Like might lead to Love, but does it lead to Buy?


The good news is you’ll be paid a Trillion Dollars.
The bad news is the payment is in Zimbabwean.
This concludes a short exercise in relativity, real value and spin.

I’m fascinated by what seems to be the fastest growing currency in marketing: The Like.
(Not to be confused with the Lira, which also traded with exaggerated multiples.)

No. The Like is like the Euro of the web; a currency that takes one click to print and  trades daily against other emerging currencies such as friends, followers, views and shares…
Click currencies really.

Why am I fascinated?
Well, that brands investing real dollars are having Likes and other click currencies used as a measure of a campaign’s success.
And this concerns me, as Coles don’t accept Likes when you try pay for your Bread and Milk.
Prices aren’t that down.

Popularity wise, the Like measure is great to benchmark the appeal and reach of a campaign. But when it comes to actually linking to business results, the powerpoint presentation / case study film becomes vague.
Shouldn’t we be working harder to connect all this clicked affection to proper currency: Dollars, or Pounds. Or Rands for that matter Go Bokke!!!!!

Don’t get me wrong. I love likes.
Getting a million likes for something deserves merit and suggests that the initiative has gained popular culture traction. But by that measure alone, Cats doing Karaoke outperform most commercial campaigns.
We shouldn’t stop short of proving the more active consequence of that like. For instance, prolonged interaction with the brand / personally endorsed sharing of that message / Increased propensity to buy / an actual transaction with a paper-based currency. (Paypal accepted)
And we definitely shouldn’t use Likes as a means of propping up a campaign that doesn’t perform at the tills.
Or worse still, think that Likes mean it automatically will perform at the till.
Maybe we should work harder to link Cats to Dollars. Dogs do go to Pounds after all, so maybe there’s logic here.
You get the point.

And so I ask, can anyone tell me the true value a Like, that goes beyond my judgement here.  Not a loaded question. I genuinely want illumination, because there are a lot of them out there and they’re playing a big part in the made for TV drama that is our business.
If it helps to use the value of ten million likes in order to answer, that’s fine.

Please like this post.


3 thoughts on “Like might lead to Love, but does it lead to Buy?

  1. As a cat lover, I’m all for the concept of linking ‘Cats to Dollars’! The real value might just be that 15 seconds of prolonged engagement that could lead to ‘like’ at the till. Like = possibility? Market researchers now have new mediums and broader ‘research groups’ (the public) to get all excited by!


  2. Depends which “likes” we’re talking about.

    A “like” on a post — depending on how a user’s timeline is set up — is essentially a “share”. So, the value of it is an increase in your “media reach”. Your marketing message gets seen not just by one person, but also by their friends, who can see their timeline, without you having to pay for it.

    A “like” on your brand’s Facebook page is a subscription to your page. Every “like” is one extra person you can market to, using what’s essentially free media. So a million likes on your Facebook page means your messages can reach a million people, without paying for TV space on Big Brother.

    Of course it’s also a bit of an ego-stroke, this display of “positive brand engagement”. And marketing people love it. Why wouldn’t they? It makes them look good. People (literally) like their ads. It’s like getting good results from a market research test, only you don’t have to pay thousands of dollars to run those research groups. And it’s in public view. Plus, when you’re going for your next review, or a job interview for a chief-marketing-whatever-majiggy, it certainly doesn’t hurt to have done a campaign with a few million likes (or views). Nobody’s going to know if it sold product or not. But they’ll be able to see the million likes.


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