Facebook to Provide More Options Than Just ‘Like’

Sherry Bonelli

We’ve all been there. A friend or family member posts something sad on Facebook. Someone’s having a bad day, their dog died, they were laid off from their job, a loved one passed away, someone has cancer or is going through surgery, etc. In these instances, the Facebook ‘Like’ button just doesn’t seem appropriate, does it?

Dislike Button

Image Source: MarketingProfs

To be fair, Facebook gives you plenty of opportunity to write a comment to your friend or family member that’s going through a difficult time. However, in our hurried lives, we sometimes don’t have the time to write a comment, so up until now the ‘Like’ button is the only option there for us to show support. But it just doesn’t seem appropriate for some Facebook posts, does it?

Sad Post on Facebook

Apparently, Facebook has heard this concern. On September 15, 2015, Facebook King Mark Zuckerberg hosted an in-person town hall Q&A at Facebook where he answered questions from people around the world. One of those questions just happened to be on this very subject, “We need to have more options than just a ‘Like’ button. Why don’t we have other options like ‘I’m Sorry,’ ‘Interesting,’ or ‘Dislike?’” Zuckerberg’s response showed a thoughtful response: they’re working on it.

Zuckerberg Facebook Dislike

Source: Facebook Newsroom

Now, Facebook is all about community and they don’t want to create a medium that could perhaps be used for evil (i.e. someone starting a “Dislike” war on posts). So, like every good business, Facebook is carefully looking at the options and will be releasing the solution to the non-Like button concern soon.

What Does This Potential ‘Dislike’ Button Mean for Marketers?

The potential Facebook ‘Dislike’ button has everyone talking. For marketers this is going to be a great way to monitor a brand’s advertising efforts, allowing marketers to collect consumer data that can be used to improve targeting efforts.

While users may be focused on the emotion behind the Dislike button, marketers will reap benefits from the data it will offer. For example, if a person dislikes posts from a company or brand, that brand may not want to target him or her with advertisements.

However, a competing brand may want to advertise to that user. An example of this might be a person who ‘Dislikes’ a Coke post, so an ad for Pepsi can be served up an instead. Brand marketers can choose to show ads to users based on their Likes – and now, in all likelihood, their Dislikes. Brands that target Facebook users with ads are going to be able to get valuable data from the disliked posts, making it easier to get user sentiment so they can serve users with content they’ll be interested in.

The potential alternatives to the ‘Like’ button can also help brands turn the ‘Dislike’ button to their advantage – allowing them to have a conversation with customers to hopefully help salvage the relationship.

Facebook is definitely looking out for its consumers by looking at adding alternatives to the ‘Like’ button, but if you’re a Facebook marketer, this could also be a huge new opportunity for you, too.

Are you planning to take advantage of whatever 'Dislike' or 'Empathize' button Facebook unveils? Let us know how in the comments.

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Sherry Bonelli, M.A. Internet Marketing, is a Digital Marketer and Presenter/Speaker. She has been a digital marketing professional since 1998. After launching her first ecommerce website in the late ’90s, Sherry has been featured on the TODAY Show, ABC News, CBS News and other newspapers and media outlets. She is the Local Search Evangelist at BrightLocal: http://brightlocal.com

She is also a SCORE Mentor in East Central Iowa. In the local community, she is the owner of early bird digital marketing, a full-service digital marketing agency located in Cedar Rapids, IA. She can be reached by visiting http://earlybirddigitalmarketing.com or by calling 319.409.3287.
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