In using Facebook as much as I do, I get to see my friends liking everything from Brands to Charities, Holiday destinations to Celebrities, and everything in-between. Many of them are obvious – usually the ones tied to a tribe or tribal mentality. Football or other sports teams, for example; the like actually happened a long time prior to the advent of Facebook, most likely, and the platform has only served to provide a means to publicly display that affinity. For other likes, though, there seems to be no obvious explanation. It got me thinking about which likes are real, and which have been incited under a somewhat false pretence. I’ll explain.
First, some of my likes, and the reasons for them. Mrs. H and I are coffee lovers (not a euphamism), so we recently invested in a coffee machine for our home. After asking around for recommendations, and doing a bit of research online, we settled on a Nespresso machine, made by Magimix – trusted brands both – So far, so good. It’s only when we got home an opened the box, that we truly understood the set-up. Nespresso’s packaging, for one, is stunning. Well-designed, sleak, and would give Apple a run for its money, any day of the week. The Nespresso club membership is a great way to order your coffee online, get special promotions, and keep up to date with new coffee blends and such. Impressed, I immediately jumped onto their Facebook Page to Like them.
Firstly, it’s a true Like. I experienced the brand, tried the product, and I really liked the experience. I would recommend Nespresso any day of the week, and don;t mind my Facebook community seeing as much. I also want to see what others are saying about their machines, and the coffee, and want to make sure I get to benefit from any Facebook-only promotions – a tactic that I know a number of Brands employ.
Working in Social Media, I am often asked what measures should be taken to get more fans and Likes on Facebook Pages for businesses and Brands. I always advocate the use of a meaningful campaign to elicit a true like, over the competitions and sweepstakes that play on the desires and emotions of the participants, in a non-relevant way. For example – How many Facebook competitions have you seen, where you can Like the page, in order to be entered into a prize draw to win an iPad? There are plenty, and let me tell you something … the vast majority of them aren’t run by Apple (in fact, I doubt Apple give away iPads on their own Page)! Whatever the business – be it a hairdresser or multi-national accountancy firm – the real like is one of iPads … not of their company, people, products or services.
When you accept the “fake” likes in this way, you would be forgiven for thinking you’re improving your chances of raising the bottom line in your business. After all, more people get to be exposed to your messages and updates, and some of them are bound to engage and buy from you. Whilst the hit-and-hope marketing approach has been known to work, it’s inefficient. Imagine an army of fans who truly do like you and the things you do. How much easier would it be to engage them in conversations, have them share your updates, news and content, and ultimately, make customers and advocates of them?
So my request of you is this … get real likes. Explore the reasons why you liked the things you have, on Facebook and elsewhere, and get inside that mindset when pitching for new fans of your own. What can you do to get more people to like you and your company? After all … everyone wants to be liked!