Hi, I'm Howie.
I'm a normal dude from Texas. Ordinary in all ways, except one.
If there's ONE thing I can say I'm exceptional at... better at than anyone else... it's Digital Marketing.
Since 2014, I've been a professional Paid Social Marketer, making my living running Facebook Ads at the agency level and beyond.
Profitably scaling Facebook Ads... to the tune of 5-figures per day!
But let's back up for a moment.
How It All Got Started
It all started in 2009 - my last year of University. I still had no idea what I wanted to do in life.
And so, with the guidance of a friend, I got into Affiliate Marketing.
It wasn't easy - I felt like I had so many things to learn and not enough time. How do I setup a website? How do I find good offers to promote? How do I find cheap traffic sources? How do I spend $1 and make $2 back?
I had a tough go at it and sadly, ended up in massive debt - even though I had started in the "golden era" of Internet Marketing when it seemed everyone was making a buck.
I felt like a failure.
I was forced to move back into my parent's house. And to add insult to injury, all of the websites on my VPS server got hacked. The dream of a 4 hour work week was dead. I spent the next few years chipping away at my Sisyphean pile of regrets, month after month.
But even though I "failed," I never gave up. Because if there was one strength I had cultivated over the years, it was persistence. I refused to quit.
Serendipitously, my friend Matt ended up getting a job at a Search Engine Marketing (SEM) agency in 2012. With a liberal arts degree and no real job experience, I ended up interviewing there and getting my first "big boy" job ever.
When he first explained the position...
It totally blew my mind.
"Wait... so you're telling me I can have a career... doing exactly the same thing I was doing before, except now I don't have to risk my own money to do it?? Sign me up!"
And so, because of his referral and my past experience (gained from my "failure"), I was able to get the job.
At first it was really cool.
Big office. My own cubicle. Free snacks. Even meetings were novel to me then.
But soon after, I realized I was already way ahead of most of my co-workers, most of whom had not spent a penny of their own on ads. Because my experience had come from a bootstrap startup mindset, I was able to bring a lot of direct-response marketing techniques to the agency that seemed obvious to me, but that no one else was doing.
I worked my butt off for the agency, at one point servicing 18 clients in a month. While I was being underpaid and overworked, my consolation was I was leveling up faster than anyone else. I spent the next year grinding this way, and eventually I mastered Google Adwords Pay-Per-Click (PPC).
It's my unique development, starting first with Paid Search - that's what separates me from other Paid Social Marketers.
The first traffic source I mastered was Google Adwords.
Back then, Facebook Ads was around, but advertising on the newsfeed wasn't even a thing yet. Google was by far the biggest paid traffic source available.
Google was the king and Facebook was barely a rook.
In a historical context, I had already shown my proficiency in running Google Adwords, well before Facebook became the behemoth advertising platform it is now.
Nowadays, when you look at the resumes of junior or even senior Paid Social Marketers, you don't see the same thing. Usually their only advertising experience is with Facebook Ads. In fact, most media buyers in general only know one traffic source.
I was lucky enough to have already mastered the biggest traffic source available at the time, before I made the switch to Facebook Ads. (Funny enough, I've already spent more years managing Facebook Ads than I did Google Adwords)
It's important to note that I learned Google first, then Facebook. There are many reasons why this benefits me as a media buyer.
With Google, you had to be a lot more precise. In order to successfully optimize accounts, you had to understand keyword match types, ad group structure, limited text ads - and how all these things affect CTR, which was the major factor in achieving a higher QS (Quality Score). The higher the QS, the lower your CPC (Cost Per Click).
Back then, ads were limited to a 25-character headline with two 35-character description lines. While limitations like these did not exist within Facebook Ads, they certainly helped my development, and I was able to transfer my learnings to Facebook's platform.
Through Google's limitations and lack of options, I was able to more easily learn what mattered and what didn't. I was able to really get down to the 80/20 of things.
Some things I learned with Google did transfer to Facebook, as the core principles of media buying apply to all traffic sources. At the same time, there were elemental differences that made Facebook Ads a whole 'nother beast to learn.
So in 2014, I put everything I knew about Google Adwords aside and started learning Facebook Ads from scratch.
And once I learned Facebook Ads, I knew I had found something I was way more excited about than Adwords.
The biggest reason why I liked Facebook Ads better than Adwords was because of the social media platform's near infinite scalability.
"Wait, you mean to tell me... my traffic is no longer limited by number of monthly keyword searches? You mean, I can literally reach EVERYONE... INSTANTLY? Wow!"
My mind was blown.
A Rare Opportunity: Moving From Paid Search to Paid Social
In many corporate environments, the "specialist" path doesn't go far. To make more money, you have to become management. While innovative companies like Facebook do offer both a specialist and manager a path to make more money, in most companies it's rare to be able to make more money without managing people.
So even though I knew it'd pay less within the corporate structure, I knew that I had to master the skill of managing Facebook Ads. And I knew I could do it, the same way I mastered Google Adwords. So I put all my focus there. And I became immersed in Facebook advertising for the next 4 years. While it's uncommon in the field of digital marketing to only focus on one single traffic source for most of your career, that's what I've been doing thus far.
I can honestly say I prefer being a Paid Social Marketer over a Paid Search Marketer. I have more people I can target, I can scale faster, and I have more room for creativity with the ad creatives. Ultimately, I found Facebook Ads to be much more interesting and fun. And because of that, I've gained so much experience on the Facebook Ads platform that very few people can compete with. I also gained the ability to scale a Facebook account for maximum growth of revenue and ultimately profits.
I spent some time learning Facebook Ads with my own hard-earned money, but mostly with OPP (other people's money) as well as my own blood, sweat and tears (okay maybe not blood, but definitely sweat and tears).
My Facebook Ads journey started when I got hired at a marketing agency that almost exclusively ran Facebook Ads. I spent most of my time running traffic for direct-response digital product funnels - the kind that looked stupid but just worked (i.e. it made money).
From there, I went back and forth between working in-house for direct-response media companies and servicing my own clientele as a remote freelancer.
Five years after my first marketing agency job, through becoming highly proficient at my craft, I was able to finally get out of debt, move out of my parent's house, and I have to say...
Life is good.
There are moments when I catch myself. Sometimes I still cannot believe companies just allow me to spend millions of their dollars, but I guess when you're able to make them millions of more dollars, they're cool with it.
It's reached a point now where I can't grow any further just hoarding all of this knowledge to myself. I have to teach in order to get better.
So now it's time to bring you along for the ride.
One of the biggest blocks I faced when deciding on making this website was, "There are tons of other websites covering how to do Facebook Ads... What makes my site different?"
Well, not only is there a huge demand for information about Facebook Ads, but if we're talking HIGH-LEVEL, ADVANCED material... there just isn't a whole lot out there. Partly because most of these guys don't know much, and partly because they are only interested in teaching newbies, as that's the largest segment of their audience they could make money from.
Well I'm not interested in teaching newbies. Because everything that's out there in the form of books and blog posts and courses... frankly, the options out there just plain suck. There's really no resource available that teaches what I know - even the ones that have the audacity to charge an arm and a leg for ineffective, cookie cutter advice. And that's why I MUST share my knowledge.
It BLEEDS out of me.
I've always been a big proponent of self evolution, iterating over time, and innovation in technique.
I believe in taking the most efficient path to effective action.
In order to honor my teachers of the past, as well as my future students, I have decided to open up my knowledge to the public.
Everything I teach here (at least until I shift my focus next year from building a following to monetizing) is pure, unadulterated gold - just the good stuff, none of the filler.
Sorry, were you expecting keyword-stuffed fluff articles? Or generic bullshit posts like "5 Funky Tips To Blow Up Your Marketing"... lol.
My content is designed to deliver as much real value as possible to you, the reader - NOT to game the search engines. I don't outsource my articles to a 17-year old VA in the Phillipines - I write them myself.
Looking back, the theme of my entire life has been scaling and viral growth. By reading this blog, you'll be learning the secrets of a Paid Social Marketing master.
Yes, that's right - a true master.
One who has made a living running traffic for Inc. 500 companies, spending millions of dollars (making even more) - not for myself, but for my clients.
Within the realm of digital marketing, if I were to 80/20 it... there is one thing I'm better at than anyone else, and it's NOT:
Sales, CRO (Conversion Rate Optimization), SEO (Search Engine Optimization), Google Adwords, Bing Ads, Pinterest Ads, Twitter Ads, Display Ads, Youtube Ads, Native Ads, Email Marketing, Marketing Automation, Data Science, Analytics, Branding (speaking of KW stuffing... see what I did there? Haha).
But seriously, the one aspect I'm best at in digital marketing is...
(Tied with copywriting)
If you're interested in either subject (which if you aren't, why are you still reading this??), stick around my blog because I'll be revealing secrets about marketing you won't find anywhere else - until they start copying me.
I say this humbly.
Why I'm Teaching You
If you have trouble doing something with Facebook Ads, I want to be there to help. That's what Paid Social Marketer ultimately is - it's a resource to help people who are doing Facebook Ads to do the proper things they should be doing in order to get the most efficient and effective results.
The problem is, you don't know what you don't know.
Most people in marketing simply have not been educated properly in what I learned as an affiliate marketer, what I learned as an agency advertiser, and what the skills I've mastered by putting in my 10,000 hours.
In the past, I was quite reticent to share what I knew, because I feared it would negatively impact me. See, my knowledge has been cultivated in the trenches - I put in long hours, invested lots of money to be around people who could teach me things no one else knew, and I acquired information that, if kept away from my competitors, would give me the leg up, keep my skills in demand, and most benefit me.
Now, I believe differently.
I believe that if I'm able to help other people succeed, then that in itself is actually the best form of "self branding" I could possibly do. I'd be literally branding my name and image into the minds of readers like you - individuals who are success-minded, who demand the best results, and who will eventually be the change this world needs.
By giving incredible value to people like me who have decided to play this marketing game, I can help influence the influencers, and together we can change the world.
Because marketing is not just about making money. It's about having the ability to spread the right message to the right people. It's about effective communication. It's about persuading people to take actions that would benefit them the most.
And that's why I'm so excited to be writing this blog... for myself and for you, my readers.