Yes, you SHOULD put your prices in your Facebook ad copy. Here’s why.
Rhodes to Wealth
December 1, 2020
“The solution was right in front of my face, but I couldn’t see it because it was right in front of my face.” Not every podcast starts by comparing me to Bruce Lee … but I think more of them should. On this episode of Rhodes to Wealth, I tell Josh Rhodes about how I thought earning six figures in my business would solve all my problems … which meant I had to look for an industry where the best-of-the-best were earning seven or eight figures. That way, even if I wasn’t the best-of-the-best, I could still hit my six.
Josh also grills me for hot tips on how to create “magic Facebook ads.” It’s a common question, and I love how the example tips he cites are some of the least-productive ways to boost the performance of a Facebook ad! My answer will probably surprise many aspiring marketers.
We also talk about...
- The one word that Steve Jobs, Bill Gates, and Warren Buffet chose to describe the secret to their success.
- How I graduate $2,000-a-month clients to $15,000-a-month clients without adding to my workload … and they’re happy to do it.
- Why I’m not a fan of “going viral" as a marketing strategy.
- My no-guesswork approach to choosing a name for Agency 2.0
About the Show: Josh Rhodes is the host of Rhodes to Wealth.
Josh Rhodes: Welcome back to the Rhodes to Wealth podcast. I’m your host, Josh Rhodes, and here we are, middle of February, closing in on my one-year anniversary of the Rhodes to Wealth podcast. It has been a hell of a year and I have really cool episodes in the hopper here over the next couple of weeks. Even more so, some mind-blowing interviewers booked for March and April several guests that are from my original hit list, the folks that I said, “If I could get them on, they would really move the needle.” Which obviously causes a little bit of pressure, a little bit of nervousness from my side, which has led me to start my preparation now weeks in advance before their appearance. All of this is really exciting.
I’ve gotten to this point, we have gotten to this point because of you all as the listeners and your continued support, your interaction with the podcast has been crazy. I ran an interview yesterday where I’m almost positive that I could have put together the entire podcast outline, all of my questions could have been user-submitted questions. And, to me, that’s absolutely incredible. Starting from creating everything myself to now having some back and forth with some of you folks, start to work with me on really taking this journey with me, and it’s been really fun.
If you are tuning in today for your first time, or you’re just feeling generous and you haven’t left a review, I’m tracking 100 podcast reviews for the year. I won’t go into all the benefits on these podcast reviews here in the introduction, but know that those are extremely powerful for us in building and maintaining momentum for the podcast, and continuing to book great guests. It’s a good segue, great guests into today’s guest, which is Dylan Ogline.
Dylan is a high school dropout, starting his first business when he was 14 years old selling cellphones. He used that hustle of selling cellphones to talk his parents first into homeschooling, and shortly after, into the total dropout. You’ll hear today that Dylan is a starter and a student. A starter in that at one point, he had north of 12 businesses in flight, under his thumb of control, at one point. It was bonkers. A student in that, like Bruce Lee, he learned from a mentor of his early that a successful man or warrior is an average man with laser-like focus.
And as he narrows his focus down to just one business from that 12, Ogline Digital, a digital agency, his success skyrockets. Turning that business into a seven-figure agency in just under three years. With a journey like Dylan’s, there is lots that I want to explore, lots of topics that I had jotted down that I wanted to cover. I could’ve easily made this a three, four-hour podcast. And hopefully we will have him back in the future, but today over the hour, you will hear us cover lots. What it sounds and feels like to drop out of high school, the conversation with your friends, your family, your mentors, what that just all feels like. How the early business exposure-- I mean selling cellphones at 13, 14 years old-- set him up to be a business outlier in his later years. When you’re a thinker or a starter, like Dylan is, how you can test when and lose fast with your different business ideas so you’re not spending lots of capital and times on these different opportunities.
And we wrap it up with the importance and the application of the Pareto Principle. Having him apply that 80/20 principle to his expertise in building an ad and working with different marketing teams, I will be back after the episode with just a quick wrap-up. But with that, I bring to you, Dylan Ogline.
One of the most fascinating stories or journeys that I’ve had the chance to learn about, I’ve really, really enjoyed the deep-dive as I prepared for this. I mean, even so much so, man, that the last couple days I could feel my juices, I could feel myself getting amped up for the interview, right? So really, really appreciate you doing this, man, thanks for being here.
Dylan Ogline: Sure thing. I’m really glad to be here. Now you set the tone, the bar really high. Is that the term you used? “Fascinating journey”? Oh, man, I’m like I’m sweating bullets over here now.
Josh Rhodes: Yeah. We don’t play games, man. I’m going to hit you with the tee up.
Dylan Ogline: Yeah. Wow. Okay. All right, high expectations. You’ve been thinking about me for days. Ooh, okay, all right. Let’s do it. Let’s do it, man.
Josh Rhodes: I mentioned earlier I’ve had the chance to explore lots of what you have going on. There are some really cool topics that I want to explore. But before we do anything of that nature, I want to catch the listeners up to speed. For the folks that live under a rock, they haven’t heard your story, can you kind of catch them up to speed? And I’d ask you start somewhere in the early sort of cellphone business stage and you work us up to whatever you have going on today.
Dylan Ogline: Sure. Sure. So I’ll try to give you the two-minute story or one-minute, 60-second story. So yeah, so when I was 14, I started my first business selling cellphones on eBay. For context, this is 2003, 2004, and this is like prior to iPhone and any of the good stuff that we have now. The best cellphones in the world were in Europe and essentially I was exporting them to the United States, getting them at wholesale price, and then I’d flip them on eBay for like $50, $100 profit. Because you just couldn’t get them in the United States yet.
So that was the first business. That lasted for maybe a year or so and then it got shut down because they found out my merchant account, my merchant account provider, my credit card processor shut me down because they found out I was under the age of 18. So that was short-lived. So yeah, so that’s where it all started, it was my very first business. Fast forward 12 or so years of pain, and suffering, and bouncing around getting nowhere, having way too many projects, forgetting what sleep is like, dreaming about vacation but never knowing what vacations are, not making any money. From 14, 15, all the way up till 26 or 27.
Then I had a conversation with a long-term mentor. Again, I’m trying to keep this really condensed and short for you. And I just scrapped all of my projects, focused on one single service, which was digital marketing management. One single business and that was pretty much it. Just focused on that and that was 2016. 2017 hit multiple six figures with the business, and then 2018 was the first year doing seven figures. So that’s my main business now is my digital agency. And then over the last year or so I’ve put a lot of focus into my education company where I’m teaching people how to start their own digital agency. There is 15 years in-- did I do it under 60? That wasn’t 60 seconds.
Josh Rhodes: It’s close. That cellphone business, early on you mentioned you got “caught,” and the business had to go under. But if research serves me right, I mean it was a legit business. I mean legit enough to where you decided to get out of school and take that full-time, right, and start pursuing that.
Dylan Ogline: I didn’t quit school necessarily because of that. I think the fact that like I actually had something. Like my best month I was making like $1,500, $2,000. I might have had like one month where I made $3,000 or something. It was a long time ago. But that’s what I sold my parents on. Because I had a little bit going for me, I was able to sell them on hey, let me. It wasn’t like, “Hey, I’m in school, and then boom, I’m dropping out.” It was, “Let me do home school. Like, I got this guys. Like I could do homeschool, and then I can like work on my business, and like get things going there.” And I had to sell them on it, but they bought it, and I had to pay for the homeschooling and everything.
And I’ve been talking about this a lot recently, and I’m trying to remember. I don’t even think I opened the box that had the books in it. I know I never opened the books, but I don’t even think I opened the box. I think just it sat in a closet and then eventually I just threw it away. But eventually, that lasted like six months, and then I was like, “All right, guys, just let me quit.”
Josh Rhodes: I was going to say. So at what age? At what age did you kind of hang the school books up?
Dylan Ogline: I never finished 10th grade. I know I started doing homeschooling when I was 14 or 15, and you have to go through a process to officially drop out. And I think I was 16 when I officially dropped out.
Josh Rhodes: I mean, we’re fast forwarding, right? I’m jumping around a little bit, but you called today’s business a digital marketing management company. Right, so just broad stroke, what is that? What do you guys do today?
Dylan Ogline: It’s very simple. What we’re doing is we’re managing Facebook and Google ads, and sometimes YouTube, but mostly Facebook and Google ads for our clients. We write the ad, we design the landing page, and then we choose like what to target and things like that. Especially with Facebook and like what key words with Google. That’s pretty much what we’re doing. And then we charge our clients a 10% fee of whatever their spend is. So if they spend $20,000 in a month, we send them an invoice for $2,000. That’s what we do.
Josh Rhodes: And do you guys specialize, you have a specific vertical, you only work with service business or only manufacturers or do you have a vertical you work with?
Dylan Ogline: Most of our clients generally, it’s under seven clients, varies during the course of the year because some of them are seasonal. Or most of them are in home services. There’s been few other clients that we’ve had over the years where just previously I had worked with them or they just found us, and I was like, “Okay, it seems like it’s a good fit.” But most of them are in the home service industry-- construction, manufacturing types of firms.
Josh Rhodes: Gotcha. You’re able to hear, and I’ve studied you a bunch now, and you hear your story in one big swoop like this. And it’s kind of overwhelming, right? Like people go through their entire lives, and they climb this ladder of what you’re supposed to do, right? They go to high school, then they go to college, and then they get their MBA, and they enter the workforce, and they grind 40-plus years trying to build this independence.
And no disrespect at all, but a high school dropout is able to take his agency from zero to seven figures in, what sounds to be, four or five years. Right, so I think the question I want to ask, and let me go a little bit further here, but what the hell were you doing? Right, like did you have mentorships? Did you have cofounders or advisors? Were you taking master minds or master classes? Like thinking back, what would you attribute your ability to scale and to ramp so quickly too?
Dylan Ogline: So I didn’t have a founder, I didn’t have a partner with the agency. I did have mentorship. I wouldn’t be where I am if it weren’t for the teachers, coaches, mentors that I’ve had along the way. I’m also in currently master minds. Master mind groups where I’m just able to bounce ideas off of people. I think kind of an interesting way we could go at this is, for me, I finally got it to click, I was 26, 27. I had been working for like 12 or 13, I had 12 or 13 years of experience at that time. So it was a lot of experience built up. So whenever I was making the leap, like okay, like bringing on team members it was like, “Well, I’ve done that before.” Handling marketing, “Well, I’ve done that before.” Like there were things that, again, I had so many years of experience.
Did it move very quickly? Once it clicked and it ramped up very quickly, yes, absolutely. But there was all these years of experience that came before that. The reason I went in that angle was that was kind of one of the reasons I quit school. Because we kind of have to back up with my story a little bit here to really understand the context. So, for me, I was like 12 or 13 I wanted to go to college. I was starting to think about college, and like, what do you want to do with your life? And I had interest in just business. I had no idea what it looked like, I didn’t really know what, but it was just like I liked the business world.
And college just wasn’t, like unless I got a scholarship, like it just wasn’t going to happen. Like my parents couldn’t afford to send me to any kind of college. On top of that is I also come from like a nothing town, and I was told all my life, like it was beat into me by people that like, “You’re not smart enough. You’re never going to get a scholarship based on your grades or because you’re really smart.” Like it was just it was a limiting belief at the time.
So, for me, kind of the pathway to college was hockey. I wasn’t that good. I’m still terrible. But I was like, “If I just really work hard at this, maybe I can get some kind of scholarship or a full ride. Even if it’s to some crappy college, like that’s my ticket out of here.” And I’ll never forget, I was 12 or 13 when it happened, I was at a varsity game, and I remember seeing there was like this prep school from the Pittsburgh area. And the players were just so much better than I was. Like they were leaps and bounds ahead of me. And what I realized is that, well, the key, the common themes with these players that are so much better than me is that they’d been playing longer than me. Like I started playing when I was like ten. They started playing when they were five. Which, when you’re that age, like that’s a colossal difference.
And at 12 or 13 I kind of started to see this vision of like the key of me getting out of here is to start early at something. Because I’m from a nothing town, I’ve been told my whole life that I’m not special, that I’m not smart. There’s no way my parents can afford to send me to college. Like I need to get some kind of leg up. Like these players, their leg up is that they just started early.
Josh Rhodes: Sure.
Dylan Ogline: So I just saw at that age like if I get started in business now-- again, I didn’t know what the path would be, I didn’t know what that meant, I just knew like if I start now, ten, 15 years from now I’ll be ten to 15 years ahead of everybody else. People will be getting out of college, they’ll be starting their first business, and I’ll be like, “I’ve been doing this stuff for like 12 years.”
Josh Rhodes: Yeah.
Dylan Ogline: I don’t even know where I was going with that. I just think understanding that context is huge.
Josh Rhodes: The logic makes a lot of sense. And you kind of headed where I wanted to take you, in that I mean, you thought, “Okay, I need to get an early start. Let me get running out of the gate here.” And so you take off, and if I read your sort of timeline right, as you started building businesses, you got to this point to where you were sort of stretched thin, right? You had ten, 12, 15 businesses in flight at one time. And so you were definitely getting a leg up, but maybe in the worst way, right? Because you weren’t really making any progress, you were doing a lot of nothing, right, because you’re spread so damn thin.
And when I asked you earlier of like what the hell were you doing? Like how did you differentiate yourself? How did you find this success? Because people put themselves in this process or this rat race of 50 years and they don’t find it. So how did you do it? One of the things that I’ve extracted from your story is this idea of focus and being hyperfocused. And you hinted at this story earlier, and I’m going to ask that you tell it. At one point you had ten, 12 businesses in flight, and you had this mentor give you a call and say, “Listen man, you’ve got to focus up. Tighten up, right?” And so can you maybe share that story with us and maybe how that went about at that moment?
Dylan Ogline: Yeah. So one of those moments in life I’ll never forget. This was end of 2016, so this is October, November 2016. Like you said, I was ten-plus different business projects, getting absolutely nowhere, making maybe $40,000 to $50,000 a year, up to my eyeballs in debt. Sleep was a nice fantasy to have. I didn’t know what vacations were. It was bad. And randomly got this call from a long-term mentor of mine, hadn’t spoken to him in a while. And we catch up, we exchange pleasantries, it’s like, “Oh, how you doing? What’s going on? Blah blah blah, how you doing?” And I lie and I say, “Oh, things are great.” But he sees through that. And eventually, I admit, I’m like, “I’m getting nowhere. I’m struggling. My life sucks. I’m not making any money. I’m busting my ass but I thought I would be further than this. I thought the key was just really work hard. How come I’m not getting anywhere?”
And he advice he gave me to me was, “Stop trying to build an airline and start drilling for oil.” That was just the quote. And the context, what he meant was you’re trying to build all these small little businesses that might make you a couple hundred, or maybe $1,000, or $2,000 a month. Those are your airlines. And like the best in the world get into that industry and they still don’t make money. It’s just a notoriously difficult industry to make money. Instead, drill for oil, start a business, or focus on the business where you could just be kind of sort of okay at it and still make a lot of money, and just focus on one single thing.
That was the lesson. That’s all it was. And I remember I was walking out in front of my house, it was freezing, it was late at night. I remember what I was looking at when he’s giving me this advice. Like it was that transformative to me. And I’ve described it before as like the solution was right in front of my face, but I was so blinded that I couldn’t see it because it was right in front of my face.
Josh Rhodes: Yeah.
Dylan Ogline: So it was like this metaphorical slap across the face. And literally that night, I went downstairs in my freezing basement, and I didn’t even have a chair. I sat on a bucket, like a five-gallon bucket, because I couldn’t afford a chair. If it wasn’t currently making money, I just deleted it. I would just take the folder, take the project, and literally delete it. And then there was a few things that were making maybe a couple hundred bucks a month. It was like I’m going to let that run, but I’m not going to give it a second of my attention going forward. And the one thing I focused on that I saw had the potential to scale, and I could just be okay at it, and I could hit my goal of six figures was focusing on digital marketing management.
Josh Rhodes: That’s what I was going to ask you.
Dylan Ogline: That’s all it was.
Josh Rhodes: Yeah. You had 12, 15 businesses in flight, and then you start-- I mean, I’m literally picturing you going through files and deleting, right? And the last one standing is digital marketing management. I wanted to ask why that? And it sounds like it had the most potential upside, you had the ability to I can scale out to-- I think you said at the top, “Oh, I have seven clients.” And it could be a seven-figure agency. So you don’t have to be the best in the business to make that kind of money. Am I hearing you right? I mean is that how we got to this avenue?
Dylan Ogline: That’s exactly what it was. I didn’t have the vision of seven figures at that time.
Josh Rhodes: Yeah, of course.
Dylan Ogline: But I looked at the project and most of them were like the best of the best were making $5,000 a month at this and my goal was six figures. In my mind, like if I hit six figures I would solve all my problems.
Josh Rhodes: Sure.
Dylan Ogline: So I just kept looking at them and digital marketing, it was the one where the best of the best were making seven or eight figures a year. If I’m just like okay at that, I’m probably going to be able to hit six figures. It can scale. There’s a ton of clients. I had one client at the time who was paying me maybe a little under $1,000 a month or something. It just all lined up. And I was like, “If I just focus on this one thing, I’ll get better and better at it,” which is one of the things my mentor said. He’s like, “If you just focus on one thing you’re going to get better and better and better at it.” So if I get better at this, and I onboard more clients, it can scale up and like it doesn’t need to scale up that much for me to hit six figures. And that’s what it was, it was the one that stuck out as the drilling for oil. It was a high profit margin, and it could scale very quickly, that’s all it was.
Josh Rhodes: One of the questions that I’ve been chewing on the last couple days, I mentioned in your answer here, is you’re a starter, you’re a entrepreneur, and a business starter at heart. Like that’s in your blood, it’s proven. I mean, most people don’t open ten, 12 businesses in their lifetime, and you had them in flight at once, right? So it’s like you had all these projects going on. Then you get this advice from your mentor of you need to cage that dog, and you need to focus up, and stop chasing cars and find something you can run with.
My question to you is talk to me about your mindset and your approach to new business opportunities today, right? Because this is sort of two things. One: opportunities, people with ideas run or flow to people with money. Right, and so now that you’ve seen some success, I’m assuming you see opportunities. And the other part of this is you almost can’t help yourself, right? Like you’re always coming up with opportunities or potential business ideas yourself. And so how do you cage that dog and then what questions or conversations are you having with yourself before you decide to pursue a new opportunity?
Dylan Ogline: This is a very good question. So I’m going to back up a little bit with that and say, for me, it had reached a tipping point. I had spent so many years going in the wrong direction, where it just absolutely suffering where I was able to-- I can’t think of a better term, but quit it cold turkey. I’m going to be like, “I’m going in the other direction as hard as I possibly can.” Because a lot of people they recognize that focus matters.
There’s this famous video, I think it’s Steve Jobs, he said the thing that he’s most proud of that Apple has done is the things that they have said no to. There’s a documentary on Bill Gates where-- I'm going to condensed the story here-- but him and Bill Gates and Warren Buffett meet. And they’re asked tow rite down separately on a piece of paper the one thing that lead to their success. And without any communication, they both write down “focus.” I could go on and on with all these stories of it’s obvious that focus matters. What is the filter that I kind of apply now? It’s very simple. If it’s not a “hell yes” then it’s a no.
Josh Rhodes: Yeah.
Dylan Ogline: If it’s like, “Wow, that’s a pretty good idea.” Before I would spend a bunch of time starting that business and probably getting nowhere. If it’s not like, “Hell yes, that is the coolest idea,” or “I am so passionate about that business,” then the answer is “no.” And the only thing that has met that threshold for me is my education company. That’s it. And it’s like you said, like I’m just walking around. There’s like, “Oh, that’s an idea and that’s an idea.” Like I think a lot of entrepreneurs have that.
Josh Rhodes: They do. For sure.
Dylan Ogline: So I’m not special in that regard. But putting that filter and saying no to things is an incredibly important muscle to build. So if it’s not a “hell yeah” it’s a “no.”
Josh Rhodes: Yeah, and your ability-- and I’m somewhat segueing here to another topic-- but your ability to win fast, lose fast with the potential opportunity, right? So as you started this business here, and you’ve scaled it to seven figures, you started in this mode that you’ve sort of coined “lean, mean, and scrappy.” Right, so you had no website, no logo, is that right? Am I reading that right?
Dylan Ogline: That is 100% correct. Because I had spent so much time suffering. When I decided, “Okay, I’m just going to focus on this one thing,” I naturally was like, “Okay.” Like that night, when I deleted everything, I was like, “Oh, I need to go build a website. I need to go get a nice business card, and a nice logo, and build out a phone system.” That’s naturally how I thought. Because I’m a perfectionist, I want everything to look good, and be nice. But because I spent so much time suffering, I was just ruthlessly no. I just said no to everything. Like I only want to focus absolute bare minimum. So there was no website, there was no professional voiceover phone system, there was nothing. I didn’t even have the Ogline Digital name until the beginning of this year.
Josh Rhodes: Yeah.
Dylan Ogline: Just as bare bones simple as possible because I was battling that perfectionist demon in me.
Josh Rhodes: Yeah. Earlier I asked like how you scaled so quickly, and I want to ask a similar question to the business here of you had no website, no logo, so you’re not working through SEO, or there are other tactics that we’ve heard about in the past on the podcast that people use to start building their funnel. With no website, no logo, you didn’t have that. And so I’m curious, I mean, what sort of black magic were you operating under with your roof? Talk me through maybe your milestones and then what you felt contributed to your spikes in success.
Dylan Ogline: Sure, so I already had one client, who I was making a couple hundred bucks off of. And then I simply just reached out to previous clients that I had worked with. So during my years of suffering I had maybe built some websites for people, I had built logos for people, banner ads. I had done other agency type of work. So I just reached out to those previous clients and was like, “Hey, now I’m offering this service.” And I think I onboarded one or two clients that way. And then I just reached out to other businesses in the home services vertical. And just simply being niched down, and being able to talk about their problems, and not being like, “Hey, we’re a full service agency.”
Like going into an example I always use, because it’s a real example with my agency, is reaching out to plumbing and heating companies and being like, “We specifically help plumbing and heating companies grow and get more install projects with direct response digital marketing.” That’s like a quote from one of the landing pages eventually.
Josh Rhodes: You’re hitting all your buzz words. Yeah.
Dylan Ogline: Yeah. Yeah. I’m hitting it all right there. That’s kind of what the “black magic” was. It was just I just ruthlessly applied that focus to not just the business, but then to the client outreach. I wasn’t reaching out to everybody. Once I had capped out the low-hanging fruit I call it, like the clients that I previously worked with. When I was reaching out to new people who I had never heard from, I ruthlessly focused there. It was just certain verticals. A very specific message. It wasn’t, “Hey, we’re a full service agency. We can help anybody with everything.” It was “we specifically help your type of business with just this one specific problem.” That was the “black magic.”
And then, because I was just focusing on one service with a few similar niches, just doing at the time Facebook and Google ads, I got really, really good at it. So then the results in my particular business, as the client starts to get better results, they increase their ad spend. Well, as they increase their ad spend, I make more off of them.
Josh Rhodes: Sure.
Dylan Ogline: It’s as simple as that. And they don’t have a problem with paying me more because it’s percentage of their ad spend. And if they are getting a profitable ROI of their ad spend, they don’t care if they’re paying me $1,000 a month or $15,000 a month. They don’t care because they probably have the same ROI at one as they will at 15, which is random numbers I’m coming off of the top of my head. But that was it. Like I know it’s not like the sexy answer, and really complicated business strategy, but it was just I had spent so much time suffering that I just ruthlessly applied focus to absolutely everything. And that was it, that was what I needed.
Josh Rhodes: And I think that’s what I wanted to maybe shine a light on is how simple it can be. I’m a perfectionist at heart as well. And I spent, even before launching this podcast, I’d spend like six months doing all my research, and figuring out what mike I wanted to use, and building a hit list, and building a website, and trying to figure out the jingle before the intro, and it’s like all this shit, right? And so it’s like, okay, I’m going to get hyperfocused on this business, let me reach out to any clients that I’ve done work with in the past whether I just built a banner, I’ve built one-off ad, I’ve helped build their website, or written some copy. Let me go try to land clients that way. You landed a couple, one or two of them. Obviously, try to work through referrals, you try to leverage that.
And then the second idea is now I’ve landed a few clients, I have some case studies, I have some examples that I can tap into. I’m also hyper niche. Both my clients are in the, like you mentioned, the plumbing space or whatever that is. And then you have the ability to niche down and really get hyperfocused with your outreach in this cold prospecting avenue. This is sort of hinting at where I wanted to go next. And as you were getting started, there were sort of two hot buttons. And obviously, your cold outreach, I think SEO it was hot at the time, and writing for Google was a thing. Not to say that that approach is now dead, but we’ve had bloggers and folks that have sold their blogs on the podcast, and it’s definitely a more saturated market. Folks are looking for more creative ways to get in front of or find new audiences.
And so recently we interviewed Craig Mount from Nerdy Nuts, and Craig is making $500,000 a month off of peanut butter. And, yeah, it’s insane. And the two tactics that he’s leveraging is this Supreme style drop where he only drops peanut butter on Sundays. And then the other idea, the other thing that he does is he has two influencers on TikTok, so most of his advertising, most of his dollars are going into TikTok. Right, rather than writing blog posts and trying to capture this SEO traffic, and do these things.
So where I’m headed with this is understanding that the SEO approach is more saturated, and you being in this digital marketing management space, I wanted to put the ball in your court one time and kind of ask the generic question of like where are things headed, right? If you were to come in and work with an organization today, would you pull the first lever of let’s start working on SEO? Would you pull the lever of let’s try to go viral with an ad? Like where would you spend your time?
Dylan Ogline: I hate the idea of going viral. If it happens, cool. But otherwise don’t try to go viral. The reason SEO and content marketing are appealing is because most of the time there’s very little cost. But if there’s very little cost, I mean that sounds great, there’s little barrier to entry. What you lose though is kind of the ability to scale up. So let’s say you create some blog post that goes viral or some YouTube video that you create for free, and it goes viral, and you get a bump in business. That’s cool, that’s awesome. Do it again. You probably can’t. Or if you can then you really struggle with it.
Whereas with, say, Facebook and Google ads, it’s just you get a campaign to work. I’m oversimplifying here, like if you’re spending $100 a day, you just add another zero. Or you just double your budget and you’re probably going to double your results. Of course the problem is, is that you’re spending money on it. So, for me, I don’t focus on like TikTok, as an example. I don’t focus on that because the people that get it to work now, they’re probably just they randomly went at bat, and hit a homerun their first at bat.
Josh Rhodes: Sure.
Dylan Ogline: It was just luck. It’s just like somebody who creates a Dollar Shave Club. Okay, so they did that ad, they probably spent like $5,000 on it, which is not a lot for a commercial. And for anybody who doesn’t know what I’m talking about, just Google like “Dollar Shave Club commercial,” and look for the first one. It’s gorgeous, it’s a great ad, it’s hilarious. He just so happened to go at bat his first time and hit a homerun, and build a company off of it. And that sounds appealing to people because relatively speaking, the cost is low. But the problem is, is that it’s really difficult to duplicate and to scale it up. Whereas once you get Google ads, or Facebook ads, these tried and true methods. Once you get them working, scaling up isn’t a problem. You just add another zero, or you double your budget, or you triple your budget, and you can purchase growth.
So if I’m working with a new client, sure, SEO is a worthwhile investment, but it should be like a company adding a logo to their trucks to drive around town. Are you going to get clients from it? Probably. And cool, and you should do that. If you have a truck driving around town, you should add your logo to it. If you have a website you should probably be putting some blog articles out. Like doesn’t hurt to do those things but that shouldn’t be your bet. That shouldn’t be what you’re aiming to get your growth from. It should be icing on the cake. Extra that comes in.
Josh Rhodes: I’ve heard you hint at-- and I’m going to get there in a couple questions-- but I heard you hint at before, once you have product market fit, and you know you’re chasing legit opportunity, the very next thing that you need to do is button up and figure out the marketing team, the marketing component of this, right, and start to build some what you call faucets. I’ll get there in a second, but first, let me ask you this. I kind of hinted at earlier this idea of win fast, lose fast. And this is something that I’ve really enjoyed of yours, and I’ve kind of taken to heart is this idea if you have an opportunity you’d like to pursue, spend a few hundred dollars and look to find or see if there’s a product market fit. Look to see there’s demand for that product. Let me just put that in your court. Can you expand on that idea a bit?
Dylan Ogline: Yes. All the listeners out there, you kind of have to adjust this to what your particular product or service is. A perfect example is now that I have my own training program, I’ve met other people who have training programs. Or just mention it, and they’re like, “Oh yeah.” I was working with a photographer recently, and she asks like, “What do you do?” And I mentioned I have this agency and then I’m working on my education company, I have a training program. She’s like, “Oh, I’m looking to do that too.” And we started talking about it, and she has been spending like six months building up the program. That’s not what you want to do.
Like in her particular case she’s building out this training program, I think like how photographers can get more like wedding clients. Something like that. And what you want to do is spend a couple hundred dollars to prove that there are actually photographers out there who are looking to take that program, looking to buy that product or that service. In this case, it’s a training program. You don’t want to spend six months, a year, two years building out the actual product, and then you go to sell it, and then you find out that nobody actually wants it.
Josh Rhodes: Yeah, you’re chasing a hobby.
Dylan Ogline: Yeah. Whereas if you actually go out, and the most efficient way to do this is just do some Google ads. Put it out there in the marketplace ad see if people are actually willing to give you money. So in her particular example, like I told her, like go home tonight and start doing like some Google ads or Facebook ads, build a quick landing page, and actually get people to check out and give you money. Don’t ask, now you don’t want to reach out to people and ask say, “Hey, will you buy this training program?” Or, “Hey, will you buy this product or service?” Because people will lie to you. Okay, because people are really nice.
Josh Rhodes: Yeah.
Dylan Ogline: They don’t want to hurt your feelings. But if you ask somebody like, “Hey, will you buy this product or service?” And they say yes, and you’re like, “Well, cool. Can I take your credit card information?”
Josh Rhodes: They’re like, “Hold up a second.”
Dylan Ogline: Yeah. Yeah. And if they actually give you money, then you have product market fit. And then on top of that, like in her particular case, I told her, “Actually go and sell it.” If you get people to actually give you money then you have product market fit. But then if they gave you money, like you have to deliver the product now. And be upfront with people, be like, “I’m starting the program next week, or two weeks from now, or I’ll be able to deliver the product” if you’re actually selling a physical product. I’ll be able to deliver the product next month. Something like that.
Don’t lie to people. We’re not scamming people. And if you don’t deliver it, then you just simply refund them. But because you actually got somebody to give you money, then you’re going to bust your ass to actually deliver it because you don’t want to fail.
Josh Rhodes: Yeah.
Dylan Ogline: Whereas you spent the last six months to a year just building out a product that you don’t know that the market wants. One other really important factor here, everybody knows about pivoting, right? Well, the reason pivoting is so painful is that you have all this work that you have put into something. If you’ve spent a year building out a training program, and then you go to sell it in to the marketplace, and say she finds out that wedding photographers don’t need more clients, but high school graduation photographers need more clients. Well, she needs to pivot and build an entirely different raining program. That’s painful. But if you’ve never built it, pivoting is no big deal.
Josh Rhodes: Yeah. What you’re talking through, how to test the market, I spent probably 20 minutes with the founder of the crowd-funding formula. His name is Narek Vardanyan, and they are the world’s--
Dylan Ogline: That’s an interesting name.
Josh Rhodes: Yeah. They’re the world’s best crowdfunding agency. They’ve raised over a million dollars 15 separate times. They’re the real deal. And he came on and talked about this exact mode that you’re describing, and he called it, “Jungle-proofing.” And there’s this idea of let’s build three web pages, and the first one’s going to have my products copy, in a video, and at the very bottom, just a “buy now” link. And if they watch the video, they read the copy, and they like what they see, they’ll press the button. And they’re able to test is our copy, is our video, is all this shit good?
And then the next page they see the pricing for the product and they’re able to click “buy now. And if they hit that, they know their pricing is on point, and they’re able to go up, go down, do some AB testing, all that stuff. And then the finally page it asked, “Put in your credit card information and email address.” And so they’re punching that in. And this is the true test, right, to your point of that mother-in-la test of are you just saying you want to buy this or are you going to put your money where your mouth is? And then at that point, if they put their credit card information in they get a pop-up. And it’s like, “Hey, guys, sorry, we’re out of order.” Or like you said, “This is going to be built in two months. Please put in your email address. We’ll keep you up to date, get you a discount code, or whatever.”
And then they’re getting all of this demographic data. They’re able to see who wants to buy the product. Is it male, female, what age, where are they sitting, all this stuff. They’re able to see is there demand and how much, how many orders are they getting, and things like that. It’s really, really cool. And so are you talking through a similar process? Did I miss anything? Do you have any riffles or anything else to add? Anything else there?
Dylan Ogline: Well, if you’re just a solopreneur, you’re just working by yourself, pulling that all off it’s a beast. Yeah, like that’s intensive, right there. That’s just the more advanced. Like if you have the the resources, and the time, and the know-how to pull that off, go that extra step. I’ve actually copied from Tim Ferriss, The 4-Hour Work Week. I think in that particular book he mentions like the testing process that he used to name The 4-Hour Work Week. He just threw up some Google ads and saw which ones had the highest click-through rate. That’s how I came up with the name for Agency 2.0. I literally just put up some Google ads and the key words were like, “start my own digital agency” or something like that. And just would run the ad to just a landing page on my website that just, “Hey, please give me your email address.” So I’m at least getting people’s email addresses. But all I was looking for was just the click-through rate on the name.
Josh Rhodes: Totally.
Dylan Ogline: That was it, and whichever one had the higher click-through rate, boom, that’s how I chose the name of the program. There’s multiple variations that you could do to test. And we talked about you mentioned earlier failing fast. It’s all about failing as fast as possible. Throwing things up and seeing which ones stick. And like you mentioned like that guy sounds like that’s a beast of a system and that sounds fantastic. It doesn’t necessarily need to be that. Again, if you have the know-how, you have the resources to pull that off, do that.
Josh Rhodes: Yeah, what you laid out is perfect, man. If none of your ads get hits, then obviously it’s a shitty idea, right, and it’s time to scrap it. If one of those ads is performing really, really well, then you’ve found your faucet. I’m smiling here because you mentioned Tim Ferriss 4-Hour Work Week. I had one more topic I wanted to dive into here, and this is I’ve digested lots of your material, and one of the things that I feel comes up more often or more frequently than not is the Pareto Principle. This idea of 80/20. And you first crossed paths with that, if I read right, in Tim Ferriss’ book, The 4-Hour Work Week. Which it encapsulates a lot. Tim Ferriss writes hefty books, they’re like Bibles.
Dylan Ogline: Yeah, I’ve got all of them right over there.
Josh Rhodes: The bulk of that 4-Hour Work Week, at the root of it, it is that Pareto Principle. It’s that 80/20 principle. Can you maybe talk through that and maybe a use case or two, a time you’ve applied that just to give a little bit of color context?
Dylan Ogline: To be honest, man, I apply that now. So for those of you who don’t know, the 80/20 principle is essentially this commonality that will find in like every area of your life where 20% of your, say effort, gets you 80% of your results. 80% of your effort gets you 20% of your results. So most of your time or your effort is wasted. You’ll notice if you have carpets in your house, you’ll notice that 20% of your carpet has 80% of the wear. Again, this applies to so many areas of life. And in The 4-Hour Work Week is when I was kind of introduced to that. And I looked around at my life and I was like, “Damn. Like there’s a lot of stuff that I’m just wasting my time on that’s actually not making the cash register ring. It’s not actually producing any income. It’s not moving the business forward.”
There’s so many examples that it’s tough for me to actually… Because now, it’s gotten to the point where I apply that subconsciously I don’t even think about applying that because I’m just constantly looking for like is this thing that I am working on actually moving the needle or is this just wasted work?
Josh Rhodes: This may be the same question, but where I wanted to take this potentially is knowing you’re wearing that 80/20 principle, I try to implement that lots as I chug along in my life, but when you take on a new client, and you’re going to start implementing some of their social strategies, and you’re going to start building ads and working with them, where do you find that they’re wasting most of their time? Are there processes? Are they doing things within your realm that they’re spending cycles on or it’s wasted time, wasted processes, wasted strategies?
Dylan Ogline: Most of the time what I get a vision into is their kind of marketing budget or whatnot. And most of the time, because they’re kind of blue collar businesses, it’s they’re doing say-- and this isn’t necessarily 80/20-- but they’re doing say like billboard ads because it’s just what they’ve always done. And they’re like, “Well, we noticed that if we slowed our spending down our business slowed down.” And it’s like, well, you can’t necessarily track that, and you don’t actually know if you’re getting results from that.
So this could actually be an answer here that would be insightful. So I mentioned before like plumbing and heating companies. Work with several of those. One of the things kind of like the advantage or kind of the niche strategy that I use there is that I’ll talk to them about install projects. And this is simply because I’ve known people in the industry, and I’ve worked in that industry to know that with plumbing and heating companies, they make more money off of install projects. They’re easier, the clients are easier to deal with, you’re not coming out ten times to try to diagnose a repair. They like those projects more than, say, repairs.
So when I talk to them, and I’m like, “We help you get more install projects.” Just because I know that, they kind of figure that I have the solution because I’m able to define the problem better than they can.
Josh Rhodes: Totally.
Dylan Ogline: But what I’m getting with this is that I’m able to talk to them and be like, say you have billboards that you’re running, and they’re probably talking about repairs because you get more calls off of repairs because more people need repairs than they do installs. But it takes like ten repairs for you to make the same amount as you do off of one install. So even if the amount of customers you have gets cut in half, if you’re doing more install projects, you’re going to make more money.
Josh Rhodes: Yeah.
Dylan Ogline: So when we work in that particular industry, as an example, we will focus solely all of the marketing efforts on just install projects because that’s where the profit margin in. Again, it might be ten to one. They might get the number of clients might drop and customers might drop for one of our clients but their profitability goes up because 20% of their efforts were generating 80% of their profits before.
Josh Rhodes: Yeah. You’ve found your clients 20%, right, that’s where their profits and they’re fun, the easiest clients to work with. And you’re focusing on that, and I think one: it shows target. Two: it shows niche and expertise. And you taking exact about their pain point and what they like to do, and you hinting at that terminology, using their buzz words, and getting in their field. That niche down approach has to give you lots of success.
As I hear you talk about, and I know I’m almost at my time here, man. You’ve scaled this digital marketing agency, this digital marketing management agency up to seven figures. I’d be a fool not to at least capture some of your big takeaways when it comes to building an ad, right, and maybe the core components of an ad. I don’t have any questions here, I want to kind of put this as a pro tip and just see what you give me. And what is most important when you’re sort of building out the core pieces or core components of an ad, right? Is it the attention grabber? Do you always have a call to action? Lots of colors.
I even heard earlier it was Monday of a copywriting course where they said if you put this red circle around something in ad, right, if you just have a red circle around like if someone’s hold a pen, and you put a red circle around it, for some reason that gets more clicks, and so maybe that’s your trick. Like I’m curious do you have anything that each industry is different, each company is different, but do you have core components? I’m looking for that 20%.
Dylan Ogline: 20%.
Josh Rhodes: Yeah, that you carry from ad, to ad, to ad. Is there something there?
Dylan Ogline: Yes. So this is a fantastic question, and I love that you gave me the red circle to use. The red circle, these copywriting tricks, these little cheat codes that people are looking for, the secret thing in Facebook for targeting, all of that stuff. That’s the 80% that are going to give you 20% of the results. You will spend so much time on the advanced stuff that will move the needle, but very little. I prefer to stick to the 20% that are going to get you the 80% of the results.
Josh Rhodes: Yeah. Amen.
Dylan Ogline: So for me, I don’t know how many things I’m going to list here, but I’m going to start wit hat least two. The first one is when you can define the customer’s problem better than they can, they will automatically assume that you have the solution. So kind of the perfect example there is with the plumbing and heating companies. I’m not talking about just getting them more customers. I’m talking about I’m going to get you more install projects. That’s a very slight difference. And I’ve had where they’ve asked me, “What about repairs?” I’m like, “Well, we’ve worked with people in your industry, and I know that in your industry you’re going to be making more money off of install projects.” I just defined the problem better than they could.
So if you can do that, the person will just automatically assume that you have the solution. So when at all possible with ad copy, or in the ad, on the landing page, anything like that. If you can write that content in a way where you can define the problem, get specific with it, and define it better than the end customer can, that will psychologically make them think that you have the solution. So that’s 20% strategy that I would use.
Another one that I use is I like to say that we write ads to get people to not click on them. A lot of people think they want the highest click-through rate. They want as many people as possible to click on their ad. They want that big bold headline to catch people’s attention. And there’s a lot to be said about that. Typically, we’re working with people who are selling kind of a more expensive. They’re mid to high tier in the market. They’re not the cheapest solution. So you don’t want the people who are looking for the cheapest solution to be clicking on your ad. You’re wasting your ad dollars. Then if they actually do submit the form or whatever, you’re wasting your time talking to those people. You want the people who are already looking for the mid to high tier solution. So the easiest way to do that is actually put pricing in your ad.
Josh Rhodes: Nice.
Dylan Ogline: So I’m trying to think of an example that everybody could grab their head around. Let’s say you’re a car company. Let’s say you’re Tesla, okay? Tesla’s car started, what, $50,000?
Josh Rhodes: Sure. Yeah.
Dylan Ogline: You’re not competing with Chevy Cruze. So you would want to put in your ad something like “Pricing starts sat $50,000.”
Josh Rhodes: Gotcha.
Dylan Ogline: You could be a plastic surgeon and you could put, “Our pricing starts at $5,000.” You could be a roofing company, “Our pricing starts at $25,000.” Which I don’t know what plastic surgeons or roofing companies charge, I’m just randomly making this up. But because you do that, you’re pushing away the people that are looking for the cheap solution.
Josh Rhodes: Yeah, you’re allowing them to disqualify themselves, right? The folks that make it through the funnel and into your inbox, those are legit leads that are coming from sort of the hottest segment of your vertical. Right, the leads could not be any hotter.
Dylan Ogline: 100%.
Josh Rhodes: Yeah. I love that.
Dylan Ogline: Yeah, so like another quick example here is if we’re looking to get more clients then we put a Google ad or something like that. We will write in the ad, “Minimum ad spend $5,000 a month.” So some plumbing and heating company that’s looking to do a $5,000 a month billboard ad, that $5,000 is way out of their price range. And that’s okay, they probably aren’t ready to work with us yet.
Josh Rhodes: Totally.
Dylan Ogline: I’m not writing an ad to get everybody. I want the segment of the market, the top of the buying pyramid, that are looking to buy now and are in my price range.
Josh Rhodes: Yeah.
Dylan Ogline: That would be my 20%.
Josh Rhodes: Yeah, dude. And killer info there, man. I’m going to let us wrap up on that. I probably have another 12 questions that I’m looking at here that I’ll save for round two after this thing goes public. For the folks that want to follow you, man, they want to join you on your journey, consume your material, all that good stuff, where’s the best place to find you?
Dylan Ogline: Dylan Ogline pretty much everywhere. My website is dylanogline.com. And you can find me on the Instagram and the Facebooks, et cetera, @DylanOgline.
Josh Rhodes: Cool. I will have your website, all the social, I have everything linked in our show notes. There’s actually a full podcast transcript on my website at rhodestowealth.com. So that’s how I take notes and sort of keep with the past episodes as I go back to the reading of it versus listening to them. Dylan, man, I appreciate you doing this, brother. You’re the real deal. I know you’re spread really thin even though you’re hyperfocused, still spread thin. I appreciate your time even more so for the listeners. For you all tuning in, really, really appreciate your support, your ears. You have someone to hug this week and stay on your grind.
This has to be one of the more impressive, powerful stories that we’ve heard on the show, particularly his emphasis and messaging around that idea of focus. One of my favorite quotes, it’s something that I will definitely use in future episodes. If it is not a “hell yes,” then it needs to be a “no.” There were dozens of other takeaways that I found within the podcast. I’ve done my best to capture them all and turn that into a PDF. I currently send that PDF out to a group of you subscribers. If you’re interested in being added to that list, then you want to start to compile this list of notes that I’m compiling. Please feel free to reach out. You can get me at my email, you could also find me at the website: rhodestowealth.com.
A couple of those takeaways that I have flow together rather nicely. I wanted to maybe offer up an additional resource or two, so let me just kind of draw through those really quickly, and put a bow on things. First, I think it sticks out like a sore thumb. This idea of starting early is so important. Right, and Dylan first realized this with the hockey incident. There were folks on his team or that he played against that it has started five or six years earlier, and because of that, they seem to be five or six times better, right, they were just profoundly better with their skill set. And that advice of start early, it applies across the board to all fields, and all studies. Build your expertise.
If you have not read the book Outliers by Malcolm Gladwell, I would highly recommend you check that out as he talks through some of these same concepts in the first few chapters of the book. This idea of to become an expert you have to have over 10,000 hours of high level practice of that particular craft. This is across the board through sports, and mindsets, and skillsets. Dylan would be considered an outlier because he got started with his business while most of us were still thinking about being astronauts. Right, no clue what we were going to do with ourselves at 13, 14 ears old. And Dylan was already learning what businesses could and couldn’t do, how to hire and fire people, the logistics in shipping.
He was buying and selling cellphones at 13, 14 years old. Because of that, he learned the ropes really early. It’s been a couple of years since I read the book, but I believe that it actually starts with hockey players as well, which is really, really ironic. So start early, and then you can’t start everything early is my second one. You can’t start everything early. Just take one thing and run with that. Right, reiterating, and emphasizing this idea of focus. How he went from 13 or 12 businesses to one, and that’s when things took off.
Finally, take, use, implement, reflect on, and implement the Perato Principle. I use this more than any other mental model that I have in my bank. I form my questions around it, I form my daily activities around it, I cannot tell you how powerful this thing is. There are dozens of entrepreneurs that have written about this. You can find books, you can find blogs, you can find podcasts. This is a very real thing and it’s something that I think everyone should be implementing.
If this is the first time that you’ve heard of the idea, you’ve heard of the framework and you’re interested in doing a deep dive, I would recommend you check out The 80/20 Principle. It’s written by Richard Koch. I don’t believe Richard actually came up with the idea the theory he read about it himself but does a phenomenal job at breaking this thing down. And shows sort of across the U.S., and all sorts of verticals-- business and not-- how the 80/20 principle applies. And it’s insane.
That’s all I have for you guys this week because I mentioned I’ve got the notes, I’m happy to send you everything that we’ve discussed-- the the transcript, the resources, all of that could be found in my website. If you are still listening, please leave me a review, I’m shooting for the 100 this year. That can be on iTunes or wherever you guys are tuning in. And until next week, stay on your grind.