.
2) Twitter's upload size limit is 3MB, and any image larger than that will trigger an error.
3) An 'attached image' is an image that you uploaded using the WordPress add media panel while
editing the post you're publishing. If you just selected an image from your media library and
added it to the post content, that will not be picked up by WP Tweets PRO. An “attachment”
signifies a specific relationship between the post and the uploaded image inside WordPress, and
that's what WP Tweets PRO uses to make that association. Featured images will always be used
first, if they're available, as this limitation does not apply to featured images.
Custom Tweet Filters
There are many possible unique or unusual reasons you may want something not to be Tweeted. Maybe
you don't want certain four-letter words to make it into your Twitter stream. Maybe you don't want new
authors to be able to post to Twitter, so you want to create a custom filter for that author ID for a while.
Custom Tweet filters allow you to create very specific filters to block Tweets for a variety of rules.
Possible usage is a very broad swath of options, so that's really up to you!
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Custom User Options
In addition to the standard WP to Twitter user settings and the obvious addition of OAuth configuration
fields, WP Tweets PRO allows users to have custom templates for their Tweets. They can establish a
custom Tweet template that will automatically pre-fill the custom Tweet text box. They can then
customize it further, or delete it from the custom Tweet box if they wish to use the standard Template
format.
Automatically Tweet Old Posts
Similar to the functionality provided by the plug-in 'Revive Old Posts', WP Tweets PRO has a function
to set a schedule for automatic Tweeting of your posts. This is completely separate from any of the
posting functionality set up when you publish a post.
If you set a schedule of every 8 hours, then WP Tweets PRO will run a task every 8 hours (starting
from the time you set up the task), selecting a post from your archives and Tweeting it to your Twitter
stream. This function only sends to your primary site account.
The feature has a number of safeguards to prevent sending out the same posts over and over again – it
keeps a record of what posts have been sent already, and randomly selects only from the posts that
haven't been sent recently.
You can limit the posts it'll choose from using the settings: limit by a minimum and maximum date (if
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you don't want anything recent automatically republished, and don't want your oldest articles to ever be
posted again!), or limit by specific post types.
As I mentioned earlier, you can also use your post tags to limit what will be selected for autoposting. If
you do this, then any Tweet with one of the limited tags will never be automatically Tweeted.
You can also specify in the post meta options if you want a specific post not to be eligible for automatic
Tweeting.
If you want to be notified every time your site automatically posts a Tweet, just add your email to the
field "Notify me about autoposted Tweets", and you'll receive an email every time a Tweet is
automatically posted.
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The WP to Twitter Post Box
For any post type where WP to Twitter is enabled, this panel is
present when you're in a context that will allow posting Tweets
from WordPress.
The content of the panel varies depending on which edition of WP
to Twitter you have installed, but the WP Tweets PRO version is
shown.
One of the included features in WP to Twitter is the ability to Tweet
a post on demand. Once you've published a post, you can always
use the 'Tweet Now' option to send that post to Twitter. With the
PRO add-on, you can also schedule an on-demand Tweet at any
time.
What you set in the WP Tweets PRO settings is largely a set of
default values: when publishing, most of them can be adjusted on
the fly for the post you're writing.
Certain options are only set on the fly – specifically, the option to
toggle to a Photo Twitter Card, which will set this post to
emphasize the photo, rather than the text of the post in it's Twitter
Card, and the option not to upload an image. If you've enabled the
options to upload featured images, but you don't want to upload this
post's image to Twitter, check that box.
Additionally, you can use the 'Delete Tweet History' option to clear
the record of past failures or successful Tweets for this post.
This particular example has a 15 minute delay set with a repost
scheduled for 11.5 hours later.
WP Tweets PRO - User's Guide / v. 1.8.2 / 3/31/2015
Scheduled Tweets
The WP Tweets PRO scheduled Tweets queue is an important part of managing your Tweets. If you
have accidentally published an article that wasn't ready, this is where you would go to delete the Tweets
for that article – saving yourself from having those posts make it to Twitter.
Managing scheduled Tweets is simple – you can clear the entire queue or delete individual Tweets.
Additionally, on the scheduled Tweets page, you can custom schedule a new Tweet:
When scheduling a Tweet, you can schedule any text, at all; there's no need to be restricted to a
particular template. There's no specific need for your Tweet to even be about a WordPress post, at all –
however, the WP Tweets PRO system is closely bound to posts, so any Tweet you schedule still needs
to be assigned an association with some post.
If you choose to run WP to Twitter filters on the text, the data from the associated post will be used to
replace the template tags you use.
Past Tweets and Failed Tweets are simple lists, showing each post you've submitted that includes
Tweeted information. You can click on the post title to expand a view of all relevant Tweets for that
post. For Failed Tweets, you will be able to see the detailed error messages received from Twitter or
provided by WP to Twitter indicating why that post failed. This is the best information available from
Twitter describing the error.
WP Tweets PRO - User's Guide / v. 1.8.2 / 3/31/2015
Strategy
Using social media effectively requires strategy. I've mentioned a variety of areas that hinge on strategy
already – such as avoiding 24 hour re-post cycles. But there are many areas of strategy that should be
considered, in order to get as much out of your installation as you can.
Authoring the Text
The ultimate goal of posting to Twitter (or any social media) is to increase engagement. One good way
to increase engagement is to make it easy for people to share, respond, and comment on your Tweets.
That means that short Tweets are better than long ones – because they don't require your audience to
edit them in order to interact.
I've written on this topic before, so I'm just going to link to that article instead of re-writing it:
http://www.joedolson.com/articles/2013/01/smart-tweeting-with-wp-to-twitter/
Scheduling your Tweets
Obviously, there can be benefits to rescheduling Tweets. But knowing when to schedule Tweets for is a
different kind of strategy:
–
When are your followers online? There are several tools that can suggest to you the best
times to Tweet:
–
https://www.socialbro.com/best-time-tweet
–
http://www.14blocks.com/
–
http://crowdbooster.com/
–
http://bufferapp.com/
–
http://sproutsocial.com/
Knowing when your followers are at their most active and engaged is a good guideline for figuring out
when to Tweet. However, the best time to Tweet is not necessarily the same as the best time to post
your new articles – that's where the delays and re-post schedules come in. Does your existing traffic
data indicate that you should publish posts on your site at 9:30 am, but Tweets are going to be best at
10:15am? Set a 45 minute delay. Is there a secondary peak at 7:30? Set a 7.75 hour re-post schedule.
WP Tweets PRO doesn't provide analytics for you to learn what's effective, but there are many tools
that can help you get there.
Handling Rate Limits & Engagement
Twitter has very complicated rate limiting for posting Tweets. It's not so simple as “100 tweets per
hour” or “1000 tweets per day”. There is a simple number, and it is 1000 tweets per day – but it's
broken up into much smaller intervals, and is not divided equally. So the actual limits are difficult to
pin down.
WP Tweets PRO - User's Guide / v. 1.8.2 / 3/31/2015
These rate limits, additionally, are user-based, not application based. If you're using the same account
with another application, and you send 25 Tweets from that application, that will still come out of your
rate limit for your WP to Twitter application, as well – because it's the same user.
Dealing with rate limits is something that goes hand in hand with strategically planning which content
should be posted. It's not necessarily beneficial to post all of your web content to Twitter. If you're
flooding Twitter with references to your web content, then your social media interaction becomes less
intimate – and having a well-defined personality is a crucial part of using social media.
As a result, rate limits and engagement are closely tied. You want to keep your automatic posting below
a certain threshold, so that a comfortable percentage of your Twitter interactions are natural
engagement with your audience – interactions with your followers are a key to preventing your
automated content from being a turn-off.
Always remember that any form of automation should be a supplement to your social media
engagement strategy, not a replacement. Don't over do it!
What kind of content should I Tweet?
Articles, job listings, new events – these are great things to Tweet. Anything timely is definitely
valuable to Tweet – tutorials, product announcements, etc.
It's impossible to tell you what you should avoid Tweeting – that's entirely dependent on your audience.
You have to get to know your audience and what they consume and engage with. If they're looking for
work, then job listings may be your most valuable content.
Regardless, a big turn off is flooding your stream with too much like content. If you're posting 20 new
job listings in a row, you may want to reconsider whether they should all be Tweeted – at least, right
now.
Diffusion happens when important content loses significance because of its environment. Web site
home pages frequently suffer from diffusion – if everything is important, then nothing is important. So
keep that in mind for Tweeting, as well: if you want people to notice this Tweet, then let it stand by
itself for a while. But don't worry about leaving this for a long time; Tweets only have a lifespan of
about an hour. If you haven't Tweeted for an hour, your last Tweet is ancient history.
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