What Are the Alternatives to Like-Gating on Facebook?
Before we get into answering the above question, let us try and understand what like-gating on Facebook is all about. Like-gating refers to that situation where a user is forcibly required to like a page even if he has not liked that page. The conversion from dislike to like happens when the user intends to view the content that is displayed on the page. This entire process has essentially two benefits. First, one gets to see more Facebook likes on his page. Second, this creates an upsurge of traffic on the page of the social media marketer.
Facebook has announced that they will withdraw this feature of like-gating. Whereas this is good for the users, this clearly throws the social media marketers at a disadvantage. Here’s how that apparent roadblock can be overcome and thereby sustain engagement and growth of audience on Facebook.
Paid Advertising in the News Feed of Facebook
It is common knowledge that irrespective of user experience, he or she need not necessarily remain hooked on to one’s Facebook page. Users spend most of their times in the news feed. Hence, as long as one is willing to spend money for obtaining relevant exposure and creating necessary engagement, reaching out to potential consumers is even easier. And this way, one can reach Facebook users wherever they are active and not necessarily on one’s page. So a little money, can effectively, increase traffic and potential conversions exponentially. Facebook advertisements remain an affordable means to increase audience base. These advertisements can multiply downloads of mobile applications, renew engagement levels with existing customers, reach out to new customers and can help with placing personalized social content to the target audience.
Contests and Promotions
A classic alternative to like-gating is to run promotions and contests on one’s Facebook page. Whereas there is no compulsion in this case, the content of such promotional material could be exciting enough for the viewer to participate. As and when a visitor uploads his own content through the promotion form, he also makes it available for his entire community to see one’s page. This also implies a genuine user generating traffic and posting positive likes on one’s Facebook page. Effectively, this means more eyeballs for one’s page.
Concept of Form-Gating
Instead of like-gating, one can choose to use form-gating. Here, Facebook users are required to enter details in a form before they can enter one’s Facebook page to view or listen to something. It’s different than a contest; as here there is nothing for the user except for sharing details. However, once the user posts the details, the mechanism is similar to running contests and promotions. One can then use such information to social campaigns, specific to target audience. The trick is to keep the form simple as too many fields may turn away the users. It is to be kept in mind that bare minimum information need to be collected; as otherwise no social media campaign can take off.
Facebook on Mobile – Feed Optimization
As the digital divide narrows, more and more users access Facebook only through their mobiles. So it is essential that Facebook feed for mobiles is optimised to deliver a superb experience. The intention here is to ensure that the experience of one’s page that the customers are experiencing though Facebook is to be of the highest order. For this, not only one’s own page is important, he also needs to take care of the various links that are referred to on his page. Mobile friendly tabs and applications will make more and more people access one’s Facebook page.
Like-gating on Facebook is coming to an end; but that doesn’t mean the end of Facebook advertising. There are methods available; some paid and some relying on original and smart ideas to engage with new customers. A judicious mix of all these concepts will only help businesses grow.