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Why you need to stop chasing “Likes” on Facebook

Generating likes on Facebook is not a sound social media strategy to increase sales- in order to sell you need to think exactly in the opposite direction: You need to start liking your customers.

Don’t get me wrong, the “like” button is great and very popular. According to a recent article in the Influential Marketing Blog 50% of all the people on Facebook have clicked the “Like” button on a brand page in the last 30 days.

FRANk Media- Facebook-Like-Button

Image Source: http://www.madtomatoe.com/

However, have you noticed advertising telling you to “Like us on Facebook and get xyz” or “For your chance to win, like us on Facebook”. The list goes on..  More brands decide to run campaigns or competitions to drive “likes” on Facebook and ultimately increase sales. So why is this not a great tactic?

First of all, giving something away (discount, prize, additional services) in return for a “like” usually only provides a short term boost in likes on Facebook and therefore a short term boost in sales (if any).  That is because it attracts fans for the wrong reasons, i.e. the chance to win or a discount. Second, it feels like a brand is twisting peoples’ arms to get to like them and I’d rather like something on my own terms.

FRANk Media_ CMB_JoeGirard

Image Source: http://comobo.com/

So how do you increase sales via Facebook? It’s really easy if you speak to Joe Girard, the most successful salesman ever. A recent article by Social Commerce Today writes that the most successful salesman  according to the Guinness Book of World Records says his secret to successful selling is to tell customers he likes them.

It’s so simple but very effective: Like your customers and increase your sales!

Joe is not the only one who swears by this concept. Robert Cialdini is a psychologist and author and agrees that liking your customers is key to your selling approach. According to his Wikipedia site he defined six “weapons of influence” and one of them is liking: “People are easily persuaded by other people that they like. [...] People were more likely to buy if they liked the person selling it to them.”

So stop chasing likes on Facebook with short lived campaigns and competitions and think how you can tell your customers you like them. They will like you back… on Facebook too

  1. July 22, 2011

    Any brand that runs a campaign that includes liking a Facebook page to win a prize is against the terms of service with risk that the Facebook page will be taken down.

    That’s the first reason not to do it.

    • July 25, 2011

      Hey Ed, thanks for your comment. Brands are allowed to run such campaigns on Facebook but they have to use an app to do so: https://www.facebook.com/promotions_guidelines.php
      This article however is focusing on the strategic thinking behind driving likes to pages which needs to change and not about the legalities of driving likes. Thanks Martinez

2 Trackbacks

  1. [...] Facebook is not a new tool. It has been around for a while now and brands have had some time to get their heads around how it works. It is not about chasing likes. [...]

  2. [...] It makes sense to me that as ‘Social ROI’ falls under the spotlight the easiest and most convenient demonstrations of ‘return’ are likes and followers. [...]

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