Duncan Alney made the decision to focus his agency on social media back in the late 2000s when MySpace was still a thing. Now he's running a 7-figure agency and is has niched it down even further. As founder and CEO of Firebelly, Duncan juggles the roles of catalyst, program overseer, problem solver, and strategist within the organization. Today he joins us to talk about how he accelerated his social media agency, the benefits of letting go of your fears, and why you have to let go of your ego to reach the next level.
3 Golden Nuggets Letting go of your fear. When Duncan made the decision to focus his agency on social media, he started rejecting other types of work. It was a scary moment, but he had a “burn the boat” mentality. They would succeed in this new space or they would go down trying. In the end, they committed to following their own compass. Shortly after, they started winning awards by having a clear point of view and claiming their spot in the industry. The phases of running an agency. If you look at running an agency in stages, the first stage will be building. After that’s done, the next phase is all about direction, in terms of the values that you will set up for your business and will guide you in the decisions you make in the future. Once you established your direction, you will need to put some systems in place. Many people like to skip this part, and they will regret it. The combination of the direction and the systems is what will help you scale and get to the next phase of delegating. Get past your ego. A lot of agency owners want to be needed, and that can be a problem. Remember that your clients go to you to solve a problem. They are not necessarily reaching out to you because they like you or feel you’re the only one that could solve that problem. Learn to delegate. A sustainable business has to be able to run without you. Even Apple was able to continue its mission and vision without Steve Jobs. Sponsors and Resources Agency Dad: Today's episode is sponsored by Agency Dad. Agency Dad is an accounting solution focused on helping marketing agencies make better decisions based on their financials. Check out agencydad.money/freeaudit/ to get a phone call with Nate to assess your agency's financial needs and how he can help you.
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Getting Past Your Ego and Put Clients in the Middle Jason: [00:00:00] Hey, what's up everybody? Jason Swenk here, and I am excited to bring to you an amazing agency owner who's going to talk about how he accelerated his social media marketing agency. He's in the mastermind. He's always a bundle of joy and always makes me laugh when I chat with him. So welcome, Duncan. So, for the people that have not experienced the Duncan effect, tell us a little bit about who you are and what do you do.
Duncan: [00:00:28] I am Duncan. Much like Prince or Madonna or, you know, with this Duncan nothing else is needed. I'm the founder of Firebelly, and, um, we were a social media marketing agency. I'm also a dad and a husband/partner and a son. And yeah, I have a lot of joy in my life, so I try to bring it to everyone else around me.
Jason: [00:00:51] Awesome. And so talk about how did you get started with your, uh, social media agency?
Duncan: [00:00:57] So we started doing social media marketing in the late 2000s, really like 2007, because we were a branding agency and there wasn't any real differentiation. And I already had noticed at that point that SEO was moving very quickly. You know, websites were becoming more and more technical and I really wanted Firebelly to own a space.
And so we decided, hey, this social media thing is new, let's, let's jump into it. So that's how we got into it initially and then over the years, you know, my business has, has really gone from being a lifestyle with some employees to bein
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