After a blissful, serene quiet period, I have somehow started getting more and more “opportunities” to “like” one or another business on Facebook, usually in exchange for a CHANCE at some future benefit. Sometimes these opportunities are delivered in bulk, like a case of Pepsi (I’m a Coke man, myself) or doses of bad tasting cough syrup. What gives? Haven’t we already decided this is a bad idea over the long term? It feels a little smarmy, selling out the goodwill of your brand for a short little burst of happy. For we all know that these likes are fleeting, don’t we?
There are many articles on this. Here is one from ZDNet. Here is another from Fresh Networks, and yet a third from Social Media Today. They all say basically the same thing: once someone comes to your page and hits “like,” they rarely, IF EVER, come back. There is typically no reason to in their minds. 47% of potential customers in a recent survey said that liking a page has no influence on a purchasing decision from that brand, and that 67% only liked the page to get better deals.
Facebook is a great platform for sharing the human side of a business and giving customers a glimpse of the people behind the operation. Sharing content, thoughts, and ideas with your customers in turn builds trust, which can enhance sales over the long term because we all feel better buying from trusted sources. But in order to earn and KEEP that trust, you have to be prepared to make the page a source of value EVERY DAY. If you promise one thing and deliver less, you will undo all your efforts.
So why would you undermine that trust by baiting “likes” with false or weak “deals” that will never be repeated? Moreover why would you PAY to do that?
Having just lost a client who decided to go with a “cheaper” consultant who guaranteed to vastly increase their Facebook “likes” and Twitter followers – because that’s THE most important thing in social media (gah!) – I am deeply feeling this pain right now. It’s amazing what some will fall for, even in the face of overwhelming evidence that sharing items of value to the consumer/client, NOT just ongoing commercials for the business, is the linchpin of great social media strategy. Sigh.
@SweetTeaComm Not only that but I’m seeing consistent, blatant breaking of Facebook’s promotion guidelines. It seems that some consultants think it’s OK to counsel clients to do what is against the rules, just because “everyone else is doing it.” I am confident in the counsel we provide that is within guidelines, so when the Facebook crackdown happens, and pages are disabled, our clients will be untouched.