Thursday, 6 June 2013

Do you want to add social media icons to your blog so that readers can find you elsewhere on the web? Here are step-by-step instructions.

Overview: You will add an "HTML/Java Script" gadget to your sidebar, and these instructions will walk you through writing the HTML code. I'm no HTML expert; if I can do it, so can you. The idea is to link publicly available images of social media icons (which you will host on Photobucket) to your own social media pages.

Basic Tutorial

Step 1: Find a set of icons you like.

Google "free social media icons" and you'll find great links to free icons. Here are two I like: The Ultimate Roundup of Amazing Free Social Media Icon Packs and 50 Free Social Media Icon Sets. Download the set of icons, which often include different sizes. The buttons I use are 32 x 32 pixels.
Circular set I used to use from Blog Perfume. The new set I use is at BrandiGirlBlog

Step 2: Upload the images you want from the set to a Photobucket account.

Open a Photobucket account if you don't have one. Set it to public.
Upload the specific icons you want to use to your account.

Step 3: Write HTML code that will link these images to your social sites.
Open a separate text file or word document to write your code.
The code for each icon will follow the format below (in this example, the red link is my Twitter page and the blue link is my Twitter icon on Photobucket). The rest of the steps will show you how to create this code.

To get this code, go to your Photobucket account. Go to the image you want on Photobucket (e.g., Twitter icon), click on it, and you will see a box like this on the right part of the page. Click your cursor inside the third box that says "HTML code." This will copy the code, but you will need to tweak it a bit.
click on the third line (HTML code)

Paste the code into your working document. It will look like this:

Replace the first link (the one highlighted in red) with your social media link. To get your social media link, go to your site (Facebook Fan page, Twitter profile, etc.) and copy the address from the browser bar. Your finished code for one social icon will look like my Twitter code above.
Repeat this process for each social icon you want to use. If you have three icons, Facebook, Twitter, and G+, you will have three paragraphs in your code. At the end of this post are instructions for a more sophisticated look and specific instructions for an RSS feed icon.
Copy the entire finished code. You will be pasting this into your Blogger gadget.

Step 4: Post the code onto your blog.
In Blogger, if you are using the old interface, go to Design--> Add a Gadget. If you are using the new interface, go to Layout --> Add a Gadget. I recommend placing the gadget in the upper part of your sidebar.
old interface

new interface

Find and select the HTML/Java Script gadget.
Paste your code into the Content box. You can leave the title blank, or you can add a title like, "Find me on the Internet" or whatever you want to say about your icons. I think most people understand what the icons mean, so I don't use a title.
Save and you're done. Admire it on your page. (And check to see that the links work).


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