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

Considering adding software as a service to your offering? Do you have a SaaS idea in mind? Having proprietary agency software is a great way to meet the needs of your clients. However, building it is no easy task and often takes longer than expected. Today’s guests created an email marketing system which led to building their agency back in the early 2000s. They share lessons learned and challenges overcome in the process of building their email marketing agency out of a SaaS model.

Robert Dodd and Joe Solano are the founders of XL Technologies, a digital agency specializing in helping US-based real estate brokers grow and scale their brokerages. They have over 20 years of experience and help their clients using their proven and tested agent acquisition framework.

They also created proprietary software for real estate brokerages, which they use to help get clients better results from their campaigns. Their product, and the one that actually got their partnership started, is eCampaignPro. This email marketing system helps build targeted agent-to-agent email marketing lists.

In this interview, we’ll discuss:

  • Discovering the right niche and selling a solution.
  • The #1 common mistake sending cold emails.
  • Recommendations on building your own SaaS.


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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.

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 getting a new perspective to the show.

Discovering the Right Niche and Selling a Solution

Robert and Joe have been involved in internet marketing since the dot-com bubble era. Robert moved to Florida to work in a startup, which didn't work out. He met Joe through a project, and they started XL Tech together. They developed an email marketing system, which was a challenge to sell to businesses. They decided to niche down and adapted the system as a solution for the real estate market, specifically brokers. It was a great success.

Evolving from SaaS to an Email Marketing Agency

They identified common mistakes while managing agent-to-agent marketing relations and decided to provide a more complete solution. The concept of their agency was born from the need to help clients better use their software. Their company quickly grew with the success of eCampaignPro. However, they ended up getting into hot water with Google after some of their customers were spamming clients. As a result, their email traffic got blocked, which caused a significant disruption in the business.

They decided to help real estate brokers strategically map out the right approach and leverage social media as another way to reach out to agents. Their agency used their understanding of their audience's pain points and motivations to create an agent acquisition framework. They take everything brokers may need to put together a fully functional and omnipresent marketing campaign to get their message out. They also handle all the pre-qualifications, appointment setting, and follow-up all the way to the onboarding process.

#1 Common Mistake in Email Marketing

Joe and Robert say that creating software to sell with agency services is an unbelievable undertaking and will almost certainly take longer than expected. One of the most common mistakes in people's approach to cold email is being too aggressive with the frequency and cadence. Therefore it's important to have the right balance between cadence and messaging to get the results you're looking for.

With the way algorithms work today, it's essential to be tactful and strategic with your approach. They work out email sequences in their agency, which doesn't try to say everything at once. Sometimes they just contain a simple introduction. Then they wait to see how engaged the audience was with that message before following up.

Although they grow brokerages from scratch to thousands of brokers, they've never taken equity. They acknowledge it's an interesting prospect they haven't explored and are proud of the results they can get for their clients.

Do You Want to Transform Your Agency from a Liability to an Asset?

If you want to be around amazing agency owners that can see what you may not be able to see and help you grow your agency, go to Agency Mastery 360.  Our agency growth program helps you take a 360-degree view of your agency and gain mastery of the 3 pillar systems (attract, convert, scale) so you can create predictability, wealth, and freedom.

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