This article will break down five common mistakes many entrepreneurs make when building an agency. Many factors go into whether an entrepreneur should start their own business, and you should not decide on a whim.
A lot of people mistakenly believe they have found their life’s calling when in reality, they haven’t given it enough thought or research. As such, here are some things you might want to consider before leaping building your own business.
Even if you have an agency already, this article can help. Take it an opportunity to evaluate whether your agency is running as it should or whether you have just created another job for yourself.
1. Not having a business plan when building an agency.
Without a business plan, it’s challenging to grow. You will not have direction, and you won’t know how to get where you want to go. With the right planning, however, you’ll be able to set your goals for your new agency and identify steps that will take you there!
Many people are confused when it comes to starting their own business. They think entrepreneurship is the best path for them, but they aren’t aware of all the pitfalls that come with running your own company.
It’s essential to have all of the facts and understand what kind of commitment running your agency will require from you. If you don’t have any business experience, then there is no doubt that it can be overwhelming for most people. These challenges are why I want to help by providing some insight into how much effort it takes to start an agency. So that you can make an informed decision about whether or not this path is right for you.
If you want to skip steps in the learning process and want to learn from the mistakes other entrepreneurs already made, you can sign up for the free WP Agency Summit replay.
2. Focusing on the wrong metrics.
Many agencies are still focusing on the wrong metrics for digital marketing and business performance. There was a time where “hits” and “clicks” were all that mattered, but now those numbers just don’t cut it anymore. Instead, marketers need to be focusing on engagement rates or bounce rates to see if their strategies are working.
It is crucial to know what you are getting into before starting your own business. And what key performance indicators to pay attention to after your agency has its first few customers. There is no shame in doing research first or taking some time for introspection on whether entrepreneurship is right for you at this point in your life.
The last thing any entrepreneur wants is for their new venture to fail because they didn’t do enough research before committing to it full-time. You don’t want to be in a position where your livelihood depends on something you have little experience or knowledge of how things work behind-the-scenes.
When looking at all aspects of running a successful online marketing agency, there are several factors involved such as:
- operations & process management,
- human resource management (hiring staff),
- technology infrastructure (server hosting & maintenance),
- software development (customer facing applications) etc.,
I am just mentioning a few examples out loud here. Monitoring metrics is critical and requires different skill sets from those who wish to run them successfully; however, these aren’t even half of what you’d need if you want to build an agency for the first time.
And all these areas of expertise have their metrics you need to track to keep your agency operating smoothly. Here is a good article if you want to learn more about which metrics to track.
3. Not diversifying your skillset (or that of your team).
There are many reasons why it’s essential to diversify your skillset as a freelancer. And it is the same for soon-to-be agency owners. The most fundamental reason is that you never know what will happen. You might get hit by a bus tomorrow, and your livelihood could be gone. Even if you don’t get hit by a bus tomorrow, there may come a day where you can no longer do graphic design or write copy for websites.
Many people stay in jobs because they’re afraid to lose their income whether they like it or not; this isn’t how we want things to be! It’s always wise to have backups so that unfortunate events don’t stop us from finding happiness in life again when things go wrong.
Not diversifying your skillset can leave you high and dry when things start to go south. You might not be able to find new clients quickly enough because the work is specialized, or you might discover that the skills you’ve been honing for years are no longer in demand. The easiest way to avoid this pitfall is by continually building up your portfolio of skills so that you’re ready for anything life throws at you.
4. Spending too much time on social media.
Do you spend too much time on social media? I know I do! It’s so easy to get caught up in posting and getting likes, especially when you’re building an agency and want to generate new leads via social platforms.
I always feel like the most popular person when someone comments and says something nice about my pictures, but it doesn’t matter because it’s just a photo of me. Spending too much time on social media can be really addicting, distracting, and ultimately unhealthy. Sometimes you need to log off or take a break from scrolling through your feed or feeling like everyone else is having more fun than you are.
The constant barrage of notifications from Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram has caused many people to become addicted. This addiction is so strong that some people spend their entire day on social media sites scrolling through posts without even stopping for food or drink. That has adverse effects on your health and performance – and is the opposite of the approach of active listening my friend Dennis Yu preaches.
This has led to an increase in anxiety, depression, and other mental health issues due to the lack of human interaction they are receiving by spending all day online. It forced me to take mental deload weeks in the past, which have proven very helpful.
5. Hiring employees for your agency who don’t have the right qualifications.
Some agencies hire employees who don’t have the right qualifications because they are in a hurry. They are looking to fill empty slots no matter what, and it’s not working.
The best way to figure out if this is true for you is by considering what kind of skills you need and whether or not the person has them–but always evaluate their performance on an ongoing basis before fully committing!
Some agencies are hiring employees who don’t have the right qualifications because they are in a hurry. They are looking to fill empty slots no matter what and it’s not really working.
Now their team has less experienced people, which means mistakes will happen more often, which is slowing them down even more. It was just easier for this company to hire someone with experience, but now they’re paying for it with a slower workflow.
Hiring unqualified employees can be a gamble that costs you time, money, reputation. All of those things quickly add up when mistakes become more commonplace because of inexperience or lack of knowledge.
As you can see, building an agency is a daunting task. It takes discipline, creativity, and patience to succeed in this industry. As someone who has been part of the entrepreneurial world for years, I am saddened by how often people make mistakes when building their business, costing them more time and money in the long-run.
I hope this article gave you a few starting points to consider before building an agency. And if you’re running an agency already, you might now have starting points for making sure that you’re on track.