Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg famously described his social network’s mission to be the perfect personalised newspaper for every person in the world. With his latest announcement, he’s headed closer to that goal than ever before.
Just three weeks ago, Zuckerberg controversially revealed that Facebook was working on a ‘dislike’ button, cueing that familiar barrage of hate and despair trending all over the Internet whenever Facebook announces a new feature.
Now, Zuckerberg has turned that frown upside-down by scrapping the ‘dislike’ button for a range of emoticons to help us express emotion on posts. The result? This update has been met with global happiness.
The new Reactions will allow us to express more emotion in the range of emoji faces labelled ‘love’, ‘haha’, ‘yay’, ‘wow’, ‘sad’ and ‘angry’. All we will need to do is press down on the ‘like’ button to bring up the emoticons and tap to select which one we’d like to use. Each status will then display how many of each emoticon a status has received: will there be floods of laughter or floods of tears?
But what does the latest Facebook tweak mean for brands? According to a study carried out by Forrester Research, for 17 out of the 18 industries studied, emotion is deemed the top factor in customer loyalty. The new ‘Reactions’ are therefore going to open up a massive opportunity to understand what customers are feeling and why. It will allow those of us in marketing to gauge the quality of feedback, to provide clients with information as to how to improve customer experience.
In brief, with ‘angry’ and ‘sad’ being self-explanatory, seeing a lot of ‘love’ will mean your Facebook campaign is successful, ‘haha’ will indicate whether you should or shouldn’t use jokes, ‘yay’ will show how your customers care for your brand’s success or show their excitement for a new product and leaving the meaning of ‘wow’ as debatable, will people be using it to express being impressed? Or just sarcasm?
One thing that is for sure, ‘Reactions’ will show us what people want to see and with this invaluable information, it will allow us to create content that engages with our customers even more than we do now.