Efren Castillo


Tell us about your background

My business background is very diverse. I've had the privilege of coming from a household of entrepreneurs, which has put my in a position to always have worked with my immediate family, or for myself. Since I was 14 I either managed, helped manage, or owned a vast array of businesses ranging from a flower shop to a software development company. My passion is in business, and helping businesses grow.

Elevator pitch: What is your agency about?

AD Entity specializes in Lead Generation through Facebook's ads for the real estate and financial services industries.

Where did the idea come from?

Being a Real Estate Investor myself, I have been exposed to the industry for quite a few years, and chatting with professionals in the industry I saw how there were so many misconceptions of Facebook ads, on one hand, and of course how certain sectors of the industry are being slow to adapt to a new way of doing business; saw a problem, offered a solution.

What were some early challenges you faced?

I think one of the biggest challenges was changing the conversation with prospects from cost to investment; from expense to ROI. It can be sometimes challenging for business owners to understand that the investment in digital advertising, or any other forms of advertising for that matter, has more to do with the value that that particular investment brings, and not the actual dollar amount.

How has your business changed from it’s inception to now?

The main change that my business has taken has been in terms of processes and procedures. To be quite frank, at the beginning it was more a matter of being a solo-preneur trying to wear multiple different hats throughout the day and even at the same time. Now everything has a process, and every process has a role that is responsible for that.

Tell us about your biggest failure

Throughout my career as a business owner I've had many lessons along the way. The biggest one I like to think was when I had grown a business from 3 to 24 people, and then through 2008, within months, that business ended up with two of us. The biggest lesson to take for me there was to make sure I diversify in terms of customers and not have "all eggs in one basket", not matter how big or comfortable that basket is.

What is the best indicator for you that your business is working?

From a personal point of view, the best indicator for me is to have freedom to choose what I do, without having to worry that my businesses will fall apart without me. Still work in progress, but we're getting there!

What is the biggest challenge you face with your business daily?

More than a challenge, the opportunity that arises every day is working with a platform that for all intents and purposes is a black box. Nobody really knows exactly how the Facebook algorithm works, yet we have to go in there every day and try to understand it to the best of our abilities.

What’s something you wish clients understood better about your business?

I wish clients understood the fact that in today's space, and specially on Facebook, you have to pay to play. Setting realistic expectations in terms of budget and ROI are things I hope they understood better.

Are there any areas you’d like to expand in over the next few years?

Tough question... 😛 I have a few ideas, but until they are jotted down, I'm going to leave them as a surprise. 🙂

Are there any technology trends that you’re particularly excited about using in your work?

The way the social media has changed how we interact is something that, when I take a step back and look at the overall picture, excites me very much.

What advice would you give someone who is considering launching their own agency?

Make sure you seek the best mentors and teachers you can get. In my opinion, it's knowledge that can make or break you.

Can you give us your best tip for making customers happy?

The best tip I can give is with regards to setting expectations. I think if we can set proper expectations, and maintain an honest line of communication open with our customers, we will be able to make them happy in the long run, which should be the only "happy" we should be talking about as business owners.

Can you recommend a great book that everyone must read?

"Think and Grow Rich" by Napoleon Hill

Finally, what are you most excited about for the future of your business?

I know this is going to sound super "cliche", but growing my agency is very exciting for me. Providing either jobs or contracts for people around the world, whilst growing my team has my juices flowing on a daily basis!

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