Our digital agency, Nzime, has been around for decades, and we’ve learned some digital agency growth secrets the hard way. I’ll share a few of them in this article with you today.
Collaborate & Identify Your Agency Pitfalls
Over the years our identity as a digital agency, along with our offering, has developed into something that we’re really proud of. If you’re just starting a marketing agency, you hopefully won’t have a legacy to deal with, but since we’ve been running an agency for a while, we’ve fallen into some less-than-ideal habits.
But being an innovative bunch at heart, we asked ourselves, are we operating in a way that’s efficient for both us and our clients?
We asked ourselves this question for two reasons:
- To make sure we were growing as an agency and business
- To ensure we’re providing the best client experience possible
Look At How You’re Using Your Agency Tools
A traditional agency will use a suite of agency tools and programs to run their day-to-day.
For us, this included Harvest, Resource Guru, G-Suite, Asana and a custom invoicing software. We were duplicating work updating multiple platforms which was becoming a real burden, especially with multiple clients and projects.
We were keeping our heads above water, but we knew we could do better.
Some of the issues with working this way can include:
- Inconsistent communication plans with clients
- Lack of protocol within the studio
- Inaccurate reporting
- Time wasting
- A daunting onboarding process
Growing an agency in the face of these hurdles is no small feat!
Brainstorm Improvements & Solutions For Agency Growth
We wanted to not only streamline our digital agency tools, but streamline the way we worked.
I know that many people who are scaling an agency or are trying to increase agency profits or reduce agency costs find that it’s really important to spend less resources on operations. That’s what we wanted to do in focusing less on the project board and more on the project.
As all good PM’s will do (with the exception of our Great British parliment) I started by gathering requirements.
I asked myself, instead of forcing our process around what the tools were offering, what did we actually need? To streamline an agency, you need to differentiate between the nice-to-haves and the must-haves. Running a digital agency, you’ll know that your tools come with way more features than you will realistically use. So, what do you actually need to do your best work?
By asking this, it will mean the team help dictate the way in which they work. Not only will this mean you’re more likely to work efficiently, but you’ll have a happier more productive team too.
And so after many free trials and thinking out all the potential scenarios I could imagine. I landed on Monday.com project management software (P.S. this is not an ad for Monday.com, nor is it sponsored content from Monday.com).
The flexibility of Monday meant that I could create boards with different functionality that were specific to our needs. This allowed me to combine all our previous tools into one.
This was a mammoth task which didn’t come without struggles, and the solution is still a working process. But we have achieved a more efficient, collaborative and cost effective process.
Test Your New Agency Tools & Processes
Streamlining the tools your team use is one way to boost productivity. But there are some downsides to this approach.
I’m not going to write a full Monday.com review, but here is a simple breakdown of some of the pros and cons I found by testing out Monday.com.
If you’re curious to see how we set up Monday.com for our digital agency, I made a video to show you. Watch below:
Overall a good team should communicate openly, have fun and be able to develop both personally and as a whole. The tools you use should be just that—tools, and used only to help you achieve these goals.
Let me know in the comments below if you have a good digital agency growth secret you’d like to share with The Digital Project Manager community!