Do Likes Matter?
Missing the Point
One of the biggest concerns with using social media to promote a business is being able to measure how people interact with your posts and accounts. While documenting and analyzing engagement is important, it shouldn’t be your only focus.
Why are you involved in your current business? To make money? Hopefully not. Similarly, if the intention of your social media presence is to gain followers and likes, you’re missing the point.
Approaching the Point
Now, don’t get me wrong; it is still necessary to account for the quantitative data of comments, likes, and shares. But that measurement is not the only standard that labels your business as “successful.”
My incredibly knowledgeable boss, Matt Sommerfield, once said:
“It’s not about getting likes; it’s about creating community and engaging that community on a consistent basis.”
Not only is that a wonderfully positive sentiment, it’s the darn truth! Sure, likes are great and all, but bringing people together over similar needs, desires, and interests is more meaningful. We are not just trying to sell our services, we are trying to make a difference and show people what we believe in.
In Michael Steltzner’s article, Building a Community in a Changing Social Media World, he writes about Gina Bianchini, CEO and founder of Mighty Networks. He explains how Gina believes there is a difference between having an audience and a community:
“The number-one goal of any marketer is to bring more people to a product or service; ideally, at the lowest cost possible. A community helps marketers do this quicker and at a significantly lower cost. Where you build that community matters.
If you are “building a community” on the general, one-size-fits-all social platforms out there, Gina says you’re actually building an audience, you’re not building a community. Gina acknowledges that she holds a contrarian view in this regard.
She says the difference is that if someone follows you on these platforms, your brand doesn’t get more valuable for them as new followers are added. On the other hand, when you create a space for people to meet each other in a natural, fast, normal, and valuable way, they’re actually able to get value from each other. That’s community with a network effect.”
Building your audience on social media networks is a great start, but you can’t stop there. You need to engage with your audience and have them engage with each other. Only then will your community grow.
OK, Here’s the Point
Think about your experiences with professional social media accounts. Usually, they’re filled with ads, promotions, and reminders all focused on sales. And while we do actually need to make money, we also have a responsibility to be real and be there for people. So, instead of focusing on how many people tap a heart, perhaps we can focus on how many people’s hearts we can tap.
Join the Conversation
What can you change about how you post on social media that will show your audience you genuinely care about them and are willing to listen?