What's Better Than Facebook Advertising? Free Advertising

Posted by Brian Caulfield, Forbes Staff on May 18th 2012

What's Better Than Facebook Advertising? Free Advertising

Forget spending money to advertise in Facebook co-founder Mark Zuckerberg's virtual world.

Jason Sutherland and Larry Lessler are getting word out the old fashioned way: by standing outside the social network's headquarters Friday morning with placards promoting their company, Baynetwork.

While the two have been shooed away by Facebook's security, they're definitely in the right place to get their message out.

Reporters from national television outlets, newspapers, magazines, and wire services crowded into Facebook's parking lot to cover Facebook's first day of trading as a public company.

Inside, Facebook co-founder and Chief Executive Mark Zuckerberg kicked off trading in the social networking company's shares by ringing the opening bell on the NASDAQ stock exchange remotely.

Despite all the attention, Facebook had little to say to the media. Facebook employees in Priuses and BMWs were streaming away from the campus parking lot as the company brought an all night 'hack-a-thon,' coding session to a close as helicopters from local television stations buzzed overhead.

You don't have to be a 28-year-old billionaire to smell this opportunity. "I knew there was going to be a media frenzy today, my first thought was to draw a giant chalk sign," says Jason Sutherland, who leads the 12-person information technology company's marketing efforts.

Instead, Sutherland decided to have some signs made so he could hold them up in front of the company's headquarters.

The cost: $500 for the signs, says Larry Lessler, Baynetwork's Chief Financial Officer, who liked the idea so much he volunteered to stand outside of Facebook's headquarters alongside Sutherland.

And why not. "If it weren't for the raw metal that allows media to happen, Facebook wouldn't be here," Sutherland says.

How can you not hit the 'like' button after hearing that pitch?

[Original material posted on Forbes]


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