Hollis Carter is an entrepreneur and avid skier who, after founding many companies in his career, recently became the co-founder of the Baby Bathwater Institute, a membership-based community of entrepreneurs with a focus on cultivating natural, mutually beneficial relationships. Since his business relied on many in-person events, it was quite affected by the Covid 19 pandemic and subsequent restrictions. During this time of cancellations and being stuck at home, Hollis thought of a way to add value to the members during this new situation and started to offer a series of services with a performance-based model. This model quickly grew and he ended up selling it before actually having to fully build an agency. In this interview, he talked about the process of building and growing an agency to over $4 million and then selling it, all during a pandemic.
3 Golden Nuggets Growing an agency during Covid. Before the pandemic, Hollis was organizing many in-person events. Once they were canceled because of this new situation, he realized he had a perfect opportunity to offer a new service that would offer value to members of his mastermind. There was already a business relationship and he knew their products and believed in them. So he got ready to work under a performance-based model. “It was really very simple,” he says. The offer included podcast interviews, email lists, and content sites. He spent on setting up all the automation and tracking and found someone to handle that. And of course, under this model he was working with clients, not for them. Simplifying the offer. How can you make things simpler for you? First of all, don’t just take a good deal. This agency had the advantage of having a group of companies whose product they trusted. Even then, our guest says, they took people who were so product-focused that we were going to get the content and the angles they needed. People who knew they needed to be told how to market this product. They also let clients use the work they were creating and focused on the 10% that drove revenue. However, there are some things they would do differently a second time around: setting a flat fee and, instead of complicated spreadsheets just telling the client “here’s the number that came in, this is our cut,” would save a lot of time. Finally, figuring out how to set expectations of timeline, having a written document with a timeline that the client can reread instead of emailing you questions. Pulling from other industries. Hollis believes in taking knowledge from other industries into your own. He makes sure to have participants from different types of businesses in his masterminds and sustains there's always nuggets that you can pull from other industry practices that might not exist in a niche that you're opening, like what he has learned about hiring from the hotel space. He encourages others to give themselves a chance step outside what they know and learn something new that they can implement in their business from an unexpected source. Sponsors and Resources
Ninja Cat: Today's episode is sponsored by Ninja Cat, a digital marketing performance management platform where you can unify your data, create beautiful, insightful reports and presentations that will help you grow your business. Head over to ninjacat.io/masterclass to enjoy an exclusive offer for podcast listeners.
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Growing an Agency Fast to Over $4 Million and Selling Quick Jason: [00:00:00] What's up, agency owners? Jason Swenk here. I have another amazing show guest. We're going to talk about how when COVID hit, they formed an agency and ramped it up to over $4 million and sold it, during COVID. So it's a really cool episode and you're going to enjoy my guest. So let's go ahead and get into it.
Hey, Hollis. Welcome to the show.
Hollis: [00:00:29] Hey, man. Thanks for having me.
Jason: [00:00:30] Pleasure to have you on. So for the people t