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5 Ways To Leverage Business Coaching To Grow Your Marketing Agency

As the owner of a marketing agency, it can be tempting to try and handle every aspect of your business single-handedly.

After all, your vision and passion are often driving your agency forward.

However, attempting to tackle every challenge alone can quickly lead to burnout and stagnation.

This is where many agency owners bring in their secret weapon: a business coach.

Many of today’s successful entrepreneurs — such as Steve Jobs, Sheryl Sandberg, and Eric Schmidt — were able to take their ventures to the next level with business coaching.

From providing invaluable guidance and accountability to offering fresh perspectives and strategies, a business coach can revolutionize how you operate and scale your agency.

Why Hire A Business Coach?

Many agency owners don’t realize that business growth starts from the inside out.

Rather than a toolbox of “strategies,” you need to re-examine how you perceive success, manage your team, and harness your unique strengths.

The right business coach will help you foster personal growth – then professional growth – to achieve long-term, sustainable results.

A business coach can provide:

  • An objective perspective on your business, providing insight into what is working well and what might be holding you back.
  • First-hand experience, advising you on the best strategies for scaling your team, reaching new revenue milestones, establishing your brand, etc.
  • Accountability, keeping you honest when it comes to your goals and commitments.
  • Skill development, spanning everything from financial planning and hiring to communication and public speaking.
  • A supportive environment for you to vent, navigate challenges, revel in successes, and discuss concerns in your business.

After hiring my business coach, I quickly realized that I needed to shed old habits and open my mind to new ways of running my business.

For example, I realized that losing myself in the day-to-day operations was not sustainable.

My coach advised hiring a COO to manage operations, opening up more time for me, the Visionary, to create our Vivid Vision, and explore new business ventures and speaking opportunities.

1. Lead Your Team With Confidence

As an agency owner, it’s time to shatter the illusion of self-sufficiency and embrace the power of teamwork. Even if you’ve taken the steps to hire contractors or employees, I would bet there are some areas of your business where you’re resisting giving up control.

A business coach will empower you to focus on the things you do best, whether that’s creative thinking, marketing your agency, speaking to clients, building a personal brand, etc.

They will also be honest in identifying areas where you can delegate tasks to team members, allowing you to scale your agency more efficiently.

Consider how much time and money are invested in you getting bogged down by tasks like social media posting, scheduling meetings, responding to emails, etc.

A business coach may advise you on how to hire great talent, lead with confidence, develop a strong company culture, and ultimately achieve better results.

2. Find Your “Trillion Dollar” Idea

Many business owners consider themselves to be visionaries, as it takes creative thinking to come up with a business idea and follow it through to fruition.

But these imaginative qualities can be hard to wrangle when you have too many ideas. A business coach can help you find clarity in the noise.

That might not mean discovering a literal trillion-dollar idea, but at least focusing on the idea (or ideas) that will have the most impact on your business.

That could mean launching a new offer, expanding to a new market, exploring speaking opportunities or brand partnerships, etc.

Shiny object syndrome is often the death of many entrepreneurs; a business coach will help you stay on track with the right ideas.

Beyond that, an experienced business coach will know how to quantify the success (or failure) of your latest venture.

If your efforts aren’t paying off, they can help you shift focus. If your project is gaining traction, they can help you capitalize on that momentum.

3. Avoid “Been There, Done That” Mistakes

It’s important to learn from our mistakes – but many mistakes are avoidable.

The value of working with a business coach is that they have made many mistakes before and can help you avoid preventable challenges.

For example, there is a ton of bad advice out there about how to “scale.” You might assume that, say, launching a digital product is the best next step for your agency.

But a business coach might have already launched a digital product many times over, and can tell you what to do and what not to do during the process – or whether you should scrap the idea completely.

Also, in a personal development sense, they can warn you of the signs of burnout or notice when you are out of alignment with your goals. They’ll help you stay true to your priorities and avoid getting sidetracked on your journey to success.

3. Get Your Finances In Check

Financial management is a common area of avoidance for many business owners.

The truth is that many of us have distorted beliefs about money, as well as general inexperience with how to manage it.

An experienced business coach has likely overcome many of the mental blocks that make managing finances difficult. They’ll have learned the ins and outs of business bookkeeping, financial planning, tax preparation, and when to hire financial services.

Your business coach can help you create a realistic budget and financial plan for your agency.

They might advise on how to forecast future revenue and expenses, set financial goals, and set key performance indicators (KPIs) to measure progress.

They’ll also likely have experience in cash flow management, helping to maintain a healthy influx of revenue to sustain your business.

They might suggest strategies for improving cash flow, such as developing passive income streams, enforcing payment terms with clients, or optimizing your internal processes.

Perhaps most importantly, business coaches can help with financial decision-making. This might mean advising on smart investments, expanding the business, up or downsizing personnel, integrating technology, or taking on debt.

The right coach will empower you to take control of your agency finances.

You’ll feel more prepared to dig into the numbers, incorporate best practices, and make informed decisions that benefit your business.

4. Know When To Trim the Fat

There’s a common trend in the marketing “agency” model of offering a wide, incohesive range of services. The result is a lack of point-of-view on what the agency does best, the audience it serves, and what it achieves for its clients.

Business coaches help agency owners “trim the fat,” so to speak, when it comes to what’s superfluous in the agency.

In other words, there may be several services that are generating little-to-no revenue and are instead causing a distraction in what is the core purpose of your agency.

Even Sheryl Sternberg’s business coach highlights this concept, with the appeal to “[not] fall so deeply in love with your own content that you can’t see that some of it is excess.”

Ultimately, your service offerings are most effective when they are clear, simple, and relevant to your target audience.

For example, perhaps your agency does website design, branding, social media management, and email marketing, but 90% of your revenue comes from websites.

Doubling down on your website design services may allow you to hone your offer, streamline your development process, increase your rates, and scale your new client acquisition system.

5. Expand Your Network Of Winners

One of the benefits of having a business coach that I wasn’t expecting was the networking opportunities.

My executive coach was able to connect me with so many professionals and mentors who ended up helping me and my business. I’ve also formed friendships with other CEOs, and that support has been invaluable.

Your business coach might introduce you to other winners in their network. You might not even realize you need their help.

You’ll be able to tap into a wider pool of talent, mentors, thought leaders, and, yes, even friends.

Again, the illusion of self-sufficiency can be a real killer in your business. Don’t assume that you can or should navigate this journey alone.

Networking with other industry professionals can help you avoid common pitfalls, overcome growing pains in your agency, and step into new opportunities for growth.

Finding The One

While it may seem intimidating to invite an outsider into your inner circle, the benefits of hiring an experienced coach are undeniable.

In hiring my business coach, I’ve gained invaluable insights and support that have allowed me to scale my agency to new heights.

Finding “The One” (i.e., the right coach for you) will look different for everyone. For me, I happened to stumble across a TED talk by someone who challenged the way I saw business success.

I read his books, followed his social media, and set a goal to work with him one day.

That speaker was Cameron Herold, and I’m happy to say that I was able to hire him as my coach. And, man, am I glad that I did.

In the early stages of our coaching journey, he illuminated a fundamental truth: While books provide valuable knowledge, a coach offers the swiftest route to implementation and tangible results.

With his help, we were able to take our agency from $5M to $10M in revenue.

Selecting a coach who is aligned with your specific needs is paramount.

Whether that’s doubling your revenue, scaling a team, fine-tuning your offer, or striking a work-life balance, find someone who has been where you are now and has made it through to the next level.

LinkedIn, Facebook Groups, Instagram, YouTube, and podcasts are great places to find people who are doing amazing things.

As an agency owner, you’ll quickly discover how coaching is an investment that can have significant returns for your business.

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Featured Image: Ground Picture/Shutterstock

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