Black FM_Logo_WnB-3
    Bio: Tod Holland Funnels | 5 min read

    How Facebook Sold Our Clients’ Data and Why They Should Be Thankful For it


    The latest hot topic for international business conduct and the thing most forgone when stepping into a public restroom stall.

    One thing I know I don’t need to tell the readers of this magazine is that while privacy may not be something you’re particularly concerned about, the preservation and definition of it absolutely affects your day to day activities as a marketer.

    If you think about it, all of Facebook’s eight hundred and thirty-four jillion interest parameters represents some breach of privacy or another. They’re tagged as such because they did what they thought was a private activity on their private computer.

    And in comes Facebook, teeth bared and salivating, ready to just tear that privacy away from the consumers and sell it to the highest bidders, effectively treating the general user base as chattel that exists purely for us to try to pawn our crappy digital courses onto.



    Or at least, that’s what everyone would have you believe.

    I’m the farthest thing from a Zuckerberg fanatic. Politically, morally, street-jivedly; I’ve never found a single action taken by that man to be anything short of disagreeable.

    That is until I saw him testify in front of Congress a few months back.

    Now I know I’m writing about this a little later than everyone else. That’s because I wanted to digest the news, put on my utilitarian economics hat, and really try to decipher whether Facebook is doing something morally wrong by sharing third-party data.

    If you’re tired of reading, the answer is I don’t agree that it’s immoral or even in bad taste for Facebook to share and purchase consumer data, and to be quite honest and speaking purely as a consumer, I wish they’d log and transfer more of my data.

    Yes, the man who previously complained about the lack of privacy in public latrines is making a case for higher availability and transfer of data.

    Back to Zuckerberg’s hearing, though. Some of the questions were laughable, and we all got a kick out of it. Many of us wondered how these reincarnated fossils from the 1800’s got elected to preside over our nation’s technology. Others still questioned the efficacy of having a group of Senators who received sizable campaign contributions from Zuckerberg chastise and scold him for whatever made him profitable enough to lobby politically.

    The consensus across our communities, though; the ad buyer communities was closer to mortified.

    Some of the questions asked were genuinely against some of the core principles of personalized marketing, which I believe to be one of the greatest inventions in the past 18 years (yes, this includes hardware like the iPhone, which I can get into in another article).

    For example, one Senator asked if Facebook can track activity on other websites to custom-create ads for people based on how they interact with a particular webpage. Those of us in e-commerce is probably nodding our heads as we set up our sixteenth Abandoned Cart Event Tracking pixel of the week, which we use to remind potential customers that they didn’t complete their purchase.

    Another asked about custom audiences and marketing directly to users on Facebook, as opposed to a search based protocol like Google, as if it were on par with burning witches in Salem or microwaving last night’s tuna in the office (we know it was you, Adam, and we hate you for it).

    These types of things are the only real Quality Of Life improvements for our potential clients.

    The reality is that if we’re going to be on the internet, someone has to pay for that, and advertising revenue has historically been the bridge between “hey, I like this website” and “hell no I’m not paying $4.97 a month to use Facebook”.

    And if you suddenly take the clear bottled jug of water we’ve been buying for all these years, put it in a black bottle and tell us “trust me, it’s still water,” we can be forgiven for having a few doubts.

    Doubt causes hesitation, which creates a shift away from uncertain marketing to other forms (incidentally, almost all also owned by Facebook).



    Especially when this is all under the misguided goal of protecting the consumer.

    Protecting us from what, exactly?

    People are going to see ads no matter what. So they might as well be shown ads that resonate with them. Ads that make sense in the context of the person’s interests.

    It’s either that or another Tide ad. You decide.

    Related Categories

    Bio: Tod Holland Funnels

    Tod Holland

    At 18 years old Tod got his Real Estate License in the competitive California market. At first he has no idea what he was doing and spent many sleepless nights trying to research how to market himself. After analyzing thousands of marketing tips he realized he there was very little distinction. Worse, Tod felt like there was almost no way to make himself stand out as an agent because it seemed like everyone was going after the same audience. When Tod presented his case to his broker he was laughed out of the room, this is when he decided it was time to quit. Soon he would find himself in the world of Digital Lead Generation. At 24 Tod had only a handful of sales under his belt and was leaving arguably the best real estate company in San Francisco to build a fully virtual, digitally focused, real estate company. His idea was not something San Francisco had ever seen nor did he have any idea on where to begin. He immediately joined several masterminds on digital lead generation in hopes of learning to provide an amazing solution to his agents. After 4 months of mastermind training Tod had been offered to teach the very skills he was learning. How exciting to finally be granted the kind of position he’d been dreaming of! Since then, Tod has created numerous successful companies that help businesses connect with their perfect clients, automate their processes, and maximize efficiency on one core belief: Holding true to one’s own values; becoming the best means taking the responsibility to pass on the craft as passionately as possible. Tod is currently an Instructor for Real Estate and Mortgage Marketing. He presented at Break Free Academy Live Event in 2017. He also created and presented content for 5 seasons of Funnelchat, a video podcast style weekly lesson for The Tribe, Entourage, and Funnel Closers. He is also Chief Economist and Digital Marketing Consultant for HOM Sotheby’s Int’l Realty, Co-founder of the first 100% virtual real estate company, and the Digital Marketing Contributor to the Xpansion Team where he coaches hundreds of agents on social media practices, lead generation, automatic conversation, and other strategies. You might also be surprised to learn that Tod is passionate about transcendental meditation and uses it as a cornerstone for how he works! Books Social Media Sales Mastery, a 30 page workbook breaking down social media algorithms in easy, applicable models of agents and loan officers. Social Media Facebook: (2.5k friends) YouTube: LinkedIn: Websites:

    You may also like:

    Confidently grow your business online with actionable insights being used by 6, 7, 8, and 9+ figure companies

    Subscribe Now