Facebook advertising agency success - Interview with Ben Heath, founder of Lead Guru
Ben Heath is a Facebook advertising expert, writer and the Founder of Lead Guru.
Alongside creating content for his online community, he works closely with his clients to develop and implement Facebook advertising strategies that deliver industry leading ROIs.
What's special about Lead Guru?
Lead Guru is a specialist Facebook Advertising Agency. We create, manage and optimize Facebook ad campaigns for our clients.
A lot of our resources are also dedicated to building and supporting our Facebook Ads Mastermind Group. This Facebook Group has 10,000+ members that are working together to get better results with Facebook Advertising.
What was your main motivation to start a business?
I hated having a 9-5 job in a corporate office. I saw my business as a way to get away from that and work for myself – which it has been.
I also knew that it would potentially be a lot more financially rewarding as well.
How did you start it? Did you have any previous experience as an entrepreneur?
I started my business part time and built it alongside my regular job until it could pay me a salary.
I had some experience dabbling in online business. I had sold various items on Amazon and eBay. Struggling to sell those products is what got me interested in digital marketing.
How did you validate your idea?
Before I started my business, I had created digital marketing campaigns to help promote my mum’s interior design company. Those campaigns produced great results and I knew I had skills that other companies would value.
How did you finance your project?
I started my business with £800 of savings. One of the big advantages of starting a digital marketing agency is the very low costs that are required to get started.
Over the course of the first year, I invested another £5,000 or so of my savings into my business. Everything since has been funded through revenue we’ve generated.
How did you market and promote your business when you were launching?
I offered free strategy sessions to anyone that wanted them and used my Facebook Advertising skills to promote that offer. At the beginning I converted around 1 in 40 sessions into a client, which was a huge amount of work. But it helped me generate my first 10 clients.
I also joined a local BNI chapter and the weekly networking meetings helped me generate a few clients in the first few months after I launched my business.
How did you get your first clients?
Technically my first client was my mum’s interior design company. But other than that, my first clients came from a local BNI chapter that I joined and the weekly networking meetings I attended.
How long did it take you to start getting the first results and see you could create a viable business ?
It took 2 years for me to go full time with my business. A couple of months before that, I knew I had a viable business but up to that point I was unsure. I tried a lot of different strategies in those first 2 years and most did not work.
That’s why I’m a big advocate of people starting a business on the side. It can often take a lot longer to get a business going than people expect.
Once you have reached that viable point, I think it is a lot easier to kick on from there and multiply that success.
What are the main ways now in which you monetize your activities?
The main service we offer is done-for-you Facebook Advertising services. I also offer consulting services and I’ve created online courses. Facebook Ads Insiders is my flagship Facebook Advertising course.
Digital marketing services is quite wide, but why did you focus mainly on Facebook advertising services?
I actually started with Google AdWords, but quickly transitioned to Facebook advertising. Part of that was timing. Facebook Advertising was becoming very popular in the earlier stages of my business and there wasn’t a lot of established agencies that could deliver great results at the time.
I also found the ad platform suited me. It’s more creative than Google Ads and it lends itself well to bold, industry leading offers.
Does having an approach of becoming an expert on your niche or segment rather than being a generalist made it easier for you to develop your business?
Absolutely. Establishing myself as a digital marketing expert would have been a lot more difficult than establishing myself as a Facebook Advertising expert.
Nearly all my content is Facebook Advertising related. People know exactly what they are going to get with my content and follow me if they are interested in that particular niche.
What do you like most about being an entrepreneur?
The autonomy, the financial rewards and the speed of progress.
I really enjoy being fully in charge of my working life, setting my own schedule and deciding who I do and don’t work with.
Building a successful business has also been far more lucrative for me than working for another company would have been, which is awesome.
With a small business you can also see massive growth very quickly. I have more than 5x’d my business’ revenue in a 12 month period and that is very exciting.
What has been your biggest challenge/failure as an entrepreneur?
My biggest challenge has been and still is my psychology. Like a lot of entrepreneurs, I’m impatient and want massive success as quickly as possible.
That has led me to pursue short-term strategies that are far less successful than longer term strategies. The real progress I have made with my business has come from multi-year projects such as my YouTube channel and my Facebook Ads Mastermind Group.
Controlling my impulse to pursue the short term is critical for me.
I have also found delegation difficult. When you start as a 1 person business, it is difficult to trust other people to do as good a job with certain tasks as you would. The truth is that if you hire right, those people will do a better job of it than you will.
And that will allow you to specialize in what you’re best at. I continually have to remind myself not to take on tasks that come up and instead find someone else to execute them.
What are your business goals for this coming year?
My primary objective is to completely remove myself from the day-to-day operations in my business. This will allow me to focus on strategy, content creation and audience building, which is what I am best at.
I have great staff that handle most things, but I need more. As my YouTube channel and Facebook Ads Mastermind Group grows, we are finding it difficult to keep up with the demand for our services. As a result, it is very easy for me to be dragged away from those tasks mentioned above.
How can an aspiring entrepreneur start building a business now ? What would be a good business type to start as a beginner?
For most people that don’t have access to funding, I would recommend starting a service based business, where the service can be delivered remotely. Businesses that fit that description are very inexpensive to start and don’t represent too much of a financial risk to the entrepreneur.
If the service can be delivered remotely, that also gives the entrepreneur a lot of flexibility with how they live their life. As you grow, you can build a team remotely as well – that’s what I have done.
What is one habit of yours that makes you more productive as an entrepreneur?
I meticulously schedule my time and certain types of work will be done on certain days of the week and at certain times. For example, prospecting, content creation, client work, team reporting, email responses, etc. all have their own spots.
This helps me work on what’s important for the long term growth of my business, as opposed to what has just popped into my inbox. It also really helps me avoid feeling overwhelmed, which like most entrepreneurs, I’ve struggled with in the past.
What's your favourite quote?
Don’t wish it was easier, wish you were better – Jim Rohn
Any good book to recommend to an aspiring entrepreneur?
Principles by Ray Dalio
This book is the best material I have read on decision making, which in my opinion is the single most important component of success. Deciding what to spend your limited resources (time and money) on is absolutely vital.
Learn more about Ben Heath at www.leadguru.co.uk
And check out the resources Ben offers to help you in your Facebook Ads Campaigns :
Find a local BNI (Business network international) chapter
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