How to Make Your Agency Profitable

with Simon Collard

About this episode

How healthy does your agency feel? Are there uncertainties around budgets? Are some of your retainers switching to projects? Is your pipeline flowing or in need of some work?

If your agency finances are feeling like a challenge right now you’re not alone.

Research has confirmed that PR budgets are being reduced. Data gathered in June 2023 from the world’s 100 most powerful communicators (Provoke 100 research) found that there has been a drop in public relations investment in the past 12 months of more than $1bn, from $4.8bn to $3.7bn. 

Although agencies can’t control client budget decisions, there are efficiencies that can be made in how fees are managed and how agency finances are protected.

To help guide you through this tricky time, Stella is joined by agency Chief Finance Officer Simon Collard. With over 30 years experience as an Agency CFO, Simon is an expert as safely guiding agencies to larger margins and consistent profitability, whatever the industry climate may be.

Stella first met Simon at digital PR and marketing agency Propellernet. Alongside a talented management team, Simon lead the agency to triple margin, quadrupled the revenue and generated 10x more profit. All without pressure on staff; the agency won Best Place to work in the UK 8 years running during this period of growth.

In this interview Simon shares his wisdom on;

  • Pricing and fees; Should PR be time or value priced? Or should we charge by output and outcome bonuses?
  • The importance to demonstrate the problems you are solving for your client, always.
  • Resilience; how to build it and where conscious over-servicing fits in.
  • ‘Profit vampires’ and how to deal with them.
  • Why the profit and loss sheet is a lagging indicator to an agency’s health & noticing negativity in the P&L means it could be too late
  • Numbers; The % of revenue you should spend on people, and cost per person
  • And the golden key in all agency profitability; time and resourcing and the best ways to manage it.