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Facebook gets proactive with small business bootcamp tour




Facebook FitRecent changes to the Facebook algorithms makes it seem like the social media giant isn’t interested in helping small businesses get ahead. But just because they’re keeping 90% of your posts from your fans doesn’t mean they don’t care. To prove it, they’ve launched a five-city summer tour called Facebook Fit which is all about helping small business owners be all that they can be.

First off, I dislike the name intensely. Maybe it’s because I have a natural aversion to fitness and all that it implies (diet, exercise, healthy habits. . . ) But I get it. It’s that whole “bootcamp” training mentality – “Making your business stronger!”

The tour began today in New York City. Next it’s Miami then Chicago, Austin and Menlo Park, California.

When you sign up you get to choose one of these three tracks:

  • Getting Started: Start using Facebook for your business
  • In–store Sales: Optimize Facebook to bring more people into your store
  • Online Sales: Use Facebook to increase sales on your website

Or you can choose to go to a partner workshop:

  • Intuit Quickbooks: Six tips to grow your business
  • Square: Selling Made Simple
  • LegalZoom: Legal help for your small business

You also get a keynote from Facebook’s Dan Levy and a panel discussion. Four hours of info in total, a good deal for $25.

In New York, Levy told reporters that there are more than 30 million small biz pages on Facebook that are active – as in updated at least once a month. 1 million small biz owners are now advertising on Facebook. I’m sure they’d like to see that number get closer to the first number.

As you can imagine, organic reach is a big question. Is Facebook responding? Here’s a Tweet from a participant on that:

Mobile is also a big topic. Lots of chatter around the word “storytelling” and here’s a nice training slide capture that’s almost like being there.

The other big takeaway – Facebook Fit serves great free food and coffee. Hey, you can hardly eat lunch in New York for $25 so getting four hours of Facebook training with your meal is a real bargain.

If you attended the event, we’d love to hear your thoughts on whether or not it was worth the money and time spent.