How to Centralize Your Social Presence Using Drupal

More and more small businesses are using social media as a part of their overall marketing strategy. And it is no wonder, as social marketing is an extremely powerful tool that can connect a business to consumers like never before. However, the very nature of social media, combined with the various social services used by small businesses, means that any social efforts may wind up being a bit scattered. Luckily, Drupal’s content management system can be used to connect your website to your social accounts, allowing you to begin to build a social following out of your site’s regular traffic. Of course, you have to do a few things first.

Install and use the Drupal Social Media Module

There are a variety of modules available that can be used to plug your social accounts through your website, but the Social Media Module is one of the most developed, easy-to-use, actively maintained modules available. Essentially, it allows you to easily insert icons and sharing buttons that can both connect your website to the end-user’s social accounts, and connect your social accounts to your website. So, for example, users can both access your Facebook profile and share an interesting post from your blog, all with the click of a button. They recommend that you also download and install the Widgets module, which allows you to group snippets of code, like share or follow buttons, together, along with the Apps connector module to connect your site with the developer’s servers.

Add your feeds to the site

Dynamic social content is another great way to integrate your social presence into your website. Twitter and Facebook feeds can both be featured on your site and, by using a few Drupal modules, they can even update in real time! So, if you post something interesting on Facebook, anyone viewing your website will see it and be able to click over. Dynamic feeds are also a very effective way to make your visitors aware of your social presence, and to build your following. The Twitter module is a great module that can work right out of the box. There is also a Social Parser module that can aggregate different feeds into custom created nodes. Of course, these aren’t the only modules out there, so dig around Drupal’s site and see if there are any modules that look worth trying.

Stay active!

If you do decide that you want to include social feeds in your website, then you absolutely have to stay active. It is very easy to let a social profile stagnate, but if someone sees a profile that hasn’t been updated in months, they may assume that something went wrong with the business. Having a stagnant social presence can, in fact, be worse for your business than having no presence at all. So you need to make sure that you consistently update your social feeds with interesting, engaging content. That can sound like a tall order, but if you look there are undoubtedly stories or pieces of news related to your industry that your audience might find interesting. And, if nothing else, you can always update with links to your own blog, provided your posts are not too overly promotional.

Drupal is so widely used because it is so easy to customize various aspects of the site and incorporate what you feel is important to your business. Social marketing can be tricky as ROI is hard to quantify and, if you don’t have a very strong following, you may feel like no one is listening. But centralizing your social profiles and keeping them active will definitely help boost your online presence and make your customers aware of your social marketing efforts. It is hard to find a website these days that doesn’t, at the very least, have buttons on their home page linking to their Facebook and Twitter accounts, so make sure you don’t leave your customers wondering where they can follow you, and incorporate social media into your business and your business’s website early on.