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

Are you tired of waiting for clients to provide content? Is your agency thinking of offering content creation as a service? The demand for content is on the rise and research shows content creation is profitable for agencies. However, many agencies are not using content creation to its full potential because they don't understand the value of content marketing in 2022.

Ryan Sargent is the Director of Content Marketing at Verblio, the world’s friendliest content creation platform. Verblio builds content marketing for other marketers at scale by pairing specialized, niche writers with advertising agencies and marketing professionals. The team at Verblio are the experts at content creation and he's sharing secrets on ways agencies can make better use offering content creation and strategy for their clients.

In this episode, we’ll discuss:

  • 5 ways agencies use content marketing in 2022
  • The disconnect between agency and in-house client content strategy.
  • Why is it harder for your content to rank?


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Sponsors and Resources

Verblio: Today's episode of the Smart Agency Masterclass is sponsored by Verblio. Check out and get 50% off your first month of content creation. Our team loves using Verblio because of the ease in their process and their large pool of crowd-sourced writers.


5 Ways Agencies Use Content Marketing in 2022

To continually keep the pulse on how audiences consume content, Verblio does an annual 'State of Digital Content' survey gathering information from the market. In its third edition, received data from 450+ marketers with a focus on digital agencies. The results were segmented based on the size of the agency. They got some fascinating takeaways from it, including:

  1. Content creation is profitable: At least 75% of participants expressed that content is very profitable at their agencies. This presents a really clear sign that content is something people pay attention to and that agencies will continue to offer. Creating content for your clients not only increases productivity (you're not waiting for them to provide it), it also increases profitability. Win-win!
  2. It's all or nothing: Agencies are either "all in" on content or not; and the numbers show it. According to the results, bigger agencies recognize the power of content. They report that 75% of their revenue comes from content creation. By contrast, smaller agencies reported < 50% of their revenue comes from content. Ryan believes this indicates some smaller agencies are discounting content while bigger ones recognize it as a money maker and a core part of their service.
  3. Content creation is on the rise: Increasing from the past, more agencies are producing 10 or more pieces of content per client. In past surveys, most agencies reported producing 5 pieces of content per client. The demand is there -- is your agency helping service the demand?
  4. Core content is still king: Agencies are still focused on the bread and butter of core content, like blog posts and landing pages. Most are not diversifying in other forms like podcasts, for instance, which are far more time-consuming. Content marketing is vast, but core content is still king (even in a changing economy).
  5. In-house content creation: Most agencies surveyed produce content in-house. When they outsource content creation, they usually do so through freelancers.

Disconnects Between Agency Content vs Client Content

One thing Ryan finds particularly interesting is that in-house marketers look at conversion stats as a measure of success. Meanwhile, agencies are more likely to look at engagement stats. If agencies look more at conversion stats they would find this resonates more with clients because that’s what the in-house teams are focusing on.

Also, in-house teams are far less likely to find content refreshes compelling. Agencies see the value of refreshing existing content and consider it low-hanging fruit. In-house client teams don’t see value in refreshes and therefore don't prioritize it. The roles reverse when it comes to ebooks and white papers, which in-house marketing teams see as powerful tools, but agencies don’t focus as much on.

Online Training for Digital Agencies

Is it Getting Harder to Create Successful Content?

A generalized feeling is that it’s getting harder to create successful content. So if you feel like it’s harder to rank or get social engagement, you're right!

Demand for content is growing. However, the increase in demand is also the reason it's getting harder to see those conversions. Readers are getting pickier and there’s a lot of mediocre content out there.

We’ve entered an age of content in which the audience knows to ignore the banner ad. Because of this, your content must accurately show intent and provide value.

A Happy Medium Between Education and Entertainment Content

What is the right balance between content that informs and educates versus content that entertains? Getting it right depends on how well you know your audience and understand the purpose of the content.

For example, if you’re a B2B company very focused on education and all of the sudden decide to create an entertaining ad, you shouldn’t be surprised if it doesn't work. People are not coming to you for that type of content. So you either need to work on showing them you do both, or you need to bake entertainment into your brand. If they expect entertainment aspects in your voice and tone, then there’s a logical way to incorporate that into your content.

It comes down to knowing your audience and managing expectations.

Related: Building a successful agency by putting people first.

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Direct download: How_to_Increase_Agency_Profits_By_Creating_Content_for_Clients.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 5:00am MDT

Do you offer too many agency services? Are you trying to be a jack-of-all-trades, making you the master of none? Does your broad service offering dilute your team's focus? Today's guest is an e-commerce expert whose agency works exclusively with one e-commerce platform he believes is better than the rest. In this interview, he talks about what's next in e-commerce and what you should look to improve in your website.

Guillaume Le Tual is the Founder and CEO of MageMontreal, an agency committed to building powerful e-commerce websites to increase clients' sales. They work exclusively with the Magento platform. Why? According to Guillaume, the agency tried working with other platforms and found Magento is the best open source e-commerce platform on the market.

In this episode, we’ll discuss:

  • Narrowing your agency's service offering.
  • Hiring for culture fit and values.
  • Niching down to avoid diluting your team's focus.

Sponsors and Resources

E2M Solutions: Today's episode of the Smart Agency Masterclass is sponsored by E2M Solutions, a web design and development agency that has provided white label services for the past 10 years to agencies all over the world. Check out and get 10% off for the first three months of service.


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Podcast Takeover!!

Get to know your Smart Agency Guest Host:  Dr. Jeremy Weisz is the co-founder of Rise25, an agency that helps companies launch and run podcasts profitably. He followed Jason’s podcast and eventually joined the mastermind and has been a guest on the podcast before. Today, he’s helping Jason bring something new to the Smart Agency podcast audience by interviewing a special guest and bringing a new perspective to the show.

Narrowing Your Service Offering and Focusing on a Horizontal Niche

Guillaume started his career as a visual artist building background art for clients like The National Bank of Canada and Warner Bros. He gained experience in web design, digital marketing, and e-commerce and eventually decided to start his agency, MageMontreal.

According to Guillaume, he and his team tried dozens of other e-commerce platforms before settling on working exclusively as a Magento agency.  They offer complete e-commerce website design and development, maintenance, and integration of Magento with third-party software.

Now, they are one of very few Magento-certified agencies in Canada and can see the best decision for their business was focusing on one very specific niche and cutting down on their service offering to be the very best at just one. Remember, a niche can be a specific market (vertical niche) or a specific skillset (horizontal niche).

What’s Next in E-Commerce?

Guillaume says we’re still a long way from truly developing AI to what we’ve seen in movies. Most companies are not at a point where they are truly using AI. However, it is used in for things like product recommendations. Using Adobe Sensei, for example, users can get product recommendations based on shopper behavior, popular trends, and product similarity. If a suggestion does not convert into a sale, next time it will make a different suggestion, which indicates that the machine is learning. That would be the low-hanging fruit available right now. It can also be used to improve the search bar, for example, to get more relevant search results.

It’s really a step-by-step process to integrate this technology into your company. It requires prior steps like cleaning up your data and standardizing your processes to be able to implement this. After implementing marketing automation at every step of your email process and onboarding process, the next level would be using AI to help you run that.

There’s also some interesting work done with progressive web apps (PWA). Basically, this is a hybrid between a native app and a website so you get the benefits of both. So even though it’s a website, in terms of maintenance you don’t have to constantly download the latest version of the app. It’s a website, so you always have the latest content. It also has some limited offline capabilities. And it includes push notifications for marketing like you would have with a native app.

Online Training for Digital Agencies

Hiring For Values and Resourcefulness

When it comes to his hiring process, Guillaume prioritizes the agency’s values. He recommends not overcomplicating it and having a list of three or four things the candidates must comply with. “Do not compromise when it comes to your values,” he advises. Whether it’s sales or HR, if the candidate does not meet these requirements, they’re not the right fit for your agency. Also, take your time with the process if you have to because rushing leads to mistakes.

Above all, he prioritizes a strong work ethic and desire to provide the best possible service. He asks candidates to provide examples of times they feel they provided excellent customer service. He also looks for resourcefulness. Sometimes it can be an issue when an employee comes from a big company to work at a smaller agency. They might be accustomed to having more resources, and it’s important to Guillaume the employees show they can figure out creative solutions without those resources.

Replacing Yourself in the Daily Agency Operations

He recently hired a Head of Project Management, an operations role not yet running without him. Originally, he was going to hire from within but was surprised to find an outside person who fit this role.

After making sure it was a good fit for the agency, he delegated tasks and immediately saw a difference. It was a game changer between when he organized everything a having a person with operational expertise. With someone in charge of organizing the pile of things to do and delivering on all of it, he completely removed himself from the client services process.

Stop Diluting Your Team's Focus and Be an Expert

Do you offer a very wide set of services? Looking back, that was MageMontreal. They handled everything from website building and design, SEO, pay-per-click, social media, IT support. At one point, Guillaume checked Apple’s website and realized he offered more services than Apple.

He decided at that point this needed to change because doing too much was diluting his team’s time and focus. You can successfully offer such a wide variety of services, but you need a staff of hundreds in order to do it properly. So, he decided to cut down his offering and focused on just their expertise. Overall, his agency helps clients with website building and some consulting. However, for other services like marketing and hosting they usually refer clients to their partner agencies.

Want the Support of Amazing Digital Agency Owners?

If you want to be around amazing agency owners that can see you may not be able to see and help you grow your agency, go to the Digital Agency Elite to learn all about our exclusive mastermind.

Direct download: Are_You_Diluting_Your_Teams_Focus_With_Too_Many_Services_.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 5:00am MDT

Are you having a hard time finding the right candidates to fill roles on your team? Does your hiring process take culture fit into account? A solid hiring process is key to agency growth. Today’s guest has worn many hats in her career in the agency world and has learned to always keep the recruitment pipeline full at all times. How can you manage to do this? It’s a combination of various steps.

Amy Pyles is the president of Saxum, an integrated digital agency that works with brands balancing purpose with profit. In her role overseeing the inner workings of the agency, Amy relies on her leadership team to create the type of culture where they set up people for success and keep the agency steering towards its goals.

In this interview, we’ll discuss:

  • Building agency culture and constantly recruiting.
  • Keep your recruitment pipeline full at all times.
  • How to grow your agency team talent.

Sponsors and Resources

E2M Solutions: Today's episode of the Smart Agency Masterclass is sponsored by E2M Solutions, a web design and development agency that has provided white label services for the past 10 years to agencies all over the world. Check out and get 10% off for the first three months of service.


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Cultivating an Agency President from Within

Amy is not the owner of Saxum but does operate the business. Her agency career started right after finishing her master’s degree. She started as employee number 25 at an agency that was just starting its growth journey. It was 2008 and Twitter had just come out, Apple was about to launch the new iPod, Facebook was just opening up to work as a marketing platform for brands, and everybody was building custom websites and apps. With so much happening, it was definitively the right place and right time to enter the digital marketing space. She left the agency 8 years later as a business with 250 employees, offices across the country, and working with brands like Walmart.

She started working with Saxum right away to lead their digital practice. Over the years, she led some departments, was promoted to Chief Operating Officer, and now has the role of President.

Creating Agency Culture That Supports Constant Recruiting

Many agencies have a hard time bringing in talent and building up the team to keep up with demand. Amy finds one of the most important elements when recruiting is having a clear purpose for your agency. Being able to connect with purpose on the talent side has been an important piece of how they recruit. Her team leverages culture as a key operational element in growing the agency. Thanks to their culture partner, Giant Worldwide, they also have a framework to manage culture and talent development. And, they take several steps to ensure their talent pipeline is always full.

Remember: You should always be hiring! Sometimes agency owners will say they’re having a hard time finding talent but if you go to their website there's for recruiting. This should be clear as soon as a user enters your website that you are hiring. Set up the right systems to create your recruitment pipeline and be consistent in keeping it active.

At Amy's agency, everyone knows that “what gets measured, gets managed”. As you focus on operations, think about what you’re measuring (and don’t measure too much!). That’s what will get managed. It’s been pivotal in the way her team builds competency and builds the discipline needed in operations.

6 Steps to Keep Your Recruitment Pipeline Full at All Times

At her agency, senior leaders are responsible for filling the pipeline for their departments. Basically, they should always have in mind at least two positions they should fill next and ensure these steps are covered:

  1. Developing relationships: Each team leader should think about where they could be developing relationships with possible recruits. This could mean keeping an eye on other agencies in case they want to “poach”.
  2. LinkedIn: Their LinkedIn is always running and Amy says they get great input from there.
  3. Paid ads: A part of any serious recruiting effort.
  4. Referrals: This is a piece people tend to lose sight of. However, the best source of freelance talent and full-time talent is from existing employees. So they try to incentivize that and hire from within their network.
  5. Internship program: They have a robust intern program that has worked great for them. Ideally, they’ll have up to ten interns to grads working at the agency at any given time. Keep in mind that bringing in interns to your agency won’t save you any time. In fact, it is a long-term strategy and requires a lot of time and planning to do it well.
  6. Quarterly meeting: Finally, they have a quarterly meeting where every department head goes through the pipeline.

As to the question of hiring junior or more experienced staff, her agency does prefer to hire junior staff and train them. Of course, you will need to hire more experienced talent sooner or later. Keep in mind this will be the most difficult task when it comes to recruiting and integrating them, but it is a necessary step.

Online Training for Digital Agencies

A System to Improve Interactions as an Agency Leader

Working with Giant Worldwide, Amy’s agency has learned to work with its Five Voices Framework to build liberated leaders. This framework helps employees understand themselves better, understand others, and identify their blind spots. As a leader, it helps figure out how to better communicate with others and greatly improve interactions.

At Amy's agency, the conversation about voice starts in the interview process. This way, interviewees understand how they will fit into a role and how they would interact within the team dynamics.

Investing in Development and Promoting Your Agency Team

Amy’s team implements all the typical tools and growth guides managers use to encourage growth among employees. They are also big believers in real-time feedback and maintain that 1,000 small conversations lead to more growth than one big conversation. As a strategy to help people set goals and keep an eye on skill gaps, employees get an annual stipend to spend on personal development. Of course, the agency also offers training for the team.

When it comes to promoting people to team leaders, Amy doesn’t believe tenure necessarily dictates capability. For her, it’s more about having had the right exposure to perform at the next level. It also depends on what each employee wants. Not everyone is interested in managing people. There’s a place and a need in every agency for managers that lead people and for experts that make sure to deliver a great service.

Transitioning Roles from Agency COO to Agency President

Amy has worn several hats at Saxum, including leading their digital department, COO and more recently as the company’s President. As COO, she oversaw HR admin operations, project management, and she retained the leadership of their digital practice. Most of her time was spent on project management and workflow to get all of those pieces to work together and produce for the agency.

Now as President, she also oversees the creative department and client service. All services now report to her from a quality perspective and she relies heavily on each of those department leaders. Amy has worked in different roles in her past agency experiences, leading client service, project management, digital strategy, etc., and she realizes now the importance it all had to prepare her for the role of COO.

It's difficult to hire someone outside who starts working as the agency COO. If you’re looking to fill the position of COO, you want someone who understands the different nuances of working in your agency while bringing a systemized approach in efficiency and effectiveness.

Jason has coached agency owner clients who bring in a COO from the outside by first bringing them in as a consultant. They try this for a few months until they understand how the agency operates. It's a low-commitment way of testing things out before making it official. He feels Bringing someone new in with a heavy title before they get to know and earn the trust of the team is setting them up for failure.

Want the Support of Amazing Digital Agency Owners?

If you want to be around amazing agency owners that can see you may not be able to see and help you grow your agency, go to the Digital Agency Elite to learn all about our exclusive mastermind.

Are you an accidental agency owner trying to grow fast? Rapid agency growth isn't necessarily the best way to grow. When you're going through the ups and downs you want to get to the other side quickly. But slow and steady wins the race and for one agency, hitting the one million dollar mark changed everything. He went from running a “mom and pop shop" to growing a 10-person agency. He shares how he recovered from rapid growth by getting focused and his lessons on the importance of branding while growing his agency.

Robert Giovanni is the CEO and co-founder of IronPlane, an agency dedicated to designing, building, and optimizing exceptional eCommerce experiences. Robert says he's made mistakes and learned a lot in the process of growing his agency. He experienced the awkward stage of an agency’s growth of being in no man's land. He now offers a perspective on how to get your agency past that awkward growth stage with lessons he's learned over the years.

In this episode, we’ll discuss:

  • Getting over $1 million in revenue.
  • Choosing ideal clients and firing ones that aren't.
  • Getting comfortable hiring in advance of need.
  • Branding your agency and your team.

Sponsors and Resources

E2M Solutions: Today's episode of the Smart Agency Masterclass is sponsored by E2M Solutions, a web design and development agency that has provided white label services for the past 10 years to agencies all over the world. Check out and get 10% off for the first three months of service.


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Discovering the Opportunities in eCommerce

Robert discovered opportunities in selling online back in 1988 when he sold a chess set. He built a website to sell this set purchased in Russia and sold it for around $8,000. He quickly started to buy and sell products online, which eventually led to requests to build websites for other people's product sales. And with that, an accidental agency was born.

Step by step they started to build a relationship with clients, many of which he retained for several years. Before he knew it, he was operating a digital agency that started to grow. Robert's perspective always focuses on helping clients figure out what they wanted for their business (drive revenue, improve their bottom line.) By 2012, he knew it was time to get serious with its branding to further it's his agency's growth.

Getting Over the Million Dollar Mark

According to Robert, reaching that milestone took about three to four years. In the beginning, he had about two big clients and, as he describes it, he was a "glorified consultant." He hired another person to help him with daily tasks when the agency was near one million and felt content. This was until one of his clients decided to end their contract abruptly. It was a big blow for the agency and Robert knew in order to prevent something similar from ever happening again he needed to make things more official.

He worked on defining the agency’s purpose and branding. He hired more people and really prioritized getting out of operations so the agency was not a one-man show. It took another three years, but after these changes, the agency finally got past one million.

Choosing Your Ideal Clients and Firing Clients That Don't Fit

After getting past the point of being a “mom and pop” agency with only 2-3 big clients, there was still much to learn. At the start, the agency was taking any client that came their way. They were trying to grow and it seemed foolish to turn away any client at that point.

This is a normal part of any agency’s growth process. You feel afraid of turning down any business opportunity; even if you know a client is not a good fit. However, it's important to recognize the importance of choosing clients that are a good fit for your agency so you can wasting time on the ones that aren't.

For Robert, it was when the agency had grown to about 10 employees. He was no longer part of every sales call and had a number of good clients. There was a particular client that was never a good fit and the team knew it from day one. However, it was a big project and they signed the contract anyway. What proceeded was weeks of Saturday calls and nightmare meetings until Robert decided to end the relationship. It was the first client he had to fire and it turned out to be the point where he sat down with his team to talk about being pickier with potential clients.

From this moment on, they worked to better define the agency’s values and make sure they were clearly stated on their website. He knew his agency could bring tremendous value to any client. But the client's values needed to match the agency's  or they just wouldn’t be a good culture fit.

Failing to define these values will leave you directionless in your agency journey.

Online Training for Digital Agencies

Rapid Agency Growth and Losing the Human Touch

In early 2020, Robert felt the agency was really hitting it when it came to marketing and bringing in new clients. However, the team was failing in terms of building relationships with clients and understanding their needs. One of Robert's top priorities is building solid client relationships and offering more than just mechanics. By that time, their churn rate started to increase and Robert got worried.

Robert believes the agency should always continue to have a human touch as one of its core values. When a client did not renew their contract and the team could not pinpoint the reason, it indicated a disconnect between client and agency. It was time to re-assess and re-evaluate their client relationships.

Should Your Agency Hire Talent Before There Is A Need?

Robert’s agency has a longer sales cycle, which makes it easier to predict resource needs a few months in advance. Because of this, he is comfortable hiring today for what they will need a few months down the road. When it comes to their clients, they do a review that gives them a pretty good idea of whether that project will turn into a long-term contract. Their shortest contracts are generally about a year.

This is not the case for every agency. Having a long sales cycle provides confidence and a sense of certainty. It's really all about your sales cycle and forecasting the need of bringing in-house talent versus whitelabeling.

On the flipside, hiring before bringing on clients, you may feel pressured to take on clients that are not a good fit just to pay the bills. This is a sure way to end up with clients that abuse your team and disregard your value.

Branding the Agency or Branding Your Team?

Robert's agency has a brand voice and clear values to help attract the right clients. And by the time they got branding down, he started thinking about his team. Many of the people on his team have been with the agency for a long time and are all-stars in their area of expertise. So, they launched YouTube videos and podcasts showcasing team members talking about what they know best. Doing this has done more for the agency’s credibility and authority than anything else they had previously done.

If you’re thinking about taking similar steps, know that you can go even further. Highlighting your team is great of course, but what about starting a podcast (it's easier than you think!) and highlighting your ideal clients?

#1 Lesson in Agency Growth 

The most important thing Robert has learned over the years has been to stay focused. It can be hard when you’re starting out and you want to try everything. You don't want to miss an opportunity to be ahead of the curve. However, he recalls that the agency was really at its best once they got focused and avoided distractions. He’s also not afraid to give away expertise. He’s gotten more traction from talking with prospects and giving them the advice more than anything else.

Remember people want to see that you really understand their needs and are an authority in your field. This is what establishing yourself as a trusted advisor is all about. Don’t be afraid to talk about what you know or give away too much information. At the end of the day, they won’t be able to get better results with that information, they’ll still need you to execute.

Want the Support of Amazing Digital Agency Owners?

If you want to be around amazing agency owners that can see you may not be able to see and help you grow your agency, go to the Digital Agency Elite to learn all about our exclusive mastermind.

Direct download: How_To_Recover_from_Rapid_Agency_Growth_By_Getting_Hyper_Focused.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 5:00am MDT

What are your goals for agency growth? Would you like to grow your agency to 7- or 8-figures? That is exactly what this agency owner did when he built a highly successful $50 million-dollar agency with a team of 400 people. He did it by staying ahead of the curve with technology and building leaders who evolve with the growing agency.

Robert Henderson is the co-founder and CEO of JumpCrew, an agency that generates demand for 2B2 customers by building a qualified pipeline through fully dedicated sales teams. Robert has built a successful agency by growing in the direction of the market, staying ahead of the curve, and building strong leadership.

In this episode, we’ll discuss:

  • The future of marketing in the metaverse.
  • Staying ahead of the curve with technology.
  • Building a leadership that evolves with your agency.

Sponsors and Resources

E2M Solutions: Today's episode of the Smart Agency Masterclass is sponsored by E2M Solutions, a web design, and development agency that has provided white label services for the past 10 years to agencies all over the world. Check out and get 10% off for the first three months of service.


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Building a $50 Million Dollar Agency

Many agency owners starting out are interested in “tricks” to get ahead and grow their agency as fast as possible. They seem so interested in growth they don’t stop to think about the value they should be providing. When he started out, Robert saw many businesses shied away from learning how to acquire new clients. Communicating value is something he really leans into with each new client.

He doesn’t sell a one-size-fits-all solution because it's specific enough or aligned with what the client needs. Instead, his team focuses on how to deliver value in a way that aligns with the client’s goals. Also, they are self-aware enough to turn away clients when they feel that they can’t deliver this value. Whatever the reason, they try to be really candid about good and bad fits.

The most important piece of building a successful agency is aligning with the right people. Every business is ultimately about people and when you create an environment where each team member is an expert in their area you don’t need to know everything. Partnering with people who really know about their particular area will you set your agency up for success. The secret is having people that are really good at executing what they know.

The Effect of New Technologies and the Metaverse on the Future of Marketing

Robert and his team learned the power of content marketing while automating content for local businesses. They learned what the market needed by being in the mix. They grew in that direction by adding new products and services based on the feedback from clients.

Robert is a believer in new and emerging tech tools and giving platforms the credit they deserve as they develop. Sometimes we can’t imagine the progress a new technology will represent in our particular space. For instance, 10 years ago no one was interested in being a guest on a podcast and now they have become a very popular marketing vehicle.

Looking ahead, Robert believes in ten years from now the meetings we’re having on video today will all happen on the metaverse. People from all over the world will gather in a space that feels very realistic. The adoption of mediums like the metaverse will come with the technology and infrastructures to support them. At this point, adopting this new technology will maybe shape the way the supporting technologies start to develop.

He believes the possibilities are endless as we still can’t imagine the many ways that we’ll use it. The development of paid search started with the rate of adoption of social media platforms. Similarly, the development of the metaverse as the possible future of paid ads will depend on how people start to adopt this new technology.

These tools are bound to change the way agencies work and advertise and, of course, being the first to adopt them successfully would be a great advantage. We need to continue to study and educate ourselves to be able to see where it is heading.

Online Training for Digital Agencies

Staying Ahead of the Curve with Technology

Staying ahead of the curve is mostly about educating yourself and trying to understand what the opportunities look like to capitalize on them as they come. We’re in a learning phase for technologies like the metaverse. We know it will be a part of the future but we don’t know exactly how that will look. Right now it’s about trying to create more connectivity between your team in what is set to be a more sophisticated environment. Robert believes this is the low-hanging fruit available right now for all until we can figure out how to get our partners and clients into it.

However, the technology is still in the very early stages. For instance, no one wants to work 6 to 7 hours with the VR goggles on. There’s still a long way to go before it is adapted to everyday use and usage is what will help shape that.

Evolving Team Member Roles as the Agency Grows

One of the most difficult phases for his agency was at a point when a lot of things were working great but they couldn’t figure out why some others were not working at all. In hindsight, they just didn’t have the right infrastructure and didn’t have all the right people in the right seats.

It’s really fun to be part of so much growth but it can also be a struggle to remain motivated and challenge yourself every single day, month, and year. Robert's leadership team has been with the agency since they were just ten people. This team has helped grow the agency to over 400 people. How did they do it?

First of all, they’ve had to continue growing themselves. Their role in the agency business has changed and they’ve reinvented themselves several times. Being open to the idea of constantly evolving in order to be able to grow has really helped them support the agency’s growth. Each employee remains flexible and open to change for their own growth as well as that of the agency.

Building Leaders Who Help Grow a Strong Agency

Robert built the leadership team in such a way that they've basically been with him since the very beginning. Of course, they were not all prepared for a leadership role from the beginning. Building an agency as a team of just 10 people helped a lot when it came to building camaraderie. They had different titles but were very much equals and shared the same values. It also helped build a level of communication not often seen in a team where they are able to have hard conversations and be very honest with each other.

Robert also encouraged an environment for taking risks. He feels it is important to challenge leaders to take risks without the fear of making mistakes. This doesn’t mean they make mistakes all the time, but in order to go for innovation, the team needs to know that it’s ok if something doesn’t work out as they’d hoped.

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