How to automate your Facebook and Twitter posts with Buffer

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Use the Chrome and Firefox extensions to add to your queue

Buffer’s Chrome and Firefox extensions really let the app shine and make Buffer indispensable for those late-night browsing sessions when you want to share everything you find. 

The Buffer extension offers several ways to post to your queue directly from websites. You can post highlighted text, images, and entire pages to an account's queue in just a couple of clicks.

Highlighted text

To use the highlighted text feature, select the text you’d like to quote in your post, right click, and select Buffer Selected Text.

buffer highlighted text

Posting to your Buffer queue from highlighted text makes quoting extremely easy. Just watch that character count for your Twitter accounts!

A text area like the one on the Buffer website will appear in a pop-up dialog with the selected text already added to the text box in quotes. Buffer will also add the shortened URL for the web page from which you quoted.

buffer highlighted text dialog

Highlighted text will be added to the body of your Buffer post.

This is really useful for quoting parts of articles in tweets, provided you watch your character count.

Adding images

buffer share image button

Buffer makes it easy to share images with the Share Image button.

The Buffer Chrome extension makes it just as easy to add images to your posts. When you mouse over an image, a blue ‘Share Image’ button will appear. Click on it, and a dialog box will pop up. The image will already be added to the post, along with the text from the page’s title attribute and a note about where the image was found (using a shortened URL, of course).

buffer image

When adding an image to your queue, Buffer automatically accounts for the characters needed for the image link in Twitter posts.

Sharing a link

If you want to share an entire web page, click on the Buffer icon in the upper-right corner of Chrome. The dialog will pop up prefilled with the title text and a shortened URL.

The post will also have an image (if the webpage has one) and link summary attached for a Facebook link post. When you hover over the image to the left of the summary, left and right arrows will appear, letting you select the image from the page you’d like to use in the Facebook link.

buffer page

Adding a link post to Buffer is not unlike adding one to Facebook.

Note: If you click the camera icon to add an image, the post will change into an image post, and you’ll lose the link preview. If you really want to have a link post, cancel out by clicking the X in the upper-right corner of the dialog and start over again.

Posting from within social accounts

buffer facebook link

You can add Facebook posts to your Buffer queue using the link right next to the Share link.

The really cool part of Buffer is that you can add posts to your queue from within Twitter or Facebook.

In Facebook, you can add a post to your queue by clicking the Buffer link right next to the Like, Comment and Share links. There's one drawback to using this feature, though: Shared posts won’t show they were shared from someone else and will appear to originate from you. 

buffer retweet button

In Twitter, you can add a retweet to your queue by clicking the retweet button and clicking Buffer Retweet in the dialog that opens. Just remember these will appear as embedded tweets when they are posted to Facebook.

buffer retweet

Buffering retweets can space out your tweets and avoid retweet spam.

Time hacking with Buffer

Even if my queue is empty, I still use Buffer to share content to several social media accounts at once using the Share Now option. That alone can save me time copying, pasting, and editing text.

If you’re a blogger and you publish several blogs in a short span of time, you can easily spread out your social promotion of those posts over the week. If you take a vacation, you can add old posts to you queue to keep your social media accounts active and drive traffic even while you’re away.

Once you've mastered the web-based application, you can install the iOS and Android apps and post photos or links on the go.

There are plenty of other uses for Buffer, and once you get used to it, you’ll probably wonder how you ever shared content any other way.

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