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How many "likes" do you have?
While all these optimization companies and consultants talk about likes and the power of facebook, a "like" merely means that someone saw your page or your ad and hit, "like" . That's IT.
What does a "like" NOT mean?
That someone actually has any clue what your business does.
If the other "NOTS" didn't catch you by surprise, the last one sure did. Were you aware that estimates indicate that less then 20% of the people that "like" you actually will see your status update? This article indicates the number is only 12%, but I've seen others go as high as 18% (LINK)
This should make sense to you, when you spend the time to think through it -- slowly.
facebook is giving away a free service that, while very robust -- needs to make money, especially now that it is public. If you can gather millions of "likes" and communicate with them, why would you pay to advertise?
A couple of ideas of advertising would be to get more "likes" or to drive people to your website -- but aside from that, if you could communicate for free to 100% of all your "liked" people, the odds of you paying to advertise is limited.
Now comes a value proposition that is being worked out through a beta test. Through research of about 50 articles, the numbers vary as you would expect from a beta test.
First off, the parameters are based on how many likes you currently have. For instance, again keep in mind these numbers are just for example purposes, you have 100 "likes" and create a status update. That update will be sent to 100% of those people. But if you have 10,000 likes, that number is more closely related to 10-20% regardless of how many of those people block you from their newsfeed.
Example of a Beta
The concept of a "promoted" update is that you would pay an incremental amount of $5, $10, $25 to increase that percentage, but it never equals 100% and cannot get by newsfeed blocks. For the beta test, the "promote this" is right next to the submit button as an option.
Unlike promoted tweets that are on Twitter, this is a self-serve option that is reasonably priced based on the message, but must be considered an option along with other marketing efforts.
Congratulations on having so many people "like" your business - you have succeeded at getting so many people to click the like button. That's it. They clicked. It means nothing more or nothing less, except maybe bragging rights - if that matters to you.
PS> Although technically in Beta, facebook has a page in it's help section: