Larry BraunerThis is a quick heads up about a content sharing error that’s easy to avoid.

When you share content on Facebook, LinkedIn or Digg, the site looks for thumbnail pictures it can show with your link and suggests one to you.

I’ve noticed people accepting whatever thumbnail Facebook, LinkedIn or Digg suggests. This isn’t a good practice, because that thumbnail may be irrelevant or even worse, an ad picked up from the linked page.

It’s important to show a thumbnail picture that’s relevant and if possible, one that can pique people’s interest. Therefore, you should go through all thumbnail choices to find the best one. If none are suitable, choose not to display a thumbnail at all. Having no thumbnail picture is much better than having an unsuitable one.

FacebookOn Facebook, you should also write a sentence or short paragraph to introduce the content and consider tagging the author if you follow that person or it’s a friend.

Packaging content and retweets is also a good practice on Twitter, even though Twitter doesn’t use thumbnails in the same way as Facebook, LinkedIn and Digg.

How you package content can be just as important as the content itself.

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13 Responses to “Facebook, LinkedIn and Digg Content Sharing Tip”

  1. Neil Ferree on September 6th, 2010 7:10 pm

    Right on Larry.

    Of late, I’ve been reading about Social Media Branding (mostly) from Diane on Amplify and how important it is to be consistent with the visual queues we use when pushing content to multiple social sites.

    I’ve been getting 5-6 time as many DIGG followers since the new DIGG platform went live. Are you seeing a similar phenom?

  2. Larry Brauner on September 6th, 2010 7:43 pm

    Yes, and those Digg follows are mostly people connecting with their myriad Twitter friends.. or just spam.

  3. Jack Goldenberg on September 6th, 2010 8:09 pm

    Thanks, Larry, Great suggestion. Also people should remember that with Twitter’s 140-character limit, it sometimes helps to write something that fits Twitter’s requirements to be assured your post will fit all three sites.

    Otherwise your longer post in Facebook may be limited when it also goes through Twitter.

  4. Bing SEO on September 6th, 2010 8:42 pm

    Larry, this is 24 karat advice, I agree that picking the right thumbnail is very important. (I have very often neglected to do so in the past, undoubtedly to the detriment of some of my earlier marketing results.) One thing I have noticed on Facebook is that once you have selected a thumbnail (before clicking “share”), it can be hard to change it to another image: you have to reload the page and start over again.

  5. Cherry Rahtu on September 6th, 2010 10:13 pm

    Hi Larry, I agree, a suitable thumbnail is very important, but I use ping.fm to share the stuff that I read from Google Reader and ping.fm auto picks the thumbnail which sometimes is not suitable. How should I handle that?

  6. Larry Brauner on September 6th, 2010 10:23 pm

    Yes, it does. So as with NetworkedBlogs, you’re at the mercy of the application. Hopefully, over the long run they do well enough.

  7. Mirdza on September 7th, 2010 11:37 am

    So true! These seem like they should be “common knowledge”, but common sense and common knowledge seem to be not so common nowadays, unfortunately.

  8. Monica McPherrin on September 7th, 2010 11:46 am

    It’s especially important to write something in the box above the link if you have your fan page and Twitter accounts linked. At the very least repeat the article title, otherwise when it shows up on Twitter, it will just be a link with no description and unlikely to be clicked.

    Do however remember that you only have 140 characters on Twitter so don’t make the comment too long.

  9. Larry Brauner on September 7th, 2010 12:12 pm

    There are actually fewer than 140 characters available, because the link uses a number of characters.

  10. Will on September 7th, 2010 5:41 pm

    Thanks , as usual, for great info Larry
    Best wishes,
    Will

  11. Ilka Flood on September 8th, 2010 5:31 pm

    Hi Larry,

    That is very good advice! I always make sure the picture is relevant to the actual post. I also just recently have learned about “tagging.” I love that, because then people will know that you shared their post. I like to show my appreciation to those who do share my content, but if they don’t tag me, I may never know.

    Have an awesome day!

    Ilka

  12. Svobodni Kvartiri on October 6th, 2010 10:55 am

    Hi Larry,

    Thumbnails for Facebook is really good advice, but packaging content for Twitter sounds like a real challenge… Any advice how to do it?

  13. Larry Brauner on October 6th, 2010 11:38 am

    Svobodni,

    How about adjusting the title if it doesn’t sound enticing enough, and then, after the link, add your own very short comment about the content.

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