The first Monday of September in the US is Labor Day, a bank holiday that all workers celebrate. All but the people at Facebook, that picked this day to start testing the elimination of the Facebook Likes counter.
Data miner Jane Manchun Wong discovered the change using the Android app in the morning and spread the news on Twitter. Later in the afternoon, the company confirmed they started the test as a way to help break users’ fixation with getting likes on their pictures.
Don’t panic now! Facebook likes continue to play a vital role in how content is prioritized in Facebook users’ feed. That’s why it should be an objective of your marketing and advertising goals.
And that’s also why we updated this post to give you 7 Ways to Get More Facebook Likes in 2019. And we included one of our famous AdEspresso experiments too!
Organic reach is dead. Facebook has deprioritized it as a ranking factor in the Newsfeed since 2016. So how do you compete with the onslaught of posts, ads, and shared content that dominate users’ Newsfeed every day? By getting followers to like your Facebook page.
Page likes indicate that users are actively interested in seeing more of your content, so Facebook bumps up your posts on those individuals’ Newsfeeds.
Getting more likes for your Facebook page also helps (or should we say “helped?”) showcase social proof— it lets other users know that your brand is trustworthy. And with 2/3 of Facebook users saying they visit a business page at least once a week, the more credible your company appears, the more likely you can tap into that audience of 1.3 billion users!
Facebook likes also give you more qualitative data on your followers, which you can use to build more targeted audiences.
So even in 2019, with organic reach a thing of the past, Facebook likes still help you build better campaigns and connect with an engaged audience.
To get Facebook users to like your business page, you need to create content that is both useful and engaging.
But with so many different types of content to choose from, Facebook users are only going to like pages that are worth their time, so you have some work to do!
The following seven tactics will help your content rise above the rest and entice users to like your page.
Get More Facebook Likes strategy #1:
Create an Engaging, Informative Business Page
When someone comes to your Facebook page they need a reason to stay. Make sure you’re using a recognizable profile picture, as well as an attention-grabbing cover photo to quickly captivate visitors.
Take this example from e-commerce retailer Chubbies Shorts.
Chubbies’ Facebook business page.
Both their profile and cover photos are on brand and show the product their company sells. The images are colorful and entertaining as well, showing Chubbies’ personality. And with 1.7 million Likes and 1.6 million followers, they’re definitely doing something right!
When you’re managing a Facebook business page, it’s also important to make sure all company information is correct and up-to-date.
The people coming to your page want to learn more about your product and your brand, so any wrong information will result in a bad experience.
Your business page should be an extension of your brand. Show your personality while also educating customers about your products and company.
Get More Facebook Likes strategy # 2:
Use the Facebook Invite Button
Facebook gives you the ability to invite your friends to like your business page. By leveraging existing relationships, you can reliably get your first Facebook page likes.
Just make sure that the people you’re inviting are actually interested in your company. Consistent disengagement with your content will drive down rankings for individual users.
If you have less than 100K likes on your page, Facebook also lets you invite people who have reacted to any of your organic posts (though not your ads).
If your content typically receives a lot of engagement, this tactic is a great way to boost your number of page likes.
Example post with follower reactions from Chubbies.
Chubbies uses the age-old tactic of cute animals to capture Facebook users’ attention. And they’re not shy about asking for likes (for the cute puppy of course!).
Once you’ve invited your friends and anyone who has reacted to like your Facebook page, you can use that information to create a custom audience and target them with ads to increase their potential for conversion.
Seeing what types of content resonate with your current audience can also help you create more posts and ads that elicit the same response (a page like!)
Get More Facebook Likes strategy #3:
Try a Facebook Like campaign
Anyone you’ve invited to like your business page will be listed as Invitedin your Facebook insights. You’ll also see followers listed as Likedonce they’ve clicked that button.
Target these people, as well as users who’ve previously engaged with your posts, with a Facebook like ad. This tactic lets you ask users to like your page without having to visit it.
Just remember to follow Facebook’s engagement bait policy. Ads that trick Facebook users into liking the post will get you in trouble! You don’t want your account to be disallowed due to a breach of terms.
Here’s an example ad we ran for AdEspresso’s own Facebook like campaign.
AdEspresso’s Facebook like ad.
It’s a simple but powerful ad — we let people know what kind of value they’ll receive by liking our page and tease the types of content we typically promote.
Facebook like ads make it easier for any user to like your page.
Instead of having to navigate to your page directly, they can click the like page button on the ad and continue scrolling through their Newsfeed. By simplifying this experience, you increase the potential for likes and keep your company top-of-mind.
Get More Facebook Likes strategy #4:
Engage With Your Audience Often
Part of getting people to like your Facebook page is making them feel like they’re a part of a community.
To build that community, you need to consistently interact with your audience—whether they’re your friends, a target audience member, or even Facebook users who have liked your competitors’ pages.
The more you engage with people, the more of a connection they’ll feel with your brand.
One engagement tactic is asking questions in your posts. This gives you an opportunity to start a conversation with leads by following up when they respond.
Including video in your posts also encourages engagement by creating a personal connection with users.
They will feel like they understand your brand personality more after watching your videos. The narration and visuals may even make them feel like your brand is speaking directly to them through video, which will push them to interact with your posts.
The king of this strategy is internet entrepreneur Gary Vaynerchuck. He regularly creates videos that make it feel like he’s speaking to his audience on a one-to-one basis.
If you're not FIRED UP 🔥🔥 about this Monday morning.. Please make this THE Monday you finally address that "thing" #classic #Monday
Posted by Gary Vaynerchuk on Sunday, August 25, 2019
Monday Motivation Facebook video from Gary Vee.
As one of the loudest voices in content and branding strategy today, Vaynerchuck has used Facebook videos to engage with and build his community from the very beginning. By sharing videos, he fosters emotional connections with users and encourages them to like his page.
Part of this strategy is asking people to like and share his content, which Gary Vee does in almost every Facebook post he makes.
His 3.2 million page likes mean the content he posts will always be prioritized in the top of his followers’ Newsfeeds.
This kind of engagement is how he’s built one of the most powerful branding and content agencies on the market today.
Get More Facebook Likes strategy #5:
Build a Customer Lookalike Audience
Lookalike audiences help you target Facebook users based on their similarity to an existing audience you’ve created.
The best choice would be your current Facebook followers who have already liked the page.
Starting from a source list, ours is called Leads list in the following example; Facebook will analyze data and pull out commonalities in terms of interests, demographics, etc.
They’ll then spit out an audience that shares these characteristics.
Creating a lookalike audience on Facebook.
This option automatically excludes Facebook users who have previously engaged with your brand as well.
It’s one of the quickest ways to build an audience of potential followers based on your existing customer and audience information.
Once you have this audience, it’s easy to target them with content you know has performed well for the source users in the past.
Whether it’s a Facebook page like campaign, or a post you think they’ll engage with, building a lookalike audience gives you a more targeted pool of potential followers to work with.
Get More Facebook Likes strategy #6:
Target New Audiences Based on Interests
Beyond building Lookalike audiences, create an interest-targeted audience to target a broader, more diverse group of users who would like your page.
To get started, use Facebook Audience Insights to find out what interests your current followers have.
Once you have that list, you can start building a new audience based on those interests.
Audience interest targeting in Facebook.
As you define more interests, you’ll see the potential audience size change on Facebook. Once you’ve narrowed down this audience, it’s time to start thinking about a campaign that will appeal to these interests.
From here, as with lookalike audiences, you can target these users with ads and content that appeals to the interests you’ve defined.
Remember, the more content you create that resonates with users, the more likely they’ll be to engage with it.
That engagement could come in forms of a page like, or a comment, but it all adds up to the Facebook page like you’re looking for.
Get More Facebook Likes strategy #7:
Use Social Proof to Your Advantage
The more Facebook likes you have, the more credible your company will appear. Your followers will back up any statements you make about the value or popularity of your brand.
This makes it “easier” for potential new followers to like your brand. Think about it — a business that has thousands of likes is going to seem more trustworthy than a business with only a hundred likes.
While this can be difficult if you’re just getting started, as your company grows, you’ll be able to use social proof as a part of other marketing and advertising campaigns as well.
It’s an important aspect of building a brand that people want to like and engage with on Facebook.
Testing 5 Facebook Like Campaigns (AdEspresso Experiment!)
We wanted to put this to the test, so we created five campaigns to try and get more Facebook Likes for AdEspresso’s Facebook page and tracked which performed best.
Here’s how we set up the experiment:
- Used the same design for all five campaigns.
- Created a placement split test for each campaign.
- Used three AdSets, one for each placement.
- Spent approximately $100 for each campaign.
We excluded anyone who was already a fan of AdEspresso from these audiences to make sure we weren’t skewing the results.
This is what we found:
We also visualized each campaign in AdEspresso’s campaign comparison page.
Let’s talk through what we found:
- Interest targeting was the best by far, with the lowest Cost Per Like and highest reach.
- Page lookalike and Customers lookalike audiences came next, with approximately the same reach, but a higher Cost Per Lead.
- While our Customers Custom Audience had the highest click-through-rate of these tests, that actually resulted in a pretty low conversion and a high Cost Per Like.
- Interest intersection (targeting people who have ALL of the interests we targeted) was the least successful. While it had the most impressions, that didn’t really do anything to drive down Cost Per Like.
While the results across each campaign weren’t consistent, we were able to use these tests to see how placement impacted likes as well.
Here’s what we found.
It’s no surprise that Mobile Newsfeed placements were the most successful. Most Facebook users interact with the platform on their mobile device.
The Right Column placement really surprised us in terms of performance.
Typically, you would see more impressions in the Newsfeed, but unfortunately, the increased impressions didn’t deliver results across all five campaigns. It was effective at getting our ads in front of Facebook users, but that’s about it.
To double-check our results, we analyzed more of AdEspresso’s recent Facebook like campaigns, with a total ad spend of more than $200,000.
The data did confirm that mobile is definitely the winner.
Based on this experiment, we’d suggest mobile as the placement and interest targeting as the custom audience. That gives you the most conversion potential across the board.
More Facebook Likes Equals More Trust
In conclusion, if Facebook decides to go ahead with the experiment and hide the Like Counter, marketers, and advertisers might have a harder life. But it won’t be a tragedy.
When you increase your number of Facebook page likes (and you will keep on seeing that number on your side), you cultivate an audience that supports and engages with your brand.
These users are incredibly valuable for your company as they’re likely to speak positively of your brand around others.
Continue to nurture these followers, and showcase their support in your Facebook like campaigns. Seeing others’ admiration for your company will encourage users to like your page as well.