With a weekend of a derecho storm and a leap second that sent several online sites into a tizzy, I was suddenly also faced with the prospect of having to work harder at sharing online. But it seems to be quite the opposite.
It was a wild weekend for many
June 29 derecho took down powerlines with a tree in my neighborhood. Power outages continue for many in the community.
Sure, it was interesting that Person-A connected with Person-B, Person-C and also Person-D on my LinkedIn home page.
But a whole page of that? Phooey.
I missed the real content: the news I got from people's twitter feeds.
Afer the decoupling, I discovered sites that claimed they had ways to work around this decoupling - but did I really want to invest in managing another posting tool right now? And even when I tried some of these tools I was unsuccessful in implementing them as LinkedIn was experiencing down time due to the addition of a leap second to our clock.
Now, one thing that LinkedIn's Ryan Roslansky did say in his blog post was that while we couldn't feed our Twitter updates through Linkedin, we could still continue to share updates on both LinkedIn and Twitter by reversing the process.
Initiate the conversation on LinkedIn. Simply compose your update, check the box with the Twitter icon, and click “Share.” This will automatically push your update to both your LinkedIn connections and your Twitter followers just as you’ve been able to do previously.
I was a bit hesitant to try this method because:
- Fear of multiplex postings: I've discovered that when you feed one social media update stream to another social media network, you need to make sure you aren't creating an update loop of multiple postings of the same content (yes, I've been guilty of this). I already have give-and-take posting relationship established between Twitter and Facebook - whichever of these two I post on first is set up to migrate to the other network. What havoc would be wreaked by adding LinkedIn to this interactive equation?
- Lack of interaction with existing communities. I need to make sure I'm not just feeding updates to my social networks, but am really listening to and engaging with my community online. How would this triple-posting impact that?
How the LinkedIn to Twitter to Facebook posting works
My strong belief in embracing change with a big bearhug overtook my hesitation and I jumped in.
I posted an update on LinkedIn - and here are the updates that were generated:
STEP 1: LINKEDIN. Making sure Twitter sharing box is checked, post update on LinkedIn. Note: The checkbox will default to the setting of your last post, so make sure you have it checked or unchecked accordingly for each post.
STEP 2: TWITTER. LinkedIn update posts to Twitter. While the shortened link looks like you will go to LinkedIn, the link actually takes you to the original article through a redirect from LinkedIn.
STEP 3. FACEBOOK. Autopost from Facebook to Twitter. If your Twitter feed is set up to autopost on Facebook (you can set this up through Twitter Settings > Profile), you get a nicely formatted update, graphic and all. This time the link to the original article is a Twitter-shortened URL which leads to the URL (though the LinkedIn redirect is used in the story).
To other posts, I've also tried adding @profiles and #hashtags to the post title - they do carry over to Twitter and to the Facebook status line (rather than the title which is pulled from the story link).
One downside of this is that you can't control what graphic or text gets posted over to Facebook. So if you do care about how a particular link is posted, you might want to hide from your Facebook timeline then repost the link by hand. You could also decouple posts from Twitter-to-Facebook and just do posts from Facebook-to-Twitter.
Tracking all of this in terms of metrics for posts from your blog/website may get complicated unless you use some kind of campaign tracking code such as that leveraged by Google Analytics. Because you are passing the link through multiple URL shorteners, it may be worth revising the Google Analytics campaign code a bit:
- utm_source (don't include as it will be generated via the URL shortener)
- utm_medium=LauraLeeDooley (name of poster)
- utm_content (optional)
- utm_term (optional)
Why does this Twitter-LinkedIn decoupling make my life easier?
- It encourages me to spend less time on posting and more time on listening. Reversing the Twitter-to-LinkedIn connection to LinkedIn-to-Twitter allows me to post once and reach three networks. Yes, it is important to have a conversation with your audience on social networks, but sometimes you have something to share that you want to get out to as many of your touchpoints as possible. Making LinkedIn a resource that enables you to post to Twitter and Facebook for those posts you want to share via all three networks cuts down on the time needed to craft each posting. This gives me more time to "listen" to what others are saying.
- It facilitates more engagement with LinkedIn connections. While I am constantly posting content to Twitter and LinkedIn, I have found it more difficult to actively and thoughtfully post content to LinkedIn beyond the group that I manage. This forces me to take the opportunity to craft posts that meet that are more engaging and targeted at my audience on LinkedIn, with the added benefit of also posting to Twitter and Facebook.
- It decouples all Twitter/Facebook posts from LinkedIn. Sometimes I want to post something that might not be as relevant for my community on LinkedIn. So I can target Twitter and Facebook with these humorous or off-topic posts without carrying over to my professional network of LinkedIn.
- It has the potential to increase my Twitter following. I've reached the 2,000 Twitter following limit and have been working to build my followers to be able to get over that hump. While Twitter has decoupled from LinkedIn, LinkedIn has not removed the "Follow @Twittername" button on individual profiles. Since updates will now be crafted for the LinkedIn community, if people are interested in my posts they may have more interest in connecting via Twitter (since they won't automagically get my twitterfeed via LinkedIn). While not a proven theory, this is definitely something to monitor.
All of this is based on connecting your personal profiles together. You have to hand-post content to any Company and Group page you maintain.
What are your thoughts on the Twitter-LinkedIn decoupling?