How One Agency Increased Revenue by 4X in 2 Years

By Jason Swenk on September 4, 2019

Having trouble getting your agency to the next level? Want to increase agency revenue but can’t get beyond a plateau? Then it might be time to get a little uncomfortable and take some risks. If you really want to level-up your agency check out the big risk one agency took which yielded 4X revenue in just two years.

In this episode, we’ll cover:

  • 3 hacks to help your agency level up and increase revenue.
  • Why outbound will make your digital agency revenue soar.
  • How to hire the right agency sales team.

Today, I talked with Chris Brencans, CMO at OnTheMap — a full-service digital marketing agency. Chris’s agency does something that may sound a little strange. Half of the agency’s team are salespeople. That’s right! 50% of the approximately 70 people at the agency are involved in sales, and business is booming. OnTheMap’s revenue has grown from $1 Million to $4 Million in the last 2 years by investing in its salespeople and taking some risks. Chris is on the show to share some tips with us.

3 Hacks Help Your Agency Level Up

  1. Lean on your processes. If you don’t have processes, you’re driving the highway without cruise control, constantly speeding up and slowing down. Why make it harder on yourself? Once you build-out the right processes, you can take your foot off the gas and start working on other areas of your business. You shouldn’t be spending a ton of your time on client work. Instead, build processes so you can work on the business rather than in it.
  2. Find the glaring problems. Here’s the big secret — you already know what your biggest problems are. Chances are, everyone in your agency knows what they are. Ask your employees and be honest with yourself as you reflect on them. They may be hard to fix. But ignoring them is causing them to be bigger than necessary. Tackle your agency’s problems because they are a roadblock to your growth.
  3. Take some risks! If you have processes in place (#1) and you don’t have any big problems (#2), then you’re not taking enough risks. And, your reservations are what’s holding back your agency’s growth. Take a leap – bet on your agency! Organic growth still requires money, time, and resources. Be willing to spend them. (Like Chris’s agency — their big leap was betting on their sales team and poof! 4x growth in 2 years.)

Why Outbound Will Make Your Digital Agency Revenue Soar

Inbound marketing keeps you successful. But it’s outbound marketing which makes you successful.

Chris’s agency is 50% salespeople. They bet big on outbound, and it grew them from $1m to $4m. This isn’t a one-off tactic. Neil Patel uses outbound to grow his agency, and I had one agency on the podcast who has grown to $6m in 2 years tackling outbound.

Outbound just works. You can execute it on a lean budget. There are tons of killer strategies to follow. And it’s easy to get started. You don’t need half of your team in sales, like Chris. It just depends on your specific processes. But you definitely need one person, or a few, dedicated to sales.

How to Hire the Right Agency Sales Team

Attracting salespeople is all about salary, benefits, and culture. Selecting the right candidate(s) is all about these 3 things.

  • Look for initiative. You want to give your salespeople some formal training, sure. But you should be able to hand them processes and let them run with it. This team is going to be handling valuable leads. Make sure you give them some room to prove themselves. I believe salespeople prove their worth in their first 60 days. If they aren’t cutting it…. you know what you have to do.
  • Find the right soft skills. They say good salespeople aren’t made; they’re born. That’s sort of true. Amazing salespeople need the right soft skills. Look for empathy, leadership, and resolve. You want a team of great communicators. Always hire for soft skills first. You can train the rest of the skill sets but personality either works with your culture or it doesn’t.
  • Seek an eagerness to constantly improve. You want a team that’s always looking to do better than last month. Do they set their own goals? Do they take constructive feedback? Make sure their hungry and eager to be successful.

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