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How To Use Facebook’s ‘Reactions’ To Get More Engagement

Profile photo of Robert Nissenbaum Submitted by Robert Nissenbaum March 12, 2016

What Was Your Reaction?

When Facebook’s reactions showed up last week, there was the typical banter as to who likes them and who doesn’t. Me, as with most new features or updates, it’s never about liking or disliking them. It’s about figuring out how to use them.

And, as it turns out….

…Facebook’s reactions are quite the tool for getting more interaction on your posts.


Facebook does a great job at limiting brand pages from communicating directly with people. It’s why pages can only tag individuals under only a few circumstances:


Here’s the kicker – reactions count as engagement. No big update there as I could always tag you to say ‘thanks for the like’ previously. The issue with that approach meant ‘do it for one and you pretty much need to do it for all.’ Could get a bit tedious, not to mention string of comments filled with the same ‘thank you’. I will admit my friend Debra Jason has this technique quite well. (It’s actually her technique I thought of when reactions first appeared).

Reactions, however, offer a bit more. Add a ‘Wow’ to my Facebook post and I can tag you in a comment asking ‘Why the wow’. I could further ask if it was you learned something from my post or some other reason.

An angry reaction? I could respond with ‘Do you disagree?’

So much more potential than the plain old ‘like’ wouldn’t you agree?

Facebook’s reactions open up a number of new opportunities for brand pages to tag individuals to create more engagement and interaction.

They are nice little gift from Facebook. So, I guess I do like them!

Your Thoughts on Facebook’s Reactions?

Like, dislike? Maybe you have a better appreciation for them now?



This post was originally published in by Robert Nissenbaum

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Profile photo of Robert Nissenbaum
As a consultant, speaker and educator I provide common sense, practical and actionable social media advice to small business owners and solopreneurs based on close to a decade of experience in using social media for my personal and own business brands. I approach social media from a very different perspective than most in the industry. My emphasis is on shifting focus from the media aspect (your content) to the social aspect (interaction, engagement and relationship building). This gets back to the true value of social media - being social. This shift also allows for many of the traditional 'rules' to be broken or ignored. Using social media should be easy and like any social activity, fun. Active using social media to build my own brands since 2007 (LinkedIn, Facebook), Twitter since 2009, Google+ and Pinterest by invitation and now Instagram, my advice, teaching and presentations are based on my own personal experience, not simply what I have been taught or read. Social media is more than a career. It’s a passion. Having spoken on and taught social media since 2011, you'll get a knowledgeable, seasoned speaker who will deliver quality content without fluff and up-sells. I am available to speak or facilitate social media training workshops at your event on a variety of topics.
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7 Responses to “How To Use Facebook’s ‘Reactions’ To Get More Engagement” Leave a reply ›

  • Profile photo of Sunday William Profile

    Hi Robert,
    I guess it becomes very important to understand how use these emotions or “reactions” for better marketing! This new development from Facebook seems to be rave of the moment but marketers can actually leverage on them to improve engagement and do better targeting.

    Personally, I like these developments because they somewhat help in expressing the mind of the followers/audiences.

    Only time will tell how these reactions impacts on the overall Facebook marketing strategy!
    Sunday William recently posted…Timing is Everything! How Does It Affect Your Email Open Rate?My Profile

  • Profile photo of Adam D. Mason Profile

    Hello Robert,

    I do like the Facebook reactions, mainly for the reason that I can put a sad icon on a sad post instead of the old like, which always made me stop and think about how that person would react to me liking their sad post. Sometimes I would forgo the interaction because I was not sure.

    You have now opened my eyes to these reactions. I did not think of the interactions I could get through responding to the different emotions.

    Thank you for the fantastic idea.
    Adam D. Mason recently posted…Sell Anything With These 4 StepsMy Profile

  • Profile photo of Maketta Profile

    Hello Robert,

    That’s a great way to use the Facebook reaction buttons. It helps you get a conversation going. I’m going to try that. I do like the reaction buttons though. Everything you read you wouldn’t necessarily like but you just didn’t hit the like button because that was the only option you had.

    Now, if you don’t like it you can express it more.

    Thanks for sharing this with us!
    Maketta recently posted…How To Save Money In Your Internet Marketing BusinessMy Profile

  • Profile photo of Celine Profile

    Hey Robert,
    Thanks for going further to explain the “why” and the “how-to” use the new Facebook reactions.

    These new buttons are useful for engagement because of the possibility of extended conversation.

    Every reaction – positive or negative – can generate further comment.

    I guess its time to really make the most of these reactions for effectual marketing!

  • Profile photo of Sarah John Profile

    Hi Robert,
    The “reactions” introduced by Facebook is a good development. Its cool learning how to use these buttons for more Facebook engagements.

    There is a place for every reaction that Facebook has introduced and each reflects what could possibly increase engagements.

    Nevertheless, your explanation is detailed!

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