Do people Like you?

There was a time when a friend was truly a friend, and “to like” something meant you really did. That was before Facebook.

On Facebook these words don’t have quite the same meaning they do off Facebook. You have your friends, and then you have your Facebook friends. Yes, they can be the same, but whenever you can “add a friend” by clicking a button there’s going to be the tendency to loosen your standards, especially with something so public where having lots of friends makes you look popular and cool. (My 15-year old niece has 749 friends) Now the question is: Do they Like you?

If you haven’t been keeping up with your Facebook social plugins, the Like button replaced the “Become a Fan” button a year ago. It has also taken over the functionality of the “Share” button which Facebook has stopped developing. So, similar to the Share button, the Like button lets your friends see what you Like, via the News Feed, including the image and link of the thing you Like.

The theory that: “If your friend ‘Likes’ something, then it must be worth checking out” is a logical one. And, now that Mark Zuckerberg has made the Like button king, it’s popping up everywhere. Companies, large and small, are sticking it on every page of their websites to try to capitalize their social media marketing efforts. Consequently, I’ve noticed business owners aggressively asking for the Like on their websites and, in some cases, offering bribes for it.

For example, last week I noticed that one of my friends Liked something. It was some Social Media guru’s “Amazing System” for something. Curious, I called my friend…

ME: “So, what did you like about it?”

HER: “Oh, that thing? I’m not even sure what it is. To get the free PDF he offered I had to click the “Like” button. To be honest, I haven’t even looked at it yet.”




I also came across a web guru who was pimping his dog to get a “Like.” I’m not kidding. His dog was a cute Jack Russell Terrier and the deal was:

“‘Like’ my business page I’ll send you an awesome video of Sparky.”

I’m sure he got a bunch of people to do it.

Of course, because so many of us are such suckers for these free offerings and gimmicks, it ultimately demeans the Like. So, at the end of the day your News Feed may be filled with Likes from people who aren’t really your friends telling you they Like something they know little or nothing about.

So, want to know if I clicked the Like button on that Sparky video? Just click my Like button and I’ll tell you.


Tattoo on Rapper “T-Pain.” (I’m getting one.)




4 Responses to “Do people Like you?”

  1. Christopher Adams Says:

    Hi John,
    If anyone wants to see the page John is talking about they can visit my page. My Jack Russell is Kenzie and not Sparky though:
    I realize why you used sparky vs. Kenzie and I appreciate your professionalism in doing that.

    Here is my take on this.
    I like to tell people right off the bat what I am about and what they can expect by liking my page. I like to share myself and my passion. I am an avid dog lover. I have volunteered at dog shelters and that is where I got my Jack Russell Kenzie.
    I don’t cover anything up. I say like my page and see something about me, a peak into my life. Me playing with my jack russell terrier. I don’t like your wording of “pimping” and think that you can disagree with someone without harsh words.
    I would much rather have someone say, “like my page, and this is what you will get” vs. “like my page, just because”.
    The “like” is a voluntary act. Someone can always unlike a page if they no longer wish to be a part of the community.
    I don’t agree with your opinion that giving away good content demeans the like. I think the opposite is true. To give a false promise and not deliver demeans the like. To say, just like my page and you will get nothing in return seems meaningless to me. You have to provide value to the reader/viewer/liker. As you know John, being a small business is not easy, you have to work hard at it. To say that this is a tactic for “suckers” is off base. It was good to read your opinion on this and I also enjoyed hearing it when we spoke on the phone. I take no personal offense to your post here, but just wanted to give you my two cents.

  2. John Follis Says:

    If a “Like”able video of your dog was on a personal, non-business, site, it would be perfectly fine.

    Using it on a business website as a gimmick to get people to click ‘Like’ button, is quite different. The “Like”, it that case, is implying that someone is Liking your business website and your thinking or professional approach. So, unless it’s very clear that the ‘Like’ only relates to the dog vid, it’s misleading and demeaning to the integrity of the Like.

    What’s ironic here is that I find you to be one of the nicest, most generous, most tech savvy young entrepreneurs that I’ve come across. With a little bit of thought I know you’d be able to come up with a less gimmicky, more business-related approach to prompt a “Like.”

  3. John Follis Says:

    PS: Apologies to Kenzie about the name thing.

  4. Elise Miller Says:

    I don’t think “Like” was ever mean’t to be so serious.

    Chris I’ll press Like because I like your dog and where did you get it?

    I don’t care if you share that with me on a business level; its more of who you are and your personal brand.

    My business is me and I use facebook to play Mafia Wars and yes, I found some of my bosses are on my facebook and I really do not know how they got there. They want to be in my linked in also. Some people never stop.

    I would hate to have to consider the integrity of like everytime I like that a mafia got iced really bad or someone gave me a kamakazi. I play with over 4,000 people on Facebook and I think I can talk business to anyone of those friends.

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