Are Facebook Likes Or Facebook Shares More Important?

Posted on April 3, 2013

Using Facebook to market your brand or product is a virtual must have in today's social media world. While Pinterest, Twitter, and Instagram are eroding some of the market dominance that Facebook has established, the social media giant still remains an excellent way to publish news about your brand and interact with customers.

The "like" feature is largely the most identifiable tool in Facebook's tool belt. You can like statuses and like brands and like pictures. Go to some of your favorite sites. Somewhere on the page you will likely find a "Like Us On Facebook" button encouraging you to click, but should you be using the number of "likes" you have as your major social media metric?

The idea of sharing is nothing new to the social media landscape. Twitter has retweets. Pinterest has pinning. For all intents and purposes, sharing is the next level of brand loyalty. Think of it like this: liking can be done mostly behind the scenes. John Smith can like Clay Pot Creative on Facebook. Some select friends of John may see it and John will see more of our posts in his newsfeed. In the scope of things, it really only impacts John and a small number of his friends. But sharing takes that to the next level. In essense, John is not just saying "I like Clay Pot Creative." He is saying "I like Clay Pot Creative and you all should too!" So while "likes" provide a good snapshot of brand supporters, sharing provides a good snapshot of brand advocates who are expanding your market reach.

So if you are trying to get shares in addition to likes, how should you modify your approach? The simple answer is, you don't really need to. The marketing efforts you were using to get likes can be easily adopted to get shares. At the heart of the matter is content. People don't want to tell their friends boring or uninformative messages. Make your posts insightful and educational or funny and engaging. Photos can also be a great way to encourage sharing. And while asking for shares or likes can often seem desperate, don't shy away from it when it can be accomplished tastefully.

The simple fact is that you likely already have won over people liking your page. They have worked with you or have used your product before they ever connect with you on Facebook. Sharing opens up new doors with potential clients you may have never had the opportunity to interact with. So start shifting your perspective and see if you can incentivize your followers to not only like you, but share you.

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