What Facebook’s New Reactions Mean for Marketers

If you’ve been on Facebook recently, you have likely noticed some new reaction emoticons. Now, instead of just “liking” something on Facebook, users can also click emotions to express love, laughter, sadness, and anger. They can even click a “wow” emoticon if something surprises them.

You need to understand these emoticons so you can enjoy the benefits. At the same time, understanding them will help you avoid some problems that can come with negative reactions.

Reactions Provide Insight

Whenever you put marketing content on social networks like Facebook, you want to know what people think. While “likes” certainly give you an idea of how engaged your users are, these new emoticons provide a much clearer picture of what they think about each piece of content you put out there.

These new emoticons let you know if your content makes people sad, or if it is shocking to them. When you know their reactions, you can develop a marketing plan based on those responses.

For instance, if you get a lot of sad reactions, you might want to forgo posting that type of content. Sadness is typically the wrong type of reaction to get from your customers. If you make people sad, they will be less likely to read your posts. They might even hide you so they don’t have to worry about you bringing them down every time they log onto the social network.

On the other hand, if you get a lot of “wows,” you have generated some serious excitement that you can use to take your social marketing campaign to the next level. You always want to wow people, and this will let you know how to accomplish that.

At the same time, when people click the emotions to indicate love or anger, they are having an emotional response to your content. Marketing is largely based on emotional responses. People buy things that they love and give bad feedback when something makes them angry. By looking at the different emotional reactions, you can come to understand the emotional component of people’s decisions, which will show you what you need to fix and what you need to promote.

The Impact on Rankings

The importance of emoticons goes beyond determining what’s on your followers’ minds. In the future, Facebook might use reactions to change the way that people see posts.

Right now, the social network lumps likes and reactions together, meaning the more reactions you get, the better your position will be on the news feed. Facebook is constantly looking for ways to improve the user experience, though, and one such way might be ranking posts based on the types of reactions they receive. Posts that get lots of positive reactions might move up in news feeds while posts that receive negative reactions could get buried at the bottom of the feed, where no one will see them.

While this is a frightening thought, there are some strategies for getting positive reactions on Facebook.

Eliciting Positive Reactions

If you are going to get positive reactions through your advertising campaign, you have to start with great content. If your content is weak, people will either ignore it or react negatively.

Once you have great content, you have a couple of options for getting more reactions. The simplest way is just to ask for them. Post something and ask people to love it. This strategy is similar to instructing people to like or share your content on Facebook. You are telling people what to do and hoping they will comply.

While that is an option, it’s always better to be creative. Take a page out of Chevy’s playbook and have some fun while getting people to love your content.

The company released a new video campaign for the 2016 Malibu. The video campaign starts by outlining all of the things that people like, playing off Facebook’s like button.


Then, it introduces the Malibu and states that now, it is time to love something. At that point, it showcases the new emoticons, which inspires people to love the video ad.

This campaign provides a fun way to get lots of “loves” for an advertisement. Approach your advertising campaign this way. Think of the ways you can break free from the norm and try something new with your campaign while tying in the new emoticons.

The new emoticons are great news, as long as you know how to use them. If you use them correctly, they will give you a great deal of insight and help you deliver even better content to your followers. That will result in a stronger presence on Facebook and beyond, which will help your business thrive.

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