You’ve done it. You’ve built an agency that’s delighting its customers, turning out a great product, and making things happen. It’s a prime example of doing “unscalable work,” as one Y Combinator founder puts it.
But now it’s time to step it up a notch. You want to build that customer experience to the next level and make your agency bigger. To do that, you’re going to need the right tools. Thankfully technology has made it possible to do more with less – less money, less people, more reach. With the proper tools you can scale up your business with just a bit of effort.
Content marketing is marketing, at this point. But scouring the Internet for new, fresh content and paring down news posts to just the relevant information is a hard task. It also doesn’t scale well, and with time the task of keeping up with all the relevant content marketing channels may become overwhelming.
A tool like Curata helps your agency curate content from a variety of different sources and sift through it based on relevancy, freshness, and your own preference. Collating content and scheduling across a range of platforms becomes a lot easier when you have a tool that helps you scale it.
At its core, Duda is a website builder for design agencies. But it’s a lot more than that. It’s a tool for collaboration and sharing, a capable onboarding platform and an enabler for ongoing services.
The core of Duda is its web design platform, which provides a sort of virtual design table that allows everyone involved in the project to see and contribute to it. It allows everyone involved to leave comments and communicate in real time as they look at the project. And it allows for certain restricted levels of access for contributions from a company’s in-house design or copywriting team.
Added to that, it has a full onboarding setup with an easy-to-use content collection form that makes it easy to collect information from the client. The information goes into a full site repository that’s accessible to anyone on the project, and all the version iterations and comments will be available too. If you lose someone partway through the project, you can bring a replacement in and get them up to speed instantly.
It also supports dynamic content personalization, automated analytics reports, site hosting and even easy creation of progressive web apps, which empowers agencies to sell more ongoing services.
Duda is a powerful tool for design agencies that helps them all the way from start to finish. If your agency works in web design it’s worth a look when you start to scale.
Mailchimp is a known and beloved player in the email automation field. But many people don’t progress beyond the free or pay-as-you-go services they provide. That’s a mistake. If you want to scale your business, building a strong email list is still one of the best ways to do it, and MailChimp lets you manage that email list. It also now contains some CRM capabilities, letting you track a customer through their lifespan.
The level of integration Mailchimp has with many different platforms makes it the newsletter tool of choice for many organizations. It has over 800 integrations available to you that you can take advantage of for your marketing and selling, and its email list management is solid.
If you need an email tool that can also moonlight as a CRM when needed, Mailchimp is a great choice.
How much time do you spend just sending out forms? NDAs, W9s, contracts, and other legal documents are constantly going back and forth, and if you want to streamline the process for you, your clients, your contractors, and your customers it’s time to go paperless.
DocuSign helps businesses prepare, manage, send, and sign all the agreements that come in the course of doing business. As your agency scales, this becomes more and more important. Keeping all of these in a safe central database as well as on file avoids those “oops, that contract was on my old hard drive” or “do we have a backup of the Andrew’s NDA?” moments.
The less paper you use, the faster your business runs. The faster your business runs, the more scalable it is. And if it helps you track and manage your paperwork, so much the better.
You’ve probably used QuickBooks for accounting purposes. But QuickBooks’s Pro version is a different beast, adding more integrations, robust tracking options, more capable filters, and more payment options. It eases the process of tracking things like bounced checks and saves transactions.
It even allows you to quickly generate P&L reports now. The Pro version is much more robust than the regular software and allows for more users with variable levels of access. For an agency that’s trying to scale, it’s a great choice for simplifying paperwork and accounting.
These five tools aren’t by any means an exhaustive list. There are many more tools out there that could help you scale your agency. But they are a great start. If your business is ready to go to the next level, make sure you’re helping it stay a success. Use the tools at your disposal and see just how high you can go.