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OMG, Facebook adds reaction emojis

Facebook’s “like” button isn’t going away, but it’s about to get some company.

Facebook has now officially added a select group of emoticons to allow users to react to posts – without having to use anything as old fashioned as, you know, actual words.

The social network rolled out “Reactions” – an extension of the “Like” button – worldwide on Wednesday, allowing people to display quick reactions such as sadness, anger and love.

In a video accompanying a blog post, the five new buttons appear as animated emoticons that pop up when the “Like” button is held down on mobile devices. The buttons appear on desktops when users hover over the “Like” button.

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The new emoji-like stickers Facebook users can press in addition to the ‘like’ button. Photo: Mary Altaffer

Facebook launched a pilot of “Reactions” – which allowed users to select from seven emotions including “Angry”, “Sad”, “Wow” and “Like” – in Ireland and Spain in October.

The “Yay” emoticon, which was present in the pilot launch, was not seen in Wednesday’s video.

The company will also use “Reactions” to track user behaviour and for ad delivery.

“We will initially use any Reaction similar to a Like to infer that you want to see more of that type of content,” Facebook said in separate blog post.

Facebook said that over time it hoped to learn how different “Reactions” should be weighted differently by the Facebook News Feed to customise it for individual users. Facebook said “Reactions” would have the same impact on ad delivery as “Likes”.

The feature received mixed reviews from users on social networking sites.

Many complained that they could not see the new emoticons, while some were unhappy that Facebook did not launch a “dislike” button. Others expressed concern that the feature would lead to diminished use of language and less interaction.

“Great, now you don’t even have to offer actual words, just a freaking emoji. What’s the point in learning a language at all then?,” Candice Johnson wrote on the social network.


Henry Sapiecha

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February 2nd, 2016 ADVERTISING none Comments

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Social media works but brands need to be bold if they want to stand out, according to Publicis Pusher’s MD, Kim Hopwood.

Social has come under fire at late with marketing professor Mark Ritson questioning the flood of ad dollars flowing to social, without being backed up by ROI.

Hopwood was speaking to AdNews following its recent social media campaign for the Australia Day Council of NSW, which is a “social media first” for the brand.

Publicis Pusher used its ‘Newsdesk’ tool – a real-time social media newsroom – for the Australia Day Council of NSW, to engage with people celebrating Australia Day.

The campaign had no paid media and according to preliminary tallies clocked up more than 400,000 conversations on the day and 8,000,000 impressions across social media.

“You need to be bold on social media, because it’s easy to be wallpaper,” Hopwood says.

“But the results of this are speaking for themselves. Newsdesk allows us to amplify things without media investment.”

The Newsdesk tool has been part of Publicis globally for more than 18 months but rolled out locally at the end of last year.

Publicis Pusher was created in November 2014 when Publicis acquired digital agency Pusher.

While Newsdesk is aimed primarily for mass-scale events, it can be also used for always-on marketing and even crisis management.

Hopwood says while it’s “early days” the tool has already proved popular with brands including Garnier, by tapping into marketer demand for real-time communications.

For the Australia Day campaign, a team of 12, including four community managers, two content producers, four creatives and two strategists, used a suite of tools to identify relevant conversations and respond at scale in real time.

In addition, content from the campaign engaged more than 110,000 people across Facebook, Instagram and Twitter and engaged conversations with influencers including the President of India Pranab Mukherjee and singer Recce Mastin.

“The benefit is being able to respond to people and give a better customer experience on the day,” Hopwood says.

“When we’re talking about customers for Australia Day we’re talking about citizens. Australia Day is a celebration of our nation, the government invests a lot in making sure we get the most out of our day and we’re adding in a layer of customer service.”


Henry Sapiecha