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New Facebook Reactions: Yea or Nay?

March 17 2016

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For years, Facebook users have been requesting the option to “dislike” posts. Well, Facebook has decided to do one better and offer users the option to choose from six different emotions when interacting with a post. Now, when hovering over the “like” button, you can choose from like, love, haha, wow, sad and angry icons. Here are three ways new Facebook reactions can affect your posts.

  • Reach: Right now, regardless of what emotion is used to describe a post, any interaction will be interpreted as a “like.” This is useful because when a user interacts with your posts, Facebook’s algorithms interpret that interaction as an indication that the user wants to see more of your content. The more a person interacts with your posts, the more you’ll show up on their feed, which is why it’s important to post content that followers will want to engage with.
  • Engagement: More reaction options mean more opportunities for engagement with your social audience. People inherently want to be heard, but they also tend to have limited attention spans in the online sphere. Now, when someone who is amazed by a price reduction or a beautiful property you post, they can click the “wow” button instead of leaving a comment to that same effect. This could result in a higher level of interaction, but fewer comments on your posts.

  • Tracking: Facebook isn’t offering reaction tracking for your account (yet), but you can track how many likes, loves, hahas, etc. each individual post gets. Take a look at your posts and see which ones are getting more reactions. When you take your comments, likes, and other reactions into account, which posts are the most popular? Are your “haha” posts outperforming your “wow” posts? Is your audience more likely to respond to posts that have a lot of “haha” reactions or “love” responses? Figure out which emotional responses generate results for your brand and try to create more of that type of post.

Should you be worried if your posts are still generating a lot of “likes?” Did they not love it? Was your comment not “haha” funny? Things may change in the future, but for now, don’t stress over reactions. Think of them as a fun metric to watch, to see how your audience views your brand and messages. Try to leverage the reactions you receive to get more engagement, but keep in mind, “like” is the path of least resistance and will probably remain your most popular reaction.

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