Facebook Lets Site-Owners Target Content Based on Individual “Likes”

    February 24, 2011
    Chris Crum

Did you know you can publish content directly to people that click the "like" button on any piece of content on your site?

A recent post on the Facebook Developer blog discusses just that. "As part of Operation Developer Love, we are are continuing to update our documentation," said Facebook’s Ankur Pansari. "Recently, I was talking with some developers in New York, and they were surprised to learn that they could publish updates to people who have liked their Open Graph Pages."

"You can publish stories to people who like your Open Graph Page the same way you write a Facebook post from your own wall. The stories appear in the News Feeds of people who have clicked the Like button on the Open Graph Page," he added. "You can also publish using our API. If you associate your Open Graph Page with a Facebook app using the fb:app_id meta tag, you can publish updates to the users who have liked your pages via the Graph API."

Do more with the Facebook like button A tip of the hat goes to Josh Constine at InsideFacebook for pointing this out, as well as raising a good point that publishers should consider: "For instance, retailer Urban Outfitters has Like buttons on every product in their website’s ecommerce store. It sells a wide variety of products, from clothing to bikes. If the Urban Outfitters Facebook Page posted an updated about a new line of bikes it was carrying, only a small part of their audience would find it interesting, while a large portion of their audiences would find the update irrelevant or even spammy, leading them to click the Unlike button."

"Instead, Urban Outfitters could publish the update about bikes to only those users who’ve clicked Like buttons on their bikes," he adds. "By sending product-specific updates to those who Like that type of product, Urban Outfitters can send higher relevancy updates more frequently but to less people, increasing click through rates and driving more traffic to their website without spamming all 600,000 fans of the Facebook Page."

Basically, this has the potential to be a very powerful tool for anyone using "like" buttons on their sites, but like any other powerful tool, handle with care.