You’ve probably heard about social media automation. The basic idea is that you can write 10 Facebook posts, schedule them all to be published at different points over the span of a week, and then sit back and relax. (Well, maybe not exactly—you still need to be strategizing, responding to fans, and engaging.) Still, when it comes to the grunt work of posting social media updates, automation software can add tremendous ease.
But some of the conveniences that it affords are double-edged swords. For example, it’s certainly easier than ever to post the same update to Facebook and Twitter—which is a great way to populate these and other social channels with new, albeit duplicate, content.
Yet, while there are obvious perks to this approach, there are also some drawbacks. Chiefly, if all of your social channels have the exact same content, there may be little reason for anyone to follow you on each individual channel.
So, should you be posting the same content on Facebook and Twitter? Let’s find out.
The Pros of Cross-Posting
We’ll be honest—there are definitely some benefits to cross-posting. These include:
- Ensuring that all of your followers and fans see important announcements, promotions, and company updates.
- Recycling your best content, therefore getting more bang for your buck.
- Not spending nearly as much time maintaining social platforms or generating new content.
- Maintaining consistent brand messaging across all platforms.
The Cons of Cross-Posting
Critically, there are also some big drawbacks to cross-posting. For example:
- The content isn’t tailored to a given social platform, which means you’re not really optimizing either. Twitter is a platform best suited for frequent updates, while Facebook for less frequent, more personal ones. By cross-posting, you may not be fully utilizing either.
- More pointedly, for those who follow you on each platform, your cross-posting will probably come across as lazy.
And that’s actually the bottom line here: Posting the same content to Facebook and to Twitter, time after time, is repetitive and annoying. It may even make your followers want to pack up and leave, because after one update, they’ve already seen everything.
Cross-posting is fine for the occasional update, but it shouldn’t be the norm—not if you want to have the best engagement opportunities on social media. For better optimization, try to remember that Facebook and Twitter are separate platforms that were designed with separate uses in mind, and treat them accordingly.
How do you tailor content to different platforms? Let us know in the comments!
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Editor's Note: A version of this post was originally published on 2/19/14 and has been updated to keep up with changes to Facebook and Twitter.