Likes, Hearts, Shares and Followers – Are you playing the game wrong?


There is no doubt that social networking (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram,etc.) is used commonly in today’s information age. Almost millennials, who were born after 1980, spend more time for checking what is happening around themselves through those applications. Besides that, they also care about others’ attention such as the number of likes, hearts, shares and followers. Feeling hurt (if there are few likes and hearts) and giving up blogging (if there are few viewers and followers) are two common problems which are the results of earning others’ attention.

Are you playing the game wrong?

There are some self-questions to identify that you are on the wrong track:

  • Do you pay more attention to the number of followers/ viewers? (the statistics)

If your answer is “yes”, you are certainly playing the game wrong. Drawing more followers/ viewers (social traffic) does not mean you will be successful. Let’s imagine that if your followers/ viewers just go to the homepage of your sites – means your sites are not sticky, what profit will you earn? Moreover,  there is no doubt that the statistics will seem to be more attractive but does it sustain day to day? Maybe yes, if you spend a lot of time on advertising your sites. However, it is impossible for you to do that for a long time.

Further, spending a huge time on drawing the traffic to your sites may make you stressful and unhappy. “Having a million followers did not afford me new opportunities. It did not make my life richer or make my teeth brighter. It quite the opposite. It made me more self-conscious than I already was. It made me feel riddled with self-doubt.” Catalano wrote in an article on (cited Zweig 2014, p. 106).

  • Do you focus on how many likes, love-hearts, and shares you get, but not how great your content is?

If your answer is “yes” again, you will be the loser in today’s social game. In the past, marketers based on the number of likes, shares and love-hearts of your content to hire you for the advertising. However, the game has currently changed. As you know, there are a lot of programs for buffing your followers, likes, shares and love-hearts on Facebook. As a result, your content is the key to help you earn the attention of the marketers.

Further, earning a lot of likes, love-hearts, etc. does not mean your content is great. As you know, people tend to click spontaneously on “like” button without reading the whole content. Besides that, they also tend to share the posts that go viral on the Internet without thinking critically. Therefore, if the number of likes, shares, love-hearts, etc. is the only way to judge your content, you are staying on the wrong track (Oldford 2018).

  • Is your content affected by the way other people judge it?

If your answer is “yes” again, you are playing the game wrong. There are a lot of thoughts which are different from each person. So, if you lose yourself and your content is edited by the way people want you to be what they want, you will be stuck in the hustle. It means your content will be rubbish because it is not your value – it is the mix of others’ thoughts.

“The I’ll-show-people, or, People-are-really-gonna-like-this-thinking that way has hurt me so bad”, and, “If I depend on the hype, the praise, then I’m gonna be miserable for once every five years”. Wallace – an American writer and university instructor of English and creative writing – quoted in posthumous book Although of Course You End Up Becoming Yourself (cited Zweig 2014, p. 116).

Some piece of advice for this situation:

  • Stop caring about the statistics and improve your self-awareness.

There is no doubt that drawing more followers and viewers helps you earn more profit from the advertising. However, if you depend too much on it, you will be in trouble.

Further, the high statistics do not mean you earn more profit than the low one. For example, if you have hundreds of followers but half of them are sponsors or vendors, what will happen?

Today, the game is decided by how great your content is. Therefore, your content is the key that helps you become a winner in this game and engage your audiences. As a result, it is important to spend time on improving your self-awareness instead of wasting your time on driving the traffics.

Great content is what you’re going to pump into your social media networks to draw eyeballs to your blog.” (Vaynerchuk 2013, p. 49)

Don’t get obsessed with how many friends or fans are following you-the stats are only marginally important. What’s important is the intensity of your community’s engagement and interaction with you. At this point, the quality of the conversation is much more revealing than the number of people having it. If your content is making people talk enough so they start to make some noise, I guarantee you’re going to see more people show up to your party. As long as you’re seeing your audience grow, even modestly, over the first four or five months, you’re doing what you’re supposed to do.”(Vaynerchuk 2013, p. 100)

  • Be yourself and stop worrying about the judge

The judge will hurt your feelings and affect negatively your content. Thus, it is necessary to stop overthinking before you create or publish your content. It means you will never know if you do not try to share your words because of caring too much about the judge. For example, if Backpack Kid, Supreme Patty, and other personal brands considered a lot about others’ thoughts when posting their content, what would happen?

So, you should be yourself to control your value in the hustle of today’s social media. Otherwise, you will be able to be controlled by others to implement their purpose.


Oldford, S 2018, ‘Why You Need to Stop Worrying About Facebook ‘Likes’ in 2018′, Entrepreneur, 26 February, viewed 28 February 2018,

Vaynerchuk, G 2013, Why now is the time to crush it cash in on your passion, HarperCollinsPublishers, New York.

Zweig, D 2014, Invisibles, Penguin Group, New York.

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