My Day at the Facebook FMC – Pt. 2 March 5, 2012

Written by: Larry Weintraub
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After all of the big presentations, we were instructed to move into other rooms to attend breakout sessions.  There were two rounds of sessions, the first options were as follows:

Session One

a. Creative content on Facebook: What people share and why

People are most influenced by the people they are emotionally closest to. Learn how to create great content on Facebook by understanding the psychological motivations behind why people share, like and comment.


Paul Adams, Global Brand Experience, Facebook, and author of Grouped

b. The Hacker way

The pace of change in today’s business world requires teams to move fast and be bold. Find out how Facebook’s engineering team fosters innovation, and how Ford adopted those principles to do the same.


Doug Frisbie, Head of Automotive, Global Vertical Marketing, Facebook


Andrew “Boz” Bosworth, Director of Product Engineering, Facebook

Julius Marchwicki, Product Manager, SYNC AppLink at Ford Motor Company

c. Facebook Pages: Telling your brand story

Facebook Pages offer an unprecedented opportunity to tell the story of your brand. Hear about the philosophy behind the design and learn how to use your page to the fullest.


Blaise DiPersia, Product Designer, Facebook

Jeff Kanter, Product Manager, Facebook

I chose to attend “The Hacker Way” for a very specific reason, Boz.  When I was at Facebook last year, Boz was the most inspiring speaker of the whole group.  He is a master motivator and was the guy who inspired the concepts of “Social-By-Design” and other Facebook slogans such as “Move Fast.  Break Things.”  He is also one of the leaders of the hacker programs at Facebook and this session was explaining about what that means.

Andrew “Boz” Bosworth on stage at FMC talking about the Hacker Way

Most of what Boz spoke about was an abbreviated version of what I’d heard last year, but his delivery still inspired me.  He talked about how at Facebook they build things and then launch them with a very short lead time.  He admitted that not everything works but they prefer to “build it and see” rather than let things toil while in an effort to figure out every answer.  He used terms like “standardized disruption” to explain that you have to let people do what they came to do, even though it may go against the grain.  He blasted executives or long-term employees that “poison the well” for new people who enter a company that have interesting ideas but are often discouraged from thinking differently.

All of this may sound like common knowledge, but I find that when I am sitting in a room with Boz, he makes me take a deep look at myself and the way I’ve operated my business for the past dozen years.  And how I did the jobs before that and the people that told me that something couldn’t be done.  Don’t get me wrong, Boz is not a motivational speaker, he is really just an “aww shucks” guy that makes you believe that the world is changing for the better because of people like him.

After Boz, Julius Marchwicki from Ford come on to explain how they took the Hacker concept to heart and a handful of Ford engineers came to Facebook and they held a Hackathon to create new ways of making the automobile more social.  For a 24 hour period Ford and Facebook engineers competed with each other to create new ideas, many of which are now in the Sync-based system in Ford cars.

Julius showed how they incorporated many different things ranging from location check-ins, music integrations with Spotify/Pandora/Clear Channel’s I Heart Radio (where you can share your playlist with others who are driving in their cars), and overall voice activation of apps.  Julius did make the point that social networking while driving was not the goal, only to use voice activation and social compatibility to make your experience in your car that much more social.

You can watch the whole session HERE and if you want to watch the other sessions, you can watch them here:

Session #2 options included:

Session 2

a. Driving maximum value from your social marketing strategy

The most successful brands on Facebook are innovating in every dimension of their social marketing. Join us for a look at how to build the right strategy for your objectives.


Mike Fox, Director of Global Vertical Marketing, Facebook

Wanda Young, Senior Director, Social Media Strategy, Walmart

b. Success through collaboration: Brands, agencies and Facebook

Today’s marketing landscape demands coordination across multiple teams and functions. Join us for a living case study on how brands, agencies and Facebook can best work together.


Mark D’Arcy, Director of Global Creative Solutions, Facebook

Joe Grigsby, Group Planning Director, VML

Randall Brown, Global Director Digital, Gatorade

Sarah Robb O’Hagan, President North Amer ica and Global CMO, Sports Nutrition, Gatorade

c. Turning insights into engagement

Facebook Pages are at the center of successful marketing on Facebook. Learn how to use Page Insights to more effectively build connections and engage a wider audience with your content.


David Baser, Product Manager, Facebook

I chose to attend the first one, Driving maximum value from your social marketing strategy.

Mike Fox, the head of Vertical marketing went through the steps for brands to best connect with their customers.  He explained that this is broken into 4 key areas:

  • Connect
  • Engage
  • Influence
  • Integrate

He went through each step and for each section he gave a really good example of what he meant.  Mike explained that it’s time we put real people on our Facebook pages and not interns.  How we connect with customers is vitally important.  He showed a video from Burberry featuring Christopher Bailey, the company’s Chief Creative Officer who explained how they’ve engaged with their customers through Facebook.  Mike also talked about how different brands utilize Facebook to create a better relationship with their customers.  Below are shots of each slide Mike showed to expand on each point.

Mike introduced Wanda from Walmart who told her story about how Walmart incorporated social-by-design into their marketing strategy.  She explained how they listened to customers who asked for products such as “bring back layaway” and acted on those requests.

Mike ended by saying that it is all about our stories.  It is not about Facebook creating stories, it is about you guys (the brands and agencies) creating compelling content for customers.
You can watch the whole session HERE and if you want to watch the other sessions, you can watch them here:

The final presentation was a fireside chat between Sheryl Sandberg and American Express CEO Ken Chenault.  They were introduced by Carolyn Everson, VP of Global Marketing Solutions, who stated that, “Today has been about you and how you been a connection between you and your customers and how we turn those customers into advocates.”

Carolyn introduced Sheryl and Ken and made it known that American Express has been the top example of a company that has used social to change their business.  She highlighted Small Business Saturday as an example of something that started on Facebook and has grown into a nationally recognized annual event.

You can watch this dialogue HERE.  In brief summary, the two discussed the state of the economy, how American Express innovates, how AmEx identifies and nurtures leaders.

Ken explained that they have to constantly change.  That while they study their competition, they look at their competition as more than just other card providers, but as the retailer that accept their cards as well.

This was a really good interview and Ken was an eloquent speaker, I recommend you take the time to watch this conversation.

After a long day, the event ended with a party included lots of food, drink, and music (provided by the special secret guest: Alicia Keys).
All in all a good day for networking and gaining insight into Facebook.

Phew, I think the recap took me longer than the actual conference.  🙂