Dennis Yu

Syncapse's spectacular $45 million bankruptcy-- the turd in the punchbowl

They raised $45 million, had 180 staff across the globe, and had a blue chip client base. Their epitaph reads “Facebook fans are worth $174.14”, but they discovered reality is not so simple, as laid bare in their financials.

Syncapse going under is not indicative of Facebook’s overall direction. Just look at the stock price. Syncapse lived and died by their own sword– trumpeting social ROI with the flimsiest of logic with their “value of a fan” analysis. Their own cost of acquisition, evidenced by their financials demonstrated that merely making noise in social doesn’t equate to revenue.

I agree that many of the social marketing software vendors will go under, whether or not they specialize in Facebook, Twitter, or whatever. As a fellow members of this group of software companies, we are coached by Facebook on how to drive more value to clients. Namely, we have to demonstrate unique value— whether it’s Nielsen’s OCR, Datalogix shopping behavior, a tie-in with web analytics, the SEO effects of social, and the email lift from multi-touch attribution.

Custom audiences and partner category targeting are super powerful tools for PMDs and anyone else to use. Vendors who build logic on top of this with the Facebook Ads API (full disclosure– we are one of the firms with access to the ads API), have an incredible number of ways to deliver value here by integrating with other social ads and direct marketing systems.

That’s where the battle will be played over the next 3-5 years– in true multi-channel measurement, not in silly arguments about a Facebook fan being worth $3 or whatever number.

Though it shouldn’t be their problem to solve, Facebook has taken it upon themselves to show the rest of us how to quantify the impact of word of mouth, whether on or offline.

Firms in our space that don’t go cross-channel, no matter how sexy their charts or how much dumb money they raise, will die.

Last week, Hootsuite raised another $165 million to service their 7 million small biz customers. SEOmoz had to change its name to Moz since they knew SEO had morphed into social and content marketing. Salesforce bought ExacTarget and Adobe adds more to Omniture, Buddy Media, Efficient Frontier, and Context Optional. You can name the other social deals in the last month.


Yet you know that if you look at the social presence of these social touting companies, most don’t practice what they preach. One firm (we’ll not name them here) last week cold-called us to offer their content marketing support. They specialize in writing engaging content that drives “thought leadership”, so we could make the most of our Marketo implementation. But their blog is a sad sight with low-quality content and zero interactions in the last 6 months on their posts.

True of most vendors in the space.  But this tells me that there are those who talk about social, producing PowerPoints, as opposed to those who do it. Execution in social is now the same as SEO– the production and distribution of content so good that it impresses the subject matter experts:

  • A tool can measure how many inbound links you have, but it can’t write your content.
  • A consultant can give you “training” on how to use Facebook but isn’t likely going to have expertise in your field (critical to producing this content).
  • Analytics can generate charts of all sorts but aren’t going to produce traffic for you or respond to your prospects.

And with such expectations, this is what happens:

  • Bank of America uses social predictive software that automatically and “intelligently” responds to customers. I reached out to this vendor and they are proud of their black box logic, but likely didn’t see this happening.
  • One of our clients hired a high-profile social consultant for $30,000 to tell them how to organize their social operations. This fellow has written several excellent books on strategy but doesn’t have hands-on experience, especially not running large operations.
  • You buy marketing automation or social software to run your business (the sales guy said it would automate your marketing and sales, right?)

Eventually, the breathless salesmen and the unsuspecting customers will realize that the snake oil on manipulating search engines and social networks will never replace good old-fashioned taking good care of the customer, doing a great job at whatever it is that you do, and getting people to talk about you (not PTAT).

The software can measure and ads can amplify traffic, but only you, not a vendor, can deliver wow and create content that tells your own story.

Dennis Yu

Dennis Yu is co-author of the #1 best selling book on Amazon in social media, The Definitive Guide to TikTok Ads. He has spent a billion dollars on Facebook ads across his agencies and agencies he advises. Mr. Yu is the "million jobs" guy-- on a mission to create one million jobs via hands-on social media training, partnering with universities and professional organizations. You can find him quoted in major publications and on television such as CNN, the Wall Street Journal, Washington Post, NPR, and LA Times. Clients have included Nike, Red Bull, the Golden State Warriors, Ashley Furniture, Quiznos-- down to local service businesses like real estate agents and dentists. He's spoken at over 750 conferences in 20 countries, having flown over 6 million miles in the last 30 years to train up young adults and business owners. He speaks for free as long as the organization believes in the job-creation mission and covers business class travel. You can find him hiking tall mountains, eating chicken wings, and taking Kaqun oxygen baths-- likely in a city near you.
I'm a member of Blitzmetrics Academy and a friend of Dennis to boot. Not only is Dennis highly intelligent and full of great and creative ideas, he's also incredibly generous with both his knowledge and his time. Success couldn't come to a better guy. Thank you for all that you do for the world, Dennis! 🙏

Michael Pacheco


Thanks 🙏 for being shining light in this industry. Love what your building for works overseas too network for jobs so innovative. Dennis helped me navigate having bad experiences with marketing agencies and doing dollar a day marketing which has helped my personal brand tremendously. Highly recommend.

Eric Skeldon

Founder at Kingdom Broker

Working with Dennis has been a delightful experience. After meeting him in 2015 I got to collaborate with him on countless occasions. His understanding for state-of-the-art marketing, his implementation, and his leadership put him into the top 0.01% of marketers and mentors.

Jan Koch

Ihr kompetenter Partner für innovative KI-Strategien.

I had the pleasure of interviewing Dennis for my podcast in 2021 and since then we have maintained a friendship that grows with each interaction. I have seen Dennis' devotion to his friends and clients firsthand, and our conversations often result in us talking about how we can provide more value to the people around us. He is someone whom I can ask questions on a technical level, and look to on a personal level. If you have any hesitancy about hiring him, get over yourself and do it!

Isaac Mashman

Help scaling personal brands.

Geez, where do I start recommending Dennis? First, he is an absolutely brilliant marketer who understands where marketing is today and where it's going tomorrow. He also has an incredible passion for the International Worker community. The lessons he has taught me from his almost 20 years of experience hiring International Workers have been immense. Most importantly though. Dennis Yu is someone who wants the absolute best for you and is willing to tell you the truth. Dennis sat with me at a point in my business where I was floundering but did not want to admit it. He asked some very straight forward questions to get me to admit my issues, highlighted the issues, and then helped me create a roadmap to success.

Atiba de Souza

International Keynote Speaker | Video Content Superman | Superconnector |

Dennis, which I had the pleasure of working with is one of the most giving, honest and tell you as it is person I ever know. The knowledge this man has is remarkable and he just gives it out freely. He is not pretentious and always entertain anyone big or small in the industry always willing to help. If you ever get a golden opportunity to work with him or mentored by him say YES!. You will notr regret Dennis, which I had the pleasure of working with is one of the most giving, honest and tell you as it is person I ever know. The knowledge this man has is remarkable and he just gives it out freely. He is not pretentious and always entertain anyone big or small in the industry always willing to help. If you ever get a golden opportunity to work with him or mentored by him say YES!. You will not regret

Nixon Lee

The PR Whisperer

Ready To Take Your Marketing Game To The Next Level?

Register today for the Dollar-A-Day Coaching Program and accelerate your growth journey!

Scroll to Top