Category Archives: All Things F

10 Takeaways from Our Facebook Pop-Up…

Josh Collins, Williamson Co., (TN) CVB presents his case study on organic reach.

Josh Collins, Williamson Co., (TN) CVB presents his case study on organic reach.



1)Why Facebook really wants us to refresh business page profile data.

The canned Facebook message to all small businesses is, ‘Back to Basics’ a.k.a ‘Claim Your Page’s Real Estate.’ Scratch a little deeper and the message is: Businesses should clean up page settings and profile data to be discoverable on ‘Nearby.’”  While this optional feature launched in April 2014 was directed at Friends Nearby, the capability is there and it will evolve. It’s not really about helping you to hook up with your friend at a concert, is it?

Moving beyond Friends Nearby, how far behind are geo-tagged ads using beacon technology?

Curate your content carefully; think about what you don't post.

Curate your content carefully; think about what you don’t post.


2)“Curate your content like a museum would.” 

Absolutely. What you don’t post is as significant as what you do post, points out Martin Stoll. Social media managers not part-time interns are at the heart of your operation and reputation. They are “thinker, feeler, doer”, who must create and display “easy to read, digestible, snackable” content, he adds. Hmm…it’s not easy to be always delicious, never fattening.

3)Test, test, test.

There are three ways to manage your account: Facebook direct (a live support person requires a minimum spend of 50K per month); self-managed; or via a third-party agency or Preferred Marketing Developer. Regardless of which works for you, “Stop optimizing for a click,” was well-received advice from Brittany Senko, Tourism Richmond. Be aware that soft interest produced by contests designed to increase a fan base in the past can potentially cost you when a paid campaign means you’ll only reach that soft interest. Don’t burn money.


4)  Why you cannot beat the almighty algorithms.

Remember Edge Rank? You needed: Affinity + Weight + Time Decay for the magic to happen. That was 2010. “The machine-learning algorithm has 100,000 variables now,” explained Elena Ferranto. According to Facebook, due to sheer volume of posts, no one user will see more than 1,500 updates every 24 hours. To reach that max, they’d need to be logged onto their newsfeed all day, so realistically it’s more like 300 posts per day being seen by the average user.

5) There are still ways to maximize Organic Reach.

Baby boomers seen in Austin

#Baby boomers getting their messages across, as seen in #TrueAustin. Use Instagram well. People and vibrant colors. Hashtags.

Facebook says:
–  User submitted content is “highly recommended, great.”
–  A ‘share’ trumps a ‘like’ every time.
–  Posts should be “very deliberately timed and regular.”
–  Post no more than 4-7 times per week or you’ll “hurt your own reach.”
–  Use 3 images together, “delivered at a higher rate” especially “vibrant, people” shots.
–  Don’t ask for likes to pages nor posts, as it will “potentially hurt your reach.”
–  And, learn to use Instagram effectively while it’s free, as demonstrated by Elena Ferranto.

6) Build fan bases strategically.

–  Custom Audiences: Facebook will encrypt and match from your mailing list.
–  Lookalike Audiences: Since Sept. 2013, Facebook will find potential new users (no email addresses are used).
–  Retargeting and Conversion Tracking: Built from website, and microsite, visits.

7)Keep building LinkedIn connections and groups.
These are the base for your CRM growth.

 8) Build buckets now.
“In two or three years, our fan bases will be too large to talk to in one go,” predicts Martin Stoll. Therefore, build special interest and demographic buckets now to target for future campaigns and avoid wasting dollars.

Matt Clement, Fort Worth CVB,  tests to acheive best ROI using clever NASCAR-related bucketing

Matt Clement, Fort Worth CVB, tests to achieve best ROI using clever NASCAR-related appeal.

 9) Use zero-based budgeting.
Assign dollars after you perform A/B testing on reach per campaign, per objective, audience. Drill down. Choose demographics and interests wisely. Target and then budget. Then test again. Good advice from Jennifer Barbee.

10)Expect more 2-way comms on your page.

Facebook has 70 engineers in Austin alone, we learned. “We’re working on messaging now, finding new ways that fans can interact with business pages,” says Krupa Patel. “Two way conversations on Facebook are important,” she added. Watch this space.  Go to for an updated agenda






With our thanks to the delegates participating in this pop-up exchange. 




Laurie Jo Miller Farr, contributor





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Announcing a Facebook ‘Post with the Most’ Competition







Enter the search for the Facebook post with the best organic reach

(Photo: Gunnar Richter)

(Photo: Gunnar Richter)

SAUSALITO, CA — The 15th Annual eTourism Summit held in San Francisco on Oct. 8-9, 2014 is launching a competition among its delegates to find the Facebook post with the highest percentage of organic reach. 

The prize winner receives a complimentary registration to eTourism Summit.*

Since Facebook’s latest algorithm changes, reports abound that organic engagement has plummeted.  However, several organizations are reporting that they have been able to sustain, even to grow beyond pre-2014 levels.

“Many marketers have the wrong followers for the algorithm changes, or the wrong content or both,” stated Jake Steinman, CEO of NAJ Group, which produces eTourism Summit. The contest invitation to delegates is now open.! We’re looking forward to your entry.

Competition Guidelines:

1. All entries must include a PDF screen capture of the Facebook post as well as the Facebook insights results.  

2. Reach must be purely organic and cannot include paid boosts.

3. Eligible entries must include posts that were uploaded after April 1, 2014.

4. Must be a destination, hotel, or attraction with a minimum of 3,000 Facebook followers. 

5. Winner determined by percentage of total followers reached per entered post.

Email one entry per organization to: by July 31, 2014.

 *In the event that the winner is already registered for eTourism Summit 2014, a credit for the same value toward a future registration or the option to bring a colleague to #eTS14 will be extended.





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Filed under All Things F, eTourism Summit San Francisco, Facebook

Turning Likes Into Love: Announcing All Things Facebook 2014









Why did we create the All Things Facebook Pop Up Workshop?

So you can meet Facebook’s Travel Team in person and learn to turn Likes into love. 


 July 7-8, 2014    |    Beta Pop-Up Workshop    |    The Driskill    |   Austin, TX 









Join us for a deep dive into all things Facebook with their travel industry staff, other Facebook marketing experts, a workshop, Q&A, and a reception at the Facebook office.  Find the Agenda and the link to All Things Facebook Registration below.

If you prefer to have your registration billed forward to accommodate your 2015 budget cycle, just let us know.   Each attendee receives a Certificate of Course Completion during the private reception at Facebook corporate offices.  

Why A Facebook Pop-Up Workshop? Let’s face it. It’s a real challenge to keep up with all the changes Facebook is making. Consider revised algorithms for the news feed, bolder designs for brand pages, improved analytics products, new products to track lead generation, conversion, social CRM, plug-ins, applications and clever new tools. It’s estimated that Facebook introduced over 200 changes in 2013 alone.

Together with Facebook we have curated the most critical tools that destinations and attractions need to stay on top of their game. And, by the end of the program, you will know exactly how to use them.

Meet Facebook’s Travel Team.  Fifty attendees will meet Facebook’s Travel team that works with DMO’s, hotels and attractions— in person to get rare access to tailor-made presentations, workshops, roundtable discussions…and a truly rare Q&A session, too.

Ask Facebook? Here’s a unique opportunity to meet Facebook tourism executives and ask your questions, get answers that work for your business, dive deeper, navigate the platform, and explore Instagram.

You’re invited! Join us in Austin where we’re invited to a reception at Facebook’s Austin offices. You will leave with a certificate of completion—proof that you know more about Facebook for business than 95% of your colleagues and competitors. Or, make that 99%.

Who Should Attend? This is a lively, professional development and interactive workshop especially for digital, new media and social media staff to expand the knowledge necessary to ensure your organization thrives. Join us. Due to the 1-2-1 interactive nature of the workshop, space is limited.

1        Marketing executives

2       Digital media directors and managers

3       Social media directors and coordinators

What prior knowledge is necessary? A basic understanding of how things work on Facebook. Delegates have used Facebook in a business capacity and must have a business page, but may not know how to go further with it. (Note that delegates are at intermediate level. We will not instruct on Facebook page set-up.)

What’s required? 1) We will pre-register all delegates with a Facebook ad account authorized for a minimum $50 spend billed to the credit card supplied. This is in order to conduct transactions during the interactive workshop session to ensure that each attendee is comfortable with the how-to basics that meet your own budget.  2) We ask that all attendees bring an excerpt or log-in from your customer database, as we will demonstrate how to use Facebook’s management tool known as Custom Audiences. ********************************************************************

 Your ALL THINGS F Workshop Leaders and Facilitators:

 – Jessica Roberts, Global Solutions, Travel Vertical, Facebook

–  Krupa Patel, Global Solutions, Travel Vertical, Facebook

–  Jennifer Barbee, Founder and CEO, Jennifer Barbee Inc.

–  Martin Stoll, Founder and CEO, Sparkloft Media

–  Elena Ferranto, Product Development & Innovation, Sparkloft Media

–  Laurie Jo Miller Farr, eTourism Summit


 What will be covered in this workshop?

PROVISIONAL AGENDA  (Last Updated 4/1/14. Subject to Change)


JULY 7, 2014


4:30-6:00 pm: Explore Instagram For Business…and burn calories at the same time. Introducing the Instagram Field Trip—a walking tour of Austin.  Participants bring mobile phones plus inquisitive minds for Instagram tips and tricks. Following the field trip, participants will have newly honed photography skills and digital media applications that will make a difference back home.

6:00-7:30 pm:  Instagram Opening Reception.  Instagram moves indoors. Continue tips and tricks while we showcase our best results from the field trip. Facebook marketers join delegates for an evening showcase and  icebreaker at The Driskill in the heart of Austin.


JULY 8, 2014 

7:30-8:30 am: Continental Breakfast

8:30-8:45 am: Opening Remarks and Introductions

8:45-9:15 am: Diving Right Into the Deep End of Social Media  

With 76 percent of the 1.23 billion monthly active users logging on daily, uploading 350 million photos a day, the “why” of Facebook is clear. Get up to speed on the latest Facebook tools and plans (drones, virtual reality – what’s next?) and adjust your strategy to take advantage of the updates and changes that Facebook is making for brand marketers.

– New advertising tools like FBX

– New Social CRM tools like Custom Audiences

– New Targeting tools such as “look alikes”

– New ways to analyze Facebook uses using Facebook Insights

– New tools for page admins

Leaders: Martin Stoll, CEO, Sparkloft Media;  Jennifer Barbee, CEO, Jennifer Barbee, Inc.

9:15-9:45 am: How To Improve Your Facebook Engagement

We could call it “Understanding the Art and Science of Facebook Engagement and How It Will Affect Your Social Media Programs.” During this session we will look into relevant industry content samples and discuss why they worked or didn’t.

– When and how your fans — and their friends — see your content

– How your News Feed is affected by Edge Rank changes with the latest Facebook updates

– What type of posts work best and how often should they be updated – What the best community management practices are

– Know how your News Feed is affected by Edge Rank changes with the latest Facebook updates

– What type of posts work best and how often should they be updated

– What are the best community management guidelines

– How tourism marketers are using their Facebook followers to amplify their brand

Leaders: Elena Ferranto, Product Development & Innovation, Sparkloft Media; Jessica Roberts, Director, Global Solutions, Facebook

9:45-10:00 am:  The Right Stuff 

We’ll see precisely what can go right when we apply the right stuff in a case study from within our own peer group presented as a best practice example.

10:00-10:30 am:  A Look Inside Facebook

Keeping up with changes and updates to Facebook can feel like a full-time job. Hear directly from Facebook’s travel vertical about the most recent updates and product changes and how these affect your social media marketing campaign. Find out how destinations and attractions can benefit from the latest innovations in 2014 and in 2015 marketing plans.

Leaders: Jessica Roberts, Director, Global Solutions, Facebook; Jennifer BarbeeJennifer Barbee, Inc.

10:30-11:00 am: Break

11:00-11:30pm: Hands-On Exercise: Hit The Bulls Eye by Laser-Targeting Your Desired Audience

Did you know that you can easily identify and target potential fans who are most likely to engage with your Facebook page? The essence of success on Facebook is learning about the various ways to precisely target…and re-target…your Facebook fans. See how a call-to-action such as Shop Now, Learn More, Sign Up, Book Now or Download can enhance your strategic marketing. In this hands-on session you are introduced to the targeting capabilities of Facebook, for example:

– Use the Look-Alike Audiences tool to target your best prospects

– Use FBX

– Discover Custom Audiences

– Re-targeting using your own first-party audience data

– Pages To Watch

Leaders: Krupa Patel, Associate, Global Solutions, Facebook; Jessica Roberts, Director, Global Solutions, Facebook

11:30-11:45 am:  The Right Stuff II

In our second case study (tba), we’ll find out how Facebook advertising techniques are used to target new fans with an ROI that’s good news for everyone.

11:45-12:15 pm: Hands-On: Ads That Boost Your Brand’s Self-Esteem.

Destinations and attractions can boost their Facebook marketing results with new ad techniques. We’ll find out how to construct a Custom Audience on Facebook and you’ll manage an actual Social CRM experience.  During this session you will be able to upload up to 500 names from one of your actual databases and, under the watchful eye of our experts, match them to Facebook users to construct your own custom audience.

– Use Conversion Pixels to track ultimate sales

– Understand how to use Facebook for social CRM: Custom Audiences

– Re-targeting


Leaders: Jessica Roberts, Director Global Solutions, FacebookJennifer Barbee, Jennifer Barbee, Inc.

12:15-12:30 pm:  The Right Stuff III 

Watch your reach and engagement numbers grow on Facebook Insights. This case study (tba) presentation is on organic and paid reach.

12:30-2:00 pm: Luncheon

1024px-Facebook_like_thumb2:00-2:45 pm: Turning Likes Into Love

  What constitutes a successful promotion? How to tip the balance from like to love to evangelist, perhaps? What types of games, surveys, contests and sweepstakes are tourism marketers using to generate excitement and engagement among their Facebook fans? We’ll hear from Facebook with examples of successful destination, hotel and attraction promotions, plus examples of tips on stretching dollars via co-op programs that work.

Leaders:  Krupa Patel, Global Solutions, Facebook; Martin Stoll, Sparkloft Media

2:45-3:00 pm: The Right Stuff IV  

“Make new friends but keep the old” are the lyrics to the traditional Scout song that makes good sense for marketing pros. We’ll hear from the field about how this can work for you with repeat traffic on Facebook that translates into repeat visitors at your doorstep.

3:00-3:45 pm: Measurement Isn’t Magic, But It Sure Helps  

It’s not uncommon these days to hear that social media marketing is really all marketing, not just a separate line item on the budget. Still, reporting upstairs to get the appropriate resources for social media campaigns and staffing is a fact of life. It’s your Facebook ROI that makes the difference. We dive into an overview and interpretation session of Facebook reporting features and analytics capabilities and various ways to use them. Whether its sales conversions, event attendance, lead generation, creating more engagement, our experts will introduce real-life examples of proven ROI followed by interactive roundtable discussion among attendees about what’s worked and what hasn’t.

Leaders: All

3:45-4:00 pm:  Break

4:00pm-5:00 pm: Rotating Facebook Peer-to-Peer Roundtables  

We know that destinations and attractions have created and conducted some brilliantly successful ideas using Facebook. Other destinations and attractions have noticed some initiatives that they’d like to adopt.  Each roundtable discussion will dive even deeper into these topics. Every 15 minutes we move to a new table so each of you will have an opportunity to cover four topics.

Roundtable #1: Managing Your Facebook Community

Roundtable #2: Making ROI and Analytics Work for Your Department

Roundtable #3: Really Sticky Facebook Engagement Techniques

Roundtable #4: Managing and Staffing a Social Media department

Roundtable #5: Building Your Facebook Audience Organically

Roundtable #6: Using Instagram to Reach Millennials

5:00-5:30 pm:  “Ask Facebook” Q & A Session, with Jessica Roberts and Krupa Patel, Facebook Travel Vertical, Global Solutions

6:00-7:30 pm: Reception at Facebook Offices.  Facebook’s offices are a short five-block walk from the hotel. Each attendee receives a Certificate of Course Completion during the private reception at Facebook corporate offices.



The Driskill, at the intersection of historic and dynamic in the heart of downtown Austin is our venue for the Pop-Up.  For hotel reservations, please call The Driskill directly at 800-233-1234 or 512-439-1234 and ask for the special eTourism Summit rate of  $175 per night.


Early Bird Registration Fee for DMOs/Attractions/Hotels: $795 (until April 14,  fee will increase in $100 increments through June 6, 2014).

Early Bird Registration Fee for NON- DMOs/Attractions/Hotels: $1,095  (until April 14,  fee will increase in $100 increments through June 6, 2014).

Attendance is limited to 50. Cancellations on or before June 7 are refundable minus a $75 cancellation fee. Cancellations after June 7 are non-refundable. Special Discount: Like our Facebook page  and receive a $50 discount. If you prefer to have your registration billed forward to accommodate your 2015 budget cycle, just let us know.   Each attendee receives a Certificate of Course Completion during the private reception at Facebook corporate offices.


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Filed under All Things F, eTourism Summit San Francisco, Facebook