Facebook's Dislike Button: Marketing Friend or Foe?
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By now, most of us have heard the news: Facebook is working on a dislike button. While we don’t have all the details, speculation about what that kind of button will mean is running rampant. On one end, people are worried that having a dislike button will turn Facebook into a cyber bullying feeding frenzy. On the other hand, people are excited to be able to convey empathy on posts that might not be sharing good news. Then there is also the whole dynamic of how this might impact online marketing. In my opinion, Facebook has nothing but the best of intentions here and it’s really going to be up to the people to determine how this is executed.
It’s my opinion that Facebook is putting the same thought into this new dislike button that they are into their social reporting.
Forbes shares this information about Facebook’s company compassion research:
Facebook engineer Arturo Behar and the Facebook Protect and Care team have collaborated with leading compassion researchers like Mark Brackett, director of the Yale Center for Emotional Intelligence and Dacher Keltner, from the Greater Good Science Center at the University of California, Berkeley to figure out how to help users communicate with each other in ways that encourage useful dialog rather than angry exchanges. […] This has led to Facebook’s social reporting tools that help users select just the right phrase to, for example, ask someone to take down a picture of yourself that you might not like […].
But, what might it mean for your online marketing? Well, just like people who might worry about negative feedback on their photos or posts from this new button, marketers will most likely have to anticipate some criticisms on their photos and posts as well. Now that people will have the option to dislike –they might. Marketers have to be prepared for that and have a plan on how to handle it. Also, as far as metrics go, dislikes won’t always be a bad thing in every case. Marketers should figure out how to use the dislike button to attract engagement in the same sort of way that they use the like button to attract engagement.
So, think of this as a twofold issue. On the one hand, expect criticism and a new avenue for negative feedback. On the other hand, use this as an opportunity for another channel of engagement on your posts. Like I said in the beginning of this post though, we won’t know exactly what the Facebook dislike button will be until it is officially unveiled. Until then, we speculate. What are your thoughts on the subject? Is this a disaster waiting to happen? Do you think Facebook has any tricks up their sleeves surrounding this reveal? Comment below!