November 10, 2009

Peanut butter and chocolate


Maybe I’m alone here because while I like peanut butter (on toast) and chocolate (in numerous formats) the idea of combining them sounds a bit wrong.

However, this sickly blend is the metaphor chosen by business social networking site LinkedIn to describe its new partnership with Twitter.

As Linkedin said on its blog: “Because when you’re trying to get something done, you want Twitter and LinkedIn to work together. Like peanut butter and chocolate!”

The tie-up will enable users of Twitter to stream their updates on LinkedIn, and vice versa. So, for example, you can use your LinkedIn status update to share work updates on Twitter.

Initially, I couldn’t see the logic in this pairing. LinkedIn has a serious, business-like tone, while Twitter is a bit more frivolous. Third-party tools that allow Facebook and Twitter users the ability to post updates on both social networks makes complete sense, but I couldn’t see why a Twitter user would want to inform their LinkedIn connections the tedious details of what they had for lunch.

But, the two-way interaction allows users to be selective about what they share across both networks. Another bonus on reflection is that the deal could open up an opportunity for brands and marketers to harness LinkedIn as a marketing tool.

LinkedIn boasts a rich array of groups, which have hitherto remained untapped by advertisers. We were trying to figure out an interesting and engaging way to use LinkedIn for a social media campaign only last month. By using the hastag ‘#in’ as part of a social media campaign, you could easily share content and spark conversations with relevant LinkedIn groups that might not use Twitter.

It sounds like a sticky combination so perhaps peanut butter and chocolate isn’t so wrong after all.