Facebook to stop blog and web RSS feeds

Social Strategists Beware! Your workload is going to increase! From 22 November Facebook will no longer allow the automatic import of Blog and RSS feeds into Profiles.

A long-used strategy by social networkers has been to link their blog posts and websites via RSS directly to their Facebook profiles. This meant that every time they put up a blog-post, it would automatically “push” the information onto Facebook, creating a note.

This allowed for great interaction with fans, followers and friends — building the all-important relationship with potential clients and readers.

According to Facebook, this feature has been disabled for Pages already on 30 September.

“We want you to connect with your fans in the most effective ways possible. That’s why as of September 30th you’ll no longer be able to automatically import posts from your website to your Page notes. The best way to get people to interact with your content is to give them insight into the links you share on your Wall by adding personal comments and responding to feedback from fans.”

What Facebook says makes a modicum of sense: Often a frustration for social networkers is that a blog-post creates two conversations, one on Facebook and the other on the comments section of the Blog. This strategy will now force networkers to manually select and post information onto Facebook.

This can also be seen as another strategy by Facebook to “capture” the internet as its password and privacy-setting controlled environment allows users to choose what they can and cannot see. With over 800-million users world-wide, Facebook has already surpassed Google as the number one website on the internet.

But could this strategy backfire on Facebook? Only this week Google+ announced the launch of its version of Pages for Business, allowing companies to finally put up a presence on the rival network. Previously Google+ had a very strict “Real Names Only” policy for accounts being created.

People rarely like being told what they can and cannot do, and doubly so for most Social Networkers who already stretch the envelope. With the large plethora of social networks, blogs, twitter accounts and websites to manage, Social Marketing Managers at firms already spend large amounts of time during the day ensuring that company information and press-statements are carefully posted and represented across all networks.

Perhaps Facebook realises that, with its membership, it is simply too big to fail? While Social Networkers may be upset by the end of automatic RSS posts to Profiles and Pages, Facebook does leave us with one last bit of good news:

“We’re focused on creating even better tools for Pages. Look for announcements soon.”



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