Brands and consumers alike love collecting Facebook Likes on their posts, shares, and Pages. Sometimes, though, clicking the Like button is as awkward as leaving your friend's high five lingering in mid-air. Fortunately, The Social Network recently rolled out Reactions, five new emoticons that give people a wider range of ways to communicate their post responses in a single click. The new Reactions have been a big hit with users, and here's why brands should love them too.
Relevant responses mean better discussions
Historically, Facebook Likes have given users a way to acknowledge that they've seen a status update, even if 'liking' the message isn't exactly the response they might want to provide. When a local restaurant posts that they're closed for the day due to a broken water pipe but will reopen tomorrow, it wouldn't be uncommon for dozens of area diners to Like the message. Of course, no one means that they're pleased a pipe burst, instead, what they're trying to say is, "Hey, we saw your message and we'll see you tomorrow for tacos".
Facebook's new Reaction buttons enable customers fine-tune their digital expressions of support, sympathy, or surprise. By clicking on the Wow or Sad face, diners can engage with the restaurant in a way that better corresponds with the intent of the message. Visual cues from relevant Reactions help set the tone for the post and any discussions that follow in the comments, making the entire engagement process more meaningful for brands and customers alike.
Everyone loves emojis
Smiley and winky faces used to be reserved for the teen and tween crowd, but today people of all ages use emojis and emoticons in text messages and social posts. In fact, almost half the captions and comments on Instagram contain emojis.
So who's using emojis? Well, nearly everyone. A recent study by brand engagement firm Emogi says 92 percent of the online population uses them and the age breakdown of frequent users might surprise you.
- Under 25: 72%
- 25-29 years old: 76%
- 30-35 years old: 68%
- 35+ years old: 62%
Smart brands mirror the behavior of their customer base, and plenty of marketing teams are looking to get in on the emoji action. According to Socialbakers, 59% of top brands were using emojis in their Twitter posts by the end of 2015, and 40% also included them in Facebook updates. Now that Facebook has put Reactions right at your fingertips, it only makes sense to use them as part of your marketing strategy.
There are dozens of ways to use Facebook Reactions across the customer experience journey. Social media commentator Kristi Hines says that Reactions "can be a fun way for Facebook fans to interact with pages, a great way for businesses to encourage specific emotional responses from fans, and a new way for businesses to learn from their competitors."
How are you enjoying Facebook Reactions? Have they upped your marketing game?