It happens when you realize that not all your clients want to hire you for your hours, or for any of your deliverables …
In fact, most of them want your expertise.
Why? Because they want to:
- Be in charge of their own destiny.
- Manage and adapt their own internal processes to fit their needs as they grow.
- They don’t want to waste time going through a third party.
- They want to manage their own deadlines.
- They want to get their own results at a lower cost.
- They don’t have the necessary expertise yet, and so they are willing to pay you for your expertise.
Transitioning from a “Done For You” agency to a “Done With You” agency:
Certain clients are actually better served by a “Done With You” model, and the leverage you and your staff gain are enormous.
For example many PPC and SEO firms get tired of trying to prove their value to clients each month, nagging their clients to close the leads so they can justify paying for another month of ads, etc.
However, when they transition their clients to a “Done With You” agency model, what almost always happens is the clients naturally take much more responsibility for their own sales, since they are managing their own process and ad spend internally.
They also can’t complain if their ads aren’t working, since they probably neglected their own ads, or messed something up.
The idea here is that clients actually want to execute tasks and take responsibility for their business.
It’s interesting because it takes all the work from off your shoulders and places it on the client’s.
Imagine the reduced back-and-forth?
Imagine the load off your team’s shoulders when the client starts paying YOU so they can successfully put up their own ecommerce sites under your guidance (for example)?
Your job is to just provide the solution, the framework, the steps, the training, the guidance, the quality assurance, and step in to coach them here and there.
For example one agency I’m working with has an amazing SEO process which he was selling for around $25k DFY, but instead he packaged it up and sold it for $16k per package.
And what’s in the $16k package? A few videos, a coaching group and a small bit of software!
That means he is making $16k per sale and doing almost nothing on the fulfilment side.
The value is in your expertise, your trusted brand, the results you get your clients.
You not only get them results, but you empower them for the rest of their lives with the abilities they need to succeed.
And the DWY package will save them 25% – 40% over a DFY model.
And they probably get the results faster since they can stay up all night working on their biggest priorities rather than waiting for your team to get it done in a few weeks.
They don’t have to nag you, and you don’t have to nag them.
And finally you are simply making more money for less time and effort.
This same transformation “shifting the burden to the client” has happened many times in the past:
- Old retail stores from 100 years ago placed the clerk and the products behind the counter. Then Walmart and other big box stores placed all the warehouse items in the isles so people could pick and pack their own products. This increased efficiency tremendously because the clerk was no longer the main bottleneck.
- The same thing happened again with Vending machines and ATMs.
- This has happened online with Self-Service Google Ads, and Ecommerce.
People want the ability to serve themselves when they want, which actually reduces costs for both sides!
The key to all of this is in transforming your agency in small steps towards productization.
Steps to Productizing Your Web Agency:
(don’t skip any steps!)
Step 1. DFY, 1:1, Custom – Most agencies start here
Step 2. DFY, 1:1, Productization – The main innovation here is niching down. You still do a lot of work for the clients, but you cut out all the random, oddball projects and focus on the single most valuable process in your agency — the “Signature service” or process that your team enjoys delivering and that 80% of the clients want)
Step 3. DWY, 1:1, Productization – Before this step, agencies will often say “We can’t grow because it all depends on me”, but the new paradigm is: “It should depend on the client! Give the client homework and tools, then let them bring it back to us as an agency to finalize things”.
Step 4. DWY, 1:MANY, Productization – This naturally happens when you have digital versions of almost everything. You realize that you can give many homework assignments out to many clients at the same time, and you automate more of your processes and tools to deliver at scale
Once you remove yourself as the bottleneck, you can scale to $100k/mo more easily and go on vacation without your laptop!
The reason I share this is because I want you to see the big picture — what might be possible for your agency, if you decide to take action on it.
If you’re simply not generating enough leads yet and not at the first step, then I highly recommend you join the Upscale Method mastermind program first, where you can get all the leads you need. (see link below)
If you’re at “Step 1. DFY Custom” and getting loads of leads, but still feel like you’re running around doing too much custom work to scale, then start identifying and clarifying your processes so you can start productizing.
This enables you to say no to clients that don’t match your process, and yes to your ideal clients who do.
If you simply write down and track even one process, you’ll start moving in the right direction.
However, to move fully to “Step 2: Productization” we need to be more clear about what single problem you can best solve for your customers at scale.
This is best determined after you’re making a lot of sales because you can begin understanding what the exact problem is that most of your customers are having in your niche — and that you’re most suited to solving.
You will also need the ability to consistently bring in and close clients that have the exact same problem each time.
This enables productization.
Because if you can’t attract a lot of the same clients with the same problems, then “Step 2: Productization” is almost impossible.
That said, I understand that not all agencies want to go down the path towards “productization”.
The “productization” path will make you a lot more money, but you may love working on custom creative projects with your clients 1:1, or you may be more focused on growing your recurring retainers.
In that case, what some agencies do instead is qualify their existing prospects more heavily to create less chaos on the fulfilment side.
Without enough homogenous clients, the closest you can get to “Step 2: Productization” is setting up clearly defined processes for everything, so you can build out your solutions with repeatable lego bricks.
Even if you get 50% – 60% of your processes clearly defined, it will reduce the load on you and reduce the chaos inside your agency to a much more manageable level so you can focus on scaling it more easily.
Growing your agency can be complex, so if you need help with any of these stages, then try the Mastermind Program at Upscale Method.
The agencies in the Mastermind Program are meeting each week, helping each other grow faster, with more clarity and confidence.
Let me know how this helped you on your journey!
If you want to generate your own “ready to buy” inbound web design leads that are 10X easier to close, then check out my upcoming workshop.
In this week’s workshop, you’ll learn my simple 4 step process to generating 50 “ready to buy” web design leads per month, without wasting time on cold outreach, SEO or complex funnels.
It’s FREE, so register here before it’s booked up:
At the end of this training you’ll be invited to join the Mastermind Program where you’ll have the chance to meet with other agency leaders each week and scale to new heights together.
To your success!
Agency Growth Mentor
P.S. If you would like to scale your agency right away with other agency leaders in the weekly Mastermind Program, let’s talk.
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