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Grand Unified Social Networking


Internet savvy people will know this problem : you have a blog, are using microblogging tools as or Twitter, and of course have a Facebook or Netlog account. But what about your target audience ? Do you expect them to follow you wherever you post something on the internet ? And as more and more people are using Facebook as a medium, the less popular blogs are becoming. Sure, some people use a feedreader for this, but it requires extra software to be installed, and feedreaders are sooo 2008 anyway :) In this post, I'll show you how you can use a single channel for the display of all your internet publications.

First of all, we must choose a consolidation channel. In my case, I'll be using Facebook for this. It has the advantage that it has lots of features which can help you realize many of your consolidation efforts.

Let's start with your blog posts : we want our blog posts to be displayed on our Facebook wall. This can easily be achieved by using the RSS feed aggregation that Facebook is supporting. To activate this, Go to your Profile, choose Actions, Imported Stories. In the first section, you can use other social networking sites as Youtube or Flickr to be imported. To import your own blog, simply head over to the second section, and choose Blog/RSS,and enter the feed URL of your website. A disadvantage of this is that Facebook imports the whole story and stores it internally : typos that you have made cannot be corrected this way, even if you update your blog post. Just use a good spell checker (default in Firefox) to minimize the damage ;) Another thing is that everything you post on your blog gets drawn into Facebook, which might be a disadvantage. This can be solved by creating categories or taxonomies for Facebook posts only, but it requires your blogging engine to support this.

In a next step, we want our Twitter feeds to be displayed also on our Facebook wall. Facebook supports many Twitter applications, from which I personally like Selective Twitter Updates the most. You can select which tweets are to be displayed on your wall by ending them with a #fb suffix. It looks a bit weird on your Tweet list first, but this is something you're getting used to quickly. Selective Twitter Update has the advantage you don't submerge your wall by every tweet you're publishing.

There you have it : some simple steps to steer all your internet posts to a single distribution channel, which might help you save some time.