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Be Careful-Facebook’s ‘Like’ Button Now Shares More

The net was all a buzz the last few days over the Lones_v_Rothamel trademark infringement lawsuit. Lawsuit’s are by no means rare in our litigious society, what was rare though was the specifics surrounding this particular case.   I won’t go into the specifics of this suit other than to tell you that it pertains to a real estate marketing company in Washington State and a real estate blogger in Virginia.  I am a former business development manager for a national title insurance company in Phoenix, I spent 10 years help real estate professionals grow their business.

Everywhere I looked yesterday-blogs, facebook, twitter and YouTube-there were comments left by mostly real estate professionals-real estate agents and lenders-weighing in on the merits of the lawsuit. Most real estate professionals thought the suit was frivolous as the overwhelming majority of comments were in support of the real estate blogger and therefor against the real estate marketing company.

I like, many of the industry professionals aware of the existence of the suit have been following it intently, seems like everyone has an opinion-hundreds, maybe even thousands of them, on facebook, twitter, youtube and other real estate industry related blogs. While reading a familiar blog I came across some comments from real estate professionals that I know personally. On Saturday February 26th 2011, {In a show of support for their comments and the real estate blogger in Virginia,} I “liked” the blog post.

An interesting thing happened.

Lets back up, “liking” my friends comments and blog posts on facebook and other related websites is nothing new, I, do it 3, 4 times a day, usually to let the person or brand know that “I was there”. Prior to Saturday, liking a post on a blog would appear on my wall as “Stephen, or “MyTitleGuy” {depending on whether I was logged into my personal or professional fb page} liked X”, whatever X was. If I wanted to “share” the post with my facebook friends I could do that as well, though I rarely do.  I am very good at keeping my personal facebook-personal and my business page {mostly} business. I learned very early in the social media game that sharing too much business on my personal fb page can alienate my friends and violate {what I call} The invisible social contract.

Like you, I have hundreds of facebook friends, while many of them are business acquaintances, most of them are good friends-friends outside of the real estate industry-friends outside of Arizona, far removed from this lawsuit. Liking my friends blog post did something I had not seen before, instead of showing up on my wall as “Stephen or “MyTitleGuy liked X” facebook prominently displayed the entire post on my personal wall for everyone to see.

What I was unaware of at the time, [and I believe you were as well] is-Facebook recently released an update that changed the ‘Like’ button’s function to that of a Share button.  Now, when you hit the ‘Like’ button, on a third-party site,  you are allowing a full story with a headline, description and thumbnail [picture] to be posted to your profile wall.

Luckily I noticed the unwanted addition and promptly removed it-no harm done.  But I have a feeling there will be others that involuntarily share {others} views, religious, political or otherwise on their personal fb wall for their friends to see and not be aware of it.

As with all facebook updates there is a clear winner-the ‘Like” button functioning as a ‘Share” button will help publishers more easily share content, increase engagement and hence, drive more traffic to their websites.

Real estate professionals-what should you do?  That’s easy. Add a ‘Like” button to your website. The average person has 130+ friends in their network,  this change will help your content be easily shared across the largest social network in the world resulting in more traffic, brand awareness and hopefully more business.

Takeaway-When on a third-party site, think twice about hitting the ‘Like” button, as it will now prominently appear on your wall and in your networks’ news feeds.


Hi I'm Stephen Garner, I'm just a guy in the title industry {in Phoenix} trying to change how real estate agents market themselves and their services. To that end, I teach my clients HOW TO leverage sales technologies like WordPress, Content, Video, Camtasia, Final Cut X, iMovie and indexable IDX solutions to convey value and help your ideal client find you online when they are most interested in learning about you and your services. I work for escrows. Hire me!

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