You can listen to the first, introductory episode here:

Show transcript

Welcome to the new Agency Connexion podcast. This is a new podcast with a new format and things that may not have been tried or asked before. I’m excited for you to join me as we explore the future and the current environment around agencies. If you are interested in working for an agency, if you are leadership at an agency, if you are involved in marketing or consulting of any sorts, or if you’re just interested in hiring an agency, you are the right audience here. My name is Paul Kortman, the founder of Digital Marketing Agency. The goal for this podcast will be to interview other leaders, former leaders, owners, founders, or CEOs of other agencies so that we can get the lay of the land, because there is no one way to run an agency. I have been working for an agency or owning an agency for at least 12 years now and my agency, Connex Digital Marketing, was founded in 2010, so we’re seven years old. It’s the fall of 2017 when we’re starting this podcast. At Connex, we do digital marketing, we ran it as a traditional marketing agency for a few years. I say we because my wife is highly involved even though she’s not on the payroll. We’re now equivalent to 13 full-time contractors or employees. Three of those slots are taken up by multiple people so we have 10 full time teammates, and then the equivalent of three extra people.

Now, in this podcast, we’re going to be asking difficult questions, that in the initial planning stages we’ve gotten a lot of people who are potential guests turn us down because of the questions that we’re planning on asking them. We’re not pulling any punches, we are telling our guests what the questions are ahead of time so that they’re prepared for it but we’re not going to make this all nice and rosy and fluffy. We’re going to dig into the dirt and we’re going to get down and dirty. One of my favorites is Money Monday where we actually cover how much they pay their staff, how much markup they have, and are they charging per hour, these sorts of basic things that help you develop your agency and/or look at this agency in a new light. There are lots of big agencies out there, some you may have heard of, some you may not, but what you don’t know is how much they markup per hour. How much are they billing? Are they billing per hour or do they have a different way. I make $40,000 in Midwest Minnesota or whatever working for an agency but if I were to switch agencies would I be making anymore? Or is the average salary you know $40,000 to $60,000? So these are just basic questions that run through everybody’s mind that are ‘taboo’ to talk about. So we are going to run this as a seven day a week podcast. So you will get hit with different topics from the same agency, from the same founder or leadership person for seven days in a row, and then the next person will come in and talk for seven days in a row. So we’re talking five to 10 minute episodes. They go pretty fast and we try to keep it lively and moving. Maybe you’re only interested in Money Mondays, but maybe there are cool things throughout that you might learn from this agency from the founder for the week.

So, what are the topics? Mondays are money. On Tuesday, we’ll be talking about their clients, including their ideal client and their worst client. We’ve had some good stories there already. Wednesday is hump day hassles. What don’t you like about your job, how do you deal with difficult clients, etc. On Thursday we’ll be talking about differentiators. I really want them to give us a pitch, to say why I should work with you and why you’re better than a smaller agency or a bigger agency. And I asked the same question to lots of agency founders and it’s really fun to see the different answers that we get. It’s not just ‘we’re cheaper’ or it’s not just ‘we’re better.’ There’s some really cool differentiators out there. Friday is our fun day, so we talk about what the staff or agency or the person, him or herself, do for fun. On Saturday we focus on growth and their growth strategy and then on Sundays we talk about the taboo things, the gossip, the things that they sell that don’t actually help their clients out. So there’s been some good stories that have come through on Taboo Sundays as well.

This is episode zero. We are launching in November of 2017. We’re happy to have you along here. First on deck is Jason Swenk, And you’ll see all seven of his, we’re going to launch them all at once. And then we’ll start with the next guest after that and put them out there one day at a time. So if you have any questions or if you think you might be a good guest on the podcast, head on over to connexdigitalmarketing.com/podcast, and there you’ll be able to sign up to get an e-mail every time we publish a new episode, and also you’ll be able to fill out the form if you’re interested in being a guest. You can see our interview questions, you can pick a time, and then be a guest on our podcast. We really want this to be for agencies and from agencies. We do know that a lot of people that are and will be listening to us are vetting agencies and looking for other agencies. It’s a problem when you’re an agency in a community and you could service anybody anywhere in the country or in the world, but how do you get in front of those people? So the Agency Connexion podcast is here as another way for you as an agency owner to get the word out about what makes you different and why you’re incredible even if it’s just a great agency to work for or if it’s because you’re super specialized and hyper specific and somebody wants to work for you on that.

So I hope at some point in time, maybe the 30th guest will be me or something like that, but I hope to turn the tables on me and have somebody interview me for seven episodes, and maybe we’ll do a different person each time. But I’d love to tell Connex’s story and how far we’ve come, and I wish seven years ago or even longer than that, I had the Agency Connexion podcast to help me know what I was getting into and how to set it up right. Because there’s no one way to do it, but if you have an inkling and then hearing somebody else I do my business this way or this is what makes us different, that can be a real encouragement for you as you grow your agency, as you develop an agency, or as you know bring in new clients. What makes you different? Why are you special? Is it just your culture? Or is it something really unique about what you bring to the table for your clients?

My name is Paul Kortman. I run Connex Digital Marketing and you are listening to Episode Zero of the Agency Connexion podcast. Stay tuned as Jason Swenk is up next with all seven of his episodes. I’d really love to hear your feedback. I’d love to get your comments and reviews on Stitcher and iTunes. We will be on every podcasting platform we can be, so feel free to write a comment anywhere for us. And then after that, feel free to send me an e-mail with questions or whatever concerns you may have. My email address is paul@connexdigitalmarketing.com.