Positioning Your Agency for Higher Retainers and Growth

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  • My dad will be in the audience… I’ll probably make a joke about not even having internet in my house when I built my first website, I had to go to the public library.
  • We’ve been very lucky and blessed to be able to grow to what we are today, and we still have very aggressive growth plans. But not too long ago, it wasn’t like this. Scared about money, investing everything I had in this business. Months where I couldn’t pay my mortgage. It was scary. But’s it’s all worth it. I stand here today both very humble, honored, and privileged. I hope that my story inspires you and that you have some real takeaways to help you avoid some of the mistakes we’ve made along the way and achieve the goals you set out to achieve as an entrepreneur.
  • Had a lot of pushback when I first started, friends and family were scared, asked about health insurance. Show of hands.
  • Our first office with minimal start-up investment, no furniture, and no doors. Our first website, had no clue what I was doing. Notice the typos.
  • Talk about bandwidth issues.
  • Do Some Homework – Watch the webinar series, read baseline selling
  • STILL HAVE TO FIGURE THIS OUT
  • Positioning Your Agency for Higher Retainers and Growth

    1. 1. #inbound2013 POSITIONING YOUR AGENCY FOR HIGHER RETAINERS AND GROWTH Bob Ruffolo @bobruffolo
    2. 2. @bobruffolo bobruffolo.com BOB RUFFOLO Founder & CEO of IMPACT. Fun Fact: I built my first website in 1997 on Geocities at age 12.
    3. 3. 1 TELL OUR STORY OF GROWTH 2 SHARE WHAT WE DID (BOTH RIGHT AND WRONG) 3 PROVIDE A LIST OF TACTICS AND RESOURCES TO HELP YOU ACHIEVE SIMILAR OR BETTER RESULTS PURPOSE OF THIS PRESENTATION
    4. 4. 1 ABOUT OUR AGENCY & BECOMING A HUBSPOT PARTNER 2 MARKETING YOUR AGENCY 3 DEVELOPING YOUR SALES PROCESS 4 PACKAGING & PRICING 5 SETTING EXPECTATIONS & CLIENT RETENTION 6 HIRING & RECRUITING TALENT TOPICS WE’LL COVER TODAY
    5. 5. ABOUT OUR AGENCY & BECOMING A HUBSPOT PARTNER 1
    6. 6. OUR STORY • STARTED IN A CONDO IN 2009 • PRIMARILY A WEB DESIGN COMPANY • HAD A GOAL TO SCALE THE BUSINESS
    7. 7. 2010
    8. 8. GETTING STARTED• GRINDED!!!! • HUPSPOT UNIVERSITY & ADVANCED SALES TRAINING SERIES • LATE NIGHTS AT THE OFFICE = LOTS OF PIZZA & BEER • WE WERE GOING TO BE THE BEST INBOUND MARKETING AGENCY
    9. 9. GET OFF TO A FAST START 1. SET AN END GOAL, ONLY MAKE DECISIONS BASED ON THAT GOAL 2. LEARN HUBSPOT INSIDE & OUT 3. READ THE PURPLE COW 4. CONSUME ANYTHING FROM GARY VAYNERCHUK 5. THINK STRATEGY BEFORE TACTICS
    10. 10. 2 MARKETING AN AGENCY
    11. 11. OUR STORY • DECENT LOCAL PRESENCE • IF OUR GOAL WAS TO BE RECOGNIZED AS THE TOP INBOUND AGENCY, WE HAD TO LOOK LIKE IT • IMPORTANT FOR EVERYONE TO KNOW WHO WE WERE
    12. 12. HOW WE GOT OUR NAME OUT THERE• CREATED VIRAL CONTENT • BUILT A MARKETING TEAM • BUILT RELATIONSHIPS • REMAINED CONSISTENT & AGGRESSIVE
    13. 13. REAL TACTICS 1. MAP OUT YOUR ROUTINE 2. DO SOMETHING DIFFERENT 3. BUILD RELATIONSHIPS 4. GET FEEDBACK 5. GREAT DESIGN / VISUALS
    14. 14. 3 DEVELOPING A SALES PROCESS
    15. 15. NOT GOOD AT “SALES” • ALWAYS PITCHING • STANDARD PROPOSALS / SELLING TACTICS • NO PROCESS • NO GOALS • CHURN
    16. 16. THIS ENDS NOW! • BROUGHT ON A DEDICATED SALES CONSULTANT • ADVANCED WEBINAR SERIES & BASELINE SELLING • DOCUMENTED PROCESS • UTILIZED MY TRUSTED RESOURCES (HUBSPOT, OTHER AGENCIES,
    17. 17. WHAT YOU CAN DO NOW 1. DO SOME HOMEWORK 2. MASTER YOUR IMA 3. STRATEGIZE YOUR AGREEMENTS 4. SAY NO, MORE THAN YES 5. SET CLEAR EXPECTATIONS
    18. 18. 4 PACKAGING & PRICING
    19. 19. HOW WE WERE DOING IT • USED TO BE PRIMARILY PROJECT BASED (85% PROJECT : 15% RETAINER) • KNEW IF WE WANTED TO SCALE, WE NEEDED TO REVERSE THAT • NOW WE’RE 85% - 90% RETAINER
    20. 20. PRICING THAT MAKES SENSE • DEVELOPED PACKAGES AND PRICING AROUND GOALS • OUR PRICING PAGE • DON’T BE AFRAID TO INCREASE YOUR PRICING
    21. 21. IMPROVE YOUR REVENUES NOW1. PUT YOUR PRICING OUT THERE 2. STOP TAKING PROJECT WORK, FOCUS ON RETAINERS 3. 12-MONTH PLANS 4. SELL TO THE GOALS, NOT THE FINAL DELIVERABLES 5. DON’T LET THEM CUT
    22. 22. 5 SETTING EXPECTATIONS & CLIENT RETENTION
    23. 23. REAL STRUGGLES• WE WERE SELLING WITHOUT SETTING FAIR EXPECTATIONS • ALSO NOT SETTING UP OUR TEAM FOR SUCCESS • WE’VE BEEN FIRED AND HAVE HAD SOME VERY ROCKY ACCOUNTS
    24. 24. BIG CHANGES • RAN STRONGER IMA’S • WE QUALIFIED OUR CLIENTS AS PEOPLE THAT WE WANT TO WORK WITH • INCORPORATED A STRATEGY MEETING BEFORE CLOSING • MUCH STRONGER CLIENT BASE, MUCH BETTER RESULTS
    25. 25. MAKE YOUR CLIENTS HAPPY 1. CREATE CLIENT AND ACCOUNT MANAGER CHECKLISTS 2. LINK ALL TACTICS TO THE OVERALL GOAL OF CAMPAIGN 3. MAINTAIN A COLLABORATIVE STRATEGY DOCUMENT 4. CONSISTENTLY ASK FOR FEEDBACK 5. THANK YOU ECONOMY
    26. 26. 6 HIRING & RECRUITING TALENT
    27. 27. EVEN FROM THE BEGINNING, WE WERE VERY GRASS ROOTS, AND USED UNPAID INTERNS AS A WAY TO HELP US GET OUR WORK DONE. EVEN FROM THE BEGINNING, WE WERE VERY GRASS ROOTS, AND USED UNPAID INTERNS AS A WAY TO HELP US GET OUR WORK DONE.
    28. 28. • DEVELOPED AN ORGANIZATIONAL CHART THAT WAS SCALABLE • DEFINED ROLES • DEVELOPED OUR TRAINING PROGRAM HOW WE BUILT OUR TEAM
    29. 29. REAL TACTICS 1. LOOK FOR YOUNG TALENT THAT IS NOT GOING TO LEAVE YOU 2. WHILE THEY’RE TRAINING, HAVE THEM PRODUCE MARKETING CONTENT FOR YOU 3. BRING IN “PIECES” AS NEEDED 4. DON’T BE AFRAID TO OUTSOURCE
    30. 30. #inbound2013 KEY TAKE-AWAYS • KEEP LEARNING • KEEP WORKING HARD • BUILD A LOT OF STRONG RELATIONSHIPS • MARKET YOURSELF
    31. 31. THANK YOU @bobruffolo bobruffolo.com

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