The #1 Digital Agency Podcast for Social Media, SEO, PPC & Creative Agencies

Do you want to get free exposure from podcasts, influencer videos, and TV stations? Want to generate leads at no cost? Are you ready to start building your personal brand? Growing a digital agency is all about attention. You want to get in as many people's faces as possible. And you want them to think of you as an authority figure while they're watching. To do that, you need to step up your PR game.

  • How to create a killer agency PR pitch.
  • #1 branding mistake your digital agency is making.
  • Why you need to be the face of your agency.
  • 3 ways to up your content game.

Today, I talked with Christina Nicholson, founder of Media Maven — a media relations and PR agency. Christina worked as a reporter and TV anchor for over 10 years before she decided to "transition to the other side" (a.k.a, she jumped ship and created her own PR agency.) Today, Christina has a team of 7 people, and she pumps out an incredible amount of content ranging from podcasts to blog posts and YouTube videos. She's one of those agency owners than transcends their digital agency. And she didn't get there by accident.

How to Create a Killer PR Pitch

Whether you want to get on the news, on an influencer's YouTube channel, or on a podcast, you need a public relations pitch. Drop those old-school press releases in the trash can and draw up 6 or 7 sentences answering the following questions:

  • What do you have to say?
  • Why should anyone listen?
  • What can you give the audience?
  • Why is it relevant?
  • Why is it important?

Try to make it topical. You may own a trash pickup service, but if you have some killer advice that is relevant to digital agency owners, you better believe I'll have you on my podcast. It's all about positioning. How can you take your experience, product, or service and apply them to a specific situation?

Look, if that trash pickup service owner tells me he understands how to sell his services to people, I'm not going to have him on the podcast. It just doesn't resonate with my audience (that's you!). But if he tells me he has tips on how to win clients with amazing on-the-spot pitches, regardless of the target audience, then he's in! It may be the same information, but positioning, phrasing, and application of that information are totally different.

#1 Branding Mistake Your Digital Agency is Making

Most agency owners spend a ton of time branding. But are you branding... YOU? Personal branding is massive in today's agency ecosystem. People like Gary Vee, Neil Patel, and Seth Godin have become more than their agency. They've become full-blown brands. And that's what your clients expect.

Christina says you have to practice what you preach. You have to have the authority, social proof, and credibility to get clients to trust you and your agency. People want to work with people, not nameless agencies.

How do you self brand?

Treat yourself as a client. Take time out of your busy schedule to brand yourself. Start a podcast, pump out some videos, or start making incredible blog posts.

Having a personal brand breeds trust with clients and your team. Leverage your talents and make an identity for yourself. What happens when you Google your name? Does your bland LinkedIn profile popup? If so, you've got some work to do!

Why You Need To Be the Face of Your Agency

Once you start mastering personal branding, people are going to turn to you first. When prospects look at your agency, they're going to have you in mind. So what happens when every client starts asking to work with you directly? It's just not possible! You need to be the face of your agency. But you should never be the voice.

Let clients know you have an incredible team to help them. And, your team is their touchpoint. Also, let them know you take a personal interest in every account. You get the emails forwarded to you, and you're working on the backend to make stuff happen. But you simply can't be there to field their questions or touch base with them. Set those expectations early. Honestly, your clients will be ok with it.

The best example of this is Gary Vaynerchuk and VaynerMedia. Gary Vee isn't going to personally oversee your account. He is the face of the agency and his clients know they aren't going to work directly with him. Your clients secretly know that too. Just make sure you set those expectations early.

3 Ways to Up Your Content Game

Christina says you need tons of content in order to build your personal brand. But putting out tons of content is time-consuming, expensive, and difficult, right? So how do you do it?

  1. Use other people's content. You don't have to create and share your own content. When Christina knows this podcast is live, you better believe she's going to share it on social media. Why? Because it brands her! It's ok to share other people's content. It's even better if you were involved. This goes back to PR pitches. If you can get on those podcasts and social channels, you can share that content to brand yourself.
  2. Recycle your content. It's not a sin to share the same piece of content 2, 3, or 20 times. We're in a content-stuffed world. Think about how many pieces of content pop up on your social feeds and how many YouTube videos get recommended to you every day. Your audience is going to miss some of your content. So, as long as it's still relevant, share it again! And keep sharing the same content year-after-year. You may have new people in your audience, or you may have people who missed it the first time around.
  3. Multiply your content. Did you create your first YouTube video? Sweet! You have 4 pieces of content now. How? You can multiply the content to make... more content. Check it out. With one long-form video, you can:
    • slice up a few promos from the video to share on Instagram and LinkedIn.
    • embed the long-form video on your site.
    • upload the long-form video to Facebook and IGTV.
    • create a blog post from the video.

You can stretch your content creation efforts by creating multiple pieces of content at once. Do more with less!

Would You Like More Leads for Your Agency?

If you want to get more leads with an 80% open rate and 25% click-through rate, you need to check out ManyChat. Engage prospects and build relationships with simple personalized experiences using the #1 bot platform for Facebook Messenger.

I've been using ManyChat for 3 years for connecting with prospects and converting leads. ManyChat bots are ideal for marketing, e-commerce, and support; making it easy to have automated conversations with prospects and customers. To connect with the 1.3 billion daily Facebook Messenger users, head to ManyChat.com and enter code: SwenkPro for a free one-month trial.

Direct download: How_to_Step-Up_Your_Agencys_PR_Game_and_Generate_More_Leads.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 5:00am EST

Is it just me or can agency life really suck sometimes? Ever wish you could just hit the reset button? Or get a do-over? It’s like we’re always working for our clients, improving their business, and adopting their purpose instead of having our own. In turn, we struggle to grow our agency business because can’t see the forest for the trees. It happens to all of us from time to time. But a turnaround might be easier than you think.

In this episode, we’ll cover:

  • How can your digital agency inspire happiness?
  • 5 things your agency can do to be more successful.

This is a banner episode for me, guys. It’s my first three-peat guest, Jeff Hilimire. That’s right, he’s been on the show twice before talking about agency growth strategies and mistakes to avoid. He founded and sold his first agency and is now in his sixth year as founder of his agency, Dragon Army. He has also founded a web development non-profit called 48 in 48 and sits on the board for a variety of other 501(c)(3)’s.

Jeff has been in the industry for over 20 years and he’s seen it all. In fact, that’s exactly why he literally wrote the book on how entrepreneurs can change their mindset in order to get out of their own way and turnaround their business.

How Can Your Digital Agency Inspire Happiness?

Jeff founded Dragon Army in 2013 as a gaming startup, after selling his first agency. After one year of chasing success in the game realm, Jeff says he realized his agency did not have a purpose. Jeff’s revelation: agencies are always working for other people and adapting their clients’ purposes. At that moment, he decided to develop a purpose and pivot his agency to carry it out.

Today, Dragon Army focuses on web, mobile, and brand marketing. Their purpose is to inspire happiness with positive relationships. I know what you’re thinking… how in the heck?! But it’s actually really basic. Jeff says they execute this in two ways: creating impactful work and doing good. And what’s even more basic -- they start internally with inspiring happiness among the team.

Think about it this way. When you create a desireable agency culture and actually live your core values, you end up inspiring your team. That inspiration flows over into their work -- and everyone wins.

This purpose-driven business model has won Dragon Army clients like Coca-Cola, Lyft, and Chick-Fil-A, to name a few.

Jeff’s advice to all agency owners is to consider how you can inspire happiness in a way that has a profound effect on your team.

5 Things Your Agency Can Do To Hit the Reset Button

In such a competitive space, it’s natural for agency owners to be constantly focused on the bottom line. But, Jeff says that is exactly what’s causing agencies to bottom-out. Reflecting on his 20+ years of experience as an entrepreneur and agency leader, Jeff considered 5 lessons or core principles that can help other businesses change their mindset and create transformative growth.

In The Five-Day Turnaround, Jeff authored a narrative about a business who adopts these 5 principles to turn around their business amid five client meetings:

  1. Adopt a do or die mindset. A lot of businesses get complacent and lose this “do or die mentality.” But when there’s no Plan B, you’re forced to solve problems or find a fix.
  2. Find your purpose, vision, tenents, and values. While successful already agencies employ this, it’s important that teams actually do too. Consider your team as your startup and develop team purpose, vision, tenents, and values.
  3. Get the right people on the bus. Understanding and defining how to get the right people working with you and building trust among the team.
  4. Move at the speed of a startup. Embracing the MVP “minimum viable product” and learning to take action without hesitation.
  5. Reward failure. Try new things, embrace failure, and celebrate losses. Get over the threat of “messing up.”

Would You Like More Leads for Your Agency?

If you want to get more leads with an 80% open rate and 25% click-through rate, you need to check out ManyChat. Engage prospects and build relationships with simple personalized experiences using the #1 bot platform for Facebook Messenger.

I've been using ManyChat for 3 years for connecting with prospects and converting leads. ManyChat bots are ideal for marketing, e-commerce, and support; making it easy to have automated conversations with prospects and customers. To connect with the 1.3 billion daily Facebook Messenger users, head to ManyChat.com and enter code: SwenkPro for a free one-month trial.

Direct download: 5_Characteristics_of_the_Most_Successful_Agency_Owners.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 5:00am EST

Not sure when you should add to your agency team? Wonder who the first hire should be, and when? Growing an agency can be difficult and lonely. But when you have the right kind of support, the right people, and identify the right clients you'll grow leaps and bounds.

In today’s episode, we’ll cover:

  • How to know it’s time to add to your agency team.
  • #1 thing to grow your agency beyond 6-figures.

On this week’s podcast, we are hearing from Drew Schulthess, owner of Catchfire Creative. Drew’s agency has been working in the consumer packaged goods and lifestyle brands space since 2011. He’s on the show today talking about the steps he took to get over to the million-mark and beyond in revenue.

How to Know It’s Time to Add to Your Agency Team

Drew’s first hire was a mere four months into starting his agency. That’s super quick, right? He said that at the time, a resume came across his desk that was just good to pass up. The person was multi-faceted and seemed to have experience in many different areas that Drew wanted to grow. So even though it was a stretch on the budget, he took the leap to bring the person on board… and eight years later, he’s still with the agency!

Of course, Drew says his first hire has been amazing and able to adapt and evolve as the agency changes and grows.

Here’s the thing about hiring. When you’re just starting out, you might feel like you need to “sell” the agency to the candidate and convince them to want to work with you. (I remember thinking, “why would someone want to do this with me?”) But remember -- it’s supposed to be the other way around, of course! Make the candidate sell themselves to you. And hire for culture fit first, over skillset.

#1 Thing to Grow Your Agency Beyond 6-Figures

Here’s why I really dig Drew… he listens to me :) Drew credits a nugget of advice he picked up in one of my videos about setting prospect qualification criteria. He says taking the time to do that made the difference for his agency and helped them sky-rocket to the million mark and beyond.

Once you have a framework for who your ideal clients are, you can stop saying yes to everything. (Like you can quit taking on the clients with unreasonable deadlines and outrageous requests, like this one.) It might seem counterintuitive to turn down work, but when you start saying no to the wrong work, it frees you up to only saying yes to the right stuff.

Drew says that creating the criteria and actually putting it on paper was an important exercise for his agency. It gave him the clarity he had been missing and was the turning point in the agency’s growth.

Related:  https://jasonswenk.com/nbat/

Would You Like More Leads for Your Agency?

If you want to get more leads with an 80% open rate and 25% click-through rate, you need to check out ManyChat. Engage prospects and build relationships with simple personalized experiences using the #1 bot platform for Facebook Messenger.

I've been using ManyChat for 3 years for connecting with prospects and converting leads. ManyChat bots are ideal for marketing, e-commerce, and support; making it easy to have automated conversations with prospects and customers. To connect with the 1.3 billion daily Facebook Messenger users, head to ManyChat.com and enter code: SwenkPro for a free one-month trial.

Direct download: How_to_Quickly_Grow_Your_Agency_Beyond_6-Figures.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 5:00am EST

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