Episode 34: The Best Low-Cost or No-Cost Tools You Need

The best low-cost or no-cost tools you need to provide

Jody Milward

The best low-cost or no-cost tools you need to provide Facebook ad management services for clients

Wondering what low-cost or no-cost tools you need to provide Facebook ad management services for clients? Well, that’s what we’re talking about today in this episode of online confidential, where I take you behind the scenes to talk about secret ad manager business.

So when you’re running a business, you want your overhead to be as low as possible so that your profits can be as high as possible. That’s what we want for ad managers. So what tools do you need to be able to effectively provide an ad management service to your clients as well as not break the bank for you?

Let’s just consider, first of all, if you are going heavy into lead generation, that you’re spending a hundred dollars a day on your Facebook ads or more to just get people opting in.
Your expenses will be a bit more with the software that you will require because you’re going to need very heavy automations and some sophisticated software that’s going to be filtering out leads.

We’re not really going to be diving into that one today because I focus on helping freelancers and ad managers have what I call like a boutique agency, where you’re working intimately and exclusively with just a handful of clients so that you’re not going to need these big, heavy automations.

We’re keeping things personal, and we’re giving a white-glove service to our clients. So what tools do you need to be able to do that? Well, honestly, you can get this underway with free tools, like just using Google software. So for example, people want to book a call with you. Now, one of the biggest mistakes I see a lot of ad managers and service providers making is that when someone reaches out or you’ve got the opportunity to talk to somebody, to figure out if they’re a good fit for your service, they will just drop their calendar link, you know, like Calendly or ScheduleOnce, or something like that. And they’ll say, “Sure, hey, book a call. Here’s my calendar link.” And they drop that link, and then it’s, like, off in the habeas. It’s like a ghost town. It’s like, what if they don’t book a call? It makes it a bit more awkward for you, doesn’t it?

And you’re sitting there going, “Oh, I wonder if they’re going to book.” What are you going to do? You gave them the link. They should book, but they don’t. So it’s just a one-way conversation going, and you’ve left things out of control.

So one of the best things to do and what we teach our ad managers in the Elite Ad Manager Certification is to communicate with them and offer them a couple of times that are on your calendar.
How to run facebook ads for clients

That way, if they want to line up a call, you respond and say, “Hey, that’s great. I’ve got 3:30 p.m. on Wednesday, or I’ve got 10:30 a.m. on Thursday. Which one of those suit you?” And 90% of the time they’ll come back and reply with one of those times you’ve offered. Then you’ll just send a reply saying, “Awesome. I’ll send you the calendar link.” And off it goes. You can just use your Google calendar integrated, like, with Zoom, which is free. Or you can even use Google Hangouts, which is also free. And you just integrate that into the booking. You send off a calendar invite to their email and make sure they get a notification one day before and also 10 minutes before. And that’s all done. It’s all free. It’s right there for you.

You stayed in control as well. You haven’t just dropped your link and ran. You’ve been able to offer these times and have shown them a premium level of service. Not just feeling like here’s my link, book it yourself. And off you go to white-glove service right at the start.

And they’ve booked their time. Very personable. So your Google calendar is the number one thing that you can use for free to be able to get people to book a time with you. You can also have an application form if you want to have them provide some details before the call. That way, you can go and check them out beforehand, show them some love, and opt in for their email list and such. Use a Google form, which is free, and you can just put some questions in after they’ve booked a time. You can say, “Awesome. Great. We’re all booked in. By the way, so that we can get the most out of this call, could you just quickly fill in this form so I can review a few things before we actually get on the call and we can hit the ground running?” So a Google form is nice and easy. That’s a couple of free things that you can do right there.

One thing that you will have to pay for (which I recommend) is a document signing software. So after you have your call, they love what you’re doing, and they’re going, “Yes, we want to come on board.” You’ll be sending them an agreement. Now, it’s very important that an agreement is easy for them to sign. I mean, I cannot believe the number of organizations and people that will send me something that’s just in a Google doc these days.

And I’m supposed to print it, scan it, take a photo of it, and send it back? That’s hard work these days, right? We just want an e-sign document, thank you very much! So provide that to your clients and make it easy. Show them that you’re all about making their life easier. And you can do that really cheaply.

I like to use 17hats, which we’ll talk about in just a moment as well, but there are some document signing options (I think it’s E- or DocuSign) or something. There’s loads of them out there where it might just be $7 a month or so, but that’s a very important piece of software that you will need.

Your contracts will save you in times of things getting a bit confusing or out of hand, and you’ll always be able to refer back to them. So make it easy for your client to sign. And so that, you know, you don’t get started and go, “Oh, by the way, I haven’t got that contract signed.” Hello!

Now when you’ve got them on board and you’re going to have to do some reporting, there are lots of different reporting software options out there. And again, if you are scaling things up and you’ve got lots of clients on board, you know, 10, 15, 20, you’ve got a whole team in play, then yes, you likely are going to want a paid service. However, I’ve tried those before and they’ve been good to be an automated kind of process.

But again, a boutique agency working with a limited number of clients, you can just do the reporting with just a spreadsheet. You can get their numbers from ads manager each week. You can do an export of the reports and just copy and paste numbers over into your spreadsheet. And that’s where with my Elite Ad Manager Certification, we’ve got these templates and reporting spreadsheets so that they can just put the numbers in. And then we see what’s green, red, or yellow. We can see what’s working well. Awesome! We can see what’s in the yellow and go, “Okay, we need to watch this.” We can see what’s red and identify things that need to be changed, or a major bottleneck that needs to be worked on.

So just putting the numbers in, we automatically populate those colors and we can see where the blockages are in the funnel. A spreadsheet is free, right? Again, Google sheets, super easy, nice and easy to use. Then also you can use your Google folders as well for your client documentation. Again, you don’t need to be paying for any software for that.

So lots of free options there for you. Now, let’s look at some low-cost options. There are a number of great services that can help you combine a few of those things together. If you are sending out your e-documents that you’re wanting people to sign where there there’s quotes, proposals, and then the service agreements, they can do that. They can also incorporate some project management.

They can also incorporate calendars and some forms. And like I said earlier, 17hats is one of the tools that you can use there. That’s the one that I use. And it’s a great little piece of software. There’s various pricing options that can support you at various stages in your business. You can put all your contacts in there. So your new leads and your new clients. You send through a proposal, they can sign it, and automatically it sends them a service agreement. You can send them invoices as well.

So 17hats is great for that. Another one is HoneyBook, and another is Dubsado. I haven’t actually used HoneyBook or Dubsado, like I said, I’m a 17hats kind of girl, but they all do fairly similar kinds of things. You can have your forms and your documents clients need to sign, and you can send off invoices and also have calendars integrated.

So minimal costs there. I think they can start at, say, about $9 per month or so, or $13 per month. And if you’re in business, you really need to expect to have some expenses. Seriously, $13 or so a month is just a couple of coffees. So there’s no excuse why you couldn’t use a service like that to make your life just a bit more streamlined and easier.

I would one-hundred percent keep the white-glove service going when you’re organizing that first time to talk with your client. Offer them a couple of times; never just drop your calendar link. It makes it so much easier for you to get back to them the next day or the day after. “Hey, just circling back those two times that I offered to you. One of them’s gone. So I’m just wanting to make sure that I can get you in this week.”

So there’s a couple of tools that you can tap into right now that are free, and a couple that just have a very minimal, low cost to be able to help you to provide a service that can help you make consistent five-figure months. Now, if you want to learn more about that and how you can make consistent five-figure months as an Elite Ad Manager, then I invite you to head over to and learn more about what it is that you need to do to be able to provide this service to clients.


I love to share practical information to help you improve your skills, learn something new or help you avoid the mistakes that many Ad Managers and I have made to help fast-track you on your journey as a well-paid and in-demand Ad Manager.