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How Will Facebook’s New Reactions Affect Digital Advertisers?

Written by: Carolyn Berk, Content Marketing Associate

Note: The brands featured herein are meant to serve as compelling examples, and are not Nanigans customers unless expressly noted.

If you’ve logged on to Facebook recently, you’ve probably noticed a major change to the site’s “Like” button. Instead of simply indicating if they liked a post, users can now indicate if that post left them amused, sad, surprised, angry or in stitches. Although this feature is still very new, it will definitely have an impact on businesses and the ads they run on Facebook. Here’s what you need to know about Facebook’s Reactions and how they may affect your campaigns.

What Are Facebook Reactions?

Reactions are an extension to the Like button, allowing users to share a diverse range of emotions in response to a post. By holding down the Like button, users can reply via the following icons: Like, Love, Haha, Wow, Sad or Angry.

Amtrak Reactions Example - Facebook Reactions

Facebook says its News Feed is already a hub of information that inspires emotions, making the addition of Reactions a logical next step for the site:

News Feed is the central way you can get updates about your friends, family and anything else that matters to you, and the central place to have conversations with the people you care about. We’ve been listening to people and know that there should be more ways to easily and quickly express how something you see in News Feed makes you feel. That’s why we are launching Reactions, an extension of the Like button, to give you more ways to share your reaction to a post in a quick and easy way.

Now that Reactions have rolled out globally, Facebook users worldwide can use this new element to react to all posts — including ads.

How Will Reactions Impact My Facebook Ads?

Facebook says that Reactions will affect ads the following ways:

Like - Facebook Reactions

Metrics that include Likes in ads reports will also include Reactions. However, these won’t be broken out as individual Reactions.

Haha - Facebook Reactions

Advertisers who want to see a breakdown of Reactions can do so in their Page insights only.

Angry - Facebook Reactions

Reactions are treated the same as Likes for ads delivery (for example, Loves carry no extra weight than Likes in the auction).

Sad - Facebook Reactions

In the same way that you can’t remove a Like, you can’t remove a Reaction.


Keep in mind that Reactions are still fairly new and their functions and abilities are not set in stone. Don’t be surprised if the factors mentioned above change as the role of Reactions evolves.

How To Make Reactions Work For You

Wow - Facebook ReactionsThe Reactions feature is still fairly new, and the opportunity that it represents for advertisers is not completely clear yet. However, early signs indicate that Reactions can help marketers get an in-depth understanding of how users feel about their ads. Previously, businesses could only measure an ad’s ability to elicit (or not elicit) Likes. With Reactions, they can now physically see if their ads inspire the right kind of emotions from audiences. For example, an ecommerce company running an ad featuring a new product may discover that audiences think a new piece is more laughable than wow-worthy.

Love - Facebook ReactionsReactions bring your audience’s emotions into the forefront and help you determine how those feelings surrounding your ad will help you achieve particular results. For example, creative that inspires people to hit the “Love” button may be better at driving clicks and revenue than a simple “Like.” It’s a good reminder that at the end of the day, the way your company and your ads make people feel is a powerful factor in determining your success.

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