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How are you branding your agency? Do you treat the agency like a client and market purposefully? Your agency’s brand is much more than just a name or logo. The way you brand your impacts the type of clients you attract. A rebrand can be daunting. However, sometimes it’s the best way to regain control and attract your ideal clients. Today’s guest purchased an agency and decided to strip it down and rebuild the agency she envisioned. She shares the reasons for the rebrand and some of the surprising results in her team and marketing efforts.

Avril Tomlin-Hood is the CEO and Founder of boa, a Vancouver-based digital marketing agency specializing in media buying. After committing to elevate companies that want to effect positive change, boa now works exclusively with plant-based and sustainable brands. She recalls why she decided to rebrand her agency after six years and her surprising new role at the agency she enjoys more than expected.

In this episode, we’ll discuss:

  • Rebranding to build the agency you really want.
  • How a mastermind helps combat isolation.
  • The surprising way a podcast can change your agency.
  • Why you shouldn't forget to invest in your agency.


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Sponsors and Resources

Dot & Co: Today's episode of the Smart Agency Masterclass is sponsored by Dot & Co, client management specialists that will help digital marketing agencies keep their clients happy. With the help of their knowledgeable account managers, agency owners can step away from the day-to-day and focus on driving results. Check out and get 20% off your first month working with them.


Rebranding to Build the Agency You Really Want

Ten years ago, Avril worked at a media buying agency. After four years there, the owner was ready to move on to other things, so Avril took over and bought the agency. The agency has gone through a few iterations doing white labeling services and branded agency work.

A year ago, after a failed employee acquisition, she realized it was time to invest in the agency’s brand to be in more control. In hindsight, the acquisition was never going to work because the structure didn't allow for independence. Once the deal fell through, she knew it was time to try something different and focused her energy on an agency rebrand.

Years after acquiring the agency, she had never really invested in the brand. It was sort of just there while the actual work had shifted to white labeling services. Hence, despite having owned the agency for many years it never felt like it was actually hers.

She renamed it boa and decided to focus less on white labeling and more on media buying. The shift also includes working exclusively in a niche of brands that want to have a positive impact on the planet.

Finding an Agency Community to Help Set Goals and Combat Isolation

Lots of agency owners feel like they're making decisions on an island. The game changer for Avril is following a friend’s advice to get a coach. This way, she got the help she needed to figure out her goals, strategy, and the support she needed to get there.

Furthermore, joining a mastermind like Agency Mastery made a big difference when it came to combating isolation. The community really helped her work through her feelings of being stuck. It also helped her see the options and opportunities for the future, by meeting people who were three or five years ahead in their agency journey.

Finding an Integrator and Focusing on Building a Leadership Team

We all know how hard it can be to find great people. One of Avril's most significant successes in this area was hiring a trusted "right-hand" person who has been moving into an operations position. This person fills the role of the Integrator and her addition to the team has been a game-changer for the agency operations.

Avril's own role as Visionary has helped her have a clear and defined vision for the agency. She is no longer in the weeds and can focus on the agency rather than being stuck in it. This is something she now communicates to her team. She focuses more on reaching the agency's goals and measuring KPIs that matter in the process.

Avril believes growth is all about building a leadership team. Right now, she requires all hires to have leadership potential so they can manage a team in the future.

The Surprising Way Starting a Podcast Can Change Your Business

Recently, Avril has added podcast host to her role. Starting a podcast wasn't in the original plan but she has found it is a great way to grow her agency's audience. It was hard to get her head around the concept and she didn’t know what she would talk about on the show.

In the end, she realized the podcast didn’t have to focus on what the agency does. It should focus on her target audience, which is why she interviews innovative and sustainable brands.

The podcast has actually made it easier for her to reach out to her ideal clients. Instead of sending a cold email, she invites them to the podcast as a thought leader on sustainable brands. It’s a smart strategy for business development. It has also helped her understand the importance of branding herself, which wasn't a priority at first. Now she sees branding herself can be very beneficial for the agency as well.

Growth Takes Investment and Getting Out of Your Comfort Zone

For a long time, Avril was really good about keeping solid profit margins. However, this also meant she was limiting the agency’s growth. Staying in your comfort zone is not necessarily best for agency growth.

If you’re feeling too comfortable, you’re probably not pushing enough. Growth takes investment, which is something Avril is taking seriously by treating the agency like a client. Now when they look at investments like media planning, marketing planning, etc. the agency is included.

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: Is_it_the_Right_Time_to_Rebrand_Your_Agency_.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 5:00am MDT