Is cross-posting effective? This is a question that I get asked a lot. What I mean by cross-posting is when you post your content from one social media platform to another automatically.
In particular, I get asked about Instagram a lot, specifically whether you should let Instagram also post to Facebook.
Post reach on Facebook
I did some looking into this and found this really interesting article by Agora Pulse.
They were keen to find out if cross posting from Instagram to Facebook affected your reach on Facebook. Their initial hypothesis was that it would have no affect at all. However, they were wrong. There was a noticeable negative effect on reach. In fact, from the small study that they completed they found that native posts on Facebook got 72% higher reach than the same post, cross-posted from Instagram!
Their conclusion – don’t cross-post from Instagram to Facebook if you don’t want to see negative effects on your post reach within Facebook.
Every platform has unique features
I spoke about respecting different social media platforms in episode 10 of the podcast.
I think this is an important consideration when it comes to cross-posting from platform to platform.
Is it appropriate to be so blasé with what you’re posting that you just assume it carries the same relevance across platforms?
For example, links. On Instagram you can’t have clickable links in your posts. So there is not a lot of point in putting a link that people cannot click.
On Facebook and Twitter you can include a link, and so what do you do if you are going to cross-post? Do you put a link in Instagram that people can’t click? Or do you have no link at all to suit your Instagram audience, but then you lose the opportunity to include a link on Facebook and Twitter?
Also, let’s look at hashtags.
Instagram is all about hashtags, especially if you’re trying to grow your audience.
You don’t really use hashtags on Facebook at all (apparently hashtags can even reduce your reach on a Facebook post).
There is a way around this if you want to cross post from Instagram. My tip is to have no hashtags at all in the wording of your post/description. But, instead put the hashtags in your comments.
Think about terminology too. For example, terms like ‘like’, ‘share’, ‘follow’, ‘retweet’…they aren’t totally interchangeable across each platform. When you write your posts, if you are going to cross post, keep your description relevant to all platforms.
In my opinion the cross-posting from Instagram to Twitter is quite a funny experience for people on Twitter – because they are provided with short amount of text (which usually gets cut off) followed by a link, and the link take them to Instagram.
If you simply don’t have time to go to Twitter and post there, then it’s not exactly the worst thing in the world to do to cross-post, it’s just not ideal.
Do you create a negative perception?
If people cotton on to the fact that you are cross-posting all the time, does this create a negative perception for your audience?
I don’t know. Perhaps it does, maybe it doesn’t.
I depends on what and how you are posting. It depends on who your audience are?
This is just something to consider.
My opinion, if you have the time to go to each platform and just spend a moment making your post relevant to the platform vs cross-posting I think it’s worth it. Posting directly in a platform (native) is likely to give your posts good reach.
If you don’t have time to post everything native within each platform, whilst cross-posting is an option, you could also consider using social media scheduling tools like Smarter Queue, Buffer and Hootsuite to name a few. By using them, you can post to all platforms, but you do get the chance to tailor what you are posting and where.
If you do cross-post, think about where your post is going and make sure you recognise that in your terminology/description.
Be there to engage with your audience on every platform that you post on. If you get comments, make sure that you engage with people. Be sociable because that’s what social media is all about!
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