Listen to this if you have ever thought “Facebook Ads Don’t Work”

Elite Expert Insider

April 16, 2021

“If you spend $1,000 and get $1,000 back, you are sitting in front of a printing press for money.” In this episode of Elite Expert Insider, Melanie and Jen and I talk about how so many people give up on Facebook ads too soon. They spend $1,000, make $600, and quit in a huff after two weeks.

By contrast, I tell my clients that if we make sixty cents on the dollar in the first month, we’re doing well. That might be hard to hear for someone who is about to sink $10,000 or more on a marketing campaign … but if I’m good at my job (and I am), that number will turn to three dollars on the dollar in due time … and then it’s off to the races.

We also talk about:

  • Why you should never “boost a post” on Facebook.
  • Why I don’t bother with TikTok or SnapChat marketing.
  • How to avoid falling into a “price trap” in your service business.

About the Show: Melanie Johnson & Jenn Foster are the hosts of Elite Expert Insider.

Full Transcript

Introduction: Welcome to another inspiring episode of The Elite Expert Insider Podcast. Hosts Melanie Johnson and Jenn Foster are the owners of Elite Online Publishing. They’re both Wall Street Journal, USA Today best seller authors. We’re really glad you’re here because this podcast was designed for you. Meet industry experts that share their secrets and strategies. Get successful results for your business in money, relationships, health and your life. Each episode is going to inspire you to take action towards reaching your greatness.

Melanie Johnson: Hey everyone, it’s Melanie Johnson, how are you doing today? I hope you’re doing awesome. I have Jenn Foster, my business partner.

Jenn Foster: Hey, how’s it going everyone? It’s a wonderful day today.

Melanie Johnson: Make it a wonderful day. If you’re not having a wonderful day, turn it into a wonderful day. Show gratitude. That always changes my mindset when I’m having a crummy day, so we want you to have a happy, joyful, grateful date. We’re going to learn about digital media today and it’s confusing with everything out there. But we’re going to kind of focus on what’s working that we know that’s working that’s been around for a while, what we should dive deeper into. Before we get started, I want to remind you, if you’re thinking of doing one of the most traditional forms of media and promotion, which is a book, it’s been around for thousands of years, we know that it works.

If you’d like to become an author and use it as an advertising and marketing, tool for your business reach out to us at Elite Online Publishing. We will help you write the book, we will publish the book for you, market the book and make you a best seller. Reach out to us there at our website and fill out the submission form.

Let’s get started. We have Dylan Ogline with us today, who is a digital media expert. We are going to talk about what you should be doing for your business, but maybe even personally. Like how do you grow your Instagram? What should I be doing as a personal brand as well as my company brand? What should I do for a side hustle? So, let’s dive into that. Thanks, Dylan, for coming today.

Dylan Ogline: Thanks for having me, I’m glad to be here.

Jenn Foster: Tell us Dylan how you got into this industry and kind of how you started.  

Dylan Ogline: I started my first business when I was 14. I’m 31 for reference so it started in 2002, 2003 somewhere around there. I was selling cellphones on eBay. Flipping phones that I would get from a wholesaler in Europe and then I’d bring them to the United States, and I’d flip them. But this was at the infancy of things like Google Ads, I don’t even think Facebook was a twinkle in Mark Zuckerberg’s eye yet. But this was the beginning of this whole digital marketing thing. I didn’t know it at the time, that I would eventually get into that industry, but I began to play around with it. I began to do my first Google Ads when I was 14, 15 years old and paying 5 cents a click, just ridiculous, it was the Wild West back then.

I started doing that. Eventually the cell phone business got shut down because my merchant account provider found out that I was not 18 or older, can’t give merchant accounts to teenagers, I guess. That got shut down, but I learned web design, I learned a little bit of graphics design, so I transitioned to spending 12 years bouncing around between different businesses, but always kind of having agency work that I was doing to pay the bills.

I got absolutely nowhere for many years. Eventually, it would have been end of 2016, beginning of 2017, I reached a tipping point, scrapped everything and just focused on digital marketing services for my clients. I quickly scaled things up from there and that’s what I’ve been focusing on since then.

Melanie Johnson: What do you think is working right now in the digital marketing space? What should people be focusing on and having to decide what to focus on?

Dylan Ogline: Well, there’s three very different questions there. What working is everything. We were talking pre-show obviously about TikTok and Snapchat and what’s the one for people just talking?

Jenn Foster: Clubhouse.

Dylan Ogline: Clubhouse. I am sure that people were making money off of that or they’re doing some kind of marking on that. What should they focus on? I really advocate on focusing on things that are tried-and-true, things that have been around for years. The truth is that people who, say Clubhouse or Snapchat ads or doing things like that, if they’re having success now, they just so happen to try it and they hit a homerun their first at bat, which can happen. People get excited about these early returns and like, I can’t into it, knock it out of the park and it’s great and everything. But it’s kind of just luck.

Whereas with things like Facebook Ads, Facebook itself has been around for years, people have been learning Facebook Ads for years, so now everybody can get really, really good at it. You can just continue to practice and practice and practice until you get good at it. So, what should people focus on? If you’re talking about digital marketing, I’m a huge advocate of tried-and-true methods, YouTube, Google, Facebook Ads, things like that. What was the third questions? What was the third element?

Melanie Johnson: No, it’s all right, I think you covered everything like what they should be doing and what they should be focusing on.

Dylan Ogline: Yes.

Jenn Foster: Well, let’s talk a little bit about some of those because I know some people are a little bit scared of ads. They’re scared of Facebook Ads because they’re like, “Oh I tried it, I boosted a post, and I didn’t get any return.” Or “I spent $1,000 and I only sold $1,000 so I broke even” or whatever. So, tell us a little bit about how they can utilize Facebook Ads and how they can do it right. Do they need an expert like you to help them? How does that work?

Dylan Ogline: A couple of different questions there.

Jenn Foster: That’s a lot, I get it.

Dylan Ogline: No, no, that’s all right. So, boosting posts is just a terrible idea. Facebook’s just doing that to grab a quick $20 bucks off of you. They will try to eat your money if they can, but don’t boost posts. You mentioned spending $1,000 and getting $1,000 back. If you do that, if you’ve tried a Facebook Ad once and you’re like, yeah, I spent $1,000 and I got $1,000 back in sales, you have a printing press in front of you. I consider us really, really good at what we do, really, really good at Facebook Ads. When we bring on a client, we tell them straight up, expect your first month to spend $1,000 or $10,000 and if you get 60 cents back on the dollar, we killed it. That’s fantastic for your first month.

You have to understand, you’re not going to hit that homerun the first up at bat. You have to test things and you have to continuously improve. I tell people expect to 60 cents back that first month and then maybe we improve to 80 cents back. You’re making an investment. We continue to test. We continue to figure out what ads work, what ad copy works, what pictures work, landing pages and things like. You continuously iterate. Once you get to $1.10 or $1.20 back, you just scale it up and you literally can print money. Then again, you continue to improve, and you continue to improve and then you might get $3.00 back for every dollar that you spend. But you don’t start there, you start by being really terrible.

It’s like the first time you rode a bike. Remember how you were really at it the first time? Well of course not, you were terrible, you fell. It’s the exact same thing with Facebook Ads. You just have to continue to reiterate. Do you need an expert? That’s up to you. I hire an accountant because I don’t want to take the time to learn it and they’re better at it, they’re more efficient at it then me. If you’re a do it yourselfer and you want to do everything yourself, and you want to figure it out, then yeah, go down that route. If you want to fastrack, then yeah, work with an agency and work with an expert who can help you along much faster that what you could.

Melanie Johnson: I think that’s good advice about the Facebook Ads. I think even when we’ve tried it and we’ve been so discouraged and we just run it for a week or two weeks and we’re just like, “This isn’t working. We’re just throwing money away.” You feel like it’s never going to work so you’re just throwing it away. So, that’s good advice to say, “Just know that you’re going to make an investment and you’re going to lose money for maybe three or four months on those ads.”

Dylan Ogline: Absolutely.

Melanie Johnson: Then if you have good people behind you eventually it’s going to work. Part of that is, you talk about being lean and mean when you start out. It’s hard to be able to say, “I’m going to throw this money away” or “I’m going to losing X amount of money a month.” What is some advice about running your company lean and mean and to get to that point of having success?

Dylan Ogline: I’m going to go in a different direction that what I’ve recently--so I always go with keeping it lean and mean. You want to focus on the critical things in the beginning, don’t build out this complex business because you’ve got to reiterate and things. I like the idea of also really recommending the people, and this I haven’t talked about much, but lately I have. Find other people who have found success. Not necessarily try to copy them, but--how do I want to explain this? Let’s use the Facebook Ads. Let’s say you’re an eCommerce business and you want to figure out Facebook Ads. You’ve tried it, you spent $1,000 and you got $600 back. And you’re like, “Facebooks Ads doesn’t work, I tried it for two weeks.”

Look into other people in the industry who are killing it with Facebook Ads for their eCommerce business. Simply keeping it in the back of your mind, okay, those people were able to figure it out will continue to motivate you to be like, “Okay, obviously, this works.” Then, if those people are talking about their story, they will probably tell you how, “ey right now, I’m doing a million dollars a months in sales, but I started doing $1,000 a month in sales.”

You can look at those stories and be like, “Okay, other people have clearly done this, and other people failed miserably over and over and over again until they finally figured it out.” To me, that has been, both with students I have worked with and myself personally, has kept me going in those times where you continue to fail over and over and over again. So, find somebody else who has done very similar to what you have already done and use them as motivation.

Jenn Foster: It’s kind of like that mentor or that person--I mean they may not be a personal mentor, but you can look up to them because they’re doing it and they’ve done it before. I like to call it success leaves clues, right? Look at those who are successful, look at the clues and try that. Because it could just be you tweaking your niche, or it could be just tweaking your copy or could be tweaking your demographic, right?

Dylan Ogline: Yeah. It’s also, one if you can find a mentor and actually work with him or her, that’s fantastic, you’re really on to something there. But maybe it’s somebody who does a podcast or somebody who puts out YouTube videos, or maybe it’s just a family friend that you know. Just having that motivation to like, okay, those people figured it out, obviously I can too, can really push you to keep going. Especially if you can find out and hear about how they continuously failed in the beginning. Because very, very few people hit a homerun their first at bat. Whether we’re talking about marketing or publishing a book or starting a podcast, most people were absolutely terrible in the beginning. Keep it simple and just continue, just keep pushing on.

Melanie Johnson: I love that you say, “To build your company you need to show your value and stop hiding behind low prices.” Explain what you mean by that.

Dylan Ogline: I guess it could go for product-based businesses, I was going to say it’s mostly for service-based businesses. But a lot of people when they’re starting, especially first-time entrepreneurs and things like that. They end up convinced that, well if I’m just the low-cost provider everybody will want to come to me, right? That’s a race to the bottom and nobody makes money being the low-cost provider. Then it also, and this is something that I figured out working with students in my industry, then you also end up providing a low-quality service and you get discouraged because I’m just not providing the kind of service that I know I could provide.

But you’re not really motivated to because you undercut your price to get customers in the beginning, which, again, doesn’t work, it’s a race to the bottom. Most people when they’re getting into whether it’s the product business or the service business, they have this idea of, I can do it better than other people. Nobody gets into a business and says, “My opportunity here is I can do it cheaper than everybody else.” Most everybody is, I can do it better or different than everybody else out there in the marketplace.

Then, they convince themselves that the way to differentiate themselves and to get customers is to be the low-cost provider. Don’t do that. Be the high-quality solution or the different solution. Whether it’s the product or a service, be very high-quality and charge a premium price. I could do an hour long show on all the benefits of this, but just trust me, be the very high-quality product or service provider that you know you and be and charge a premium price for that.

Jenn Foster: I really like that because I’ve talked to a few of my entrepreneur friends and they have this great service they provide and they have a unique way of doing it and providing it, but then they undercut themselves by saying, oh, I’m just going to run a few Groupons for a couple of months, where they’re really just giving away their service for free. It does bring people into the door and maybe some of those will sign up for the next package. But why not offer the full price and then get them into the next tier up. So, yeah, I really like how you do that.

Dylan Ogline: This is also important for service providers. You can end up in what I call a price trap situation. Most of that idea of doing low priced work is, well, then I’ll get referrals and stuff. I’ll do great work and then I’ll get referrals because everybody’s going to be like, oh, this is great work. Look at John, he built me a great website and he’ll tell all of his friends. Or photographers do this all the time, oh, look at these great pictures. You will get referrals if you do great work. But if somebody sees a product or service, the first question they ask is, “Who did that for you?” or “Where did you get that product or service from?” And the second question is always, “What did they charge you?”

If you’re building websites for somebody and you want to charge $2,000, but in the beginning you’re like I’ll do them for $500 to get some referrals. Those referrals are coming in with the mindset of, hey John’s website looks great, and  he paid $500, I’m going to get a great website for $500. Well then if you look at that person and say, “Well, it’s $2,000” automatically that’s a massive issue. Like, “Why do I have to pay more?” In the beginning it’s tempting, but don’t undercut yourself and don’t into a price trap situation. It’s a huge mistake.  

Melanie Johnson: That’s makes a bunch of sense. You talk about narrowing your focus. I know even with our business we started out and you’re trying to be everything to everybody and then when do a Micro Niche, and we’ve so much about Micro Niching your business down. We had someone, Trisha, who just came on our podcast and she Micro Niched that she is a realtor, but she Micro Niched that she does manifestation, that she likes law of attraction, the secret manifestation and she tied the two together. So, she’s a real estate agent that helps you manifest your house. That’s a pretty big Micro Niche. So, talk about finding your focus and you found your focus in your business too.

Dylan Ogline: For me the big factor that I didn’t see in the beginning was that you get better. When I was just talking about websites earlier, if you’re building websites for all kinds of different businesses, all kinds of different niches, you’re reinventing the wheel every single time. The main reason you want to niche down or get very narrow is that it makes acquiring customers better. If you’re building websites and you go to a restaurant and you say, “Hey, we build really great websites” that’s not really exciting.

But if you go to a restaurant and you say, “We specifically help restaurants grow their online presence and get more reservations with their website” that’s completely different, but you’re doing the exact same thing. The reason I started narrowing down my focus and narrowing down my niche and also narrowing down my products and services is because I thought it would make it easier to sell, which it absolutely does. But the bigger factor I learned over time is that you get better and better and better.

If you’re building websites for everybody, you’re reinventing the wheel every time, you never really get good at one specific thing. But if you’re only building websites for restaurants, very quickly you can become one of the best people in the world at that particular niche. That differentiates yourself, makes you be able to communicate better with the potential clients, you provide a higher quality service, you’re able to charge more. You become wanted more, people will be waiting in line for you. You want to be the very best and the narrower you can get the better.

Jenn Foster: I love that. I love that focused energy on that one specific niche, because, like you said, that gets you better and better and better.  

Dylan Ogline: Absolutely.

Melanie Johnson: Tell us where we can find you Dylan.

Dylan Ogline: My agency website is and my personal website is and I’m on Facebook, Instagram and LinkedIn @dylanogline. Pretty simple.

Jenn Foster: Awesome. We’ll put those up in the show notes. For those watching on YouTube it will be in the comments there.  

Melanie Johnson: Terrific. Thanks for coming by today. We hope you enjoyed the show and got some good takeaways .We’ll see you next time. Remember, if you’re looking to publish a book, we help you write, publish and market your book and make you a number one best seller. Just look us up at We’ll see you next time, thanks.

Outro: Are you looking to increase your revenue, build credibility and elevate your brand? This podcast is brought to you by Elite Online Publishing and innovative publishing and full-spectrum marketing company. They will publish and market your book to make it a number one best seller. Becoming an author is the best way to market your business, so contact them at today. All of their authors become number one best sellers.