Running a successful agency is a lot like juggling multiple balls at once. Agency leaders are expected to stay on top of trends, acquire and retain customers, manage cash flow, and more.
With technology, consumer behavior, and client needs constantly evolving, it's important for digital marketers to stay on top of the latest industry developments and adapt their approach accordingly.
By continually expanding their knowledge base, digital marketing agencies provide more effective and innovative solutions for their clients while also staying ahead of their competitors. Additionally, learning new skills and techniques helps digital marketers improve their overall performance, boost their creativity, and better understand their target audience.
But, with so much on their plate, how do agency leaders find time to learn and stay ahead of the curve?
To find out, we spoke with several agency leaders to learn about their preferred learning strategies.👇
Here are some of the highlights from our conversations:
1. Networking and Social Media
Successful agency leaders are always looking for ways to stay ahead of marketing trends, and Claire Daniels from Trio Media has found a winning strategy: she surrounds herself with people and is constantly talking to them to understand their experiences.
I surround myself with a network of people… just constantly talking to people and understanding their experiences. To me, every single experience you have, you learn.
In addition to networking, Claire also recognizes the value of social media for staying up-to-date on the latest marketing trends. "What are people doing? What's happening in the world? And you know what's going on. That's something that I'm checking in on every day," she says. Claire's confidence in social media as a powerful tool for learning and staying ahead of the curve is well-founded, and it's clear that she knows how to make the most of it.
Successful agency leaders need to surround themselves with the right people and resources and use those resources to their advantage.
Whether it's through networking or social media, there are always opportunities to learn and grow. The key is to find the tools that work best for you and use them with confidence. After all, every experience is an opportunity to learn something new and become a better leader.
2. Video and Podcasts
When it comes to learning about SEO and business, Austin Benoit from Search Prestige has a preference for video content–especially on YouTube! He searches for SEO content creators who are thought leaders in the industry to keep himself attuned to industry best practices and ways to keep his skills sharp.
Video content really resonates with me. It sinks in easily, and I can digest it.
He also seeks out business people who create content on how to build a business and develop the right mindset. According to Austin, "That's the type of content that works best for me. And it's 95% going to be video-related personally."
Plus, you can learn a thing or two about YouTube SEO just by seeing what the people who are leading in this area are doing with their thumbnails, titles, descriptions, and more.
Austin's approach is a reminder to be intentional and focused when it comes to learning and to seek out the best resources available to keep our skills sharp.
Read More: 25 Digital Marketing Podcasts Every Agency Owner Should Listen To
3. Blogs and More
Nathan Hawkes from Arcane Marketing has a learning strategy that casts a wide net, encompassing all forms of content. From blogs to webinars to other marketing agencies, he takes in information from all angles to stay ahead of the curve.
He reads Moz, Search Engine Land, and Search Engine Journal to keep himself informed about the latest trends and best practices in the industry. But Nathan's interests don't stop there. He also listens to Gary Vaynerchuk's videos and podcasts to get a broader perspective on business and marketing.
It feels like you need to be a sponge in all of those places.
But it’s not just reading and listening–it’s also about in-person conferences to stay up-to-date with the latest trends and best practices to stay current in the ever-evolving world of marketing.
Stay Ahead of the Curve: Finding Your Agency's Learning Strategy
To truly stay ahead of the curve, we need to cast a wide net and consume content from all angles. Whether it's blogs, webinars, or conferences, there are always opportunities to learn and grow. As your agency grows, the content you consume may change. Initially, it might be more tactical and focused on building your SEO skills. As you evolve as an agency leader, it becomes more about mindset, habits, and building out a successful team. It also depends on what stage you’re at in your agency life cycle.
There are many ways to stay ahead of marketing trends. What works for one agency leader may not work for another. Whether it's networking, social media, video, or blogs, it's important to find a learning strategy that resonates with you and your agency.
What are your learning tips? How do you stay on top of marketing trends? Let us know in the YouTube comments!