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Despite Wall St. Woes, Facebook Still Valuable on Main Street

Mark Cuban made news last week by announcing a (rare for investors) mea culpa about the huge investment he made in Facebook.  According to Web Pro NewsMark Cuban, who has been a steadfast supporter of Facebook throughout the IPO process, and an investor who purchased 150,000 shares of the company, is coming forward today to say he was wrong about the company.

[...] “I already sold it, I took my hit, my thesis was wrong. I thought we would get a quick bounce just about the excitement about the stock. I was wrong, and when you are wrong you don’t wait, you just get out. So I took a beating and left.” 

Here in Dallas, we pretty much love the ebullient billionaire. Even if he can be a little bit, er, entertaining at times from his courtside seats, he’s our billionaire. And no sports owner has done more for his team and his city than Cuban. This would be true (warning: chest-thump coming) even if the beloved Mavs hadn’t won the crown in the most satisfying way possible a year ago.

And there’s roughly 2.3 billion reasons why he’s earned Dallas-Ft. Worth’s attention when it comes to business and financial matters as well.

But it’s important here to make a distinction between Facebook’s success (or failure) on Wall Street and its Internet marketing value on Main Street — especially when it comes to social media marketing in Dallas.  If your goal for Facebook is stock returns, it could be deemed a failure. But if your goal is connect with vast numbers of potential new customers and clients, nothing has changed. It’s still an extraordinary tool.

Of course, there are links between the two realms. Unprofitability undermines the sustainability of Internet marketing tools —  and their long-term worth for businesses. But whether or not the social networking behemoth delivers a nice return to its early investors, its value to friends, families and businesses alike is proven and impervious to market whims.

If you read closely, Cuban is not condemning Facebook to long-term unprofitability or failure. Indeed, he said the site likely has long-term value in an article published the same day. Facebook just didn’t deliver the immediate returns he had expected and formed his investment strategy around, so he got out.

For businesses, the importance of Facebook isn’t going to decline any time soon. It’s still coming up with new, innovative ways to facilitate connections between businesses and potential customers. And it’s still being used by just about everyone you know.

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