Google+ may be the newest kid on the social networking block, but it is not the only kid. I have multiple social networks that I maintain and update, and sometimes it can be tedious and redundant to post the same links or information on multiple networks. For today's 30 Days With Google+ journey, I am taking a look at some methods for cross-posting content from Google+ to Facebook, Twitter, and other social networks.
I found one creative method of sharing posts with Facebook compliments of EnBeeOne3.com. The site explains how I can automatically update Facebook when I post to Google+ by taking advantage of the system Google+ has in place for letting me add people who aren't even on Google+ by putting the email address in a Circle.
posting status updates via email into a Circle, any Google+ posts shared with that Circle will be emailed to the Facebook address and subsequently posted to Facebook.
Voila! Well, almost. I wrote a post on Google+ that I shared with my "Post to Facebook" Circle with my Facebook email address. It did, in fact, cross-post, but the original Google+ post was a link to a PCWorld article with a couple sentences of commentary, and all that showed up on Facebook was the first 10 words or so followed by ellipses, and no link to the rest of my text or the PCWorld content.
As creative as that solution is, it's not the most elegant, it only does Facebook, and apparently it doesn't work very well. There are some third-party solutions that allow you to send Twitter tweets via email as well, but TheNextWeb.com pointed me in the direction of something even better--the Publish Sync extension for the Chrome Web browser.
The article from TheNextWeb.com describes some shady behavior about automatically spamming your social networks, but apparently the developers took the hint and resolved that faux pas. The Publish Sync extension requires that I use the Chrome browser of course, but it enables me to automatically cross-post from Google+ to Facebook and Twitter, or from Twitter to Facebook, or whatever direction suits my needs--at least in theory.
I ran into two issues trying to use it. First, the Google+ functionality is apparently not working right now. In Facebook or Twitter when I start a new post there are checkboxes that appear that let me select which connected social networks to cross-post to. On Google+ those checkboxes are missing. Reading the forums for the extension, I am not the only one having this issue and the developers are supposedly working on it.
My second issue is with Twitter. The Publish Sync extension would not be very useful to me when it comes to cross-posting a Twitter tweet because it requires that I tweet from the actual Twitter website. I never use the Twitter website (I use Tweetdeck), so a Chrome extension that relies on me using the website isn't helpful.
The nice thing about Publish Sync is that it lets me choose on a post by post, or tweet by tweet basis whether or not I want to cross-post the information and to which social networks. In general, I don't agree with simply cross-posting everything between different social networks--if I am just saying the same thing then it's redundant and one of the duplicate networks should be eliminated. However, it is nice to have the option to cross-post on a limited basis when it seems warranted.
These are only two of many solutions circulating out there. A quick Google search turns up a plethora of options, but they all seem sort of like hacks and workarounds. I assume that as Google+ matures and moves from limited "Field Trial" mode to publicly available social network that mainstream tools like Tweetdeck will incorporate Google+ and give me a platform for sharing with whichever networks I choose.