During a live stream recently, Facebook’s CEO Mark Zuckerberg confirmed that Facebook is working on a “Dislike” button. As many late-night comedians would jest sarcastically: The Internet is filled with love, of course we need a dislike button to show some hate!

Hate is not necessarily the case, according to Zuckerberg. He said people could use “Dislike” to “express empathy and sympathy”, “not every moment is a good me moment.” (USA Today)

What Zuckerberg said sounded highly counter-intuitive, so naturally we at Spot Trender started to explore our data to see if the evidence supports his hypothesis. We found many examples to support his claims – for instance, Coca Cola’s “#MakeItHappy” anti-bullying Super Bowl 2015 spot.

Let’s look at the reaction graph:

Coca Cola Make It Happy

Spot Trender reaction graphs measures your audience reaction to your spot as they watch your commercial with reaction graphs. As your target audience watches the video, they click up or down arrow button on the keyboard to indicate whether they like or dislike what they’re watching. Respondents also provide live, time-stamped comments as they watch.

When we look at the graph by itself, our initial impression was “wow, people hated the beginning of this video!” However, this is not necessarily true. Looking at quantitative data, people said they love the ad. 78% of respondents  out of 300 said they “very much liked” or “somewhat liked” the spot. When asked an open-ended question “what did you like about the ad?”, many respondents express deep sympathy for the bully victims and the message of the video:

I liked the overall message. I appreciate that Coca Cola is using its power to promote positive thoughts and actions, rather than just sell its product. I also appreciate that it is acknowledging a very real problem within our society today.

I love Coke, so that’s always a positive. But mostly, I liked the smiles on people’s faces when they thought of happy things and were reminded that they’re worthwhile

As a bully victim myself, it shows people that words can hurt others so it is best to say something nice or do not say anything at all.

While the #MakeItHappy example is not by itself conclusive evidence, it supports what Zuckerberg said: “Dislike” could express sympathy, not hate.

Now that Facebook is going to release a Dislike button, what does it mean for your commercials? Wondering if the Dislikes you’ll get means “Sympathy”, or “I hate this ad and therefore I hate this brand!”? Contact us and let’s find out! Give us a call: 1 (800) 755 – 5790 or email us.