What do the world’s best musicians, athletes, entrepreneurs, actors, and others at the top of their fields all have in common? If you mentioned that they have coaches, you are correct. To elevate your web agency to the next level, it’s wise to consider working with a digital marketing agency coach. A coach can assist you, regardless of where you are in your agency journey. Freelancers can benefit from guidance on pricing and processes, and smaller agencies can receive advice on staffing and building a scalable agency. Similarly, even multi-million dollar agencies can benefit from counsel on topics like niching down, acquiring other agencies, or planning to be acquired. Table of Contents Why I’ve Invested $100k+ in Agency Coaching Let me share my agency coaching story with you. Maybe you can relate… I’ll also share why I’ve continued to invest over $100K in coaching and continue to do so today. I’ll give you the Cliff’s Notes version… In 2015, my life took an unexpected turn. One afternoon, my wife approached me with concern, insisting that something needed to change. My relentless 70+ hour work weeks were not only affecting my health and our marriage but also casting a shadow over the upbringing of our two young daughters, who were aged 2 and 3 at the time. Even though my agency was very profitable, I came to the realization that financial success did not necessarily bring me fulfillment. I was navigating the entrepreneurial world without proper guidance, and I did not have the necessary tools to steer my business in the right direction. At that time, there were very few resources available for agencies, and my knowledge was limited to a handful of books and blogs. It wasn’t until a few months later that I stumbled upon a game-changer—UGURUS, a pioneering coaching agency based in Denver. Their promise was bold and intriguing: They’d help you close $10K website projects. I cautiously joined one of their webinars and connected with Jonathan Hinshaw, one of their coaches at that time. Little did I know that this encounter would begin a transformative journey. I decided to invest in their $10K Bootcamp. I think it was around $3K back then. UGURUS helped me close higher-value deals but also helped me pivot to a model focused on charging on value and implementing a consultative process called Project Discovery (a process to get paid for scoping out a project). The following year, I signed up for Troy Dean’s WP Elevation, now known as Agency Mavericks, which was a business-in-a-box model with the processes, systems, and templates needed to run a successful web design company. As the years unfolded, I delved into several other coaching programs, each contributing its unique blend of insights and strategies to my professional arsenal. In each program, I met amazing people, made new friends, and even got several projects and clients from those groups. I just got a client referral today from my friend Devon, whom I met through UGURUS 9 years ago! Through these coaching programs, I refined my business acumen and discovered the delicate balance between entrepreneurship and a fulfilling family life. The investment in coaching proved invaluable, shaping not just my agency’s trajectory growth of over 300% but also redefining how I approached work, family, and personal satisfaction. Today, I look back on that pivotal moment in 2015 as the catalyst for a journey that transformed my business and my entire way of life. My intention in writing this is to help you gain knowledge, learn, and decide if hiring an agency coach makes sense for you and your agency. If it is, this guide will walk you through how to do that. What To Expect If you want to expand your client base, boost your revenue, and build a talented team that will remain committed to you for the long haul, hiring a digital marketing agency coach could be the solution you need. A competent coach will have the experience and ability to pinpoint areas where you need to improve, overcome obstacles, and guide you toward the most effective strategies to accomplish your objectives. If you like the sound of that, then keep reading. Inside this guide, you’ll discover the answers to the following questions: What does a digital marketing agency coach or consultant do? Do you need a digital marketing agency coach? What are the benefits of hiring an agency coach? How do you find, choose, and hire a digital marketing agency coach? Let’s jump in… What Does an Agency Coach Do? An agency coach, also called a business coach for web or digital marketing agencies, assists freelancers and agency owners in expanding their businesses using various methods. They serve as knowledgeable advisors, offering counsel, direction, and resources to overcome obstacles and reach objectives. What gives them the credibility and authority to do so? Most of these agency coaches have built their agency successfully or built and sold multiple agencies. Agency coaches can help you and your team build skills, streamline processes, and improve performance. More specifically, a digital agency coach may be able to help you with the following activities: Strategic Planning and Goal Setting: Collaborate with you to understand your business and set clear goals and objectives for growth or other desired outcomes. Develop strategic plans with actionable steps to achieve those goals. Assist your agency in identifying, articulating, and aligning your long-term goals, purpose, mission, and vision. Operational Optimization: Analyze your agency processes related to growth, like lead generation, sales, and hiring, to identify inefficiencies, bottlenecks, and opportunities. Recommend improvements focused on team and customer-related activities like project management, client communication, team collaboration, and resource allocation. Assist in implementing new systems and workflows using agency resources and playbooks for better efficiency. You don’t have to spend time and money creating them or struggling with trial and error. Financial Management and Growth: Guide agencies in developing financially sound revenue generation strategies and minimizing expenses. Help you define, measure, and understand your key financial metrics and track your progress. Offer strategies for pricing services, attracting new clients, and increasing profitability. Team Leadership and Development: Assist you in cultivating effective management styles and honing communication skills within your agency. Facilitate the creation of high-performing teams by promoting collaboration, motivation, and employee engagement. Offer guidance on culture, talent acquisition, retention, and employee development programs. Marketing and Sales Support: Assist your agency in crafting a compelling brand story and value propositions. Review and refine marketing strategies for attracting ideal clients. This may include specializing or niching down to help you get more traction in a specific industry. Offer guidance on your lead generation and sales processes to bring more leads into your pipeline and increase your close rates. Personal Growth and Wellbeing: Support you in managing stress, maintaining work-life balance, and avoiding burnout. Act as a sounding board for challenges and provide a safe and confidential place to discuss your business. Offer strategies for personal development and leadership growth. It is important to note that the specific services an agency coach provides may vary based on their expertise and your agency’s unique needs. The primary objective of an agency coach is to help your agency reach its full potential and achieve sustainable growth. It’s common for us to have blind spots and obstacles that hinder our progress. An effective coach will be able to identify these barriers, help you overcome them, improve your mindset, and optimize your strategies to increase your and your agency’s growth potential. Why Hire a Digital Agency Coach? Now that you know what an agency coach does, the short answer is probably, “Yes, you need to hire an agency coach.” Otherwise, you wouldn’t be reading up on agency coaching. However, a more systematic approach is for you to answer the following questions as to why you should hire a digital agency coach. You’re a great candidate for agency coaching if you answer “yes” to one or more of these questions. To help you, I’ve grouped them by theme: Revenue & Growth Is your agency currently facing a situation where there is no growth or progress despite your best efforts? Do you need help with pricing your services or profitability? Do you need help generating new revenue streams or help minimizing your costs? Are you concerned about your agency’s profitability and long-term financial sustainability? Does your agency have a high client turnover(churn) rate? Do you need assistance with lead generation, converting leads into clients, or other marketing and sales issues? Strategy & Leadership Do you need a clear vision for achieving your long-term goals? Do you need more clarification about your target market(niche), ideal customer profile, or service offerings? Do you need help creating actionable plans for achieving your goals? Operations Is your agency going through a phase of disorganization, missed deadlines, low productivity, or any other related issues? Do you need help making important decisions, or do you often find yourself second-guessing your choices? Would proven systems and standard operating procedures to run an agency benefit you? Are your internal processes negatively impacting your productivity? Do you need help managing your projects to mitigate scope creep, expenses, or stress? Stress and Wellbeing: Are you struggling with burnout? Are you struggling with establishing a work-life balance? Is running an agency impacting your health and relationships? Do you feel overwhelmed and need support to manage your agency? Have you lost the passion for your agency but aren’t ready to quit yet? If you answered “yes” to any of the above questions – then agency coaching might be right for you. I’ve listed some of the most common benefits agencies like mine experience when working with an agency coach. What Are the Benefits of Hiring an Agency Coach? Agency coaching can benefit you in many ways. Here are some outcomes you can expect to achieve when working with a coach with a proven track record. I have categorized the benefits using the same categories as we used earlier. Revenue & Growth: Set clear, actionable goals and develop strategic plans to reach them. This can result in accelerated growth, increased revenue, and expanded market share. Optimize pricing to increase revenue and profitability. Develop new services or refine existing ones to increase value, attract better clients, and generate more revenue. Reduce client turnover and increase customer lifetime value. Increased efficiency of team members and processes, resulting in increased productivity and reduced costs. Better tracking and understanding of key financial metrics lead to smarter data-driven decisions. Strategy & Leadership: Gain a clear and inspiring vision for your agency’s long-term goals. Differentiates your agency from the competition with a unique value proposition. Develop a deeper understanding of your target market and ideal customer profile, and create compelling offers to gain a competitive advantage. Operations: Standardize your systems and procedures to boost productivity within your agency. Manage projects better, mitigating scope creep, meeting deadlines and maintaining profitability. Stress and Wellbeing: Establishing a healthy work-life balance. Less stress more time to focus on your health and relationships. Rediscover your passion for your agency and develop resilience to navigate challenges without sacrificing your well-being. Growth and Scalability: Receive strategic guidance to create goals, develop actionable plans that fit your industry and agency well, and implement those plans to achieve success. Increase your revenue by implementing proven strategies and optimizing your processes. Create a scalable business, reduce growing pains, and enjoy long-term success. As you can see, an agency coach can help you improve just about any process, help you get unstuck, and pave the way for more success. How Do You Find, Choose, and Hire an Agency Coach? Now, you can see all the reasons to hire an agency coach. How do you find, choose, and hire a consultant? Here’s the process I recommend… Step 1: Define Your Needs The first step is to define your goals and your needs clearly. What are your agency’s specific needs? What outcomes do you hope to achieve? Clarifying your needs will help you choose a coach that’s a good fit. Step 2: Determine Your Budget Secondly, you’ll want to determine your budget for consulting. Once you start looking for a coach, you’ll find that their prices vary widely from $100 – $2000+ a month. Having a budget can help you narrow your options, but you must also be careful not to price yourself out of hiring a good coach. Pro tip : Some coaches will offer a customer satisfaction money-back guarantee, performance guarantee, or discounted pricing when signing up for a monthly vs. annual plan. Check out their website for more information or contact them to learn more. Step 3: Develop a List of Potential Coaches The third step is to search for coaches. There are a variety of ways you can do this, including: Ask fellow agencies for recommendations. Do a Google search (e.g., “hire digital marketing agency coach”). Inquire through your broader network, such as FB or LinkedIn groups. Browsing coaching directories, such as the International Coach Federation site. Check out the coaches I recommend (see the next section). Next… Step 4: Do Your Due Diligence Once you have a list of potential coaches, you need to find the one that’s the best fit for your needs and your budget. You can evaluate potential coaches based on the following criteria: What type of experience do they have? How long have they owned an agency, and what type of success have they had with it? How long have they been a coach? What are the coach’s credentials? Do they have any coaching certifications or other credentials? Does the coach provide references, testimonials, and case studies? Follow up on any references and check that testimonials and case studies are verifiable (e.g., they include a name and company name/website). What is the coach’s style? Do the coaching style and coach’s values align with your own? Is the coach available? The coach may look great on paper, but availability may be a sticking point – good coaches tend to stay busy. Are you compatible with the coach? It’s a good idea to schedule an intro call to discuss your needs, payment details, communication styles, and other aspects that could influence your decision to hire a specific coach. In most cases, coaches usually have you speak to a sales rep to see if you fit their program. Do they have a customer satisfaction, ROI, or results-focused money-back guarantee? Not every coach offers this, but some do. Do they have different investment levels? Some coaching programs offer on-demand training, group coaching, and one-on-one coaching. Try them out before going all in. Does the coach fit your budget? As mentioned, it’s good to have some flexibility in your budget, as good coaches aren’t cheap – but it is an excellent investment in your business and yourself if they can help. The goal is to collect as much information as possible about each coach on your list. Once you’ve completed these steps, it should be clear which coach fits your needs best. Pro Tips : Some coaches and their sales process include high-pressure sales tactics. I recommend being comfortable saying NO and walking away if you don’t feel it is a good fit for you. Before you sign up, I’d also recommend you ask to speak to 2 people in the mastermind who have a similar business model to yours so that you can ask them about their experience. Agency Masterminds Many coaching programs for agencies provide a community or mastermind group. An agency mastermind is a peer support group designed for freelancers or agency owners facing similar challenges and working towards similar goals in their agencies. It is an excellent way to receive feedback, learn from others, hold each other accountable, and accelerate your growth. As I mentioned at the beginning of this blog, other great benefits of masterminds are networking with other great agencies, getting referrals for work other agencies want to pass on, and even white-label work offer agencies service your agency offers that they don’t currently offer their clients. Most agency coaches have both free and paid Facebook groups. Here is a short list of some of the agency-related Facebook groups that I am a part of: The Best Agency Coaches & Coaching Programs Over the years, I’ve invested in many coaching programs, as you know if you’ve read about my agency journey and experience with agency coaches above. Here’s a list of agency coaching programs I’ve invested in; I know the coaches personally or have agency friends who’ve invested in them. There is no way to determine who is the best because each agency will need to determine what type of coach and coaching they need. Each coaching program listed below in alphabetical order serves freelancers and agencies differently. Check each one out for yourself and see if it fits you best. These are listed in alphabetical order. If you’ve got a vision for the agency you want to build… We want to help you build it. Coaching, training, and community for agency owners who want to start, grow, and scale. You don’t have to learn every business lesson the hard way: personalized business and executive coaching. Get private access to one of the world’s most sought-after marketing and Facebook ads experts. Whether you’re struggling to find clients, you’re overworked, or perhaps you’re afraid to charge what you’re worth and barely get by. We’ve been there. We’ve stumbled in the dark for years until we figured out how to conquer these dragons. And we want to help you do the same. Does your marketing agency own you? Or do you own your marketing agency? Unlock the marketing agency systems I used to start, scale, and sell my multimillion-dollar digital agency. I teach independent professionals how to make more money without working more hours. Great coaches are driven by their students’ successes, not their own. If you are ready to grow and expand your business faster, more efficiently, and more effectively, YOU need the right coach. Are you ready to take your agency to the next level? Whether running a small agency or a solopreneur freelancer, this course will help you maximize profits, improve client satisfaction, and achieve long-term success. Do you feel like you have to do everything in your agency yourself and that finding the right team members is nearly impossible? I Help Digital Agency Owners Who Aren’t Growing Fast Enough. You have a lot on your plate regarding running a successful agency… Predictable agency profitability is possible. Parakeeto helps your agency track the right metrics and improve profitability. Tired of working too many hours for not enough money? Ready to get a handle on how to increase sales, grow profit, and work fewer hours? I will help you take your digital agency to the next level. Starting & growing a web design / SEO business just got a whole lot easier. Start with your free daily training to jumpstart your business by attracting clients, creating recurring revenue, business ideas & more Grow a seven-figure digital marketing agency, land clients, deliver results & retain like a million-dollar business. UGURUS offers elite training & mentorship for agency owners & growing freelancers. We use proven processes & frameworks to attract leads, win high-value deals, and delight clients. Transform your web agency with care at the center. Training, community, books, and articles that guide you on how to build recurring revenue through care and support. Get your agency working for you—brand & marketing coaching for digital agency owners. Conclusion It is a common misconception that only freelancers or agencies starting up need coaching to start their agency on the right foot. Established agency owners can benefit significantly from coaching as well. Although many agency owners possess the motivation, tools, and knowledge to get their agency to a certain point, they may need help getting to the next level. The agency’s growth may plateau, the team may not be capable of scaling, and the agency owner may feel overwhelmed and unsure about the next steps. In such cases, a good agency coach can help boost productivity, build confidence, and take the agency to the next level. Only you know if hiring a coach for your web or digital marketing is currently what you need. This blog helps inform and educate you on what I wished I had known when starting that journey almost a decade ago.