Tuesday afternoon, Richard Rosen and I continued to prepare for our DMA 2010 Though-Leadership lecture. Working with Richard is fun, to say he knows his stuff when it comes to Direct Marketing is an understatement—and as a Creative Director of Quango Interaction Design, a proven Social Media agency—I find that we often try and tackle subjects over a glass of wine or a mug of coffee, that are far beyond the how-to implementation and BKM’s of marketing.
Even though we feel like we might have hit-gold on how to give Direct Marketers at the DMA Annual a model that ties in their marketing wisdom with the medium of today, what interests us most is the evolution of the Facebook like button, and what it means.
All discussion aside, I love the like button. But what I love more than the feature-set is what it means from a brand stance—Facebook is showing that it is human. Not through the linguistic sense of the word like, but more so from the desire to better its product. Though confident in nature when announcing at the F8 conference all of the features that Facebook would tackle today, it hurries past what it has left behind—yesterday. Become a Fan was so off from a psychological, and an international-sociological approach [not everyone thinks of fans like we do here in the states] it showed users the hand that Facebook was ok with selling-out just a little-bit as big brands jumped onto the fan bandwagon. Facebook admitted it was wrong in a passive, way stating ‘we hope this allows users to associate to more content’. It’s ok Facebook—we like you as more human—making mistakes is good, and making them small rather than large is even better.
Tell me again—why is being human good? As a social media marketer I can’t emphasize enough how important it is to be authentic. Retracting a feature that has underperformed is the software equivalent of a retracted statement in public relations—they are healthy, and build a better brand.
How does this effect business on Facebook? More important than just making it easier for someone to voice their allegiance to a brand or idea, is the interaction that the like button provides for traffic driving purposes to content-driven sites. For example, take a look at a Quango built Seneca Website—we have launched our new brand [a full top-to-bottom rebrand of the company] in harmony with the roll-out of the Facebook feature availabilities. Not only is the new site dang good looking, but it also allows for users to like any content page on Seneca’s Website. Go ahead, try it out—maybe think about integrating a similar feature on your client’s Webpage.
The obvious merit to this integration is that it will allow your site to be picked up via a heavy content syndicator in Facebook. Just wait until Facebook starts providing analytics on your likes; trust me, it will happen.
Want to know how to put this on your site? If you are using WordPress check out this plugin, otherwise for enterprise customized solutions like the one on Seneca, send me an email for info.