Getting a “Like” on Facebook can be a heady experience for brand. Are you swept off your feet when a consumer willingly clicks that thumbs up button and publicly expresses a fondness for your product or service? You should be! But after that initial attraction, your fans may start feeling a need for the relationship to grow and progress.
Sadly, far too many brands are happy with Like, the cheap one-night stands of the social network world. In reality, when a consumer clicks a brand’s Like button, all they’re really saying is, “Okay, you caught my eye. I’m interested. Let’s see where this thing goes.” You, as the suitor, have to then either close the deal, or set the fan free to Like someone else. Like is merely the introduction, the first step. Like is not enough.
At this stage in the social marketing meat market, brands should be working diligently to turn Likes into Loves. We’ve learned that simply gathering fans and putting notches in your iPad for every conquest is about little more than bragging rights. That’s not going to get you what you really want out of a relationship with your customer. To get that, you have to get engaged. Getting engaged, just as in the real world, means making a clear and obvious, ongoing commitment to a relationship that’s going to last (hopefully forever), and that’s going to work and be healthy for both parties involved.
What does true love do for us?
-It makes us feel good about ourselves
-We know we’ll always have someone, in good times and bad
-It gives us someone to do nice things for
-It gives us someone who will be honest with us
-It gives us someone to build a family with
The value for brands of turning Like into Love is not much different. Fans make us feel good about our product. As long as we don’t betray or neglect them, they’ll always stay with us. If we mess up, they’ll be inclined to forgive us. They give us someone to make smile every chance we get. They’ll be 100% honest with us, even when the truths they’re telling us are painful to hear. And they give us a foundation on which to add members to our family of fans. None of this is possible if we settle for Like.
So how do we make people fall in love with our brands? How do we move them from somewhat interested, to deeply committed to us? We love them back. As Glenn Close told us when she cooked Michael Douglas’ family rabbit, people don’t like to be ignored. When you love someone, you care about how they feel, you care about what they think, you try to make sure they’re happy, you invest time with them, you come up with ways to have fun with them, you make them feel like they’re the most important person in the world to you. It’s human nature…we are fond of people who are fond of us. Love is a 2-way street. The minute your fans feel like they’re doing all the giving in the relationship, the passion is gone.
As the Dr. Phil of brands on social, we at Vitrue are embarking on a renewed effort to increase the engagement between brands and their fans so that these real and human relationships can blossom into the true love stories for the digital ages. If you follow our social streams on Facebook and Twitter, you’ll get to see and participate in some fun ways to experience and share brand love, such as Vitrue Music Monday, Love Tip Tuesday, Share the Love Wednesday, Love Trivia Thursday, and Follow Friday – Brand Love Edition. Be sure and track us using #vitruelove.
Make sure to join in the fun. And while you’re at it, don’t shortchange yourself by stopping at Like. Go for love!