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Want to rule Facebook? Take notes from George Takei

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Want_to_rule_Facebook_Take_notes_from_George_Takei-lsIf you just went "huh?" then you've probably been bunking at Guantanamo Bay for the past year... or you're a cat.

And I'm not even sure about the cat bit.

The minor details:
George Takei played Sulu on the original Star Trek.


George Takei Sup.


The not-so-minor details:
In March 2011 George Takei decided to take up the little hobby of completely rocking Facebook's world.

He took a relatively small level of fan notoriety and within a year transformed it into a fanpage mega-empire.

He hewed from the very foundations of Facebook a David in his own image.

His tools?

Lolcats, personality, community engagement, and presumably gigantic balls.


David Oh Myyy. Brad will be pleased.

But Likes Mean Everything!

Some people will protest that George only has 2 million likes, whereas people like Jesus and Darth Vader have a combined 13 million.

Surely Darth and Jesus are running better Facebook pages, they'll say.

Then these people will drool on themselves, and you should call the police.

Allow me to illustrate...

Eminem has 58,970,233 likes on Facebook. Sounds great, right? But wait... see what happens when you abbreviate that number:

58.9 million

Not so impressed now, are you?

But I jest.

Anyway, we're not trying to see merely how popular something is, are we?

That's not social media success.

Rather, social media success is about fostering community engagement, raising brand recognition, and increasing sales and goodwill.

It'd be great to have 58 million likes, but that doesn't mean you're running a successful page.

It just means you're popular.

To pick on Eminem some more: he has 58,970,233 likes, but only 420,410 people are actually talking about him. To really get a feel for how successful someone's Facebook page is, you've got to compare brand recognition (58 million likes) with actual community activity (420 thousand).

Popularity-wise, he's a rockstar. Social media-wise, he's at 0.7% community engagement, which in the Facebook world is somewhere between garbage and warm cottage cheese.

Why George is King

George Takei may only have 2.1 million likes, but he has a staggering 2.8 million people talking about him.


(via Inside Facebook)

So if we do the same calculation we subjected Eminem to, that's 2.8 million divided by 2.1 million, which gives us 135.7%.

I'll give you a moment to compare those numbers.

  • George, 135.7%
  • Eminem, 0.7%

Ever hear a coach yell about giving 110%? Well, George is giving 135.7%. That's like single-handedly winning the championship, eating the coach's clipboard, and then shagging a unicorn.

George has become a social media demigod by having more people talk about him than actually like his page. It's so rare that it's like he has successfully divided a number by zero -- and lived.

His community engagement is so strong that he actually broke Facebook's graph:

People talking about


In fact -- at the time of writing this -- George Takei is talked about more than bacon, Lady Gaga, the New York Yankees, Legos, Rihanna, cake, Darth Vader, William Shatner, beer, Christmas, Barack Obama and God.


If you're reading this, then you probably already know all there is to know about social media, not to mention your obvious refinement and discerning taste in ascots.

So I won't bore you with the details of how he does it. But I will say this: if you haven't done it yet, say heyyy to the Takei. Like his page.

Sit a while, and listen. You might learn a thing or two.


Haight Mail
Haight Mail

Haight Mail are the insights and contributions of one Ryan Haight. His interest in social media first flowered during a tour in Iraq, where it kept him involved with his family even from a far off desert. Since then, he's become an active (and not always uncritical) member of the SM community. His opinions come from a place of tough love and straight talk. Connect with him on Twitter.


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