ESM Digital's Higher Ed Marketing Blog

What Facebook Reactions Mean for You

Back in mid-September 2015, Facebook announced that it was developing a much anticipated “dislike” button. Digital marketers everywhere scrambled to anticipate what this could mean for their overall strategy. Even though the announcement came after years of public pleading for a dislike feature, the overall reaction was mixed. Now, we have a better understanding of what this feature might actually look like.

On October 8th, Facebook’s Founder and CEO, Mark Zuckerberg, announced its newest feature: Reactions. In a recent Townhall Q&A, Zuckerberg recognized that users want “better options for expressing yourself, while keeping the experience simple and respectful.” Most people don’t necessarily want to dislike posts, Zuckerberg explained. What they really want is the ability to express empathy. That is precisely what Reactions is meant to offer.

Reactions will allow users to respond to posts with an emoji. It will be an extension of the Like button and will be available on all posts, on both pages and profiles. The emojis will give the user the option to express seven total emotions including, Like, Love, Haha, Yay, Wow, Sad, and Angry. You’ll be able to view and choose a Reaction when you hover your mouse over the Like button on desktop or press and hold it on mobile.

In Ads Manager, all seven Reactions will be counted as a Like (for now, at least). Reports on ads will not break out the Reactions, but will simply lump them together as Likes. However, advertisers who want to see a breakout of the Reactions can view it in Page Insights. Just like a Like, you won’t be able to remove a Reaction.

Reactions can be considered a compromise by Facebook to appease its users’ requests, but still prevent the online community from becoming too negative. Whether Reactions will be a positive tool to the every-changing platform is yet to be determined.

For now, Reactions are being tested in Ireland and Spain. But, this new feature could be coming to your Page soon! At Effective Student Marketing, we like to stay ahead of the game; which is why we’re keeping a close eye on this new feature. You, too, should be prepared for what comes next. We can help you develop the right social media strategy for your school, manage your reputation online, and teach your staff best practices. Call (978) 475-0880 to learn how our team of #HigherEdGeeks can help you!

~ Lindsay Moura