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Add A Mashable Style Social Media Box To Your Sidebar With Easy Mashable Social Bar

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A few months ago I added the SocialBox plugin to WP Mods to replace the old social media subscription area. The one criticism I have about this plugin is that it doesn’t include a Feedburner email subscription field or option to add Google+.

Like many bloggers, I am a fan of the social media box that Mashable use on their website so I was very excited when I read about the InspiredMagz Easy Mashable Social Bar Plugin on WPLift today.

The plugin can be added easily to any widget area in your design. It supports Facebook, Twitter, RSS, Google Plus and LinkedIn. The width of the widget can be adjusted so that it fits correctly into any widget area e.g. whether it’s in your sidebar or footer.

The colours of each area can be adjusted through the widget area too. This makes it easy to integrate the box with the rest of your design. The default colours are also permanently noted on the widget so that you can easily switch back to the default colours if you change your mind.

Easy Mashable Social Bar

It’s a fantastic plugin but there are some limitations. For starters, all of the media fields are fixed. For example, I don’t use LinkedIn so didn’t enter my details into the LinkedIn field but the link still appeared. Hopefully this is addressed in a future version so that when a social media site field is not completed, it doesn’t appear in the box.

Easy Mashable Social Bar

If you do want to remove a social media profile from the box or add a new one, you will have to edit the plugin directly. The code was well documented so you should find this fairly easy to do. In just a few minutes I was able to replace the LinkedIn link with a link to my newsletter. This isn’t the most practical solution though as any changes you make will be erased when you make an upgrade so you will have to remember to save the changes you make before you upgrade. Unfortunately, the widget doesn’t have a built in title either so you can’t place the box under a header such as ‘Subscribe’.

Whilst I do love the style of the box, it isn’t perfect in my eyes. I would prefer if the Google+ recommend link was replaced by an RSS link and a note of the number of RSS subscribers you have. Also, I really don’t like the fact that there is a link back to the developers website integrated into the box footer. Hopefully in a future version he releases a premium version that allows you to remove this link.

I’m going to test the box out on WP Mods for a few weeks to see how it performs. I suspect it encourages more people to become of your Facebook page as can click the like button and follow you without leaving the page. Usually the visitor has to go to Facebook and then click the like button.

I did like the SocialBox plugin I was using before however the lack of Feedburner email and Google+ subscription links lets it down (SocialBox was updated yesterday. Support for Dribbble, Forrst, Vimeo and Digg was added but not Feedburner email or Google+. Strange!). Plus I do like the fact that Easy Mashable Social Bar highlights my Facebook and Twitter profiles better.

What do you think of the Easy Mashable Social Bar? I’d love to hear your thoughts on this.

Thanks,
Kevin

Easy Mashable Social Bar: Information & Download

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Comments (5)

Comment by Prasenjit says:

Guys this is important. Please be advised that the authors of this plugin have injected two hidden links to their website by making the font-size and div height set to 0. This is highly unethical and it is probably the reason for being removed from the wordpress plugin directory. Please edit the plugin and use it.

I think a better way to get backlinks is to leave it upto the user to link or maybe release a premium version. Google penalizes for any hidden links in your website. Iâ€â„¢ve cleaned the plugin and released it on my blog. Please visit this link and download your copy.

http://www.incrediblogger.net/wordpress/plugins/easy-mashable-social-bar-plugin-recoded-cleaned/

Comment by Kevin Muldoon says:

I’m thinking of writing a tutorial about how I designed this area once I have finished the other articles I have scheduled for myself (themes/plugins reviews etc).

Stay tuned.

Comment by Charnita Fance says:

Hey Kevin, this is very cool. I’m actually more interested in knowing how you got the active daily readers stats above this widget!! :)

Comment by Rabindra Lamsal says:

Can this be used in blogger.com’s blogs? If yes, How? Please help.

Comment by Praveen Gowda I V says:

Hi Kevin,
This is way too better than the social box plugin.
Since visitors can like our fanpage without leaving the blog, I think it is very effective.
I am going to put this plugin on my blog right away
Thanks for letting everyone know about this plugin.

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