While I’ve had a Facebook account for a while, it’s only recently that I’ve started to pay a bit more attention to some of the behaviors of my friends and family. (That’s what happens when your youngest goes off to school and your use of Facebook picks up to see what he’s up to – or to stalk him, depending on your perspective.)
One area that I’ve questioned is the behavior to “Like” a business or product or famous personality. When you do, your “Like” is then advertised to your network. But why? Loaded question. Why “Like” it in the first place? What do YOU get in return for “Liking”? Why do I care if you “Like” it? I totally understand from the perspective of the business, but shouldn’t the relationship have a mutual benefit? Are there expectations of a benefit when you take the action to “Like” it?
Recently, Coca-Cola just achieved an impressive 50 million “Likes” on Facebook. As Coca-Cola puts it, “This provides an opportunity to engage our most supportive and enthusiastic fans in a quest to find ways to make the world a happier place.” Was that the objective of the 50 million that chose to click “Like”? Did they intend to be part of this global network of joy-searching? I don’t mean to be such a skeptic, but really?
Now of course “Liking” MSI would advance your social quotient with fascinating information and tidbits about marketing and media issues. And “Liking” local businesses and services puts some local buzz out there. And there is of course personal value in being altruistic about a cause. But national brands or retailers? If I’m advocating you in my network, I want something in return. A coupon maybe? Nah…too much effort. A warm, cozy feeling that I’m part of a group of supporters? It’s going to take a lot more than that. So don’t just ask me to “Like” you … tell me what’s in it for me if I do. Before I click.