Lives in New Franklin, Ohio
Founder at Veterans for Libertarianism
Former Northeast Regional Coordinator at Ohio Libertarians
JE: What is “Veterans for Libertarianism?”
JR: It’s my page that I have been running since 2012. It’s intended to be a page for veterans, but everyone is welcome.
JE: I am going through that Atlas Network training program. Advice on how to build a Facebook page?
JR: I don’t know if I’m the best source, on that issue, lol. I’ve been running the page since 2010 and I still have just under 6,000 fans. During the Johnson campaign, we did a few “sponsored posts” (bought advertisements from Facebook) and it definitely helped very quickly.
JE: Do you still have an ad budget? I was chair of Brazos county… now I am trying to build up its page…
JR: No, I just run the page as a hobby, instead of a blog or something. Even when we bought ads, it was only for $50-100 or so for a week at a time. If I recall correctly, “boosting” posts was the best bang for the buck. For about $5 you could get your post in front of thousands of eyes.
JE: I see… Many Libertarians in New Franklin, Ohio?
JR: The page you shared is a Group, so I don’t know if you can boost posts or create ads. The page I run is a political page, which is treated a little differently. There are a few here, but it’s a pretty strong MAGA country.
JE: What do you think of MAGA country?
JR: I pretty much mind my own business like a good libertarian, so I don’t care too much what anyone else around me thinks politically, lol.
JE: I understand… so your involvement is mainly with your Facebook page and not “on the ground” locally?
JR: That’s correct. We tried to start a Summit County Libertarian Party a while back, but there wasn’t much interest. I figure that by sticking to Facebook, I’m interacting with tens of thousands of people a week, but in person, I could only really contact a few dozen a week at best.
JE: Wow, you are doing great… What is your vision for your page?
JR: Right now, I share libertarian news, but when there’s an election, I try to push LP candidates. I don’t mind if it stays small, because it’s more of a hobby for me.
During the last Presidential election, I was a campaign volunteer for Johnson/Weld and I put a lot of time into using the page to campaign for them.
JE: 6-12,000 sounds great to me…
JR: I am trying to get this group up to 250 so we can run analytics… Hehehe
JE: Your mission?
JR: Don’t really have one. Just to get libertarian messages in front of people’s faces.
JE: Using Facebook… that is a mission statement right there! What makes your page unique among libertarian pages? How does one decide whether to have a page or a group?
JR: There are very few libertarian veterans’ pages, and I’m pretty sure mine is the oldest. I think a group is more of a community of like-minded individuals who want to communicate directly with one another.
I don’t think that’s a bad route for you if you want to keep it as a group for people who have signed up for the Self-Determination Advocates Group, or whatever.
JE: So one of your selling points is as the “oldest libertarian veterans group on Facebook?”
JR: Page not group! A page is more of YOU talking to an audience, but the audience can comment on your posts. If that makes sense. I think you can also make a page and then connect the group and the page.
JE: I am torn…. part of me… I am retired with a small pension and a love for freedom and travel. I want to help unrepresented peoples, defacto nations, and secessionist movements receive recognition through non-violent means. Can you suggest people and organizations I should be aware of?
JR: You could create a page to disseminate information/memes/ etc. and connect the group for people who have officially decided to join and use it to plan meet-ups, etc.
JE: But part of me…. so many ideas…. I just want to throw the ideas out like seeds… and see which ones grow…. hehe.
JR: I know there are plenty of libertarian pages with WAY over 10,000 likes, but I don’t know what their secrets to success are.
JE: I am excited about this Atlas network training… they have webinars on social media and Facebook, and even grants too
JR: I haven’t heard of that.
JE: https://www.atlasnetwork.org/academy/courses So, I started this Page and group… How do we turn it into a community?
JR: Just have to get people commenting and posting. Share posts from your page into the comment sections of other page’s posts.
JE: Great idea… How do I do that from a page? Having trouble sharing the posts in groups
JR: When you are logged into Facebook as yourself, you should see a little circle with a dropdown arrow right next to the Share button on another page’s post. If you click that, you’ll have the option to switch over to your page. Then, if you like or comment on their post, it will show up as your page, instead of you personally.
JE: Thank you, sir