How Facebook Killing Fan Gate Just Saved Businesses Millions

The moment Facebook announced they're banning Fan Gating (Like Gating) in November, social media marketers panicked: How will I increase my Page Likes? How will I reach new audiences? How will I run successful contests?

But we’re not worried. We’re celebrating! Here’s why:

What is a Fan Gate?

Fan Gates are landing pages on Facebook contest apps (provided by third-party developers) that force new visitors to Like your Page before they can see your content, vote for an entry or participate in your promotion. They’re an abrupt and self-interested first impression to new potential clients who stumbled upon your Page because they were enticed by a prize or promise for cool content. Yes - Like Gating is often effective in tricking lots of people to Like your Page in exchange for a chance at winning something. But they irreversibly destroy the quality of your Facebook fans and ultimately cost you hundreds to thousands of dollars later on.

How Facebook Killing Fan Gate Just Saved Businesses Millions

How Fan Gates hurt your business

When people like a Page because of a Fan Gate on a contest, they don't like the Page. They like the prize.

The more people who Like your Page that don't actually support your business, the less engagement you will have on your content. When they're forced to Like your Page through a Fan Gate, your Facebook fan base doesn't necessarily want to hear what you have to say. They clicked "Like" because they want a free iPad or to vote for their friend. If they don't immediately Unlike your Page after entering, they will when they see your posts, which sabotages your News Feed ranking.

Less engagement means less organic reach. If a Page has 100,000+ Facebook Likes that they bought with a Likes service or persuaded with a Fan Gate, it's borderline impossible for them to reach the 1000 fans that actually Liked their Page through organic engagement because they valued their business. Managers of these Pages will need to pay hundreds (even thousands) of dollars in ads to reach their true fans among the fake Likes. And the worst part? It's impossible to delete fake likes. They're forever.

Facebook Kills Like Gating

Why Facebook killed Like Gating

Facebook knows the importance of organic engagement for propagating your business. "Liking" pages and posts is arguably the simplest, smartest feature on social media today. But a few greedy businesses and developers abused it to the point where it's ruined organic reach for everyone. Facebook's putting a stop to it:

“To ensure quality connections and help businesses reach the people who matter to them, we want people to like Pages because they want to connect and hear from the business, not because of artificial incentives” - Facebook Developer's Blog

So how do you reach the people who matter most to your business?

How to truly connect with fans on Facebook

How Facebook Killing Fan Gate Just Saved Businesses Millions

  1. Forget Likes. Your real goal is to connect with people who support your business, cause or community. Do this by defining your value to your customers and clearly communicating it through unique, authentic and accessible content.
  2. Never stand in the way of someone who wants to engage. Make it as easy as possible for people view and vote for your content or enter into your contest. Every time a fan participates, they generate organic News Feed notifications to their friends which will powerfully and authentically propagate your brand.
  3. Let fans introduce themselves. When you provide an invitation for fans to share their information with you (who they are, how to contact them) and let them decide to share that information with you rather than forcing them, they will trust your brand and appreciate that you respect them.

What's the easiest way to do this? A mobile-friendly, Open-Graph enabled engagement app with fully branded authentication. Learn more about them by chatting with us or see an example of how the Canucks used one to engage thousands of true fans - no Fan Gate in sight!

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Learn more about the value of real Facebook fans in this free white paper: "Why Facebook Marketing Matters"

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