Users have been asking for it for years and Mark Zuckerberg is finally answering the call. That’s right, Facebook finally is getting a “dislike” button to go along with the popular “like” button feature. So what does this mean? Well, as a user it means you’ll finally get to express your opinion to that one friend who takes too many pictures of their food instead of eating it or that other one who insists on using seven hashtags in every post. As a marketer? It’s a whole new way for users to express their opinion about your brand.
It’s no secret that people aren’t the biggest fans of targeted online advertising, even if they do get results for your brand. Currently on Facebook, if a user doesn’t like your content they can voice their opinion by leaving negative feedback in the comments section or choosing to block your ads from their feed. These are all easily managed. If a user is being negative on your ads or unpaid content you can respond to the user and try to work it out or, if they are being particularly offensive, you can delete their comment and even ban them outright. If they choose to block your content from their feed, well that’s a win win. They don’t have to see something they don’t want and you don’t have to waste money on a user who isn’t interested in your content.
But the dislike button, will likely be far different. This will likely be an interaction that everyone can see, but you can’t really respond to. In fact, you’re only option might be to delete the content if it is generating too many dislikes as opposed to likes. And if you aren’t 100% on your targeting or messaging, you could end up killing your content and advertising campaigns on Facebook. People don’t want content in their news feed that they feel is irrelevant. If you’re targeting the wrong users or putting out content that feels too much like an ad and less like something that would naturally appeal to that user’s interests, chances are you’re getting a dislike.
But it’s not all bad, necessarily. If you’re testing out new audiences and messaging, this can be a great form of feedback. Measuring the proportion of likes to dislikes against different targeting parameters or creative is a great metric to help you decide who your target market is on Facebook and how to best communicate with them. Is one audience generating hundreds of dislikes? Experiment with the creative, ad text and calls to action. Did they start generating positive engagement? Great! If not, maybe it’s time to test new targeting parameters.
So what does this all mean for you, the social marketer? You’ll need to be more diligent. Lazy marketers who would usually just delete negative feedback from their ads or unpaid content will find themselves in trouble quick. The alert marketer will act fast when they see the negative feedback building up and work quickly to make adjustments. What we have here is just another challenge, one that should ultimately help us become better marketers.