Four Key Things to Know About Facebook Likes

By Renata Mathewson, Maple Marketing

What’s the deal with Facebook likes? What pages should you like? Should you pay for likes?

Someone recently asked for my advice about liking other people’s business pages. To be exact, the question was, “If someone asks me to like their page on Facebook, should I? Even if I don’t know them well?”

Facebook likes and Facebook advertising are huge topics, but here are some tips to clear things up about business pages and “likes”.

1. As a user on Facebook, please don’t feel as though you have to like every page you get asked to like.
First off, liking a page is somewhat of an endorsement for the page. So unless you know the business or the owner well enough to recommend them, then don’t feel obliged to. People look at which pages you like and they form opinions of you based on those likes. Imagine if I liked all sorts of pages to do with cats, cat toys, cat clothing, cat clubs. What sort of impression would you form of me? And then what if one of those crazy cat companies did something dishonest or dubious … wouldn’t that somehow tarnish your opinion of me too?

So no, you don’t have to like every page you receive an invitation from. Don’t feel obliged to endorse a page just because you’ve been asked. Feel free to politely suggest a phone call or coffee first before you endorse someone.

Remember, as well that, as soon as you like a business page, their posts start to show up in your news feed. Do you really want to see all those daily posts about cat toys?

One thing you can do if you want to show support for a business by liking their page, but you don’t want to see their posts regularly is you can “unfollow”. You can unfollow a page or turn off notifications from a page that you still like so you don’t get their posts in your news feed. I have to admit, I’ve done this. I can still see the posts when I go into a page that I like, but I don’t get a news feed full of posts every day that I don’t want to read that frequently.

2. It’s okay to pay for likes – it’s more than okay, it’s recommended
Should you pay to get people to like your business page? Sure, why not. But do it strategically and only pay for relevant ones. How do you do this? You select who you want to see your Facebook ads so that they are in your target audience. A page with 1000 followers has more credibility to some people than a page with 100 followers or likers. So if you run Facebook ads to generate likes (paying for likes) then make sure you’re targeting your ads at your ideal audience. Otherwise you may get crazy cat kooks commenting on your posts.

But isn’t it like buying friends? No it’s not – no more so than paying for advertising is a way of buying customers. You’re paying to get your message in front of the right people to attract them. Converting them into likes, or friends, or customers is what happens when you give them something they want or need – information, entertainment, instruction, inspiration.

So make sure, of course, that you’re also looking at ways to increase your likes naturally – or organically – through non-paid activity. This is really about sharing content that people want to read, and that they’ll be likely to share with others and re-post. The more word-of-mouth you can generate, the more likes you’ll attract.

3. Likes that you pay for can actually make your marketing cheaper
The other reason to pay for people to like your page is because it can make your Facebook advertising less expensive. If you run Facebook ads, targeting and reaching people who already like your page is cheaper than targeting people who aren’t already fans or likers.

For example, I might run a Facebook ad targeted at people who already like my page because I’m promoting a webinar and really want people who are interested already in the content I’ve been putting out. But another day I might run an ad for a new service I’m launching and I want to attract new prospects to my business. People commonly only advertise on Facebook to people who don’t already like their page and overlook the opportunities to target existing fans.

4. Remember that there is a person behind every like
It’s absolutely essential that you treat all of your likes as people – because they are! Just like the entries in your database, treat these as humans not numbers or statistics. Don’t get too hung up on the number of likes you have, but instead work on nurturing the relationships you have. If you’re worried that you only have 100 likes on your page, imagine if you had 100 people in your office meeting room or your home office. How exciting would that be, to have that captive, interested audience?! What would you share with them? How would you try to inform, entertain or inspire them? Every person who likes your page, and every person who occupies a field in your database, is a person who you need to nurture a relationship with. Your job as a business owner is to listen to them and serve them.


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