Monday, 17 June 2013

When The Love Is Gone - Why Facebook Page Fans Click Unlike

Like, what was once such a small harmless word now carries so much weight but very little real value. New page admins get so focused on gaining new likes for their pages that they forget, or worse, don't even consider to target their audience. Like ladders, promote pages, giveaways, all aimed at increasing the number of likes on the page but what is the point?  

The number of likes you have doesn't equal the number of customers you have. Don't get me wrong, to the new person encountering your page for the first time, they will look at your number and might decide to like you too as you seem to be so popular but what you do and how you interact after they click like is the key to transitioning them to a paying customer.

" the most common mistake made by Page admins is putting so much effort into how to get new fans, and not enough effort into keeping current fans engaged and interested." Social Buzzer
When a page like number starts to go the other way, the admin are left scratching their heads wondering why, what have they done? So why do people unlike pages? What is it, that pages do to make someone take the effort to unlike them?

Unfortunately there isn't a lot you can do to stop this one, all relationships run their natural course and sometimes they end. It could be that you sell baby related products and your fan is not having any more children. It could just be that they no longer like your product or brand, not through any behaviour on your part but have just moved on. 

Yes, your page is for your product or brand, why shouldn't you sell sell sell to your followers at every opportunity? Why? I'm sure deep down you know this one, Facebook is a Social Network. What this means is Facebook is a way for you to connect with your past, current and future customers on a personal and social level. Involve them in the design processes, ask their opinions, share your behind the scenes moments even funny anecdotes during production. Spamming your base will ultimately result in alienating them and make it even harder to convert them into a paying customer.  I'm not saying that you can't sell to your fan base from Facebook, believe me the are some very successful pages out there doing it very well. What I am saying is you shouldn't do it all the time. 

Scott Ayers wrote a post on Post Planner where he recommend the 70/20/10 approach to posting on your page.

70% of your posts should be of value to your fans, be it blog posts (yes definitely your own blog posts), updates on production, sharing or asking for input. Whatever they are they are not pushing for sales but pulling for interactions that could possibly lead to sales. 

20% of your posts to be sharing other pages, remembering to keep it relevant to your audience. If your page is a clothing page for children it's unlikely that your fan base would be interested in a Seniors travel page. 

10% of your posting can be for you to sell, you've been respectful you've earned a moment in the spotlight to let them all know what's on offer. This is your free pass to push for a sale.

Posting too much. Not posting enough. Always posting the same thing. Doing a days worth of posts in one sitting. It's a balancing act to get it all just right. 

There is a lot of differing opinions from lots of different experts out there and to be honest, you need to know your audience. What do they like? What do they respond to? At a minimum I would suggest at least one post per day. As for the maximum number of posts in a day? It really is dependant on your audience, so be smart, pay attention to how your fans respond and adjust accordingly. It doesn't have to be a hard and fast formula for each day, you could have more posts on days you have better engagement while leaving some days with less. I personally have had success with a three post a day strategy, each morning I would post my morning post and schedule one for 10-11am and one for 3-4pm. If there was something special to share I was able to do it around 7pm. 

With the roll out of #hashtags on Facebook I would wager that this will be another factor for people to unlike pages. Use them wisely. There is no need to use them all the time and please, pretty please, #do #not #use #them #for #your #whole #status #forgiveme #icouldntresist

I'm sorry but you're not Snow White. No one comes out smelling of roses here.
Too Much Information, there is no need to share your midnight toilet dashes, how gastro has inflicted your whole family or anything else that if you weren't affected by fever or medication you wouldn't share on a public page. We also DO NOT need to know you are soldiering on with orders while feeling this way!
Asking for likes. 
Publicly reprimanding customers or other businesses. 
Disrespecting anyone or anything. 
Posting inappropriate material of violent, racial or sexual nature.
Political or religious slamming.  
Complaining about people unliking your page. 

If you offend someone they will most likely just remove themselves and you will never know why. You can't please all of the people all of the time, but don't be an idiot and make it easy!

When you started your page and started to grow your "likes" you cast your net too far and too wide. You didn't target to a specific profile of customer and were just focusing on the like count going up. 

As the saying continues, "you never know what you're going to get". Some of your base have no interest, need or desire for your page. In fact, if they'd stumbled across your accidentally they are unlikely to have clicked like. So you can't be surprised when they realised they have liked a page they have no interest in and they unlike you further down the road. 

Promotions and giveaways are a fun and cheap way to get your business name out there but I urge caution, think about what the prize is and who would be interested in it. Is that your potential customer? If not, step away and look for another opportunity. Also keep in mind that if someone comes to you trying to get something for nothing or next to nothing then they are unlikely to stay.

It's time to get smart about your posting strategy, you need to takes look at what works well on your page and also when it works well then make your plan.

You need to identify your potential customer, when you better understand who that person is it will make it easier to target them as potential new fans.

Step away before posting anything in the heat of the moment. Once you press that button it is there forever even if you delete it.

Remember that Facebook is a social connection to your past, present and future customers, keep it social and fun.

Related articles::
Lab42 did a study on 1000 Facebook Users asking about what makes them unlike brands on Facebook. The following infographic is interesting.

Lab42 Market Research
Courtesy of: Lab42


  1. Love your article, really helpful, thank you!

  2. I have a question regarding the 70/20/10 rule.... with the 20% being shareing other business pages... is there a particular etiquette in doing this so as not to upset other pages and also how do you choose what pages to share as you wouldn't want to promote your competition but you also don't want to share unrelevant pages... I hope that makes sense :/

    1. Melody that is a great question!
      I tend to follow two options here,
      1) I share pages that I have actually been a customer of. If I would happily recommend a business to my family and friends then I will happily recommend them on my Facebook Page.
      2) Businesses that I network with (or that I want to create a networking relationship with). Looking for businesses that are complimentary to mine and also have the same ideal customer. Clearly, not competitor (though you could forge great referral relationships with selective competitors so don't discount them completely), businesses that your customer is likely to find useful and helpful.
      Remember to always let the business know that you have shared them or recommended them. Don't ever expect anything in return but do try to use it to start a relationship that could be mutually beneficial to everyone.


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