TroopbookFan, Friend, Follow, Like — all of these words have taken on new levels of meaning thanks to social media. It may have even motivated Facebook’s just-announced changes around Fan and Like.

Fan Pages will still function the same way, but “people will soon be able to connect with your Page by clicking ‘Like’ rather than ‘Become a Fan.’ People already ‘Like’ their friends’ status updates, photos and links on a daily basis. In fact, people click ‘Like’ almost two times more than they click ‘Become a Fan’ everyday. ‘Like’ offers a simple, consistent way for people to connect with the things they are interested in. These lighter-weight actions mean people will make more connections across the site, including with your Facebook Page.”

“I DO like you in that way”
Social media has driven several “lighter-weight actions.” While it used to be about minimizing clicks, social media technology and design eliminates them if possible. Technologies like OAuth and Facebook Connect make it simple to login to sites and Twitter has tweaked itself to make Retweeting and Following possible without leaving the current screen. The use of “light box” design has also become prevalent to ensure users can quickly and easily Tweet, vote, login and more without leaving the current screen. This also eliminates the need for a new window or dialog box which can be blocked by browsers that can assume it’s a pop-up ad.

Connect the Dots
The Facebook news doesn’t require any immediate actions. Over time it will be easy to phase in Like, instead of Become a Fan. But taking a quick inventory of where a brand flies its Facebook flag is a proactive move. In fact, a smarter move is to review a brand’s customer touch points and make sure Facebook and Twitter buttons are used where it makes sense. This does not mean brands should festoon everything possible with Twitter and Facebook badges. But marketers have hard-earned, established connections with customers, including web sites and e-mail newsletters. Some of these connections are an obvious opportunity to promote a brand’s social media presence. It can benefit acquisition but, more importantly, it also lets the customer choose how they interact with a brand.

Facebook Friends Are Not Created Equal: Filter Connections to Find Relationships
Facebook Wants You to “Like” Brands
The Spectrum of Online Friendship 

Facebook uploaded by Balakov
Cross-posted to my work blog, Social Study

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