Why You Shouldn't Link Your Company's Facebook Account to Twitter

Brett Heitz
Brett Heitz President, Such Great Heights Marketing

Posted on November 18th 2013

Why You Shouldn't Link Your Company's Facebook Account to Twitter

linking Facebook and twitterGiven the laundry list of tasks you face every day as a business owner, you’re probably on the constant lookout for ways to save time. One of the ways to save time on social media seems like a no brainer: linking your company’s Facebook account to Twitter. In other words, when you post on Facebook, it automatically shows up as a tweet from your Twitter account, too. Sounds brilliant, right?

While this may sound like a great solution, Facebook and Twitter are completely different animals and require entirely different management. User behavior, consumption of information, structure of posts/tweets, and the ways fans and followers engage vary dramatically across the two platforms.

Twitter can be a powerful tool for connecting with your customers and future customers. It’s an excellent platform for making real connections, gathering and responding to feedback about your business, resolving issues or complaints, growing your customer base, and more. However, it needs to be managed properly to reap these benefits.

Although the benefits are clear, I often see Twitter treated like an afterthought as shown by companies that blindly push all of their Facebook posts to Twitter. Too many business owners are falling into this trap and I’m on a mission to educate them about the pitfalls.

Let’s look at four reasons why you should not link your Facebook and Twitter accounts.

It’s antisocial

If your business takes the shortcut of having your Facebook posts show up on Twitter, what are the chances you actually log into Twitter to follow up, reply to mentions, interact with others, grow your following, and so on? I’ve personally tested my theory by responding to numerous tweets by businesses that that link their Facebook accounts to Twitter. Nine times out of ten, I never hear back because they’re not actually logging into Twitter. It’s a social media tragedy.

Not engaging with others is on Twitter is antisocial and defeats the purpose of using it as a marketing tool for your business. It can irritate potential customers that reach out to you, resulting in lost sales opportunities. Even worse, if you are not responding to customer concerns or complaints, it can tarnish your reputation beyond repair. It sends the message that you don’t care enough to connect with others, which defeats the purpose of social media in the first place, doesn’t it?

It’s unauthentic

People on social media are looking for genuine communication. When you don’t manage Twitter as a stand-alone medium, you’re using it in an unauthentic way.

If people are connected to you on both Facebook and Twitter, what’s the motivation for them to continue to follow you on both networks if you’re blasting out the same content at the same time? It comes off as unauthentic and robotic, which can be a real put-off for folks. 

In the end, linking your accounts to save a little time can actually work against you in the arena of public perception. It shows that you have little understanding of how to properly use these social networks for business purposes.

It looks sloppy

Formatting on Facebook and Twitter are entirely different. Facebook posts allow up to 5,000 characters; Twitter allows a mere 140 characters. Accordingly, Facebook posts that are over 140 characters don’t show up very nicely on Twitter.

Messages that are cut off because of Twitter’s character limit not only look sloppy, they make your business look bad and may prevent people from wanting to follow you. In addition, some Facebook posts show up only as links on Twitter with no descriptive text whatsoever. Also, images without descriptions that are posted on Facebook show up as tweets reading, “I posted a new photo to Facebook,” which is incredibly annoying.

It hinders your progress

At the end of the day, the effects of the reasons to not link your Facebook and Twitter can hinder your social media efforts. In a majority of cases I’ve observed, businesses that link their accounts have far fewer followers, receive less engagement with tweets, and are missing out on the powerful potential of Twitter.

Next steps

Now that you understand why your Facebook and Twitter accounts are different creatures and should not be linked, make sure you take the time and effort to manage them individually. If you’re already doing this, I congratulate you for a job well done.

(Don't link Facebook and Twitter / shutterstock)

Brett Heitz

Brett Heitz

President, Such Great Heights Marketing

Brett is the President of Such Great Heights Marketing, a marketing company serving small businesses in the Detroit, Michigan area. He is passionate about providing marketing services that help local businesses thrive and grow.

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Comments

Marketwithmario
Posted on November 19th 2013 at 6:58AM

Great points here. Especially with the formatting of pictures.  Manually uploading pictures to Twitter now has a huge impact with the pictures being opened instead of a link.

Lisapatb
Posted on November 22nd 2013 at 4:43AM

Excellent point Brett - I often wondered why they tweet stuff with FB llinks and half the time you can't even view the pages unless you are logged in. It can be somewhat annoying. If it is done for a major announcement or something of that sort I don't mind as much. But for just posting pictures and other "stuff" it can be quite the turn off. 

SabineMcKenna
Posted on November 22nd 2013 at 4:51AM

Fully agree. Too many tweets consist of incomplete sentences with a link to Facebook... looks lazy and is annoying. Besides, for most businesses, the Twitter audience is quite different from the Facebook audience. The same update just cannot work for both platforms.

As you mentioned authenticity, Brett, what do you make of scheduled Tweets and Facebook updates? I for one find myself switching off when I see a status update is prescheduled...

SusiQMcHugh
Posted on November 22nd 2013 at 10:46AM

Good points all.  Firm believer in handling Twitter in 'real time' as much as possible.  Not always easy but it doesn't take long once in there - maybe 5 minutes 10 times a day or so.  

Example - went into a personal Twitter feed this morning to find that I had about 20 @ tweets where I was mentioned that started with a conversation yesterday where someone disagreed with me.  Although I was included in all these 20 tweets, I was not 'live' during the conversation.  Ugh.  Now to go back and address them is more time consuming than if I had been on top of things all along.  Another FEATURE Twitter could add is to trash a tweeter's involvement in tweets via @ where the conversation was long ago OVER. 

Maybe it's there but I don't even know it - things change quickly! :)))