Seamless workflows free-up time to win more clients

Digital Marketing Dude strengthens its operations using Ignition's automation, workflows and boosting efficiency to empower growth.

Peter Brissette
Chief Executive Officer, Digital Marketing Dude

About Peter Brissette and Digital Marketing Dude

Based in Broomfield, Colorado, Digital Marketing Dude (DMD) has been a trusted digital marketing agency since 2009. The company specializes in website development, hosting, and maintenance, along with an array of other monthly services such as search engine optimization (SEO), reviews management, and ads management. Its offerings don't stop there. DMD also delves into website redesign, content creation, social media, email marketing, reputation management, and more. What sets the DMD team apart is its commitment to results. The company generally operates on a month-to-month basis, avoiding long-term contracts, ensuring that the business is always accountable to its clients. DMD’s aim is clear – to provide support to business owners, helping them grow and simplifying their journey by being a dependable partner.

The problem

For professional services providers, growth, while desirable, often comes with its own set of challenges. Peter Brissette, CEO of Digital Marketing Dude (DMD), was feeling the heat. His agency was expanding, and though that signaled success, operational bottlenecks were beginning to show.

With a significant chunk of his business relying on monthly recurring revenue, the administrative overhead of tracking and managing payments was becoming cumbersome.

Clients' credit card payments would sometimes bounce or fail for various reasons, leading Peter and his team down the rabbit hole of constant follow-ups.

“And as we keep growing and getting more clients, it's a lot of transactions to chase,” he says. This was not only a cash flow problem, but also an enormous drain on time and effort. Peter really needed to automate and streamline this process.

Next on the list of DMD’s challenges was the repetitive and tedious task of data entry. Imagine entering a client's name, address, and contact information half a dozen times, a circumstance Peter admits was ridiculous – but that’s what he and his team found themselves doing. This was extremely inefficient and seriously increased the risk of human error.

Sorting out the technology puzzle was the DMD team’s third hurdle. Like many modern businesses, Peter’s agency was using a suite of software applications to manage its operations.

“I was using a Docusign-type document to send to clients to get them to put their credit card information in, which I knew wasn't really the right way to do it,” says Peter. “But I didn't know what else to do, because I didn't want to be calling people all the time and taking credit cards over the phone.”

DMD’s tools were not well-integrated with each other and were not living up to their potential. The result? Fragmented data, inconsistent communication between platforms, and substantial workflow inefficiency.

So although DMD was growing, its internal operations were not keeping pace. As transactions increased, these challenges threatened to become even more difficult, making existing processes untenable in the long run.

“That prompted me to start going, okay, I know we've got to find something better out there – a better way to do this because this is not a feasible way,” says Peter.

The fix

Peter first came to know about Ignition through his certified public accountant (CPA), who was using the all-in-one proposal, client agreement, billing, payment and workflow automation platform to streamline her own processes.

With custom proposal templates and automated proposals, Ignition immediately addressed a significant chunk of Peter's pain points. "I do the proposal in Ignition, [the clients] accept their proposal, they pay for it, we collect the payment," Peter says.

"I don't have to touch another credit card ever again or another form... it's all there, and all the billing’s set up and ready to go. So we just eliminated all those steps."

But Ignition isn’t just a one-trick pony. Thanks to its integration capabilities with workflow automation software Zapier, the platform seamlessly connects with more than 4,000 apps. This proved to be another key benefit for the DMD team. Ignition integrated with DMD’s own suite of tools, including QuickBooks Online, ActiveCampaign customer relationship management (CRM), and project management software (though the team has since shifted to SmartSuite for project management). “Just having that in one system was a big deal,” Peter says.

This integration's practicality quickly became evident in everyday tasks. "Once [clients] accept the proposal, it kicks over and creates a project in SmartSuite," Peter says.

"So again, we're eliminating extra steps that we would have had to do manually before; it’s all connected around Ignition."

Another standout feature was Ignition's automated client payments and billing. No more chasing clients for missed payments. The system would automatically notify them if their credit card was about to expire or if a payment failed.

The tangible benefits for Peter and his team were major. "Now that I've got a couple of proposal templates, I've got all my services in there," says Peter.

"I can spin out a proposal in a couple of minutes, send it out, and have [clients] complete the deal. All that can happen in a really short amount of time... it's a huge time saver."

Just how much time has Peter and his team saved?

"I'd say I’ve saved at least an hour just right off the top for every single proposal – probably a little bit more," he says. "Then, just chasing stuff, [I've saved] probably a couple hours a month alone. So, if we're doing five or six deals a month, that's six to 10 hours a month."

"I couldn't imagine doing it now without having my proposal and the payment all in one place," Peter says.

He emphasized that this newfound efficiency lets him and his team zero in on more value-based tasks, such as selling. "I know I can turn around a deal – get it done and out to somebody, get it signed – and can move right to the next one in a matter of minutes."

The results, however, have not just been in saved time but also in realized goals. "Last year, our goal was four websites a month. We got to about two websites a month last year. But this year, we've already done four in January. We did four in February, and we might do seven this month," Peter says.

"[Ignition gives me] the ability to just keep pushing the deals through."

Peter’s pro tips:

Streamlining your workflow is all about smart decisions and effective tools. Peter has two essential pro tips for businesses grappling with operational inefficiencies:

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