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Constant Changes

While I don’t believe that Facebook advertising is right for every business, there are some that it just makes sense. After a quick trial run to make sure one of my clients would actually benefit from ads, I agreed to manage their advertising on Facebook as well as their conversation.

My first step was to get approval for eight ads that I would rotate through the program. My second step was to build them all in the Facebook advertising dashboard so I wouldn’t have to think about it much. My third step, a week later, was to cuss and think about crying when Facebook changed the size of their ad photos and eliminated my library of pre-built ads.

And they added these fancy schmancy featured stories things.

Have I mentioned that Facebook changes things? A lot?

In previous posts I’ve talked about how no one can be an expert on Facebook because of the constant changes. There are, however, dedicated students who work to keep up with the changes and how those changes impact business. I’m one of those students. But there are advanced students from whom I learn.

A whole gaggle of those advanced students have been gathered together for an Advanced Facebook Ads conference this month. And by gaggle, I mean 22 presentations by well-respected professionals who have studied and read and tried and failed and succeeded. If you’re curious about the value of ads or those sponsored stories, these are the people who can tell you the truth.

And, let’s face it, there’s nothing better than a conference you can attend in your pajamas, right?

Oh wait! There is!

There’s the conference you can attend in your pajamas at a discount! Mention “SOCIALFRESH” when you are checking out for $150 off your registration. I love a discount.

One of my favorite speakers at the conference is Jay Baer from Convince & Convert. He spoke at the Wyoming Governor’s Conference on Hospitality and Tourism. What I like about Jay is that he stresses the value of quality content and conversation before a gimmick to increase your “like”s. He also believes you should be very clear about what your goals are for any given page. Seriously, see this man speak ANY chance you have.

On a side note: Jay used to have a blog that consisted entirely of the bathroom faucets in the hotels he stayed in when he traveled. I find this hilarious. And brilliant.

I’m also looking forward to Jeff Widman from PageLever and about nine million other ventures. I love how Jeff’s brain works – it is 180 degrees opposite of mine. Which is a good thing, of course. You don’t get much from people who think just like you. And storytellers don’t get far without someone to think about the numbers and find those solutions for them.

And there are more! So many more!

  • Justin Kistner from Webtrends
  • Marty Weintraub from aimClear
  • Randall Lloyd from Buddy Media
  • Diana Plazas from Doubletree by Hilton
  • Angela Leaney from the Harlem Globetrotters
  • Jordan Franklin from Clickable
  • Hussein Fazal from Ad Parlor
  • Tim Bosch from Likeable Media
  • Dan Slagen from HubSpot
  • Chris Tuff from 22squared
  • Amy Porterfield from
  • Ryan Cohn from What’s Next Marketing
  • Matt Monahan from AlphaBoost
  • Dan Benyamin from Citizennet
  • Katie Roberts from Walden University
  • Maya Grinberg from Wildfire
  • Mark Unger from PUSH
  • Merry Morud from aimClear
  • Erika Brookes of Vitrue
  • Lucy Jacobs of Spruce Media
  • Nate Riggs of The Karcher Group
  • Roland Smart of Involver
  • Chris Penn of WhatCounts
  • Victoria Gibson of FB Ad Queen

From these speakers I expect to learn the latest in ads and stories and all things Facebook. And I imagine I’ll go away with a couple more advanced students to follow in the social webs.

And I’ll be bringing all that know-how to my clients.

Until Facebook changes it all again.

LinkedIn: To Connect, Or Not to Connect

“I just wanted to let you know that I am no longer associated with Bob. How do I let everyone know that I don’t endorse him? AT ALL.”

I worked at a chamber of commerce for seven and a half years. About twice a year, I’d get to have this conversation with a member after they’d brought a new acquaintance to a Chamber event. They thought they were doing the right thing – bringing in a new businessperson, introducing them to their friends and colleagues, helping someone new to the community get their foot into the business community door. The problem is that skeezy people are slick and you don’t necessarily know about the skeeze factor right away.

Once you’ve introduced them, though, you can’t erase that link in the minds of those who were introduced. If one of your acquaintances is ripped off by this person it is your reputation that may suffer.

Translate this to LinkedIn, the social version of a chamber of commerce. I’ve recently heard that some experts (Gah! Experts!) are recommending that people accept all connection invitations because it increases your possible reach. And to send invitations to everyone which whom you’ve made a passing acquaintance. My mind went immediately to Mr. Skeeze.

Not only do I think you should follow this advice cautiously, I’d point out that this is the exact opposite of what LinkedIn suggests. Here’s what they say to newcomers (bold is mine, for emphasis):

Ensure your connections represent your “real-world” network.

Use webmail import to see, in seconds, all the people you know who are already on LinkedIn. You can then select who you wish to invite to join your trusted network.

On my personal LinkedIn account there are dozens of people that I know but don’t attempt to connect to. Mostly because, while I know them, I don’t feel that we’ve worked together enough for them to endorse me as a professional. I have friends on Facebook who I would not choose to connect to on LinkedIn because I like them as people but would never do business with them. The reverse is true; I have LinkedIn connections with whom I would never be a Facebook friends.

Life is life. Business is business. Common sense is common sense.

If you are interested in expanding your reach in LinkedIn, do it exactly as you would with the chamber of commerce: find groups that interest you and participate. Offer advice. Ask and answer questions. Post articles that you’ve written or share articles from others in your industry. BE THERE.

As with all social media – and life, really – people want to be heard and they’ll respect the people that listen. Respect turns, eventually, into business. That is how you achieve reach.


Note: As an individual, there are no rules on how to use social media correctly. As long as you are being authentic to yourself, there’s no such thing as “wrong.” There are some ways you can keep yourself safe from the dangers of the world – stalkers, bosses, gossips, thieves, etc. But social media is just a tool for them; they’ll still exist without digital tools and will prey on people that don’t choose to protect themselves.

Anyone who tells and individual that they’re doing social wrong? They’re doing it wrong.

Beware the Social Media Expert

Check any of my six email addresses and you’ll find articles written about the latest trend in social media, marketing, tourism or design. I’ve got no problem at all with learning on a daily basis. I spend a lot of my working day trying to stay up to date.


The problem with social media “experts” is that they profess a level of knowledge that just isn’t possible within the industry. It isn’t old enough. The changes happen to quickly. And you have to question just to what, exactly, their expertise pertains. Is it the technology? Because knowing how to post and share and disseminate doesn’t do anything for your consumer.

The only person who is an expert on your customer is…your customer. And, maybe if you’ve been paying close attention, you.

For social media success it is important to be an expert on your community of consumers and a student of the technology that connects you.