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Build a Better Agency Podcast

Scale and grow your agency with better clients, invested employees, and a stronger bottom line, with Drew McLellan of Agency Management Institute.
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Build a Better Agency Podcast
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Now displaying: June, 2020
Jun 29, 2020

There are very few agency owners who love biz dev. It’s time consuming, sometimes it feels like you are trying to target shoot in the dark, and you often end up settling for prospects that aren’t quite the right fit. But at least it’s a win! Your spidey senses are tingling and you know there’s trouble ahead but you ignore that little voice and forge ahead, hoping for the best. What if you could eliminate those near misses?

I’m a firm believer that every agency should have a clear understanding of what their sweet spot client looks like and how to spot them in the crowd. Every client is right for some agency. But not every client is the right fit for yours.

How do you know who your ideal client is? How do you attract them to you so you don’t have to hunt them down and how do you encourage them to give you that first dance?

My guest will be a great beacon and help us gain clarity around all of those questions. I’ve known Matthew Kimberley for about 4-years and love his unique style and outlook on sales. He leads the business building system called Book Yourself Solid Worldwide, which is based on the bestselling book, Book Yourself Solid, written by Michael Port.

Matthew is waving that flag all over the world and helping salespeople understand there is a proven way to literally book yourself solid. The beauty of the Book Yourself Solid system is that when you do it well, you never have to settle for a not quite right fit client again.

Matthew is also the author of a great book entitled, “Get a F*cking Grip: How to Get Your Life Back on Track” and has an online course about writing delightful emails — which I thought was spectacular. He also hosts his own podcast entitled, “How to Get a Grip.”

Matthew and I talk through the concept of Book Yourself Solid and how it pertains to agency owners. We talk through the questions that I know you would ask around sales, prospecting, and how we as agency owners and leaders can better use our day to drive sales into our agencies.

Today (no matter when you’re listening to this) is the perfect time to get a better set of client filters in place so you protect and build your agency by filling your pipeline with those sweet spot clients.

A big thank you to our podcast’s presenting sponsor, White Label IQ. They’re an amazing resource for agencies who want to outsource their design, dev or PPC work at wholesale prices. Check out their special offer (10 free hours!) for podcast listeners here.

Agency Owners

What You Will Learn in This Episode:

  • How to create a set of criteria so you and your team can quickly filter out the wrong fit clients and spot the right ones.
  • How to get more right-fit clients than your agency can handle even if selling isn’t your favorite thing to do.
  • How to apply the “rule of three.”
  • How to create new business opportunities around things you already enjoy doing.
  • Why agency owners tend to do well at the top end of the sales funnel but then struggle when it comes time to drive sales into the agency.
  • How to apply the three guiding principles within the Book Yourself Solid business development system.
  • Why blending in “non-negotiable” criteria in your client filtering process will help protect your agency.
  • Why you need a conscious process for developing trust at different points in time for different reasons with your clients and prospects.
  • How you can develop a “Something to Invite People to Offer” so your prospects have an opportunity to get to know you and your agency better.
  • How to apply the five things every agency owner should be doing every morning to fast-track biz dev.
Jun 22, 2020

Most agencies have yet to harness the power of data automation tools, and the numbers reveal a concerning reality. 60% of all agencies believe that they make at least 6 costly digital marketing mistakes on a client’s account every week. 33% of agencies have eaten between $5-$10,000 to fix a single campaign mistake. And it doesn’t get better with size. The number of mistakes nearly doubles when a digital agency scales from $1 million to $5 million in fees. And that’s not the most horrifying news that came out of a recent study conducted by Morphio.

If there’s one thing most agencies have plenty of—it is data. If there’s one thing agencies struggle with—it’s data. That’s what intrigues me about data automation tools like Morphio. They define themselves as a check engine light for your digital campaigns. I invited founder (and agency owner) Eric Vardon onto the show to talk to us about this very real challenge. Out of his agency’s necessity, Eric’s team has been developing data automation tools baked with AI and machine learning. Eric’s products are helping agencies plug their leaks and become more profitable using data and automation, and he offers his tools at an affordable price point.

In this episode of Build a Better Agency, Eric shares his journey as a tech entrepreneur and agency owner. He walks us through the lessons he’s learned about refining agency processes, improving team efficiency, and expanding the agency-client relationship using data automation tools. He breaks down the common mistakes agencies make in that arena and explains how we can improve our own systems and processes. Find out how Morphio is working with other small to mid-sized agencies to bring them invaluable AI and machine learning capabilities that don’t break the bank.

A big thank you to our podcast’s presenting sponsor, White Label IQ. They’re an amazing resource for agencies who want to outsource their design, dev or PPC work at wholesale prices. Check out their special offer (10 free hours!) for podcast listeners here.

Data Automation Tools

What You Will Learn in This Episode:

  • How data and reporting have shaped the way clients interact with agencies
  • How Morphio’s data automation tools help agencies plug leaks in the bucket
  • When and how Eric decided to offer his automation tool to other agencies
  • How to leverage AI so you can focus on creativity and client strategy
  • Why you need a check engine light for your agency’s performance and efficiency
  • How you can use Morphio to make your agency more profitable
  • How Morphio has changed reporting, and where it’s headed next
  • Why data monitoring can help you make more informed decisions as an agency leader
Jun 15, 2020

The past three months have felt like a bad sci-fi movie. As agency leaders, most of us have navigated the economic struggles right after 9/11 and the great recession of 07-08’. But nothing has come close to the economic, health, and social impacts that we’ve experienced recently. But we need to stay smart and fight our way out of this economic slowdown. I want to share some trends that will help you do just that.

COVID continues to be a major topic of discussion throughout the world. It is still a hot button issue as many agency leaders work to stabilize their operations. However, the pandemic has had to share the spotlight with the global conversation about racism and it’s reasonable to assume these are both conversations and realities we’re going to be wrestling with for the foreseeable future.

In this episode of Build a Better Agency, as I have every summer, I want to look at the trends that are impacting our industry. A couple of them have been altered by COVID but most of these are trends I was talking about in early 2020 and they’re as relevant today as they were in January.

With everything going on right now, it is hard to dedicate the necessary time and mental space to focus on running your agency. The health of your agency is more important than ever before. We have to carve out of the time to protect our businesses and I am hoping that taking a look at these trends will help you do that.

A big thank you to our podcast’s presenting sponsor, White Label IQ. They’re an amazing resource for agencies who want to outsource their design, dev or PPC work at wholesale prices. Check out their special offer (10 free hours!) for podcast listeners here: https://www.whitelabeliq.com/ami/

What You Will Learn in This Episode:

  • Why the health of our agency is so important in the big picture
  • How to tee up your agency for a great 2021
  • What you can to start thriving right now
  • Trends that agency leaders should be watching for in 2020-2021
  • Why AMI agencies have been so much more profitable than average privately held agencies
  • How our clients’ needs have changed this past year
  • What we can do to map out our sales funnels and increase efficiency
  • How to take control of the sales cycle by being direct
  • Why agency leaders have become a bottleneck for strategy
  • Why we are seeing more employees buy minority stakes in their agencies
Jun 8, 2020

Most agency owners would put attorneys in the cost column. Until they get into legal trouble. Then, they quickly realize how much they could have ultimately saved if they’d been a little more proactive and worked with an attorney before they got into hot water. But with the right attorney who specializes in agencies and understands our world, you can navigate common legal obstacles while saving hundreds of thousands of dollars.

My guest is AMI’s go to attorney, Sharon Toerek. Sharon’s depth of expertise in our world makes her an invaluable resource for agencies who have any sort of legal issue that they’re either trying to proactively resolve or when they’re in a jam.

She speaks our language and has spent the last fifteen years carving out her niche. In this episode of Build a Better Agency, Sharon Toerek joins us again to share her expertise and walk us through the new research project that she and her law firm put together, looking at common legal snags that get agencies into trouble.

A big thank you to our podcast’s presenting sponsor, White Label IQ. They’re an amazing resource for agencies who want to outsource their design, dev or PPC work at wholesale prices. Check out their special offer (10 free hours!) for podcast listeners here.

Agency attorney

What You Will Learn in This Episode:

  • The most prevalent legal issues that agency owners are currently facing
  • How to approach client contract negotiations from a legal perspective
  • How to overcome the legal challenges of working with freelancers
  • How to protect your agency from copyright and trademark issues
  • How to move out of the anxious and afraid category by finding an agency attorney you trust
  • Why putting foundational processes in place can make a substantial difference in the way you handle legal issues in your agency
  • How the pandemic will change language in contracts
  • The most worrisome part of Sharon’s research findings

The Golden Nuggets:

Jun 1, 2020

There are two questions plaguing agencies in the spring of 2020. The first is how are brands going to respond to covid when it comes to budgets, tackling new projects and their relationships with agencies. The second is how can the agency sensitively and successfully mine for new business while the world is trying to get back on its axis. Fortunately, RSW/US recently released a new study that answers both of these questions and is filled with more good news than you might expect.

The first piece of RSW/US’ research was conducted in March 2020 just as the pandemic was hitting the US. They went back into the field in mid-May to track how things had changed over the previous 45 days and as the US was beginning to re-open for business.

In this episode of Build a Better Agency, RSW/US’ Lee McKnight walks us through some of the key findings. He also shares how some of the responses have shifted over the two months in between the studies. There’s plenty of encouraging news in the data and there are also some danger signs. Listen so you can learn what the agencies and brands are thinking, feeling, and saying as the curve flattens out and business begins to pick up again.

A big thank you to our podcast’s presenting sponsor, White Label IQ. They’re an amazing resource for agencies who want to outsource their design, dev or PPC work at wholesale prices. Check out their special offer (10 free hours!) for podcast listeners here.

What You Will Learn in This Episode:

  • The findings from RSW/US’ research in both March and May of 2020
  • Why small to mid-sized agencies have a better shot at being “too small to fail”
  • Why most brands believe that their spending will be unchanged or increased as business gets going again
  • The surprisingly good news from RSW/US agency research project
  • What surprised Lee the most on the agency side of the data
  • How agencies can change their messaging to position themselves as leaders in the crisis
  • What we should be thinking about as we take a new approach to case studies
  • What agencies are doing right now to get conversations/meetings with prospects
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