Publisher WordPress Theme

Created: 8/28/2013
By: Mike McAlister

Thank you for purchasing Publisher! If you have any questions that are beyond the scope of this help file, please feel free to check out the Support Forum.

Getting Started

To get started with Publisher, you need to upload and activate the theme. You can add the theme via your WordPress dashboard by going to Themes → Add New → Upload. Upload

Alternatively, if you're a wizard you can also add the theme via FTP to the /wp-content/themes/ directory.

Installing Jetpack

Jetpack is a WordPress plugin by Automattic, the folks who make WordPress. It's a toolkit that provides various features and enhancements to your WordPress site. Publisher utilizes several features (infinite scroll, likes, sharing, contact form, widgets, etc.) of Jetpack, and must be installed for the theme to work as you see in the demo.

Install Jetpack by going to Plugins → Add New and search for "Jetpack". Install and activate the plugin. Once installed, you can enable Jetpack by

  • After activating Jetpack by, you will be asked to connect to to enable the Jetpack features.

  • Click the connect button and log in to a account to authorize the Jetpack connection.

  • If you don't yet have a account, you can quickly create one after clicking the connect button.

Once installed, activated, and connected to, you can visit the Jetpack settings page, which is now available at the top of your admin menu. You will need to activate the following Jetpack features by clicking the Activate button on each feature box.

  • Carousel
    The Carousel adds a beautiful lightbox carousel to your gallery images. This can be seen on the gallery posts on the homepage of the demo. Learn more about the Carousel.

  • Likes
    Likes are a way for people to show their appreciation for content you have written. Likes show up on posts and pages in the Sharing tab. Learn more about Likes.

  • Sharing
    Share content with Facebook, Twitter, and many more. Learn how to setup Sharing.

  • Contact Form
    Easily insert a contact form anywhere on your site. Learn how to create a contact form.

  • Extra Sidebar Widgets
    Easily add images, Twitter updates, and your site’s RSS links to your theme's sidebar. Learn more about Extra Sidebar Widgets.

  • Infinite Scroll
    Infinite Scroll is a feature that loads the next set of posts automatically when visitors approach the bottom of the home page or posts page. Publisher's homepage template utilizes Infinite Scroll to load posts. Once activated, go to Settings → Reading and make sure Scroll Infinitely is activated. Learn more about Infinite Scroll.

Publisher Options

Upon activating your theme, you should visit Appearance → Customize to setup the basic theme settings such as your logo, header, background and social links. Detailed instructions and tips can be found below.

  • Add Your Logo
    The first option in the Theme Options menu will be Logo Upload. Click the Logo select box to drag and drop or select an image from your computer. One you've uploaded and selected an image, a thumbnail preview will display and your logo will update live in the browser.

  • Social Media Icons
    To add social media icons to the header of Publisher, simply visit Appearance → Customize → Theme Options and add your links. Be sure to enter the full URL to your sites. Only the links you add will show up in the header.

  • Accent Color
    You can change the blue accent color on the site to any color prefer. Simply click Select Color and use the color picker or color palette to choose a new color. You will see the color update on your site live in the preview window.

  • Custom CSS
    Add custom CSS tweaks to your site with the Custom CSS box. Note: This is provided so you can apply quick touch-ups or minor tweaks to your site. Theme modifications should be handled via a child theme so you can preserve the original theme and update without losing your modifications.

Adding Homepage Excerpts

As you can see on the Publisher demo homepage, each post has a small excerpt of text that represents the post. This can be done in a few different ways.

  • By default, Publisher will cut off your text and create an automatic excerpt after 55 words. While this will work, it's not the cleanest option since it will truncate your content automatically.

  • You can fine tune the excerpt by using the Excerpt box when creating your post. I recommend this option because it gives you the most control over how the excerpt displays.

  • You can also use the More Tag to cut off your content at a certain spot. Note: This is helpful for audio and video posts on the homepage, if you want to show audio or video embeds coupled with a text excerpt.

Add a Custom Background Image or Color

Add a Custom Background to your site by going to Appearance → Customize → Background.

Similarly to the Custom Header Image, you can either upload a new image or choose one from your media library. Once you've chosen your image, you will have several options for displaying the background. You can also choose a background color instead of an image.

Complimentary Dark Background Color

If you'd like a sleek dark background, try using the color #3E444D. This is a great dark gray/blue color and compliments the default color scheme of Publisher very well.

Adding Widgets to the Sidebar

To add widgets to the sidebar, visit Appearance → Widgets. Drag any of the available widgets onto the sidebar and arrange them however you'd like. Enable Jetpack's Extra Sidebar Widgets module to get even more widgets!

Adding Images To Your Posts

Images can be added directly into your post content, or added via the Featured Image. Publisher uses the Featured Image for various aspects of the post, so be sure to set one if you can.

Using Post Formats

A Post Format is a piece of information that can be used by a theme to customize its presentation of a post. Publisher supports a few post formats that you can use to customize the look of your posts.

Changing the Post Format

You can change the post format of any post by selecting it from the Format box on the Edit Post page. The Format box will be in the right-hand column, under the Publish box. From the list, you can choose Standard, Image, or Quote. See below for a breakdown on how to use each format.


The Standard post format is the default post format. It is used for writing blog posts or articles. Simply write your post and hit publish. You can publish text, video, audio and galleries in the Standard post format.


The Image post format allows you to display just an image block on the homepage. The single page will show the image, as well as a title and content like standard posts.

To use it, create a new post, select Image from the Format box, add a title, content (optional) and set a Featured Image.


The Quote post format allows you to add quote text, which will show as a stylized block.

To use it, create a new post, select Quote from the Format box, add a title, and then add your text to be displayed in the quote block. To add a citation name, go to a new line, enter the name and italicize the text. This will style the name differently from the quote. You can also set a Featured Image here, which will be used as a transparent background behind the quote.

Full-Width Page Template

Publisher comes with a full-width page template, which displays your post content without a sidebar. To use the full-width template, select Full Width from the Templates section of the Page Attributes module.

Extra Styles Via CSS Classes

Publisher comes with a few extra typography styles that can be used by simply applying a class to your content. They are entirely optional, but can add a nice touch to your content!

Pull Quotes

Pull quotes are similar to block quotes, but are reserved for less text. See Publisher's Style Guide to see our suggested usage.

To use pull quotes you can add a class of pull-left or pull-right to your content. See an example below.

<span class="pull-right">This text will be pulled right.</span>

Text Highlight

Text highlight simply adds a yellow background to your text, useful for in-paragraph emphasis. To use the highlight style, you can add a class of highlight to your content. See an example below.

<span class="highlight">This text will be highlighted.</span>

Intro Text

Intro text styling simply makes your text lighter and larger, creating a nice light title effect. This is useful for introducing a post or page with a brief description. To use the intro text style, you can add a class of intro-text to your content. See an example below.

<span class="intro-text">This text will be intro text.</span>

A Note About Content Curation

When you look through the Publisher demo, you'll notice it's very thoughtfully constructed. All of the posts have a brief, descriptive excerpt, images are cropped nicely, and embedded video and audio are neatly aligned. As you can see, with little effort, Publisher does an impressive job of making your content shine.

We encourage you to take the same time and consideration when crafting your latest post. When possible, use high quality Featured Images that really highlight your content and underscore your message. Use interesting bits of text for block quotes and pull quotes. Be expressive and creative with your type treatment and styling. In doing so, you're creating a beautiful, content-rich experience for your readers.

Visit the Style Guide to see layout and styling examples that you can use in your own site.