#Fail (as they say …)

My experiences with Facebook haven’t been entirely positive.  I’ve learnt a lot, but quite a lot of what I’ve learnt has been essentially negative.

When I started out, shortly afterwards, all the initial data that came in with my first ad campaigns was wiped from the system.  I was sure it wasn’t me.  I was told someone with my user had done the wiping.  A flurry of emails reached an inconclusive conclusion.

The behemoth wins out.

Anyhow.  Very quickly I reached around 350 likes.  Engagement was more difficult – where not impossible.

It’s easy to buy likes on Facebook; it’s very hard to buy love.

It was at this point I realised that whilst the truism says such sites are designed for advertisers – and the customers, that is to say, ourselves as simple social-network users, are actually little more than product to be bought, sold and trafficked with – in truth the real customer is neither ourselves nor the advertisers, but Facebook et al themselves.

With 350 likes, I had plenty of connectedness to be going on with.  Or, at least, so I thought.  Mine is a small, very small (one-person, that is) online language-learning biz.  I don’t need too many students to make a living.  I thought, therefore, my plan was this, to reach 350 and then get to know my audience better.

Out of 350, surely some would come up as people who’d really like to learn.

Only, I didn’t count with Facebook’s determination to ensure a small biz needed an expensively-run campaign.  It repeatedly refused to allow me to target just my 350 individuals, forcing me to expand to a minimum of 2000-odd – thus increasing the budget I needed to spend and reducing my ability to get my message across to specific individuals.


Whilst Facebook may be a perfect sales environment for you, for me it has been rather a fail.

That’s probably me, of course.  My fault I mean, you know.  I’m not sure that most teachers/trainers have quite the skills to go for the kill in sales pitches.  And if they do and are able to, they’ll probably – simply – be good at teaching sales-pitch skills; precisely for those people who want to learn how to pitch those cut-throat sales … whatever the language in question!

As pitchers of such aggressivenesses, this makes them perfect for such a role.  Just doesn’t exactly make them very suited to creating secure and supportive learning environments.


But, as they say, you live and learn.  And like all teachers/trainers who aspire to honour their profession, whatever you do with your life and work, learning will never stop.


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