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Executive Report - By Thomas Baekdal - April 2011

Facebook Deemphasizing Twitter and Brands

Facebook is moving more and more toward social activity over social presence. It is not enough just to follow somebody. You also have to hug them.

Facebook is moving further and further away from being an open and connected social network. Sure they have "Like" buttons, and the "open" graph, but they are also moving ever closer to favoring Facebook and putting less emphasis on third party services.

Earlier today, many people noticed what seemed like a small change to how they support posts via Twitter. Instead of ranking and displaying each post separately, posts via Twitter are now grouped into a rather inconspicuous link.

Here is what it looks like in your stream. Instead of seeing each posts, you have to click a link to get the rest of the content.

In fact, when I wanted to take another screen shot today, I wasn't able to find any posts via Twitter. There wasn't even a link to them.

This is just on of many examples of Facebook de-emphasizing content not posted directly on Facebook.

As Josh Goodwin tweeted to me, "It forces people to USE Facebook, not just post to it."

It has a huge impact on brands. Every community manager knows that, as a brand, you must embrace a multi-channel strategy. You can't just be on Facebook or Twitter. You need to be everywhere, so that your fans can decide how to follow you.

Trying to channel people to a specific destination is not a good idea.

One of the ways that brands could optimize their work flows was to cross post to multiple services at once. You would link your Twitter account to Facebook, and then you only had to post the same message once.

But with this, and several other changes (read more below), cross posting is no longer an option. Not if posting via Twitter means that people on Facebook won't see them.

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Thomas Baekdal

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"Thomas Baekdal is one of Scandinavia's most sought-after experts in the digitization of media companies. He has made ​​himself known for his analysis of how digitization has changed the way we consume media."
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