Several years ago, two companies joined forces – Twitter and LinkedIn. The pairing of these social media companies permitted professional conversations that were started in one location to be viewed and followed automatically on the other. By syncing the two, anyone’s knowledge, expertise, skills, and professional content could be shared, thereby reach a greater audience.
However, that recently all changed. In June 2012, Twitter decided that they needed to part ways. The company indicated that they wanted to make it easier for their developers to build and provide a single set of consistent and competent tools. To ensure this focus, their relationship with LinkedIn had to come to a logical conclusion. As the saying goes, all good things must come to an end.
So what does that mean for users? Here are three immediate ways that you are affected by this split:
While previously they were auto linked, the most obvious change is that tweets will no longer be shown on LinkedIn.
The hashtag #in will no longer send tweets to LinkedIn.
You can, however, share your conversations from LinkedIn to Twitter through a manual process for each conversation you start. By doing this, both your LinkedIn and Twitter followers can still see your LinkedIn updates as long as the conversation was started on LinkedIn.
How will this affect Twitter and Linkedin? Twitter seems to have more activity, but this activity may not be relevant to business. By having the two separate, users can have a much clearer distinction between fun social media updates on Twitter and professional conversations restricted to LinkedIn.
On Twitter's end, their new focus on their own development of apps instead of on third-party sites, Twitter could end up providing stronger and more varied SaaS apps for their users, with a focus on greater security and therefore less vulnerability to hacking, and that could attract LinkedIn users.
What does that mean for you as a business? You can still use LinkedIn for recruiting, starting professional discussions, and uncovering and understanding the latest business trends. You can also still use Twitter for quick updates, questions, and general communication. Your marketing group may need to spend a little more time distinguishing the conversations you want in each social networking site, but this could be to your benefit – you can reach both audiences with similar, yet different messages that are more appropriate and customized for the typical user of each.
So what does the future hold for these two social media companies? Only time will tell if LinkedIn users tire of manually sharing conversations or if Twitter’s apps will lure LinkedIn users away. Or maybe users will continue to do both, simply in different ways. At the rate of technological changes, another social site could be lurking around to take advantage of this change. After all, change can be good.