Why add audio blocks to blog posts with Amazon AI (Polly)

Listen to this article:

Audio is an amazing format to share content. It is by far the easiest to consume. Sitting, walking, running, driving, working out, painting, or anything other activity all can be done while listening to audio. Depending on the type of content, the level of focus required will be slightly different, but it’s so versatile.

Audio is arguably the easiest format to create and share as well. If you are a content creator of any kind you’ll know there’s really only three ways to share your knowledge or story:

  1. Written
  2. Audio
  3. Video

The level of effort for most is in that order as well. When deciding to record a podcast or video, it is likely that you prepared something in written form to keep you from getting off topic. If you’re only writing a blog post then there is a considerable amount of work required to take the next step rather it is for audio or video.

Really looking for bang for your buck? Then you should jump next to video because then the audio can and be pulled and repurposed for a podcast. You’ve just killed two birds with one stone.

The only other way to do that would be to record just a video with no prepared written content, and many people do this. There’s nothing wrong with that. The problem is when you stick just to written content you miss out on the opportunity to reach your audience through an additional medium with little to no added effort.


Well, February 2018 actually. Because in February of 2018 Amazon Web Services (AWS) paired up with WPEngine to create a WordPress Plugin that converts all of your blog posts to audio blocks giving your readers the option to listening to instead of reading your content. The plugin does this automatically. Once the plugin is installed and configured, simply publishing a post fires off the conversion and everything is done for you.

The Plugin is named “Amazon Polly for WordPress” and is a fantastic plugin. Beyond converting your post to audio through Artificial Intelligence (AI), that actually is quite tolerable to listen to, the plugin gives you the ability to select from many different gender dialects, as well as translate into different languages. Another amazing feature of the plugin is it will present all of your audio blocks as a podcast feed to either link to Apple Podcasts or to share with your readers to manually load into and Podcast App for listening at their leisure.

The Caveat

This plugin out of the box cannot be used by the average blogger with a WordPress Blog very easily. In order to use the plugin, you must have an Access Key generated in an AWS account that someone owns. The critical thing about that is, not just anyone is going to give you an AWS Access Key in their account. At least we don’t think so because this is how all operations are done external to the account and typically those operations cost money, as with the Amazon Polly Plugin.

So even though this is a powerful plugin there is still a significant prerequisite for getting it properly configured. Doing so requires an Amazon Web Services Account. That might be why of over 75 Million WordPress Blogs, the plugin has been installed less than 3000 times (at the time of this post).

That is why Tactful Cloud has created a service that eliminates the need to have your own AWS account. While setting up your own AWS account isn’t too tough, there are many steps to take to make sure you properly secure it and any Access Key you may generate. The risk of not doing so could be thousands or even hundreds of thousand dollars if an improperly configured Access Key were ever compromised.

Get Started

Our service simply generates the Access Key needed to use Amazon Polly and emails it to you. No need to configure the Key’s permissions or signup for an AWS account that you will never use and that could accidentally rack up a bunch of charges. We control and manage all of that for you.

Our free course walks you through exactly how to configure the Amazon Polly for WordPress Plugin the correct way with or without your own AWS account. If you choose to opt against your own account for simplicity, you just request an AWS Access Key from us and you’re set.

Many YouTube videos walk through the quick and easy way to get an AWS Access Key but the majority of those are risky and lazy ways that could end up costing you big time.

Check out our free course here: https://go.tactful.cloud/polly and get your blog post converted to audio literally today.

Included in the course are resources and additional information about Amazon Polly and your enrollment in the course will keep you updated on all the new features and services Tactful Cloud is will be releasing in 2019.