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Nick Shackelford Review: Foundr Facebook Ads Course (How Legit is it?)

December 16, 2021

how to run facebook ads cover

Back in 2015 Nick Shackelford was just ending his career as a professional soccer player for the LA Galaxy II.

He was in debt and needed money.

While coaching high school soccer he soon realized “trading time for money” wasn’t going to help him fulfill his goals.

After leaving the soccer league at the end of 2015, Shackelford felt limited by his career options.

So he gained experience in paid social media through an internship at PepsiCo. and a stint at a digital marketing agency.

nick shackelford as keeper pic

In 2016, Nick managed to get hired at Apple in one of their biggest years.

This is when they were launching the iPad Pro, the i Watch, and the iPhone 7.

This was Nick's first jump into paid social and he basically was playing with millions.

Apple was so loaded that they weren't even looking at the performance of the ads.

It was that crazy.

That was when things went even more mental.

Remember fidget spinners?

fidgetly pic cheddar

Nick and his friend Jake Schmidt, who is still his partner today, teamed up and dreamed big.

They created one of the most successful brands of fidget spinners, Fidgetly.

Fidgetly went viral across the world and made the duo millions.

No doubt thanks to Nick's FB Ads skills he had learned along the way.

After the close of Fidgetly, Shackelford launched Structured Social to start helping other brands scale online by using Facebook ads the right way.

We're not talking random brands.

We're talking making ads for the Kardashians.

You can't even work with him if your adspend is less than $50k per campaign.

At the end of 2020, Nathan Chan, creator of Foundr, asked Nick to develop the definitive FB Ads course.

the user nick shackelford picture

After having quite a few people asking me to review this courses in my comments, I thought it would be only fair to my readers to go through it, dive in it and give a very honest opinion.

As you will see, I don't have an affiliate link to Nick's course.

If you end up buying it, I will not be making a dime, but since I've had a lot of experience with FB Ads, I thought I'd try and give an honest review.

So in the following review, I'm going to go into details and be answering the questions that you really want to know the answer to.

  • Is this course better than other Facebook Ads Courses out there? 
  • Does the course deliver what it promises?
  • Is Nick Shackelford a scam?
  • Most importantly, how much does the course cost? And is it worth the money?

But before I start this in-depth review that will cover every module, a bit about me..

Until 2014, like many of the people I review, I was working in a corporate job from 9 to 5.

Not only was it soul-crushing, but it didn't give me any time to pursue my bigger goals.

I tried everything to get out of the grind: Amazon FBA, eCommerce, FB Ads, but nothing worked for me.

That was until I discovered a method to rank sites organically, generating free leads for my clients.

A lil bit about me... My name is Ippei...

That website you see above, for the tree care company, I created that site in 2015, and since then I haven't had to touch or update it:

It has gained me a passive income of $2000 a month.

That's more than $100,000 for one site, in 5 years.

That's the magic of the Lead Generation business, it's by far the best model to generate passive income. If you want to know more, just hop over here!

But enough about me: time for an in-depth review of the How to Create FB Ads 1.0 course!

How to Create Facebook Ads 1.0

The course is a 6 module affair, with a ton of videos curated in the style you'd expect a Foundr course to be.

Everything is super slick, the workbook is actually actionable, you really seem to get a bang for your buck.

You're going to learn:

  • How to show the value proposition within the first 3 seconds.
  • Include people enjoying the product in your video.
  • Show customer’s problems being solved.
  • Leverage reviews as copy.
  • Choose upbeat music.
  • Use text overlays to address common objections.
  • Show details of what the product looks like.
  • Engage commenters.

Plus, you're getting a truck-load of freebies and bonuses too!

Course Bonuses

  • Access to Foundr's Private Facebook Ad Community.
  • Facebook Ads 2 for 1 Licence to share with your Ad Manager.
  • Nick's Swipe and Deploy FB Ads Files.
  • Tried and True Spreadsheet Calculators to Calculate AOV or ROAS.
  • How to Find Free Money.
  • 365 Day Guarantee.
trustpilot reviews for course

Module 1: Mastering the FB Ads Foundations.

If you thought Module 1 was going to be another of those mindset fluffy fillers, think again.

In this module you’ll discover the “must know” Facebook ad foundations.

You’ll learn everything you need to do to give your ads the absolute best chance of winning from day one.

My main takeways were 2 in particular.

The first one was the 15 myths about Facebook advertising we should get over.

nick busting myths pic

It's pretty reassuring when someone who spent more than $100M on FB Ads dismantles some myths.

Here they are, in no particular order.

  • “I’ve tried this before, it doesn’t work for me.”
  • “What works for the “big guys” won’t work for me.”
  • My business/niche is different.
  • My audience isn’t on Facebook.
  • Facebook is not effective for B2B.
  • My page/following isn’t big enough to run ads.
  • Facebook ads are too expensive.
  • Boosting posts is the same as running ads.
  • It’s best to target a very narrow audience.
  • Instagram is only advertising to young people.
  • Facebook is only valuable for “bottom of funnel” marketing.
  • Turning your ads on and off helps performance.
  • Users will not convert on a Facebook ad the first time they see it.
  • Videos are always better than images.
  • Facebook is changing so quickly… your info is already outdated.
myths on fb ads pic

Another fundamental aspect of the first module is the explanation of all the FB ad talk used throughout the course.

Some, you may be familiar with, but it's always good to brush up on it!

Some are a bit more technical, so thanks Nick for coming in our aid:

  • ULPV - Unique Landing Page View - The number of consumers who made it to your landing page.
  • UCPLV - Unique Cost Per Landing Page View - The average cost per each landing page visit.
  • UATC - Unique Add To Cart - The first step in the checkout process.12. UCPATC - Unique Cost Per Add to Cart.
  • UIC - Unique Initiate Check Out - The second step in the checkout process.
  • UCPIC - Unique Cost Per Check Out Initiated.
  • UP - Unique Purchase.16. CPUP - Cost Per Unique Purchase.
  • CPA - Cost Per Acquisition - Cost Per Result - Cost Per (Enter you goal).
  • ROAS - Return On Ad Spend - The money you receive derived from spending on advertising.
  • PCV - Purchase Conversion Value - The revenue seen from Facebook specific purchases.
aov infographic

Module 2: Finding Your Target Clients.

With module 2 you're already in the meat and potatoes of the course.

This is all of about the prospecting end of the funnel, the top bit.

Most of your cash will be spent there, circa 60%, so you can find your ideal clients.

This is where you’ll master not only driving traffic, but driving the right kind of traffic!

Since this will also impact the quality of your clients further down the funnel, you have to be extra careful here.

This prospecting aspect is fundamental:

You need to understand your customer’s journey and how they go from cold “prospect” to warm “lead” to piping hot “buyer.”

sales funnel

The phases of prospecting are mainly 4:

  1. Interest-Based Audiences: targeting people based on their interests and behaviors in your category, which means a higher likelihood that they will be interested in your product or service.
  2. “Lookalike Audience”: a custom audience that includes all potential customers who LOOK LIKE a given group. It’s an effective way to widen your audience and reach more potential customers, especially when you have a smaller following or customer base to start with.
  3. Broad Audiences: fine to use, and you can get more granular from there as you gather learnings.
  4. Exclusions: for example, people who have already visited your website and purchased from you recently (and are unlikely to purchase from you again so quickly).

By going for these 3+1 different kind of broad audiences, you can begin testing and checking out what works better and what doesn't. 

advert by nick pic

Throughout the course Nick goes through some of his most iconic ads.

He then breaks them down and focuses on the subject at hand.

How he got the right audience, in this case.

There are also excel documents to calculate ROAS, different audiences to target.

Nothing is left to chance in this course.

By the end of this module, you will have learned how to find your top-of-the-funnel audience and will be ready to go!

Module 3: Middle of the Funnel.

This module is all about Re-engagement.

In this module, you'll walk through the next part of the funnel — the “middle of funnel”

You'll be bringing your prospects a little bit closer to purchase.

This is where you warm them up, and bring them a little bit closer to purchase.

You should be spending about 10-20% of your timebudget, and creative energy on Re-Engagement ads.

The ad campaigns aren't structurally different from the previous prospecting one.

The main differences are your Audiences, the Copy, the Timing and the Campaign Structures.

reengagement ads pic

Re-engagement targets usually include:

  • Instagram engagers (past 365 days)
  • Facebook engagers (past 365 days)
  • Video viewers (past 365 days)

These are people who were clearly interested in something you showed them, but didn’t quite have the motivation to purchase from you just yet.

You have another chance to expose them to your product/service through Re-Engagement campaigns, and bring them a little bit closer to converting.

They’ve already seen one or more of your Prospecting ads, so they are aware of you.

They may have even engaged with one of your Facebook Ads, watched your video, or followed you on Instagram.

where to drive traffic infographic

Module 4: Bottom of the Funnel.

You're now at the very bottom of the funnel.

These people are even more familiar with you.

They’ve seen your ads.

They’ve even taken some kind of action, whether that’s clicking your ad, shopping on your site (but not buying), or some other event that shows high intent.

They just need that little push over the edge, which requires unique ads, right?

remarketing infographic

At this point of the funnel you will be able to use DPA, or dynamic product ads.

The potential customer knows about you and your product, he's so close.

DPA campaigns pull content automatically from your product/service pages to show people custom messaging based on their Pixel behavior.

DPA allows you to show them another Remarketing Ad displaying the exact product/service they were looking at.

This way you have another chance to convince them to buy.

Remarketing also has its own microfunnel:

remarketing funnel by steps

At this point, there are different tactics you can use:

  • Build FOMO — Fear of missing out is a powerful psychological trigger.
  • Inject scarcity / urgency — e.g. “It’s nearly gone...” , “Time’s running out” , or “Only a few seats left.”
  • Same creative, new copy — repurpose existing creative assets, like a video clip or image of your product being used.
  • Message match — Make sure your messaging lines up from ad to landing page, otherwise people will bounce.
  • Clear, timely CTA: if you’re running ads around a holiday or specific sale event, make sure to be clear about this in your copy.
  • Leverage UGC — User Generated Content is a very powerful social proof technique, especially when it’s authentic.

There's no way they're not going to buy at this point!

You've basically done all of the work for them.

Module 5: Ad Creative That Converts.

So you've gone through the theory.

Now it's time to get your hands dirty and learn how to write killer copy.

Luckily, Nick is one of the best in the world, so you're in good hands.

Nick writes down what you actually need in an ad creative:

  • Angle / Idea
  • Hook (first 3 seconds)
  • Problem Setup
  • Present Solution
  • Social Proof / Validation
  • Big Promise / Benefits
  • Objection Handling
  • Call to Action (CTA)

This division of all you need to do in your creative is pretty priceless.

This is what all of Nick's ads are made of.

mobie ad creative index graphic

One of the most important aspects Nick really focuses on is that of congruence:

You should match what you say in the ad with what is written on your landing page.

You want to create a cohesive customer journey that carries them smoothly through your funnel, and make it easy on them.

If you have a negative experience that doesn’t make sense for your consumer, or a high bounce rate (the person clicked away from your page right after landing), Facebook will begin to dock your score and negatively view your user experience.

This leads to things like disapproved ads and higher costs.

Always make your style congruent throughout your writing gigs.

People will like that, resonate with you, and then be more likely to buy.

prospecting ad tips pic

Module 6: Avoiding Costly Mistakes

By the end of this module, you’ll have the confidence and troubleshooting framework to dive in and solve any problem that arises.

You’ll be equipped with a proven framework on how to approach any ad issues or problems that can pop-up on your journey.

And, knowing Facebook, and the way accounts are shut quite arbitrarily, I feel that this is the most useful module out of the whole course.

This module will answer questions like:

  • Where do you even look when something goes wrong? (and something always goes wrongwith Facebook)
  • Is it a traffic problem, or a conversion problem?
  • Why are my Ads getting disapproved by Facebook?
  • Is it the Ad itself, or my Website, or my Facebook Page?
ad not approved pic

Nick dives into the 6 most common roadblocks and how to fix them:

  • Overspending of an Ad Set
  • Underspending of an Ad Set
  • Target Cost Campaign won't spend
  • Exported list from Shopify incompatibility
  • Not knowing what budget to start with
  • How to scale your budget without upsetting FB

This is frankly a godsend, especially for those who are just starting out.

You can get shut down from FB but not get told why, so it's great to have a pro on your side.

But by far the best part of the module, and maybe of the course, is another one.

It's the MGD method, which has allowed Nick to become a millionaire.

As Nick says: 'The difference between a successful and unsuccessful Facebook marketer is their confidence to make decisions and to take advantage of what the data is giving you'.

100 million spent on fb ads

The 'MGD Method' stands for 'how to Make Good Decisions!'

According to Nick, when you leverage this lesson and the template we’ve provided, you can effectively make better decisions on the fly.

That will allow you stay in complete control of your ad spend even when scaling, and never light money on fire again. 

In order to do this you are provide with a Correlations Template.

All you have to do is to fill it in with your stats, and the numbers will do the talking.

Through the MGD method, you will be able to:

  • Cut the Ad if it’s not working 
  • Apply more budget to an Ad that’s working
  • Eliminate guesswork in your Ad Account

Sometimes, knowing exactly when to do the right thing will save your butt from overspending.

Bonus Module: 6 Hardcore Bonuses

You know when you get bonus modules in courses and you just know they are going to be complete fluff?

This is definitely no the case for this Foundr course.

Boy they really went all out on this one, and they are keeping the course current by adding new material regularly.

For example, since the iOS 14 update, people can opt out of FB capturing lots of their details.

This has caused concern in the Feb/March 2021 period in the course FB group.

Nick then proceeded to do a 2 hour video to add to the course addressing this very issue!

bonus module graphic

The actual bonuses you get are 6:

  • The FB community (where Nick is surprisingly active).
  • A 2 for 1 license, which means your partner can run the course to.
  • Nick's most successful ads in png or video file, for your consumption.
  • The Agency Replacer Toolkit, to help you save the $$$ for your ad spend only.
  • Tried and True Spreadsheet calculators (a frickin' godsend).
  • How to find free money by using delayed attributions.

But this is not all!

Recently a bonus module has been added on the topics of:

  • Intro to Scaling.
  • Scaling Vertically.
  • Scaling Horizontally.
  • Your Scaling Questions, Answered.

I swear, the course just keeps getting better and better as time goes by.

The Final Verdict: The Good & The Bad

So at the beginning of the review I promised to go over the main questions you guys were probably going to ask.

  • Is this course better than other Facebook Ads Courses out there? 
  • Does the course deliver what it promises?
  • Is Nick Shackelford a scam?
  • Most importantly, how much does the course cost? And is it worth the money?

In my opinion, this is the best FB Ad course I've seen out there, so far.

It really takes you from complete noob to ad pro, and you can take your time to learn.

Nick and other experts in the FB Ad group have achieved ridiculous results, like 30x ROAS in some case.

The course promises to teach you the basics of FB Ads and then how to scale to success.

Frankly, the amount of screenshots I've seen in the group have been pretty astounding.

A lot of people, and I mean a lot, have had huge success with this course.

And you guys know what I think about paid ads, but I'm just being honest here.

Nick Shackelford is definitely not a scam.

The dude has spent over $100M on FB Ads and has obviously made insane profits.

He's worked for the rich and famous, massive brands, startups, and has always brought home the results.

The course is $997, but you can buy it in 3 installments of $397 if you like.

If that is what you are really into, I'd say it's worth it.

fb use infographic


  • When Foundr launches a course, you can bet your butt they are going to find the best of the best in that niche, and are going to produce something of value for a reasonable price. Have been a bit of a Nathan Chan fanboy from the beginning, and this course didn't disappoint.
  • The quality of the videos and the materials is stunning. No shoddy productions here. You are also handed working materials like a 100+ page actionable workbook and templates to fill up that make the most tedious part of the process a pleasure to go through.
  • You're working with a pro here. Nick really knows his stuff, not only that, he knows how to explain it as if he were talking to a 10 year old kid. Fear not, you are going to understand all the concepts he goes through, and will be able to apply them to your business manager.
  • The FB group is super active, and if you ask for help and Nick is not around that very minute, there will be multiple people jumping in and giving their 2 cents. These are often people with a good track record, who you can really learn from.


  • I'm not going to lie: a lot of the things that are in this course, just like any other FB course, can be learned for free from FB itself and its courses. Of course, the production quality of this Foundr course is much higher, but you know what I mean.
  • Sometimes I get the impression that the course is especially geared towards eCommerce situations, and, although everything can be adapted to other scenarios, I wish that other types of hustling had been considered in the examples.
  • This is still FB we are talking about: no matter what it says, bans are going to happen, your accounts are going to get shut down at some point. That is just the nature of FB advertisement and there is nothing even this course can do to change that.
  • In 2021 you don't really need to have all these ad creating skills: there are models, such as the local lead generation one that I have been following for almost 7 years, that sell themselves. Carry on reading for more!

If you want to pimp your business via FB ads, Foundr's course is the right one for you.

However, these days I don't really recommend going down the path of using paid advertisement

Lead Generation, where you rank your own website, is a far superior model to monetize your skills.

Let me explain, keep reading...

Why I Quit Doing Facebook Ads... Lead Generation Proved to be a Much Better Biz Model, Here's Why...

Don't get me wrong:

I am not knocking Nick's course down.

But I just happen to think it is not the most cost-effective way of making money online in 2021.

I run a $50k+ per month lead generation business but all of my leads are generating through free traffic or SEO, not through paid Facebook Ads . 

So it's pretty much passive income, I don’t have to worry about the performance of any ads or anything.

The problems with landing leads with Facebook Ads are almost too many to mention:

Reasons why I don't like Facebooks Ads.

  • Firstly, they can fail spectacularly: you can follow all the templates you want, but sometimes FB Ads just don't work, and you're left pumping more money trying to resurrect a dead ad. That money slowly bites a chunk in your finances.
  • Secondly, after a while, your ad will exhaust its lifespan. Those who were supposed to click on it, already have, and no matter how much cash you throw at it, it just ain't worth the hassle. 
  • Lastly, banking all your chips on Facebook Ads is very risky business: your money is going to be spent without any guarantee. Sometimes you'll get returns, other times you won't and you'll need to be monitoring the ad constantly: chances are that, with a low return of investment,  you are potentially going to lose money.
fb ads vs lead generation graphic

Like I said before, I run a $50K per month lead generation business but all of my leads are generating through free traffic or SEO.

The website I create ranks on the first page of Google, in the so-called map pack, and the leads just start pouring in.

tee service grand rapid pic

So, you see, it's passive income, I don’t have to worry about the performance of my ads or anything.

Once my site ranks it generally keeps its rank with very little to no maintenance.

Don’t get me wrong you can still make leads running FB Ads but its very challenging to do so in the long term.

The problem with FB Ads is that you are constantly looking at your CTR and conversion rate.

How many people are clicking on your ad, and out of those people, how many actually end up buying your product?

If things go wrong, it's back to tweaking, spending more money, trying a different approach.

Facebook Ads are unreliable at best:

Believe me, I spent thousands of dollars before moving into free traffic lead generation.

This is why I still recommend people look into doing lead generation with free traffic.


Nick Shackelford's course is really well made, and everything is there to learn FB advertising for for your brand.

But let me tell you, there are niches that work with Facebook Ads, but the problem is there are many niches that really struggle with Facebook Ads.

Unlike Facebook Ads, if you know how to generate leads with free traffic, you can  go into any niche and create an incredible level of results for clients.

That’s how 90% of my multiple 6 figure income is generated. 

And I should add that it's passive income: see free traffic never stops.

In 2021, even during Covid-19, I continue to build more lead gen sites and I write at least 1 blog post a day for this site, because I’ve come to realize that these are the high-income producing activities because it directly increases my free traffic every month.

Click here if you want to learn more about creating leads with free traffic.

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Ippei Kanehara

$52K per month providing lead generation services to small businesses is for digital hustlers, industry leaders and online business owners.

His #1 online business recommendation in 2024, is to build your own lead generation business.

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