Resources to help you grow your agency
Below is a curated list of consultants, coaches, bigger firms, podcasts, some platform vendors and more.
They all help creative and marketing agencies in different ways. To help you grow – to survive and thrive.
You found this page because you want help. But you may not be ready yet to work directly with an agency development coach or consultant and are at the research stage.
That’s cool: I put together this big list of agency growth resources in the spirit of helpfulness: have a look and see if any help you with your goals.
But if you have now read enough blogs, binged on YouTube and want some tangible support, I’m your man:
please get in touch.
Feel free to skip the video.
SEO made me do it.
I’m no vlogger.
But I can help your agency.
Smart Insights Agency Growth Toolkit
The first place to look if you want to go it alone is the excellent Smart Insights site. They have a huge amount of digital marketing learning materials AND a specific section that supports agency growth.
I write the majority of the content in that section for Smart Insights agency members to use.
But I also work directly with agencies so you can engage with me here if you want to move on from the online guides.
Agency Growth Coaches and Consultants
- The Agency Advantage http://www.theagencyadvantage.com/#home
- Karl Sakas http://sakasandcompany.com/blog/
- Jason Swenk: http://jasonswenk.com/
- David Crawford / Digital Strategy Unit http://thedigitalstrategyunit.co.uk/blog/
- Jenny Plant (focussed on nurturing great account handlers.) http://www.accountmanagementskills.com/blog/
- Lesley Donnelly: http://www.neonnelly.com/
- Robert Solomon : http://adventuresinclientservice.com/
- Chris Do / The Futur: https://www.thefutur.com/agency-owners-increase-close-rate-raise-revenue/
- Recourse / David C Baker : https://www.recourses.com/recourses-blog-david-c-baker
- Ian Brodie: https://www.ianbrodie.com
- Felix Velarde: http://felixvelarde.com/non-executive-director-board-consultant/blog/
- Robert Craven: http://robert-craven.com/blog/
- John Doherty (John is a platform developer and an agency coach too) http://www.johnfdoherty.com/blog/
- Mark Kelly Consultancy (me.. in case this list appears away from my website) https://markkellyconsultancy.com
Larger agency growth consultancies
- Ignition Consulting: Ignition Consulting Group Blog
- Waypoint Partners: http://waypointpartners.co.uk/thinking/
- Form (leadership development) http://www.weareform.com/blog/
- Agency People: https://www.agency-people.co.uk/
- Prosper group http://prospergroup.net/
- Cact.us http://cact.us/index.php/insights/
- Trinity P3 https://www.trinityp3.com/blog/
- R3 Worldwide http://www.rthree.com/en/
Agency New Business focused
- John Heenan: http://www.jheenan.com/
- Hunter and Farmer http://karlamoraleslee.com/news_blog/
- Michael Gass / Fuel Lines: http://www.fuelingnewbusiness.com/
- Incite New Business: https://incitenewbusiness.co.uk/category/latest-incites/
- Gunpowder Consulting: http://www.gunpowderconsulting.co.uk/blog
- The List: http://www.thelistinc.com/category/blog/
- Kiwi Gray: http://www.kiwigray.com/blog-kiwigray/
- Sanderson Consulting: http://www.sandersconsulting.com/newbusinesshawk/
- Jody Sutter: http://www.thesuttercompany.com/sutter-company-blog
- RSWUS: https://www.rswus.com/
- Jill Konrath: (great sales focus): https://www.jillkonrath.com/sales-blog
- Blair Enns / WWP: http://www.winwithoutpitching.com/articles/
- Duval Partnership: http://info.duvalpartnership.com/blog
- Peter Levitan: http://peterlevitan.com/
- Data Hive: https://www.data-hive.co.uk/blog
- Entourage: http://www.entouragebusinessdevelopment.co.uk/blog/
- Co:definery : http://www.codefinery.com/
- Mirren: https://www.mirren.com/
- Winmo: http://www.winmo.com/who-uses-us/agency-new-business/
- Ark Advisors: http://www.ark-advisors.com/
- Vin Clancy: http://vinclancy.com/ (innovative marketing / growth hacking)
- Ben Potter: linkedin.com/in/bpotter/
- Wayout Consulting / Andrew Morgan: https://www.wayoutconsulting.co.uk/
Agency marketing systems / platform providers
who serve (and write about) agencies
- Hubspot Agency Blog: https://blog.hubspot.com/agency
- Core dna – digital experience SaaS platform: https://www.coredna.com/blogs/
- Scale – agency resource management solution: http://www.belighted.com/scale/blog
- Function Point – all things project management: http://www.functionpoint.com/blog/
- Better Proposals https://betterproposals.io/blog/
- Synergist – job costing and pm platform: https://www.synergist.co.uk/blog
- The Agency Works (UK partners with Synergist but distinct thought pieces on their blog) http://theagencyworks.co.uk/blog/
- Rova – a client relationship management platform: http://rova.io/blog/
- Agency Analytics: https://agencyanalytics.com/blog/
- Inbound.org: https://inbound.org/search/agency (not a platform as such but part of Hubspot – albeit a great, separate community that includes discussion on agency growth)
- SharpSpring: https://sharpspring.com/blog/
- Ruler Analytics: https://www.ruleranalytics.com/blog/
Finance or legal services for Agencies
- My Accountancy Place – accountants focusing on serving agencies: https://myaccountancyplace.co.uk/
- WOW – accountants focusing on serving agencies: http://www.thewowcompany.com/success-stories/
- Advertising Audit & Risk Management (insights on agency remuneration etc from the client perspective – useful reading for agencies) http://www.aarmusa.com/blog/
- ‘Bury the billable hour’ (and timesheet!): http://verasage.com/blog/
- Sharon Toerek / legal and Creative: http://www.legalandcreative.com/category/agency-client-relationships/
- WardWilliams Creative – business support, accountancy and tax advice for agencies and creative businesses
Agency owner communities / networks
- The Agency Collective: https://theagencycollective.co.uk/ (created by cact.us and WOW, above)
- Paul Roetzer / Marketing Agency insider: http://www.marketingagencyinsider.com/blog
- Second Wind: https://www.secondwindonline.com/
- The Drum’s agency network: http://www.thedrum.com/network
- The Agency Management Institute – includes agency owner networks: https://agencymanagementinstitute.com/blog/
- BIMA – less a network and more membership based but great articles in the business part of the blog: https://www.bima.co.uk/News-and-Comments/Category?category=Business
Agency owner and senior team development
Agency owners can often be ‘accidental leaders’, here are some books and course I have come across that hopefully help you to develop
- Good Boss / bad boss http://goodbadboss.com/
- The Road to Recognition: http://www.theroadtorecognition.com/
- Hyper Island (an extension to thier previous Accidental Leader course) : https://www.hyperisland.com/programs-and-courses/hyper-island-way
Account Handler development
Account handlers (or client services, terms vary) are the bedrock of great agencies (alongside awesome creatives, genius coders and data and media experts of course!).
But they can often come straight out of college or university and be thrown in, as an exec, into the deep end with little or no training across a range of skills. Or if we’re talking about undergraduates or school leavers / apprentice level looking to move into marketing and the agency world, they’ll be asking questions like: what does a creative agency account manager do? What skills should an account manager have?
The organisations below may be of help in answering those questions:
- Institute of Advertising Practitioners in Ireland (IAPQ) : https://www.iapi.ie/events/how-to-be-the-best-account-handler-in-your-agency
- Marketing Agencies Association: http://www.marketingagencies.org.uk/event-excellence-in-account-management
- Rock and A Hard Place : http://www.randhp.com/how-to-be-the-best-account-handler-in-your-agency
- Account Management Skills : http://www.accountmanagementskills.com/products/
- Second Wind: https://www.secondwindonline.com/certified-account-executive-college-april
- Mirren Group – agency strategy training: https://mirrengrouptraining.com/agency-strategy/
- IPA Client Relationship group: http://www.ipa.co.uk/groups/Client-Relationship
- DD&AD: https://www.dandad.org/en/d-ad-customer-relationship-management-creative-training-course/
And I have resources on my Agency Growth Shop that will serve a fledgeling account handler / account manager well: https://markkelly.selz.com/
Podcasts on #agencylife and #agencygrowth
- The Creative Agency Podcast. http://www.creativeagencypodcast.com/
- Gunpowder Consulting – Felix Velarde’s podcast: http://www.gunpowderconsulting.co.uk/blog
- The Bureau Briefing –from Bureau Of Digital, a podcast as well as an agency owners community: http://bureauofdigital.com/radio/bureau-briefing/
- 2 Bobs: https://2bobs.com/
Get in touch
Not enough time to read all those resources? (I do recommend looking at these, there is excellent thinking across them all).
But if you want some support in the here and now – I’m your man.