Think before you "Like" on Facebook

Fri Dec 30, 2011 10:00am EST
 
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By Chris Taylor

NEW YORK (Reuters) - Annie Scranton has a little problem.

The founder and president of New York City's Pace Public Relations is a successful and sober-minded individual, but when it comes to this one thing, she has a definite compulsion. It's the "Like" button on Facebook -- she just can't stop clicking it.

"I'm totally obsessed with it," says the 31 year old. "Just like a lot of people I know. My friends and I call it 'Like-Bombing', where you go online and like everything."

So it's a good thing for serial "Likers" like Scranton that there are more and more rewards for consumers who click that button.

Hotel chain Marriott, for instance, is currently offering prizes totaling 10 million reward points for those who Like its Facebook pages, including two grand prizes of a million points each.

Think of it as a social-media arms race among corporations, to see which can amass the greatest number of online followers.

"It's become a real competition between companies to grow the size of that number, and to have more fans than your rivals," says Matt Simpson, marketing director for Phoenix-based Bulbstorm, which develops social-media apps for companies such as NBC and World Wrestling Entertainment.

"Over the last year, we've been seeing more and more of it, and it's been driven largely by promotional applications like sweepstakes."   Continued...