Today, I had the honour of spending some time with Blue Cliff Media’s founder, the one and only Mr. Gavin Bell. Gavin started his business in just 7 days at age 21 and has since gone on to become certainly one of the smartest social media marketers I know. I’m sure you’ll agree as he drops some incredible wisdom, tips and insights to help you in all areas of Facebook marketing. Let’s dive in, shall we?
00:48:00 What was it like to start a business so quickly?
02:28:00 Why did you decide to switch focus so early on?
03:32:00 Why do you small business owners resist Facebook advertising so much?
04:59:00 How would you combat that resistance?
06:08:00 Why do you think small business owners don’t see results with Facebook advertising?
08:35:00 How do small business owners get started with Facebook adverterising
12:02:00 If you could only eat one food for the rest of your life, what would it be?
Connect with Gavin:
Free Social Media Course: http://bluecliffmedia.com/course
Hello, Mr. Gavin Bell.
Thank you so much. Thank you for joining me. How are you?
Pleasure. I’m good. How are you?
I’m super, thanks. How could not be? You’re here.
I want to talk to you about a few things today. First off, we have to address that at the age of 21 you started a business in just 7 days. That’s pretty awesome. Then, 6 months later you made the switch and focused from social media marketing to Facebook advertising. Could you maybe just talk a little bit about that journey and what that was like to start a business so quickly and then why you made the switch quite early on in your business?
Sure, it was about end of June, 2015. I remember at the time I was on the bus. I was reading a book called 7 Day Start Up by Dan Norris. At the time I was running a company called Alba Fitness which was like a corporate well being company where we … I took personal trainers into corporate environments basically. Business wasn’t going too well. I was getting bored of it, lost passion for it. I was reading this book and it was basically talking about what a business should do and I decided, I don’t know why, that I was going to launch a business so that would have been the 22nd of June last year then I launched Blue Cliff Media on the 29th of June. So 7 days which is basically 1 day you choose a name, 1 day you choose your service, you choose your price, you build a website in a day, etc. It’s all about minimum viable product and just getting something out there.
I did that and like I said we started off doing social media management and got a few clients after a few weeks and was enjoying the work but I found myself working too much in the business, doing quaint delivery work rather than on the business and that’s what I wanted to focus on so about Christmas time, I was wondering where I should niche down on and find one area that I was good at rather than just being a social media marketer that everybody is. I had some good results from the Facebook ads with clients in the previous 6 months and so I started to save for Facebook ads. We did that about Christmas time and since then it’s just been like an upward trajectory.
That’s awesome. That’s awesome. I think it’s really cool. You focused on one thing. It’s really really powerful and Facebook advertising we know is hugely, hugely powerful when used correctly. I don’t know about you but I think there’s a lot of resistance from small business owners when it comes to Facebook advertising. Why do you think that is and how would you address that?
I think first of all there’s quite a bit of resistance still to this day of social media in general. Many business owners are not getting it and when they do get it, they do it because they’ve been told to do it and they don’t have any sort of strategy or they don’t have a way of turning it into a business tool rather than just something to do. I think there’s an underlying thing that social media in general which is the same with any new thing that comes on. Certainly you know this quite well the business world to catch on to these things.
The way that I’m trying to combat that is through educational content and trying to educate people through videos and blogs and coming on to podcasts like this to talk about Facebook ads and how people can make the most of them. It’s educational process that has to take place there and I’m trying to lead the way doing that in the UK.
You’re certainly doing that. It’s almost taking these oh you have to be on social media. People are on it because they feel like “Oh, I have to be on this thing” but they’re not actually able to tie using these platforms and using things like Facebook advertising can add to real business value, tying it to business strategy and overall purpose and vision in what they’re trying to achieve. Do you think … it would make sense that that’s why they’re not achieving results with Facebook advertising. They’re not connecting the 2 so they’re pumping money into something in the hope that money will come out but it doesn’t make any sense. Do you think there’s other reasons why 5% are saying, “Yes, I get results” but 95 say no. Other than that do you think there’s other reasons why small business owners aren’t getting results when they are invested in Facebook ads?
I think again it comes down an educational thing where if you’re a brand new business owner who’s gone on Facebook ads and you go onto the platform it probably looks quite daunting with x amount of objectives that you’ve got and then targeting options that you’ve got and then designing the ads and copy the imagery and then monitoring the results of that and making changes with the data that comes through so I think there’s a lot there for people to learn and the thing is that you can’t learn all that from just text either. A lot of it has to come from getting money in and learning from mistakes and seeing certain trends, et cetera.
I think a lot of the time it’s resistance that we spoke with but a lot of times it is an educational thing where people just don’t know how to make the most of Facebook ads which isn’t their fault at all because there isn’t a lot of options there and things that interest you and things when it comes to creating a complex funnel, for example. There’s loads of different things you’ve got to look at like targeting and how it effects your state, custom audiences, custom conversions, et cetera which some people just don’t know about and that’s not their fault. They might not have the time to learn and they might not want to learn.
If you’re wanting to have a really successful Facebook ads campaign, that’s the sort of stuff you really need to know about.
It comes back to the thing where small business owners have limited time, skills, and resources but in order to get the results, you’re going to have to invest something whether it’s time and education or finance and money and doing it and learning as you go.
For people who are in this position where they’re maybe just starting out or they’re a startup and they see this, they see the opportunity, they know that Facebook advertising is valuable but as you say, when they log in, it is overwhelming and Facebook doesn’t do a great job of guiding you through to be fair. What would you say? How do they get started? What’s the first step that they need to take if they want to get involved with Facebook advertising?
First thing I would say is before you put any money into it at all, go out and read or watch some videos on how to set up the basic campaign. On YouTube, there’s thousands of videos on how you can set up a very basic funnel or campaign so go do that and get a base knowledge of how Facebook works and how the bidding works and how to actually set up a campaign. Then the good thing with Facebook is you can never go over the budget that you set. If you want to spend a pound a day, you can spend a pound a day and you’ll never go over that but if you want, you can always close a campaign, you can end a campaign so you’re never going to spend more than what you have told Facebook that you want to spend.
When it comes to budgeting wise, start small and try to learn the basics with a small budget. When I work with a client, that’s always what we do. We start off small and then we scale the campaign up when we start to see results. Start off small and when your campaign’s at a point where it’s getting … maybe it’s a campaign where you’re trying to get clicks to the website and you’ve got it down to a cost per click that you’re happy with, then you can start scaling the campaign up. Starting off small and making sure you’ve got a little bit of knowledge at least that’s how the whole thing works before you put any money in is important.
I love that. I love that because a lot of information online is the opposite. It’s like pump a ton of money in and test this kind of stuff and that is great and it does work in a lot of ways but if you are a small business owner, you don’t have all that money to just pump in and guess and figure it out and how it works. The thing you have to remember all the time is how do you get that return on your investment, whether it be time or finance or people resources or whatever. I love that you say scale it up and figure it out that way because what I think it does is it puts small business owners back in control which is probably another fear thing. People are scared because they don’t understand and they think Facebook is just going to take all my money.
That’s so so helpful. Thank you so so much, Gavin, for spending some time with us. I do have 1 question. If you had to sum up in a tweetable, if you had to sum everything we talked about in a tweet about how Facebook advertising can help small business owners, what would that be?
Good one. Facebook advertising can help small businesses by … content marketing in the 21st century for me is content distribution. Creating content that’s valuable for your customers and distributing that to the right people. With Facebook ads, you can simply just distribute that content to a more specific audience then you can reach a larger audience so you can get more awareness of your content. Facebook ads are a way to distribute your content throughout a larger, more specific audience.
Perfect. That summed up perfectly. I love that. One last question because you’ve been into the health and fitness industry. I have to ask. If you could only eat one food for the rest of your life, what would it be?
What would it be? Strawberry yogurt.
Strawberry yogurt. Yum. I can’t even eat yogurt because lactose intolerance but I miss strawberry yogurt. Good choice. Good choice.
I had a bit last night.
Thank you so much for joining me Gavin. How can people connect with you? They’re going to watch this and they’re going to be like “Man, this dude knows what he’s talking about. I need to connect with him.” You also have some awesome resources that we were talking about on YouTube and all over the interwebs so how can people connect to you?
Best way to find me is on any social media platform. I’m under the name Mr. Gavin on everything. Best place probably to get me is probably Twitter or if you want to check out the website and the free resources that you say, Chloe, I’ve got a blog and a couple of different freebies such as a Facebook ads blueprint that’s on my website bluecliffmedia.com.
Perfect and we’ll have all the links to that in the descriptions either if you’re listening or if you’re watching. Thank you so much Gavin! I really appreciate you spending time and I know everyone watching and listening will feel the same. Thank you so much.
Thank you for having me Chloe.