In all my years of writing and understanding the power words have to draw emotions, I never thought these words could come from my mouth: using emoticons instead of the thumbs up/thumbs down will make a huge difference in the social media marketing game.
It pains me, but it’s true. A few weeks ago, Facebook announced they were going to start testing emoticons in Ireland and Spain for people to use instead of the “Like” button. There has been a clamoring for a dislike button for many years. Seriously, who wants to “like” the death of your cat despite the eloquently worded obituary and fantastic photo of your pet doing something ridiculous? Rather than adding a thumbs down button, though, Facebook is using the faces of emotions that have become a part of our daily texting lives.
The question is how will this affect Facebook Business Pages in terms of the Algorithm?
Facebook isn’t giving answers. But, I have my guesses. Happy faces will get your posts pushed to more people. Sad faces will not. The worry I have is what if the post is sad and has good content? What if we wrote something or put a graphic together that has such a great emotional impact that could include sadness? Why should that post be downgraded and possibly not shown to your audience?
I hope my guess is wrong and Facebook will figure out how to analyze emoticons in a way that is beneficial to pages. We know that “liking” something is easy and the weight for it in terms of spreading reach of the post isn’t as much as a comment. But because of that ease and because “likes” are easier to get, this should be considered heavily when tweaking the algorithm.
We will see how this goes for business pages when the world gets to start using emoticons. Right now, it’s only Ireland and Spain.