Written by Rod Vedder, Director of Business Development/SEO Specialist
Friends, I come to you today as a concerned citizen.
There is a crime against humanity that needs to be stopped the dreaded Facebook post being simultaneously posted to Twitter, and vice versa. There has been a lot of ink spilled on this topic, however, it is 2017 and this is still a problem. Few things bother me more than seeing a cut off tweet followed by a fb.me/_____ link. Now, there’s no right or wrong way to use social media, but there are much more effective and efficient ways than others.
You may think, But it’s great! I get two posts done with half the effort! Well, that is not only exactly what it looks like (you’re being lazy) but let’s explore some more reasons this is an abomination from a business perspective.
Facebook and Twitter are two distinctly different platforms for communicating. As they have evolved, they’ve developed more similarities than they had in their respective infancies, but they should still be treated differently from one another, because they are.
Facebook has that backyard BBQ feel, where it is much more personal. Typically, you wouldn’t invite just anyone into your backyard, only people you are at least somewhat familiar with, and are able to identify exactly how you know them. To that end, conversations with people will be longer and more involved. On Facebook, the expectation is for (maybe) one to two posts per day, and these may be longer in length that just a sentence or two. Some people don’t want to read anything longer than that, but on Facebook, it’s expected that sometimes, that’s how it goes.
Twitter, on the other hand, is more like happy hour in a crowded bar. Interactions are many, but familiarity with your subjects is not always there, so they tend to be short and sweet. Tweeting 10 or more times a day is nothing for Twitter because it moves much faster. The 140 character limit helps this along, and so too does the volume of updates from people you follow. While some users restrict their accounts to allow for someone to follow them, most do not, which allows one to follow people they don’t necessarily know but have an interest in what they have to say.
Twitter Gets Neglected
Businesses that link their Facebook posts to go to Twitter often forget about an important half of that equation you know, the actual Twitter account. By doing this, again, they think that they’re saving themselves work by posting on a second social network, but they never actually log into Twitter to check mentions, follows, likes, or anything. I’ve mentioned numerous accounts on Twitter that do this, and cannot tell you when I’ve ever gotten an acknowledgement from any of them.
If you explore some interactions consumers have with businesses on Twitter, you’ll be able to see that it is a public forum that draws a lot of eyes. Some are funny, like the Wendy’s Twitter account throwing barbs at people, but others use this as a problem solving tool (or at least try to.) Southwest Airlines and Chase Support are two that have full time people monitoring these accounts because they get a ton of interaction. Southwest’s average response time is 15 minutes, and Chase does a great job searching for and finding mentions of Chase, even without an @ sign in the tweet.
Ultimately, this is a huge opportunity to provide excellent customer service that could be missed. If someone is taking to social media to complain, it is because they’ve most likely reached the last straw. Other means of communicating and trying to get a problem solved have likely failed, and so they resort to putting that business on blast to let the world (or at least their followers) know their displeasure. How you respond is important, and if you just have a Twitter that quite literally mirrors your Facebook feed, you are behind the 8-ball and missing a big opportunity to serve.
Once Again It’s Lazy
Posting to social media is much, much easier than a lot of folks seem to think it is. I’ve worked with people in other industries that try to make it a point to sit down and DO social media. Social media moves too fast for this line of thinking, for starters, but if this is the case, it’s much more effective to use a service like Buffer or Hootsuite to post content to multiple social media channels. Not only are there free options for each, but the posts you create will look like they are native to the platform, and also allow you to customize the post for each platform, like using @ to mention someone’s Twitter account or adding hashtags (#). It might sound like a small thing, but it’s not.
In doing this, however, you still need to check on your accounts. Social media accounts are like cars you have to take care of them put gas in them (post to them) and perform maintenance (update imagery/bio info, etc.) So, don’t be lazy – break your Twitter account free of your Facebook and start using it the way it was intended. Your customers will thank you!