How Twitter Made LinkedIn the Place for Industry Links - The UpStream

How Twitter Made LinkedIn the Place for Industry Links

posted Saturday Sep 15, 2012 by Scott Ertz

How Twitter Made LinkedIn the Place for Industry Links

You may have noticed that over the past few months that the number of #hashtags on the LinkedIn news feed has gone down markedly. This is because Twitter has, like many times in the past, revoked LinkedIn's ability to read users' Twitter posts and repost to LinkedIn. Because of this, more people are sharing directly to LinkedIn instead of letting their tweets get reposted. As always, they said they want to "provide the core Twitter user experience through a consistent set of products and tools." What that means is we don't want to help a competitor.

What Twitter did not realize was that the end result would be a lower usage of Twitter to share news, and a higher direct usage of LinkedIn. Now, while this sounds bad in sheer numbers, which it is, that is the the part that hurts Twitter. The loss of a large volume of tweets would not be unwelcome, either by Twitter or users, but only if those tweets are about your breakfast or where in your house you are. Unfortunately for Twitter, those are not the ones disappearing.

Instead, users are still posting about the toilet, but have stopped sharing industry links. This is what that means to Twitter: lost revenue. Hit the break to find out how.

Twitter is made up of people you don't know reading (or mostly not reading) your random posts. Most followers on Twitter are people you do not know and have no association with. From time to time you might share an article about Bitcoin and get a lot of Bitcoin-related followers who obviously did not read the article, but mostly it is unrelated followers. LinkedIn, on the other hand, is filled entirely with people you know, or people you have done business with in some way. Because of that, articles you are interested in are more likely to be interesting to your LinkedIn friends.

Here is where it hurts Twitter - those related, known connections are more valuable to advertisers. More targeted user-generated content means easier targeted advertising for the advertisers on the network. Plus, LinkedIn profiles tend to be complete, with work history, interests and even books read. All of that data means gold to LinkedIn. Unfortunately for Twitter, the door has been opened and there is no way to close it. With time, and not much of it, Twitter will see a marked decrease in advertising dollars and LinkedIn will continue to see growth. If you are a LinkedIn stockholder, that is good news. If you have invested in Twitter, privately of course, it spells disaster. It is probably time for Twitter to reconsider their closed API rules again.

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