The North Iowa Social Media Breakfast Club Is Changing

North Iowa social media breakfast club

It’s time to change things up with the North Iowa Social Media Breakfast Club. We’ve been meeting for many years in North Iowa, and 2020 sent us all home. This fun event in North Iowa is coming back and I’m excited! Here’s what you can expect when we start meeting again on August 11, 2021.

I’m excited to announce that the NIACC Continuing Education Department is a sponsor of our breakfasts for the year- THANK YOU!


social media breakfast


We will be meeting quarterly and the dates and places are as follows:

  • August 11, 2021: NIACC Muse Norris Conference Center
  • November 3, 2021: Charles City NIACC Center
  • February 2, 2022: Garner Education Center
  • May 4, 2022: Hampton Center One

You can register to attend, up to 6 weeks before we meet. Register at SocialSaraconnections.Com. The fee to attend is $20. You can pay when you register online or pay at the door.

You are now probably asking, what does this fee include?

Your fee to attend includes a hot breakfast with a drink – If you prefer something specific to drink, bring your own.

Your fee also includes an opportunity to learn something about social media that you can take and apply….. grow your business, be safer and smarter online. All of that is a win/win and worth its weight in gold.

We have a new format. For those of you have that have previously attended, you will see some changes and I think they are good.

We start at 8:30… by 8:35, we will kick off our meeting. Register at the door and grab your hot breakfast plate. We will have a business of the quarter and for the first 1/2 of social media breakfast, we will be sharing ideas on how we can help a business or organization in North Iowa with their social media. Together, we will help a business grow! Now that’s something I am excited about. When we all work together, we all win. The 2nd half of social media breakfast, up until 10 am, we will have a guest speaker.

These speakers will all offer tips and advice that you can use as soon as you leave the meeting. They are experts at what they do, they know what they are doing, and they have a proven track record of success.

So, that sums up what’s happening in regards to the North Iowa Social Media Breakfast Club. I hope to see you on August 11, 2021. Register here to attend in August of 2021.

I look forward to seeing you and helping grow North Iowa- together, we all win!




Tips For Navigating Social Media During An Election Year

An election year is upon us and my social media feeds are filled with people complaining about social media. The reality is, people are going to do and say what they want to. In an ideal world, we would not have to listen to things we don’t want to see. Here are some tips to help you, when it comes to navigating social media during an election year.

Delete The Facebook Application From Your Phone

When you find yourself mindlessly wandering through the Facebook App, it’s time to rethink how you use it. If you force yourself only to look at Facebook on a desktop, laptop, or another device; you will be less apt to mindlessly thumb through Facebook.

Smart Phone


If you remove the application from your phone, you will also have to take extra steps to log in, which in turn may make you want to not go there very often.

Snooze “Friends” On Facebook

You can snooze your friends on Facebook. This way you will not see their posts in your Facebook Feed, yet you will still be friends. If you find that you are in a friendship that needs to end, it may be time to unfriend that person.

snooze on facebook

Think about it this way. If their Facebook posts upset you, their friendship is something you may want to rethink.

Pay Attention To What You Share On Social Media

Let’s face it, it’s easier than ever to spread fake news on social media and you most likely had no clue that it was fake news. If you have any inclination that what you are going to share on social media, do not share it. Do a little bit of research to confirm that what you are sharing is true, did actually happen, and that it is real. You don’t want to be “that” person that everyone knows shares things that simply are not true. If you are part of a campaign, use the materials that you have been provided and share what is recommended by the campaign manager.

Utilize Hashtags On Twitter

When you log into Twitter, search for the specific hashtag you would like to learn about. This will immediately bring your Twitter Feed to things that interest you. Your Twitter groups can be a wealth of knowledge and a fun place to be with people you want to learn from. If you have not started your own Twitter Group, this may be a perfect time to do that. It may be a distraction for you, and an opportunity to be a leader in what you are knowledgeable in.


In the grand scheme of things, you are in control of what you see on social media. If you don’t like what you are seeing, you need to find new friends and start using new hashtags. Social media brings opportunities for you to be a leader in your industry. Start a Twitter Chat as a distraction during election season and most likely you will find you enjoy it. This could easily become something that you regularly lead in the future.

Enjoy social media and make it fun again. The number one complaint I am hearing from people is that social media is not fun anymore. Remember, it’s up to you to make it fun! You are in control.

Making Connections That Matter: A Class For People Wanting To Grow Their Businesses Through Valuable Connections

Social Media

Connections that matter does make a difference. They can mean the difference between a successful business or a not so successful business. Through the years, I have helped hundreds of people and businesses make valuable connections. As we all know, it is now more important than ever that you make the connections that matter most. Read here… these are the people that I have helped along the way.

I have put a class together that will run from 9 am – 10 am (CST) on Tuesday June 23, 2020 on ZOOM.

What you will learn from this class:

  • How to use Facebook to help you make viable business connections – Groups, Personal Page, Business Pages and Search
  • How to use Twitter to find viable new clients
  • Three sample emails that will not go to the trash (Subject lines that work & successful email messaging tips)
  • Best practices for reaching out through social media/ When and what the messaging looks like
  • How to nurture your potential clients as you move forward (these are not yet your clients, but you know that they are)

Each participant will have the opportunity to put a message together during the hour to send to someone they would like to do business with through social media, with guidance along the way.

If you take the knowledge from this class and apply it, you will easily see a return on your investment within a short period of time.

I look forward to seeing you online on Tuesday, June 23rd!

Here are the details for this class.

What: Making Valuable Connections Through Social Media

When: ZOOM- Tuesday, June 23, 2020 – 9 am – 10 am (cst)

 Your Cost: $47

Payment can be sent to PayPal:

All registered attendees will receive the log in information to ZOOM 24 hours before the class begins.



Midwest Travel Network Conference 2019 #MWTravelCon19: Why You Should Attend

Conference Feature Image

Are you someone with a passion for writing in the digital space? If so, #MWTravelCon19 may be calling your name. The Midwest Travel Network Conference is heading to Medora, North Dakota in 2019. June 13-15, 2019 is when numerous travel writers, digital influencers and bloggers will set their feet in Medora. If you are seasoned in the space or a beginner, this conference is designed with you in mind. In case you don’t know, Medora is where the entrance to Theodore Roosevelt National Park is located.


Are you a smaller CVB that tries to find online writers to help you tell your story? At the Midwest Travel Network Conference you will have the opportunity to meet those with a passion of helping you tell your story. This conference is affordable for destinations and it’s also an opportunity to put your destination in front of those that truly do care.



How many times have you attended an event and walked away with connections that were not designed with you in mind? You will walk away with valuable connections in Medora. Anytime I have an opportunity to meet someone face to face, I always walk away with ideas on how to help them. You can attend as a sponsor and showcase your destination in new light. Does your destination market to visitors in the Midwest? This conference is also a great fit for you. Several attendees have large audiences in the Midwest.


If you are a blogger that struggles to find new content, come to this conference! You will walk away with new story ideas and places to explore.

Scoria Point Medora

Attendees will have the opportunity to meet one on one with our booth sponsors. You can find a fantastic sponsor list here! With 9 states represented, the attendees will have opportunities to explore many areas of the Midwest and beyond. Through networking and exploring, North Dakota will be sure to stir up new stories to share.


North Dakota is a bucket list state for many. This is your opportunity to fulfill that bucket list item. If you are wondering how this trip to Medora may look, take a journey on I-94. North Dakota has many stories to tell. If you drive or fly to #MWTravelCon19, you will have some beautiful Instagram photos, as well.


There are several educational sessions at the conference, including how to maximize your Facebook engagement from experts Steve and Ann from the Postcard Jar. Justin Ell of the Medora CVB will share tips on how to keep your destination marketable 365 days of the year.


Are you wanting to kick up your game, in regards to Pinterest? Nicole of Mom Saves Money is an expert when it comes to growing your business through the use of Pinterest.  The list of speakers that rock tourism, can be found here. 

Most of you know that I have a passion for the Midwest and this is one way that you can join me in placing the Midwest on the map! I hope to see you at #MWTravelCon19 in Medora, North Dakota.



Attendee Tickets can be purchased here. 

Sponsorships can be purchased here



North Iowa Women In Business Series Featuring Katy Flint

Katy Flint

Meet North Iowa’s mover and shaker, Katy Flint. Katy is a very busy lady who I have always admired. She does not let any grass grow under her feet. She is a go-getter and sets a great example of how a woman can do anything she wants. Katy knows her limitations and is always willing to lend a helping hand when it’s needed. Her business has evolved over time, as she has kept up with the latest and newest things to help her clients in the world of social media. I’ve personally had the pleasure of traveling with Katy on a press trip to Kansas City, Kansas and Katy rocked it!


I actually have several! My blog and social media marketing company is Flint & Co. I also am involved in direct sales with Norwex and Arbonne.


I started my blog in late summer of 2014. I added social media marketing in 2015. I have been in direct sales for 5+ years.


I started my blog as an outlet for my love of writing and to connect with other step-moms. Over time, it evolved into sharing our love of travel and food. Now, I use it to share our favorites in both of those areas with a little real-life thrown in between. I started social media marketing because social media is one of my passions. Using it with my blog along with my sales, I developed some expertise and tips/tricks that could help others and found a couple of businesses to work with. It gives me the ability to be creative with social media posts in a realm that isn’t necessarily what I focus on!


Just go for it! Have confidence in what you are doing and be you. I was told that many years ago by a very smart woman and it really is the best advice. Just be true to you, that will shine through your business! Don’t be afraid to take risks! You can’t move forward if you don’t take a few risks! In direct sales, lean on your upline team leaders. They have knowledge and that’s how they got to their position, so definitely use them to grow your business.


I’ve had so many amazing blogging social media mentors, but you (Sara Broers) have got to be one of them! Donna Hup being another! As far as the sales ends, by upline, April, with Norwex, has been an amazing mentor and coach, as I have learned so much from her.


I am a part of the North Iowa Bloggers and the Midwest Travel Network.


Katy Flint and family

I am married to my husband Tyler and have two amazing step-sons, Riley and Maguire! We also have a Shiba Inu, Nike, who is our fur baby! We stay very busy with our full-time jobs as well as the boys’ activities and fitting some travel in between!



Tips For Not Getting Locked Out Of Facebook

Today was one of those days where I counted more than 7 people who had recently been locked out of Facebook. These folks were fortunate that they were able to regain control of their personal Facebook accounts, which in turn, controlled their Facebook Business Pages. Here are some simple tips on how you can avoid this, so you don’t find yourself in this position.


If you feel you cannot use your real name on any social media platform you have no business being on social media. Facebook and the like were designed for people to have conversations, similar to the days when we picked up the corded telephone to call someone. Yes, we actually talked to each other! Imagine that, a simpler time, where we could all have a friendly conversation and not bicker back and forth. I’m not sure why people feel that they need to use a fake name, but Facebook is really cracking down on people that are posing to be someone else. The lesson here is to use your real name when you open a Facebook account. This practice can be detrimental to any business when someone leaves the company or dies. It often leaves an account with nobody in charge of it and it hangs out on Facebook for years. I have personally tried to get Facebook to remove Facebook Business Pages with this issue and the accounts are still there. Not one person has access to the page, all due to someone setting up a Facebook page with a fake name.


Way back in the days of 2008 or so, businesses began to realize that Facebook was an option for them. Facebook Business Pages came on to the scene and most businesses transitioned to pages where people became Fans, which grew into “Likes.” For whatever reason, some folks never got this message approximately 10 years ago, you need to create a Facebook Business Page for your Business, not a Facebook Personal Account. It’s all fairly straightforward, Facebook wants business owners to be respected as businesses on Facebook, so treat it like a business. Create a Facebook Business Page for your business and you will be good to go. If you think that people want to friend your business, you are doing it all wrong. People want to friend YOU!

Social Media


Facebook is really cracking down on this practice. If you are using your personal page for your business, do not be surprised to learn that your account is no longer accessible. The lesson here, be real, authentic, and honest. If you are having conversations with your friends on your personal Facebook page, you have nothing to worry about. I do have friends that use their personal accounts for their MLM businesses and are successful. I would be leery, as I have seen too many people lose all of their efforts in the blink of an eye.


Do NOT try to have two personal Facebook accounts, as it will catch up to you. I have personally witnessed 3 people lose both accounts due to this practice. You can create multiple Facebook Business Pages that are connected to your personal account. Again, Facebook will know if you are trying to “sneak” something by them, so don’t be “that” person. 

This is the shortened version of how not to lose your personal Facebook account. I feel I do need to apologize, as these are things that have seemed relatively Facebook 101. I often forget that many need to be reminded that Facebook is a business and due to the increased volume of “fake news,” it makes sense that Facebook would crack down on these things.

Now, speaking of Fake News… I’ve got a post on that coming later this week, so stay tuned.


Keeping Your Family Safe Online As A New School Year Commences

Social Media

A new school year is upon us and the first thing many families want to do is share that first school day through social media. In my opinion, that should not be the first thing that comes to your mind. You should be thinking about the conversation you will have with your kiddos after the first day of school. It’s those conversations around the supper table that make a positive difference in the lives of our kids. Here are some tips to keep your family safe online and help you enjoy the new school year.


If you take a photo of your child with other children around them, it may not be ok to share it on Facebook. One of the first arguments I hear from any parent or grandparent is, “I’m only sharing with my friends.” Well, they must have missed the memo that Facebook is part of what is known as the World Wide Web. Hence, nothing is sacred in our online world. Screenshots are so easy to take today and it’s not smart practice to share photos of other minors without permission from the parents. We do not know what is going on in the lives of many kids. By not sharing a photo, you may save a child’s life. Many kids are in the middle of custody battles, have parents dealing with stalkers, and the list goes on and on. Be the protector and keep your photos to yourself.


I cringe every single time that I see a photo of kids boarding a school bus with the bus number and street sign clearly visible. Quite often the social media post also includes the time of day the bus arrives. DO NOT do this! A photo with all of this information makes it very easy for someone to know where your kids are during every single moment of the school day. We put our trust in school bus drivers, teachers, and other school personnel to keep our kids safe; when often times, it’s the parents and/or grandparents actions that put the safety of their kids at risk.


The cute photos with your front door surrounded with beautiful flowers make it very easy for a “bad” guy to find your kids. Often times, your house number is right there in the photo. Find a bush or tree, something very generic to take a photo that you do want to share on social media. You can share the photo, but give away zero information in regards to the location. This means that the location setting on your smartphone also needs to be turned off.

Here’s to a safe school year as new adventures await you and your family. Be safe and smart. It’s up to parents and grandparents to be good online role models. My challenge to each of you is to limit the time you spend on social media and make memories that don’t always involve a smartphone or camera in tow.



North Iowa Women In Business Series Featuring Miriah Whitehurst

Miriah Whitehurst

Meet Miriah Whitehurst of All Things Advertising. I met Miriah Whitehurst a few years ago and it’s been fun to watch her business evolve. As with any business owner, Miriah and her business  continue to evolve as she listens to her clients needs. One thing I really love about Miriah is her passion for helping others. She not only wants her clients and their businesses to succeed, she wants them to succeed in everyday life, as well. It’s evident that she is one busy lady and does not let much grass grow under her feet.


All Things Advertising


November 2013


There will never be a perfect time to start your business. If you wait for your product or service to be perfect, someone else will.

Miriah can be found working with business owners and employees at different events throughout North Iowa.

Miriah educating others


We have so many great opportunities and people in our community who will support you in growing your business. The John Pappajohn Entrepreneurial Center, ActionCOACH Andy O’Brien, Polkadot Powerhouse and the North Iowa Social Media Breakfast Club are just a few.


I enjoy serving on the board for United to Serve, a nonprofit organization that focuses on building Leadership Education in our area, helps facilitate community involvement while helping to keep North Iowa on the map. I also enjoy volunteering on the Events Committee for the Mason City Chamber of Commerce and attending leadership events, where I was recently on Jeffrey Gitomers Sell or Die Podcast. I am also a founding member of the Polkadot Powerhouse Clear Lake Chapter.

How To Remain True To You and Your Business

Editorial Calendar

I have been in this online space for 10+ years and I’m always curious as to why people do what they do. The easy way out, in my opinion, is to do what everyone else is doing. In the grand scheme of things, who will want to do business with you if you don’t set yourself apart from the masses? You need to be you! Be you and you will go far and make a lot of waves where ever your business takes you.

Sara Tuckaway Shores

Fact: The North Iowa Social Media Breakfast Club exists because I saw a need for real-life connections, with folks with an interest in social media. It became such a hit that I even wrote an ebook on How To Start A Social Media Breakfast Club.


It seems these days that there is a Facebook Group for this and that, and many join every single one that pops up. This is an example of how not to grow your business and how to follow the masses. It’s no secret that Facebook Groups offer fabulous business opportunities, yet we each need to know why we are joining these groups. Remember that Facebook Groups offer a sense of security, and people often forget that these groups are still the world wide web. Understand why you need to be in these groups and make sure you are not in them to follow the masses because someone else is doing this. Tip: Never add people to Facebook Groups without their permission.


It’s important to know your worth. If you don’t, how would you expect others to know your value? I see a lot of people going online and asking people what they should charge for this and that. In reality, it’s your business, your rates and you are in the driver’s seat. Why would you, the business owner, let others determine your worth? I’m still trying to figure this one out.


Now, this does not mean that you join every networking group on the planet because everyone else is joining this and that group. What this means is that you join a group that will support and help you grow as a person, which in turn will help you grow your business. I have found my people through the North Iowa Bloggers, Polka Dot Powerhouse, North Iowa Social Media Breakfast Club, Midwest Travel Bloggers and the friends that have welcomed me into the auction world as the social media instructor at World Wide College of Auctioneering. When you find people to connect with in real life, that is where the magic happens.

Sara teaching auction school

The relationships that you form offline are valuable in our ever-connected world today. I’m a firm believer that there is a time and a place to connect online. But, time and time again, I continue to see the best movers and shakers in any industry are the ones that build offline relationships. How are you remaining true to yourself and avoiding the temptation to follow the masses? I’d love to hear how you have tackled this issue.

North Iowa Women In Business Series Featuring Jessica Tierney

Jessica Tierney

I love it when I meet women that are rocking the business world in North Iowa. Jessica Tierney is one of these women that is a mover and shaker. Her passion shows through her love of what she does and I know you will enjoy getting to know her. There is never a dull moment when you are near this entrepreneur that is making a positive difference 365 days of the year, wherever her business takes her.


North Iowa Women’s Self-Defense Initiative


I spent 13 years working with victims of sexual assault and domestic abuse, which is what first got me interested in self-defense. I have been in the self-defense field for 20 years. I had gotten more into training other self-defense instructors across the country over the past several years and wanted to get back to my roots of working directly with women. I wanted to help them with personal safety and self-defense skills, which is why I founded NIWSDI. Violence against women is a prevalent issue in our society, even here in rural North Iowa, and I am passionate about empowering women.

Jessica Tierney


You’ll probably be spending a fair amount of time and energy in your business, so I think the most important thing is making sure it’s something that you are passionate about, something that excites you and makes you happy. A strong support system is vital, as well; a group that is going to celebrate your successes and give you strength and support during the times it’s not going as well. Surround yourself with strong, positive, supportive women. Organizational skills and good time management are important as well. Your business should be your passion, but that doesn’t mean you want it to take over your entire life.


I am a member of the Mason City Chamber of Commerce. I am also a member of the Polka Dot Powerhouse, which is a networking group of businesswomen that has given me a ton of support and assistance. It’s an organization that I would definitely encourage every businesswoman to get involved with.


I have been married to my very supportive husband, Jeff Tierney, for 24 years. I have 18-year-old twin sons, Drew and Xander, and a 113 pound dog named Turner.