At the end of April, Facebook launched a new feature, its Send button, which will render the “email to a friend” button on most websites obsolete. The Send button is very similar to Facebook’s already popular Like button, which celebrated its first birthday recently and is installed on over 10,000 websites every week. However, this new Send button has a few differences from the Like button.
When a user clicks on the Send button, a pop-up box appears which allows them to send the page or article to a friend or group on Facebook or to any email address. A message can be added before sending the page or article to the friend’s Facebook inbox or the wall of the group. Facebook designed the button to make it easier for Facebook users to share content they like or find interesting with their close group of friends, with a focus on private sharing rather than public sharing.
One significant detail of the new Facebook Send button is that Send counts towards the total number of Likes a webpage or article has, according to Mashable. Now, the Like total is calculated by adding the number of Likes, comments, shares, and inbox messages that contain the specific URL. Over 50 major websites have incorporated the Send button, including People.com, The Wall Street Journal, and The Washington Post. Anyone who wishes to include the Send button on their website can find the code on Facebook’s Developer website.
Related to Facebook’s introduction of the Send button is the relatively new start-up Likester, which is a database users can search to see what their friends have Liked on Facebook, as well as users across the globe. Searches can be limited to friends-only, or to a certain location. For example, at the time this blog was written, the three top Likes on Facebook for the Los Angeles area were pages for Star Wars, Good Fellas, and swimming. A search can also be done to see what is popular for the current day, as well as to see what people who liked a certain page were more likely to Like based upon their Like history. Results can also be filtered by specific categories. Users can also browse through a “Like log” which lists everything a user’s Facebook friends have liked, and when, which is convenient since Facebook typically hides repeat Likes from users’ newsfeeds. Likester may be the only platform on the Internet right now that gives both users as well as businesses an effective and efficient way of finding trends in Facebook Likes.
While it remains to be seen how effective Likester will be and its impact on marketers, there’s no doubt about the value of Facebook Likes for a business page. With Facebook’s users nearing 600 million, having the chance to connect and engage with these users is an almost invaluable opportunity for law firms and attorneys. Now more than ever, the impact Facebook has on the Internet across the world should be recognized, and if it is not something you or your law firm is a part of, it’s something you need to be considering, as well as joining other social networking sites.
Sources: http://mashable.com/2011/04/25/facebook-send-groups/; http://mashable.com/2011/05/04/likester/