Measure engagement with one click

I created this BackType bookmarklet to quickly measure the reach of articles and blog posts in social spaces.

Drag this button BackType Stats to your browser’s bookmarks tool bar. If you are using Explorer, make sure your “Links Toolbar” is showing, then right click on BackType Stats, click “Add to Favorites” and save the link in your “Links” folder.

Now, when you’re viewing any web page, just click on the “BackType Stats” button to see how that page is being shared and discussed on Twitter, Facebook and reddit.

I won’t get into the details of BackType, but it’s a service that shows at least these details about any web page:

  • How many times a link to the page has been tweeted
  • How many times those links have been clicked
  • How many times the link has been shared on Facebook
  • How many times the link has been liked on Facebook
  • How comments have been posted on the page
  • How many times the link has been commented on in Facebook
  • How many times the link has been commented on in reddit

Take a look at BackType’s analysis of a post about the Knight News Challenge by The Nieman Journalism Lab.

BackType example: Knight Challenge

Links provide so much more than likes

australian facebook

Like is definitely not the new link. A few months after Facebook rolled out its now-ubiquitous Like Button and the idea that “social links” might replace links, I have an answer to the question “Did Like Just Replace The Link?

A recent New York Times blog post about Twitter’s @earlybird account includes a few links. The words around those links (context) tell readers and search engines what they can expect:

Contrast that to the information you can gather ff a reader “likes” that same blog post:

  • The reader likes the blog post or
  • The reader likes Twitter or
  • The reader likes e-commerce or
  • The reader likes Twitter’s new @earlybird account or
  • The reader likes Twitter’s advertising or
  • The reader likes blogger Claire Cain Miller or
  • You get the picture

The big question/challenge with Facebook’s current like button is that you have to ask “what does ‘like’ mean, anyway?

Image courtesy of James Allenspach via Flickr

Short URLs reveal Facebook sentiment

I recently ran across a shortened URL that was customized to read “leaveFB,” as in “leave Facebook.” After reading that post, I decided to dig up some other URLs that express how some people feel about Facebook.

If you’re looking to customize a shortened URL for your Facebook linking, these options are still available:,,,,,,<

Use me to play with Facebook social plugins

Based on Facebook’s big announcements at yesterday’s F8 conference, I’ve decided to add a few of Facebook’s social plugins to Almighty Link. In particular, you can now “recommend” any post using the button at the bottom of the post, and you can see the “activity feed” of your Facebook friends who may have liked other items on Almighty Link.

In my opinion, this is a good example of an independent blogger with very limited development resource and very little time just hacking together a rudimentary implementation.

So poke around and see if this thing works for you. Tell your friends to come and recommend some posts. See how that shows up on posts and in the activity stream. Let me know if this is a good or bad idea.

Oh, I have to thank Andreas Jacob (@Cordobo) for a timely post that showed how to add Facebook’s “like” button into WordPress posts.