237: Dennis Yu On How To Build A Personal Brand With Facebook Ads

235: How To Build A Personal Brand With Facebook Ads For Just 5 Bucks A Day With Dennis Yu

Today I’m lucky to have Dennis Yu on the show. Dennis is someone who I met at Social Media Marketing World at the speakers mixer and it’s funny. I knew that I recognized the guy right away because he’s been plastered all over my Facebook feed for years.

Anyway Dennis is the CTO of BlitzMetrics, a digital marketing company which partners with schools to train young adults, teaching them how to manage social campaigns for large enterprise clients. He’s been featured all over the place like The Wall Street Journal, The New York Times and he’s an all around Facebook ads geek. Enjoy the interview!

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What You’ll Learn

  • Why Dennis started Blitzmetrics
  • How to create a strong personal brand
  • How to select a targeted audience
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  • The key to a successful campaign

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You’re listening to the My Wife Quit Her Job Podcast, the place where I bring on successful bootstrapped business owners and dig deep into what strategies they use to grow their businesses. And today, I have a special guest with me on the show Dennis Yu. And Dennis is the CTO of BlitzMetrics and a total Facebook ads geek. And in today’s episode, we’re going to discuss how to use Facebook ads to develop a personal brand.

But before we begin, I want to give a quick shout out to Privy who is a sponsor of the show. Privy is the tool that I use to build my email list for both my blog and my online store. And right now I’m using privy to display a cool Wheel of Fortune pop up. Basically a user gives their email for a chance to win valuable prizes in our store. And customers love the gamification aspect of this and when I implemented this form email signups increased by 131%.

But you can also use Privy to reduce cart abandonment with cart saver pop ups and an abandoned email sequence at one super low price that is much cheaper than using a full blown email marketing solution. So bottom line, Privy allows me to turn visitors into email subscribers and recover lost sales in my online store. So, head on over to Privy.com/Steve and try it for free. And if you decide you need some of the more advanced features, use coupon code MWQHJ For 15% off. Once again that’s P-R-I-V-Y.com/Steve.

I also want to give a quick shout out to Klaviyo who is also a sponsor of the show. Always blessed to have Klaviyo as a sponsor because they are the email marketing platform that I personally use for my e-commerce store, and I depend on them for over 30% of my revenues. Now Klaviyo is the only email platform out there that is specifically built for ecommerce stores, and here is why it is so powerful.

Klaviyo can track every single customer who has shopped in your store and exactly what they bought. So let’s say I want to send out an email to everyone who purchased a red handkerchief in the last week, easy. Let’s say I want to set up a special auto-responder sequence to my customers depending on what they bought, piece of cake, and there is full revenue tracking on every single email sent. Klaviyo is the most powerful email platform that I’ve ever used and you could try them for free at mywifequitherjob.com/K-L-A-V-I-Y-O. Once again, that’s mywifequitherjob.com/K-L-A-V-I-Y-O, now on to the show.

Intro: Welcome to the My Wife Quit Her Job Podcast. We will teach you how to create a business that suits your lifestyle, so you can spend more time with your family and focus on doing the things that you love. Here is your host, Steve Chou.

Steve: Welcome to My Wife Quit Her Job Podcast. Today I’m lucky to have Dennis Yu on the show. Now Dennis is someone who I met at Social Media Marketing World at the speaker’s mixer. And it’s funny; I knew that I had recognized the guy right away because he’s been plastered all over my Facebook feed for years. And so, we started chatting about his Facebook strategies which are fascinated by the way.

And I found out that Dennis is the CTO of BlitzMetrics, a digital marketing company which partners with schools to train young adults teaching them how to manage social campaigns for large enterprise clients. And he’s been featured all over the place like the Wall Street Journal, The New York Times, and he’s an all around Facebook ads geek. And with that, welcome to show Dennis. How are you doing today man?

Dennis: Hey, good Steve. Always good to hang out, I don’t know if like me being plastered on your feed is a good or a bad thing.

Steve: No, it’s good thing. I recognized you right away. I’ve seen you literally every day.

Dennis: Oh, oh stalking you, retargeting you.

Steve: I mean the strategy works. And that’s something we’re going to be talking about today. But before we begin, I wanted to get a quick background story about you just in case someone my listeners don’t know who you are. Tell us how you got started with Facebook ads and how did that lead to BlitzMetrics.

Dennis: Yeah and I started working at American Airlines, had built their website 20 something years ago, almost 20 years ago, I started analytics at Yahoo. And ever since then, it’s been all about data, and using data and relationships to try to drive ROI. It’s great for agents like us, right. You’re good at math. I got a perfect SAT except for two questions on robotic perfect math. And so how do you use things that you’re good at in terms of analytics to then be able to drive things at scale? And like at could Yahoo, I learned how do you drive sales for something like Yahoo Personals or Yahoo shopping, Yahoo Mail, and you’re driving relationships at scale.

But I learned from analytics, which almost nobody gets the viewpoint from being inside a search engine. I learned from being inside a search engine that it wasn’t the masses of 170 million users that were coming in every day, hey, this is before Google became big, right. Imagine back in the day, Yahoo doesn’t exist any longer. And I learned that it was about finding and developing these micro relationships. So someone who was using Yahoo mail, and they played fantasy sports, we also knew something about their favorite sports teams and who their friends were and how they can invite friends in to chat because maybe they’re using chat to talk about fantasy sports, while they’re coordinating on scores from Yahoo Sports and Yahoo News.

And the idea that you could build a giant company off of micro bits of relationships and data is something I think almost no one would understand unless they’ve been inside a search engine. Now you’ve got all this talk about influencer marketing, and personal branding and social media expert, consulting, author, speaker, coach, public figure, I’m famous, look at me, Ted Talk, all that kind of stuff. And it’s come full circle where you need to have the data, the building blocks of these relationships. And I’ve always come out at the last 20 years from a data standpoint of quantifying relationships.

Steve: And the way you do that these days is how?

Dennis: Everything that you do creates a deposit or a withdrawal in every relationship, whether it’s a client or not. It’s for example, prior to this call, we were meeting with some of our friends in [inaudible 00:06:07] and they publish textbooks, and we’ve got a digital marketing analytics textbook that’s coming out. And two weeks prior, well, these folks are up in Idaho Falls way up in the mountain on the border in the mountains in the border of Montana, and just having a good time. And a year ago, we were hanging out at Social Media Marketing World.

And three or four years ago, we were teaching well, they reached out to me saying, hey, I hear you’re really good at Facebook ads; can you do an expert session? And I said, sure, happy to right. And since then, tens of thousands of students and university professors have seen it. But what you see is a small relationship that started years ago, grows just like relationships that you have, people that you know. Think about like who your best friends are, or maybe your wife, she quit her job, right? It’s something you had to develop an initial seed, and that seed grows, and it grows through remarketing, it grows through frequent lightweight touches.

When we did analysis on Yahoo Personals, which was a dating site that we started from nothing, we found that when people would date, and they became eventually close, and maybe they got married, the nature of their interactions when they were already going steady, they’re already married, already been together a long time versus people who are like newlyweds or they were just going on a first date, or whatever, you know what, the distinguishing factor was that people in solid relationships had frequent lightweight touches. And you examine their text messages, you examine their mail, you examine, we had all this data in Yahoo, and it would just be simple things like yes, or no, or ha-ha, or just little touches.

And it’s funny, because when you build up many, many lightweight touches, that puts deposits in those relationship bank accounts. And you think about the social graph on how you’re constantly making these deposits, your personal brand is the sum of all of these positive and negative deposits that eventually you may ask for a favor, you may ask for money, and that’s a withdrawal. And if you don’t have a positive balance there, you will bounce a check when you try to make a withdrawal.

Steve: Which happens all the time to both of us, I’m sure right, people asking us for help out of the middle of nowhere, right?

Dennis: Yeah, it’s like he already has his jab, jab, jab, hook thing because you make deposits before you withdraw anything.

Steve: And I had to wait two years for this interview constantly hounding you.

Dennis: That’s called interest. Now, I owe you, right?

Steve: So one of the conversations that we did have, you probably don’t remember this; it was all along the lines of personal branding. And every day I get hundreds of emails from people who are kind of stuck in dead end jobs, or people who can’t find a career. And my advice to them is always to just start something on the side, or build your own portfolio of content. And if you don’t know what you’re doing, then just build an audience, establish your own brand. And that’s what I was hoping to pick your brain about today. And I know you do a lot of this stuff at BlitzMetrics. But let’s say one of the listeners out there, they’re starting with nothing like, what’s the first step that you would give them or have them do to just kind of start establishing their brand?

Dennis: All of what you’re doing Steve, interview other people, who have some kind of expertise, whether it’s perceived or actual, and get them on video and make a one minute video. Like if we’re hanging out at Social Media Marketing World and there’s 6,000 people there, certainly at the lunch tables or in a session or when you catch a speaker, not right before they’re about to go on stage or something like that. But you can find these people and you can ask them a question or two, not five questions, just like one question for a one minute video. And you collect a series of these.

And you don’t have to know anything; you don’t have to have a brand. You don’t have to be good on camera, because you’re just pulling out your iPhone and getting their feedback. That’s what I did for the first 20 years of my life. And then the next 20 years of my life was about paying that forward from the mentors and other people that have taught me. A lot of people want to jump straight to the main stage without having any experience and without having the knowledge and it shows through, they think they’re fooling everybody. I made a post on Facebook about that yesterday and it got to like 400 likes, because it’s about people who are fraudulently promoting their lifestyle.

They don’t have the lifestyle, they owe people money, they don’t own those vehicles that they’re posing in front of. They are constantly burning relationships, because they think it’s all about maintaining that look. And in social media people are they spend so much effort. So many of these people, these author, speaker, coach, influencer, whatever you want to call these people are so busy trying to maintain this Hollywood facade that they have not invested in their knowledge. And I always believe I’m old fashioned. I believe, invest in your knowledge is the best way to learn firsthand, right? Just start a podcast and interview other people. Of course, do your homework beforehand so you don’t come off as being silly, right?

Steve: Let’s say I want to become known as an authority in a certain area. And I know you do this a lot with your Facebook ads, because even before we even met, I saw you talking about various topics in social media. And I think you were talking about a bunch of different topics. Every time I went on my Facebook, I saw you on the feed talking about something else. And even though we hadn’t met and I knew nothing about your company at the time, I watched some of those videos. And over time I started seeing you as an authority in that area. And so, if someone wants to do that, like I’m kind of curious what your strategy over time is for doing that.

Dennis: That’s easy, so if you want to be an authority in X, whatever that is, let’s say, it’s helping out dentists or help helping attorneys generate leads. My buddy Ben Doll is actually an expert here, he’s sitting right next to me. Well, if I know nothing about that, I’m not a lawyer, I have no experience; I would do a Google search for internet marketing lawyers or something like that. See who shows up in terms of the people, follow them on Twitter, connect with them on LinkedIn, maybe if I’ve built sort of a relationship or something that I can say, and…

Steve: Can you give me some examples, like assuming you’re doing this cold, right?

Dennis: Yeah, it’s really easy. You have to creep on people in a non creepy way. So if you follow these people, if you retweet their stuff, that’s not seen as being intrusive, that’s just being part of the community. And when you comment on their blog posts, when you comment on their Facebook Company, and you write them a review, when you do things that are positive, and you say thank you. And in those reviews, and in those blog posts that you write, you are demonstrating that you have taken the time to review their stuff, not just like, oh, that was a really great article, all that was awesome, great job on being featured on Entrepreneur. That’s not building engagement. That’s not demonstrating that you have earned the right to talk to these people.

It’s very easy to build authority in any area that you want if you do this. I know because 99% of the people that approached me are automatic DQ because they come straight for the ask. They say, can you get me a blue checkmark? Can you introduce me to Mark Zuckerberg? Can you get me tickets to the Golden State Warriors? We’ve never met. I don’t even know who you are. And that’s the — can you imagine like Stephen, I just walked up to you and I didn’t know who you were and I said, hey Steve, can I have the keys to your car, and we don’t even know each other right?

Steve: I would say Dennis you could have whatever you want.

Dennis: If I had a gun at your head maybe. All of us I think we understand this kind of etiquette. Yet 99% of people fail because they think the internet is such a big place that you can get away with murder or there’s just enough people. Going back to Yahoo Personals, there were people that would behave, they’d set up their dating profile, and they just figured there’s enough people that if I make a profile and if I reach out to enough women, enough of those women are going to you no respond to my message. And of those, I’ll be able to go on a date. And of those I’ll be able to — and if you just send out enough messages, if I blast my resume out there enough times, then eventually I’ll just get a job right, if I just blast enough.

And that is what spammers do. That’s what people who put their stuff on Twitter and just like mass blast and follow and the Instagram follow trends which are getting killed, like don’t do that. I believe in following a few people. It’s a warren Buffett methodology, right? Warren Buffett, you know what is stop picking strategy is?

Steve: No, what is it?

Dennis: Like invest in 1,000 random stops like a mutual fund. It’s put all your eggs in one basket and watch that basket, research a few stocks really well, and put your money there. I have a finance degree. I can say stuff like that.

Steve: Actually, one of my buddies, you might know him Billy Murphy. He put all of his money in Apple like many years ago.

Dennis: Yeah, he’s doing well.

Steve: And he’s doing well, though, yeah, exactly. But okay. So you find someone that you want to follow, and then you kind of subtly in the background, you tweet them, you might leave a comment, a thoughtful comment on their blog. But if someone’s really busy, they might not necessarily notice that right. I mean, is this a very long term strategy?

Dennis: No, they’ll notice. I mean, do you consider long term three months?

Steve: No, not at all, three months is short.

Dennis: Look, even people like me, I’m not trying to say I’m famous or anything like that, I’m not whatever, Paris Hilton or one of these people, but I certainly get a lot of people coming after me. And I notice when people leave thoughtful comments. I notice when they leave a review, I notice if they tag me multiple times. And of course, I’ll try to block them or whatever because a lot of spammy people will like tag 80 people in a post. But if people say something that’s interesting, that really stands out. And it’s to your advantage to do that, because you know that 99% of people don’t do that. So you will easily stand out.

I know a lot of these other people — I know, I have friends that are billionaires. I have a lot of internet billionaires who it’s not hard because I know all the people from the beginning. And we all joke about these people that come up to us. We’ll be having dinner, like one time I was having lunch with Robert Scoble. And we had this, and I think I brought Logan with me. And as a three, and we were good for the first half hour at dinner, and then all of a sudden, some people noticed us. And then because we’re hiding in the back, and these other people, and then all of a sudden, all these people came up and they tried to pitch us and they want to take pictures oh my, oh no.

Steve: While you guys were eating?

Dennis: While we were having lunch.

Steve: Oh yeah that’s terrible.

Dennis: So eventually, [inaudible 00:17:01] Robert, let’s leave, let’s go somewhere else because we were chatting about some stuff, right? We were working on some stuff together; we had a book coming out, right? You can’t be interrupted right now; we don’t want to be impolite. So just don’t be one of those people, right? That’s the main thing, ask any celebrity and their main thing is just don’t be one of those people. And it’s so easy to approach. You would think like celebrities, or famous business people or whatever, oh they think that they’re so important and their time is so squeezed. And it is, but they’re actually really helpful. And I’ve met so many successful people, not just billionaires, but people who have just below that level, and they’re all really nice to me.

Steve: So, so far, we’ve talked about establishing contact with influencers and that sort of thing. How does that tie into making yourself as an authority? So once you have contact with this person, and you’ve established some sort of mutual trust, what is the next step?

Dennis: Then you interview them in a one minute video, get on Skype for five minutes. Or maybe you ask them one question. You say, hey, I’ve got an article I’m writing and it’s coming out next Friday on the 10 things that are happening with Bitcoin. No, don’t do that. That’s a big, but some kind of topic that’s an area that you would like to be well known in eventually, but you don’t have any authority. Can you just give me one tip, and so you assemble a listical, because maybe you reach out to 10 people, and they each give you one tip, and lo and behold, you have an article, a listical right? It’s the easiest way to do it.

You see a lot of people that will say, what 150 experts have to say about how to get a mortgage, or whatever the topic is, like, insert your topic, what’s your topic? Who are those people? Don’t just mass blast each of them saying, hey, can you give me this one thing, but take the time to research who they are, take the time to see what they really care about. And ask a question that demonstrates that you have done some homework, and they will reply most of the time.

Steve: It’s funny; I’m just looking at my own correspondence here. I would say 99.9% of people do not do that. It’s really easy to spot a mass email.

Dennis: Yeah, and then what’s worse, or actually about the same is then they hire these VAs, or they use these bots, the PR agencies are the worst. I even got three of them today that were saying, yeah, I can help you drive leads on LinkedIn and do your lead gen automatically and all this and that. And I replied back saying no, thank you. You’re a robot; I would not want to be known as spamming people like that. In fact, if I had competitors, I would pay for them to use your service to put them out of business.

Steve: Okay. So we have this video or this listical, what’s the next step?

Dennis: You’re going to put it on Facebook; and you’re going to set for $1 a day.

Steve: So, what would be the caption, or what would the ad look like and who are we targeting here?

Dennis: We’re going to target the people in the audience that care about that particular topic, to people that go to that conference, the people that read the book, the people that follow that particular person. So let’s say that I’m in sales and I do real estate, and I am able to pull off a five minute interview with Grant Cardone, I’m not saying it has to be A list people, I’m going to target Grant Cardone. So I’ve got an interview with Robert Scoble, I’ve got lots of interviews with Robert Scoble, guess what I’m going to target, Robert Scoble.

I’ve got pictures and videos of me with the Golden State Warriors at their headquarters with their marketing people talking about how to do digital marketing, and how to succeed on Facebook. Who am I going to target? The people that work with the Golden State Warriors and the people that work at ESPN and the people that work in the NBA, and the people that are going to care about that kind of content. I want the highest relevancy possible. Think about who would care about that piece of content.

Steve: And then I’m targeting those people. What is the goal of the ad?

Dennis: I just want to drive engagement. I want to drive an initial touch. I’m not trying to sell anything. I’m not trying to make a withdrawal. I want to demonstrate that as a journalist, as a fact gathering objective helper, I am collecting useful information and distributing it to other people without an initial ulterior motive. And when people see that you are trustworthy, they know you by who you hang out with. So, if they see that my co founder Logan Young is hanging out with Mark Zuckerberg, and they see that he is being interviewed on CNN about oh, Senator, we run ads, and being interviewed before Congress and all that.

If they see him there, he’s not selling any of our packages. He’s not selling consulting. He’s not saying anything about how good he is or how much he knows, or the fact that our company we’ve spent a billion dollars on Facebook ads. Not once does he or I or Ben, or any of our people, none of us ever need to say that because Steve, who would you trust more, Logan, who let’s say you know nothing about Logan. But you see him hanging out with Mark Zuckerberg versus somebody who says, hey, Steve, I’m really good at Facebook ads, you should hire me, me, me, me, me. Like, who would you think would be better at Facebook ads?

Steve: Yeah. So you’re gaining authority by association in the very beginning.

Dennis: And that’s called perceived authority. And perceived authority has to always precede actual authority. Actual authority is that you have the credit, you actually know how to do it, you have the proof, you have the checklist. The actual authority is where, let’s say, Steve, we implement this for you. And you saw you saw our personal brand manager, which is a media kit, let’s say they implement that for you and it drives good things for you, and it works for you and it builds your personal brand. That would be actual authority, because you’ve seen it, the proof is in the pudding.

But if you haven’t seen it, but you think based on who we are hanging out with, you think based on what we’re saying, you think based on people that we’re interviewing and the fact that we’re speaking at Social Media Marketing World, then you think that we might be good, and that’s perceived authority. Here’s a secret for anybody that wants to sell things, you must develop perceived authority before actual authority.

Steve: I just want to take a moment to thank Ahrefs for being a sponsor of the show. Now, I’m a huge fan of their tool and in my opinion Ahrefs is the best all in one SEO tool out there to rank in Google search. And recently, I completed a search engine site audit for mywifequitherjob.com and Bumblebeelinens.com and Ahrefs was indispensable. For example, I used Ahrefs to do a deep dive into all my posts to find the highest volume, lowest competition keywords to target in search. And in fact, recently, I used Ahrefs to rank a blog post in Google from position 20 to position five for a big time keyword in the span of just one month by switching around my title and H1 tags.

I also use Ahrefs to spy my competitors’ sites to see what keywords they are ranking for, and then I read a more comprehensive post and eventually outrank them in search. Now those of you who know me know that I hate spending money on tools, but I actually pay for Ahrefs and that should say something in itself. Right now, I’m giving away nine three month Ahrefs memberships for free. To sign up, head on over to mywifequitherjob.com/giveaway, once again, that’s mywifequitherjob.com/giveaway to win a three month a trust membership. Now back to the show.

And this perceived authority according to you can be obtained with this video that we’re just bidding $1 per day on Facebook campaign, right?

Dennis: Yeah.

Dennis: So can you walk me through this campaign, $1 in my experience doesn’t go that far. And so can you tell me how you can figure out whether the ad is working, or the engagement is good? What are some of the metrics that you use?

Dennis: So there’s something we call the standards of excellence, which is another way of it’s like the check engine light in your car when something’s wrong, right? And if your relevance score is low, that’s a sign that something is wrong but it doesn’t tell you exactly what’s wrong, right? It could be the engine is broken or whatever, when you’re in the car, that the thing goes on, right. And the way to troubleshoot further besides relevance score, which you can look at, at the ad level, very easy to look at, you should be getting at least an eight by the way. If you’re not getting an eight, something is wrong. You’re shooting an interesting video and you’re not getting eight, if you’re not selling anything, you should always get an eight plus.

But if it’s a video, I want to see what my average watch time is; the average watch time is six seconds on Facebook. I want to see 15 plus. If I can get 15 seconds plus on a one minute video, means I’ve captured their attention. If people are bailing out after three seconds, which is where Facebook I think currently counts a video view, that’s a sign that people are just scrolling past my junk. And maybe it’s because I don’t have captions or I’m not interesting, or I’m sitting in front of — I’m sitting in a conference room with a blank wall in the back and a fake potted plant, not interesting, right. Or I have my logo coming across the top with my name; no one cares about that, right. You’re going to lose people.

So the first thing is that watch time, which is governed by how many people I’m losing right away. Then I want to look at what my cost per view is, and not just my cost per three second view, which ideally should be two cents or less. But I want to look at my cost per 10 second view, and you can actually bid to a 10 second view. I mean, you don’t have to; you could just boost post all day long. But if I can get a 10 second view for under five cents, I’m doing pretty well. So think about that. If I spend $1, and I’m getting a 10 second view for five cents, a nickel, then I’m getting 20 people to watch for at least 10 seconds. 20 people that I know are going to be interested. Is that worth it? I think so, 20 of the right people.

Let’s say I spend 10 bucks. Now I got 200 people staying for at least 10 seconds to listen to what I have to say or listen to some other top or demonstrate that I have some kind of authority. Even if I say nothing in that video but I’m interviewing someone else who is authoritative, that Association spills over on to me, it’s called implied authority, right?

Steve: And that becomes very powerful, especially with a targeted audience of people that you want to eventually sell to.

Dennis: Yeah, I’ll just give you an example. So three years ago, Logan Young was delivering pizza for Pizza Hut at $9 an hour. Then he started following our systems on personal branding. There’s no magic, we publish it. It’s not some secret, right. And he became good at optimizing Facebook ads. Imagine that, like a cook that could follow a recipe for chocolate cake. He became good. Not that it was hard, because we follow the recipe. Betty Crocker is not a witch; you just follow the things on the side of the box. And so we were charging $250 an hour which is not bad from $9 now, right to do an ad now, right? That’s pretty good.

Then Mark Zuckerberg approached him at a conference and wanted to take a picture and his price is now $1,000 an hour. And so he used to make $250 an hour which is good right, now it’s $1,000 an hour and the clients are better, we’re getting more business from people buying that power hour because he does have the skill. He has the actual authority meaning that after they pay the $1,000, they’re not going to get disappointed because he knows what he’s doing. And I also like to look over stuff too just to make sure it’s good. I mean, I never really need to, but I just like to look over other stuff before it goes out because it has my stamp on it too.

But he has the perceived authority because he’s hanging out with Zuckerberg, so he can charge four times as much. And he’s always had the actual authority. Do you think Steve that the day before he hung out with Zuckerberg versus the day after somehow his ability to do Facebook ads was like four times better just by like, hanging out Mark Zuckerberg for a few minutes, all of a sudden, his knowledge was just like four times better?

Steve: The answer is no. But how did he meet Zuckerberg in the first place?

Dennis: Ah, you see. Now that is many lightweight touches over time because we have been to so many meetings at Facebook. We have been involved in their betas. We know a lot of their people. We even helped build the initial Power Editor, which is their copy of Google’s AdWords editor. And there was one conference that Logan was at, and he was wearing a Facebook shirt. He was the only one at the conference wearing a Facebook shirt. Why? Because the only place to get a Facebook shirt is at Facebook headquarters. You can’t order it online; you can’t even get it at the local offices. And Mark Zuckerberg said, where did you get that Facebook shirt? Are you an employee? And he wasn’t even in the main sessions. He was just like, walking around. He’s on his laptop or whatever, right? And they struck up a conversation and they talked about all kinds of stuff. And then Zach said, can we take a picture together?

Steve: Nice.

Dennis: And that’s where you see the picture that’s on his public figure page, which we then boost out and we use that picture all over. We use clips from him on CNN from being quoted in the Washington Post, he’s been all over the place, Social Media Marketing World, Traffic and Conversion Summit, keynotes in all these different countries, right. And that just builds tons and tons of perceived authority. But I don’t think it has anything directly to do with whether he’s any good at Facebook ads. He is, but you wouldn’t, you’d have to believe that he is first and then he has to prove it to you.

Steve: So we’re running this engagement ad, we’re doing $1 day and presumably if the engagement is good, we’ll up the spend on that, right.

Dennis: Yeah, so do you just let that run? When do you start transitioning over to reaching out and maybe going for some sort of sale? Like, what are the steps leading up to that?

Dennis: Okay, most people are not going to like what I have to say, they’re going to disagree with what I’m about to tell you. I don’t believe in reaching out to sell. I believe in inbound marketing all the way through, they have to come out and want it. So just 10 minutes ago, or whatever, 20 minutes ago, somebody signed up for our Blitz nation pro subscription, which is an annual subscription for 1,500 dollars of private membership. I’ve never met this person before. And he said, I’ve been following your stuff for years on digital marketing, and these other places where you’ve been sharing with the community.

And every one of those touches, we’ve been building that relationship until at which point he said, I am now at the point where I want to scale my business. I want to grow my agency and take better care of my clients. I am ready for this. I was not ready three years ago or four years ago. Is there any way I could have tracked that? Is there any way inside my Google Analytics or Facebook analytics or Infusionsoft I could have tracked that? I would have never known. And that’s really where it comes from. You have to have some amount of blind trust that if you plant this seed, that months and years down the road, it’s going to pay off. Personal branding is not put a $1 in the machine, and you get something out 10 seconds later. It’s not a vending machine, it’s a gardening thing. You plant the seeds, and however long it takes for the crops to grow, that’s how long it takes.

Steve: Right. It’ll be hard to calculate the ROI of these engagement ads, right?

Dennis: It’s really hard. I wish I could tell you, I’m an analytics person. I’m telling you it’s not fully possible. But there are some — it’s not completely blind. What you can do is see, of the people that are engaging with you are, who are they? And when you comment with them, and have a conversation with them, when they say something or ask a question and you respond by answering their question in a helpful way, instead of like trying to sell them something, they’re going to realize that and then you’re going to see their name. We see their names, usually a couple of weeks later, and they’ll buy one of our courses like $97, right? Because people aren’t just going to spend $97, well, some people will. But most people, they need to see some of the content, they need to kind of talk to you, like chat with you, right? I’m happy to chat with people if they reach out and then they buy. And that’s just how people are used to buying.

Steve: Let me ask you this. So you don’t turn those engagement ads into any sort of other ad that tries to get a lead?

Dennis: Oh, we do. We remarket those audiences.

Steve: Okay, all right.

Dennis: We’re not calling them up. It’s not like they fill out a form and then we keep calling them. It’s just like if you sign up for Salesforce, a rep will call you within like 10 seconds. Like, that’s why you never — you get your badge scanned at a conference. Never let them scan your badge because you know they’re going to keep calling you and calling you. So we do remarketing. So if people have watched multiple of our videos, then we could say, people who have watched video one for more than 10 seconds in the last 30 days, then show them video two. And video to or landing page two, or whatever the next piece of content is, could be promoting, hey, we have we 10 ways on how to do whatever.

It’s a lead magnet, and we just need your email address and we’ll send this to you. It’s free still. But you have to give me your email address so I can send the thing to you. And then when they go through our email sequence, we’ll give them a bunch of tips, we’ll give them videos, we’ll give them so much stuff. They’ll think like, wow, this is amazing. And they’ll say, hey, for $7, we have this thing on how do you hire a virtual assistant from the Philippines, that one is $7 to you? Well, heck, yeah, I got all this stuff for free. I put in my email and I continue to get all this amazing stuff for free. For $7, yeah for sure. I mean, if it’s anything like the stuff I’ve been getting for $7, Holy Molly, right.

And then from there we say, hey, would you like to learn how to use our dollar a day strategy? It’s $189. And they’re like, oh man, I’ve gotten so much value out of the $7, I think I’ll — yeah, I mean 189, my goodness, it comes with a little bit of support. It actually has tons of video lessons, it has like, it’s robust. It’s a full course, there’s a certificate, I can earn, there’s quizzes and exercises like, yeah, I think I would do that, right. Versus just starting cold saying, hey, buy my course for $189, or buy a power hour from Logan for $1,000 to optimize your ads. So what we do with — you guys understand like lead magnets are things you get for free with an email address, and the trip wire is something really cheap just to collect the dollar or two, right?

Steve: Mm-hmm yeah.

Dennis: Our best selling consulting are people who are spending say 10 grand a month with us is most of them come through by buying a course for like $99, $97 where they buy something small. The majority of people that have bought something big had bought something small first.

Steve: Do you have a gradual progression? I think you mentioned something like seven bucks first, and then 200 followed by 1,000.

Dennis: So that’s called the ascension model or some people call it an ascension path. And there’s many different price levels that you can have. You’ll see people argue in the forums on, oh, how much should your trip wire be? And a lot of people like to put trip wires at $7. And I don’t want to go into all the different arguments on how much a tripwire should be. Here’s the answer. It depends on a particular audience. So if you’re selling high end B2B software, then $1,000 could be a trip wire, right. On a million dollar package, $1,000 is the trip wire. But if you’re selling something to consumers, like learn how to play the guitar for the first time, to play an A chord and an E chord, your trip wire might be $1 or two and your course might be $17, right? So it’s all relative to the expectation of the buyer.

Steve: Okay. And then I’m just curious about your opinion on grabbing a Messenger subscriber versus an email subscriber in this day and age.

Dennis: You do both. Messenger will give you subscribers at maybe a third of the cost, but then again, I know there you can well argue with me, monkey, we’ve gone round and round. The day after he sold his company for $150 million, he spent the whole day with Logan and me, he canceled his whole schedule just to spend it with us two making videos about what to do about Facebook chat bots and the common misconceptions. But I still believe in email, right now, an email address is worth more than someone who is a subscriber in your list because you have their information. And there’s limitations on how many messages you can send and what’s promotional versus not.

However, you can have your cake and eat it too because if you set up a chat blast, or if you set up a [comment guard] [ph] where you are collecting their information with a chat bot and say, hey, comment yes, and I’ll give you the seven ways to do whatever, right. That’s a lead magnet. People comment yes, and then you give them that thing. But you say, oh, just in case we get disconnected, can I have your email address, which is a ridiculous thing to say. But that’s what happens when you’re on the phone, though. So people are like, sure here’s my phone number or here’s — and so people — I don’t remember what the opt-in rate is on that, but it’s something stupidly high like 80, 90%, right?

Steve: Really, okay, I’m not doing that right now. Okay, I’ll try that.

Dennis: And we’ll set up your mobile monkey if you want, we’re good at it. We have the inside scoop, the building features for us is really cool. So if you set up your Messenger bot, you can have your cake and eat it too, because along the way, you’re going to collect their email address. And then you have the opportunity to ask one or multiple questions and then send them down a path. So the Messenger model actually breaks the typical funnel. So when you have a sequence funnel that goes from awareness to consideration to conversion, it typically occurs over multiple weeks or months, or it goes through an email nurture sequence, it’s multiple emails. You can actually shortcut that and have it all occur in a single conversation because Messenger allows you to do that if you build out your sequences the right way.

Steve: When you mention replacing an email sequence with chat, are you talking about the interaction, or are you talking about auto responders within a chat bot?

Dennis: I’m talking about the interaction. I don’t think about chat boxes auto responders; although that’s the way most people build chatbots. They think of it as like crappy SMS, or they think of it is like, oh, I’m just going to take what I would say in an email and I’m just not jam it through a chat bot. You can’t do that because chat is so lightweight. You can’t send whole emails through chat. I mean, chat is like a few — you send a chat that’s more than a response, that’s more than a couple of sentences long and it takes up the whole window, and you can’t do that, right. So it has to be really lightweight, it has to be conversational. It has to be yes, no, A, B or C, it has to be really simplified.

Steve: I just wanted to take a moment to tell you about my brand new service that will help you grow your email list for free through group giveaways. Now, this service is called Gobrandwin.com, and we’ve had amazing results so far. In one of our last giveaways, we gathered almost 12,000 emails and grew the email lists of participating ecommerce stores by over 56% overnight. Now, does getting more customers and more emails for free sound interesting to you? Here is how it works.

If you own your own e-commerce brand, and you have a following, you contribute a gift card from your store valued at $200 or more. We will then assemble gift cards from other participating brands with a similar customer demographic and turn it into one massive sweepstakes giveaway. Now, everyone is going to send this giveaway email to their entire customer base, and drive them to a special landing page on Gobrandwin.com. We will acquire email addresses. Now consumers enter their emails, we send them special offers from your store and select a grand prize winner.

And after the sweepstakes is over, you will receive the full list of entrants and instantly grow your email list. And because my co founder and I have a pretty big network, we will also send the giveaway entry form to related influencers within the same niche and instantly augment any sweepstakes that we run. So bottom line the concept is very simple, we all help each other promote each other’s businesses, get free promotion from bloggers, and share the customer base. Now, if you’re interested in growing your email list, then head on over to Gobrandwin.com. That’s G-O-B-R-A-N-D-W-I-N.com, that’s Gobrandwin.com, and it is 100% free. Now back to the show.

Let’s take a moment since we’re getting up to 40 minutes here. Let’s take a moment to kind of just summarize everything that you’ve said so far because it’s been a lot. If you’re starting out with nothing, and you want to become an authority in your niche, you first start out by trying to get the attention of an influencer in the space that you want to pursue, right?

Dennis: Yep.

Steve: Through thoughtful communication, tweets, comments, whatever. And then try to get them into a conversation on Skype and create a small video.

Dennis: Or meet them in person at a conference.

Steve: Or meet them in person at a conference, that’s even better, right?

Dennis: Like friction, it could be friends that you know because everyone knows somebody. And if you just run into them, pull out your phone and be ready for that one minute video. Be ready for the topic. If you’ve mapped out your six topics that you care about, which we call your topic wheel, then you’re Johnny on the spot and ready to go. The worst thing is you’re about to meet someone well known or you didn’t know they’re going to be there and you don’t have anything to say, you’ve wasted that opportunity. You need to have those topics you care about mapped out in advance; it’s too late to try to make it up on the spot. It’s not going to come out the way you want.

Steve: Do you need permission before you show a video of an influencer in an ad?

Dennis: Well, I’d like to interview you for a one minute video. And they say yes, that’s called lightweight consent. It’s verbal consent, and it’s legal.

Steve: Okay. And then you put out an engagement ad, and you’re looking for metrics such as 20 cents for a 10 second view.

Dennis: Five cents for a 10 second view so you can get…

Steve: Oh, five cents, okay.

Dennis: Well, or even for dollar because we’re talking about a $1 day and you’re going to put that video or put that post or put that picture of you and that person on your public figure page, not your profile, but on a business page that has your name as the name of the page just like mine, right? If you go to fb.com/getfound, you you’ll see that that’s my public figure page, fb.com/DennisYu is my profile, the one that has a blue checkmark.

Steve: What is the difference between having a public figure page versus just your personal page?

Dennis: There’s only one page. You have a profile. As a user, you log into Facebook, and you have friends. And that’s called the profile. You don’t have analytics. You can’t boost posts. You can’t do things that happen on a business page. A page is a business page. There’s many categories of business pages. There’s restaurants, and brands and nonprofits and celebrities. And there’s one called a pop up with figure, one type of business page called public figure, which looks like you, it has your name, it has your picture, it looks just like a profile. But instead of friends, it has fans and you have the ability to run ads and do analytics and all the kinds of things that you can do on a page, right?

Steve: And what is the distinction between boosting a post versus using ad manager and running an ad manually?

Dennis: Well, ads manager allows you to choose from a broad range of objectives, like you want to drive for conversions, you want leads, you want to get video views, you want check ins you want offers. There’s all kinds of things that you can do with ads manager, if you want to sit down and actually build complex ad campaigns. However, most of us, including me, will just post stuff on our public figure page. And then we’ll just hit the boost button, right? The boost button is right there in the timeline. And then you hit boost. When you hit boost, the default, this is objective, is engagement. I mean, you can sometimes choose messages or if you want to drive video views, but I’d like to keep it on engagement.

And then you just choose who your audience is and choose the budget. And that’s the easiest way to get started. You don’t have to go to ads manager, you can boost right from your page’s manager on your phone right from your Facebook app, right? You open up Facebook and see what’s going on. In your pages there, you can boost from right there. You don’t have to go on to your desktop. And there’s no more Power Editor anymore, but you don’t have to do anything fancy.

Steve: And that is equivalent to doing the exact same thing in the ads manager.

Dennis: Yeah, it’s the same thing as driving engagement.

Steve: Right, okay. And then once we have some engagement, we want to retarget those folks into some sort of lead magnet followed by some sort of trip wire followed by a gradual ascension into larger offers.

Dennis: Yeah, so Steve, and everyone else who’s listening, if you made it this far, you’re going to have multiple posts that you’re boosting, you’re going to put a $1 day against each of them for seven days. So each post you are spending $7 and you may have to put out 15, 20, 100 of them. And you’ll find that 5% to 10% of them will become winners. And then these winners, you’re going to put for a $1 a day for 365 days, or $2 a day for 365 days when it’s generating high engagement. And you can tell, once you’ve got 10 or 15 of these posts out, you can tell which ones are doing well, and which ones suck. And usually the ones that you think are awesome are the ones that are going to suck. And the ones you think are they are whatever, those are the ones that actually do really well.

But let the numbers tell, don’t just put post out there, and just keep posting and posting and not extending the boosts. What you want to find is eventually you have these winners. We have some posts that are three years old that are still boosted and they’re fantastic. It’s the greatest hits model. And when you have a library of these greatest hits you’re going to – you know if you are Guns N Roses you’re going to play Paradise City over and over, people want to hear and we actually saw Guns and Roses in concert a few months ago because MGM Resorts International is a client of ours so we get to go to concerts and stay in hotels for free and all that. But yeah, think your greatest hits.

Steve: So Dennis, where can people find you if they want more information?

Dennis: The best way to find me to learn about Facebook stuff is to look me up on LinkedIn because I’m at the 5,000 friend limit. So don’t friend request me unless you actually know me, because I have so many of them, I’m not going to know, just connect with me on LinkedIn. The LinkedIn limit is I think like 28,000 and I’m only halfway there, I’m at 15,000 so there’s plenty of room.

Steve: And watch out, if you ever end up landing on one of Dennis’s sights, you will see his posts in your Facebook feed forever.

Dennis: Hey, if you buy our stuff, then you’ll be in some of our negative targeting so you won’t see it, so get on our feed and buy one of our courses, buy like the standards of excellence for $25, and then you won’t have to see a lot of these things.

Steve: And I want to give Stelzner a plug here too since this is how we met. If you want to meet Denis in person, head on over to Social Media Marketing World. I found you walking around the halls randomly too at times.

Dennis: Awesome

Steve: All right, hey Dennis thanks a lot for coming on the show, really appreciate your time.

Dennis: Awesome Steve, thank you.

Steve: All right.

Hope you enjoyed that episode. Dennis is just one of those guys who is great at everything related to marketing and it’s all derived from experience. And his strategies are so intuitive that you end up hating yourself wondering why you haven’t been following Dennis a long time ago. For more information about this episode, go to mywifequitherjob.com/episode235.

And once again I want to thank Klaviyo for sponsoring this episode. Klaviyo is my email marketing platform of choice for e-commerce merchants and you can easily put together automated flows like an abandoned cart sequence, a post-purchase flow, a win-back campaign, basically all these sequences that will make you money on autopilot. So, head on over to Mywifequitherjob.com/ K-L-A-V-I-Y-O, once again that’s Mywifequitherjob.com/ K-L-A-V-I-Y-O.

I also want to thank Privy for sponsoring this episode. Privy is the email capture provider that I personally use to turn visitors into email subscribers. They offer email capture, exit intent, and site targeting tools to make it super simple as well. And I like Privy because it’s so powerful and you can basically trigger custom pop ups for any primer that is closely tied to your ecommerce store. If you want to give it a try, it is free. So head on over to Privy.com/Steve, once again that’s P-R-I-V-Y.com/Steve.

Now, I talk about how I use all these tools on my blog, and if you’re interested in starting your own ecommerce store, head on over to mywifequitherjob.com and sign up for my free six-day mini course. Just type in your email, and I’ll send you the course right away, thanks for listening.

Outro: Thanks for listening to the My Wife Quit Her Job Podcast, where we are giving the courage people need to start their own online business. For more information, visit Steve’s blog at www.mywifequitherjob.com.

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2 thoughts on “237: Dennis Yu On How To Build A Personal Brand With Facebook Ads”

  1. Lizzy says:

    I have being learning a lot thanx

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