Social media is becoming more intertwined every day. There are countless tools to utilize and social networks to join and connect with others and there are even big name integrations that occur such as Facebook with Twitter and, maybe more importantly, LinkedIn with Twitter. This integration allows you to connect your Twitter account and feed updates into your LinkedIn profile, and vice versa. Also, as both LinkedIn and Twitter only allow for 140 characters in their status box, it is a natural fit.
Initially, this was a great move for LinkedIn to capture another audience and put what was largely an under-utilized status box into more of a prominent position for its users. However, if you look at this from another perspective, it may not be an ideal solution for everyone.
Twitter is an outlet for you to share a wide variety of information, from personal to professional and from insignificant to breaking news. LinkedIn is very much a professional networking site where business-related topics are shared and discussed. With the integration between Twitter and LinkedIn, the LinkedIn professional updates are becoming gray at best for some of the members.
Some individuals on LinkedIn may choose not to use Twitter or are not active on Twitter. These individuals are now getting your “noise” on any topic, including the non-business variety of message. This could be viewed as a negative within your network and could result in the loss of connections.
What is also important to consider is that you may not be connected to or following individuals on purpose on Twitter. Maybe you are not following your boss or coworkers for fear over what you may post. Now, because of this integration, you maybe exposing your messages and putting them in front of the individuals you were trying to hide them from. You are also exposing when you are “tweeting” during the workday. It is important to recognize that there is more to your tweets than just their content; the time at which they are posted can tip off a boss to an unproductive worker. Think about it.
Personally, I have linked my LinkedIn and Twitter accounts because I felt this was a fantastic merger from a business perspective. I am now able to communicate with two potentially different networks.
My strong recommendation is to not allow every “tweet” into your LinkedIn profile. LinkedIn was smart in how they allow you two choices as to what “tweets” are connected. When you link your accounts, you are provided the options to select either the “all tweets” option or the “only tweets with #in within the message” option.
The first option, the “all tweets” option, carries a high probability of producing messages which are perceived as spam to your connections on LinkedIn and potentially damaging professional relationships if you tweet often or tweet on mostly non-business topics. The second option, the “only tweets with #in within the message” is much better in my opinion and appears to be a more sensible option for the LinkedIn and Twitter integration. Simply keying “#in” within your message on Twitter will post to both Twitter and LinkedIn. This provides you a greater ability to stay on the course you have chosen on Twitter while increasing your ability to post business information on multiple sites. Or you may post a message on LinkedIn and push it out to Twitter. Either way, you are in control as to what messages you share on LinkedIn.
Easy steps on how to adjust your Twitter settings within LinkedIn:
- Log into LinkedIn
- At the top right corner of the page, select the “Settings” option
- Under “Profile Settings”, selection the last option for “Twitter Settings”
This integration may not a perfect solution for reaching both audiences in an ideal manner, but it definitely can work well depending on how you choose to use it. What this integration continues to reinforce is that you must be very smart with what information you choose to publish online and to what audience. There is definitely a big upside to this feature. Just remember, this is your personal brand you are looking out for. You spent a lot of time and effort building it up, so make sure you’re taking the proper precautions to maintain it.