How Did You React to Facebook’s New Emotions?



It’s a familiar plight: Your friend has posted something candid and revealing on Facebook—maybe something about a sick relative or a tough situation at work. You want to offer your support, to let them know you read their post and are thinking about them—but hitting the like button on such a sobering post seemswrong somehow.

Good news: Facebook has taken a big step toward addressing this dilemma, augmenting its familiar “like” button with a range of new, modulated “reactions.” When you post something on Facebook, now, your friends have the option of expressing their feelings about your post in a number of ways—like, love, anger, sadness, “wow,” and “haha.” (Facebook has not unveiled its long-rumored “dislike” button, which is probably for the best.)

You’ve probably noticed these new reactions already—both on your personal Facebook account and perhaps on your business page. This last point raises an interesting question: How will Facebook’s new reactions change the game for commercial Facebook pages? After years of competing for Facebook likes, will your small business now need to aim for “love” or “wow” reactions? And will it somehow count against your Facebook stats if you get a lot of sad or angry emotions?

What Reactions Mean for Your Facebook Analytics

While these new reactions have already changed the Facebook user experience, they haven’t actually changed the algorithms—at least not yet. Facebook has stated that all reactions are treated equally: When a user reacts to one of your company’s posts—whether with like, love, anger, or “wow”—it means they want to see more of your posts, and the Facebook algorithms will respond accordingly.

In other words, reactions won’t adversely impact organic search results or newsfeed placement—so there’s no reason for companies to fear or prioritize different reactions. Algorithmically speaking, all reactions are good reactions; so long as you’re getting some kind of engagement, that’s what really matters.

New Insight Into Your Users

That’s not to say that reactions aren’t meaningful to marketers. While they may not change algorithms, they do provide new insights into your users—what they think of your content and even your brand.

For example, the more carefully modulated reactions can provide new opportunities for customer service. When someone responds to your post with sadness, that’s a good opening for you to reach out directly and ask how you can provide a better user experience—sort of like the companies that directly respond to complaints on Twitter. By having a more precise reading of what your users are thinking, you can better tailor your response to them.

There are also potential avenues for better targeting—ad campaigns running justto the people who give you “love” or “wow” reactions, for example—though such innovations are still in development.

The bottom line: Facebook reactions are no reason for concern—and in fact, they may be something you’ll grow to love in due time. Keep tabs on who’s responding to your Facebook content—but also how.


  1. Good discussion post.

    I think it’s still too early to tell about these new reactions.

    From what I hear most people are still using the same like button they were previously using, somewhat ignoring the other love, anger, sadness, “wow,” and “haha” buttons.

    It could be that they can’t just be bothered or change is still hard, or as is always the case, they are in a hurry and it’s just easier to click the usual “like” button and be on their way to another post, video or whatever else they usually do online.

    Marketers will likely benefit a lot from these new reactions, as they get new insight into how users really feel about their content and brand.

    It’s good though that these new reactions won’t change the algorithms, as confirmed by Facebook. But maybe that will change when they have data to work with.

    What would have changed the algorithm right away would be if Facebook unveiled the much talked about “dislike” button.

    Talking about the dislike button, let’s wait and see when or if Facebook will ever unveil it. That’s the button that will get everyone talking, particularly marketers.

  2. Hi Amanda,
    While its welcoming to have these new emotions, I will agree that its still early to know the full impact of these innovations to social media marketing.

    Businesses that utilize Facebook can go for better target marketing after assessing the emotions that are popular.

    You nailed it with your summary that it provides new opportunities for better customer service and better ad targeting.

    Indeed,there is no need to panic but these emotions must not be completely ignored as they can help provide better information on the who, what, and why and how of the audience.

  3. Hey Amanda,

    I think these new responses are good. The like button absolutely wasn’t appropriate in all situations.

    We’ll have to see what this means for their algorithm because a like was definitely important to the reach of a message. Will it be the same if you click a sad emotion? Facebook may say so right now, but I’m not so sure about the future. I’m sure Facebook is watching every bit of data right now. Time will tell…

    As an advertising platform, it’s most likely beneficial for marketers (and might even be a big reason they adopted it). Facebook gives users of their advertising platform a lot of data to target users and I’m sure this will be one of the things they’ll be able to benefit from.

    – Jasper
    Jasper Oldersom recently posted…Do You Leverage These Swiping Secrets To Make Your Web Copy More Effective?My Profile

  4. Hi Amanda,
    Its cool you have shared this information about the new ’emotions’ introduced by Facebook.

    How did I react to the Facebook new emotions? Well, its a welcome idea because it provides for better appeal and attraction than the simple ‘like’ button and the likes!

    However, I recommend testing the ’emotions’ to compare search results before giving it a kudos!
    Sarah John recently posted…10 Tips On Time Management From A Lazy GunnyMy Profile

  5. Hi Amanda,

    I am pretty aware of the Facebook’s new emotions, and I agree that the modulated reactions will go a long way to improve better ad targeting for businesses.

    However, these emotions should not be forced on users to that they would be in control to interact and understand what state of mind the marketers are!

    As for how Facebook algorithm would impact on this, its still early to say. Time is of the essence here since it seems like Facebook is not too sure how long this service would remain.
    Sunday William recently posted…Is Discoverability Marketing TRULY Non-intrusive?My Profile