Back in 2017, I came to the realization that I didn’t want to build a big agency.
I was doing web design and digital marketing for B2B businesses with a team of distributed contractors.
It was working, but it didn’t feel right.
Like you, I was doing too much, burning myself out, and could never really turn off my brain at night.
I was always on-call. Always thinking about the next due date. Always wondering why my margins weren’t higher at the end of the day.
My niche—owner-managed B2B services companies—was too broad. I had no real competitive advantage. No negotiating leverage.
I was making a good living but was working hard for it. I knew if I wanted to grow I had to make a change.
I could use my skills to build a “real” agency—with employees, project managers, and an office to bring it all together.
But the thought of that frankly didn’t appeal to me at all.
It was then I realized I could focus instead on the parts I enjoyed most—the strategy and leadership part of marketing.
I could then guide my clients to their goals as an impartial advisor and “producer” of sorts—that’s where the most value came from anyway.
The model immediately felt more aligned with my clients’ interests.
That’s when I began to phase my work into advisory model and never looked back.
Since 2017, I’ve sold over US$1M in advisory services with an average retainer value of under $3,500/month.
There’s a fair few advisory miles—or kilometers, since I’m Canadian—in my shoes.
I don’t pretend to have all the answers. But I do have experience to share and lessons to teach. And I’m still in the game, innovating on the model and sharing what’s working (or not working).
I was born in Ireland. In the 80’s, my family immigrated to Ontario, Canada, where we’ve lived ever since. My wife wishes I had stayed in Ireland long enough to develop an Irish accent. Sadly, I do not have an Irish accent.
Claim to fame: In high school, I was the captain of most of my rugby teams (with the injuries to prove it) and lead singer of a metal band (which shall remain nameless).
I have a degree in Philosophy which has surprisingly helped me a lot in my business work (and life, of course).
I am a proud father of two amazing children, husband, and owner of a loyal and loving dog.🐶