Oneupweb : Avoid Duplicate Content In Social Media

I just found out that I will be speaking on “Social Media’s Impact on Search” at the 2011 Be Relentless Virtual Conference. Registration is now open, so if you  haven’t signed up for this event, please do so! Apparently I will be on camera in all of my third-trimester glory (and who doesn’t want to see that?).

I don’t want to give away my entire presentation, but as it’s fresh on my mind, I do want to cover one short topic about social media and SEO. It’s simple, really. Don’t post duplicate content.

We all know that when it comes to SEO, duplicate content is bad. And hopefully we all know that social media is playing a small but crucial role in the major search engines’ algorithms. So therefore, it’s probably not the best decision to post the exact same message, with the exact same wording, to all of your social media profiles.

I know, I know—it’s easy.There are even free tools out there that let you post the exact same message to all of your social profiles quickly—saving you important time and letting you push your message out to all of your followers. It almost sounds too good to be true! Think of all the resources you could save with a tool like this. But we all know, when things appear to be too good to be true, they usually are.

The fact is, social media is a time commitment. When you choose to enter into a conversation on a specific social network, you are telling that audience that you are interested in real engagements with them. These people expect you to have real conversations with them, and if you want them to communicate openly and honestly with you, you have to do the same with them. Think of it in terms of real-life conversations. There’s no easy tool that you can use to have a conversation with all of your kids at the exact same time. You have to listen to them, really listen to them, and actively engage in the conversation to make it meaningful. Other than that, it’s just a distraction or unwanted noise that they’re likely to tune out. The same is true with social media.

Now, that’s not to say there aren’t tools out there that can help you monitor your conversations and make posts quickly and easily. But even with those tools, you should still be crafting unique content for every social network every day.

And as if duplicate content weren’t bad enough, I have to tell you, my number one social media pet peeve is when someone uses a tool to post the same message to both Twitter and Facebook—and it’s longer than 140 characters. It just shows me you have no respect for the network or the people on it. That, or you’re just lazy. And in the corporate world, you never want to be perceived as lazy.