Pietro Ranieri, CEO of Ranieri Communications, on How To Get Clients And Scale An Agency


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If you’re thinking about starting a company of any kind, you will quickly realize that learning how to get clients is the lifeblood of your business. Simply put: If you don’t have work to do, you don’t have a company. My guest on this episode is my friend and “brother from another mother” Pietro Ranieri. Pietro has a particular talent for getting new work, a skill he exhibited time and time again in the early days of his freelance work as a PR consultant.

This conversation tells his story. He went to university to study agriculture with the full expectation that he’d become a farmer. But once he graduated and had to take the next steps, an entry-level position at a small PR agency was his door into a whole new world, and what would become his lifelong business path.

You’ll enjoy Pietro’s down-to-earth manner and the valuable insights he shares about what it takes to lead a team successfully, the obstacles to scaling any business, and the hard decisions owners/founders have to make in order for it to happen.

A freelance gig 8 days a month paid more than his full-time job

Pietro started his full-time career in the PR industry working for a small PR startup. He learned the ropes in account and campaign management and the skills of finding and winning client work. When he finally decided to take a side gig as a freelance PR professional, he learned something astounding.

He contracted to work 8 days a month for a company in need of PR consulting and was paid more for that 8-day job than he earned from his full-time work at the agency. As you might imagine, a light came on and he began figuring out how to work for himself full-time.

Pietro’s story is one of a guy who simply wanted to do the best job he could for his clients, which meant he wasn’t afraid to learn, develop new skills, and do what it took to learn how to get clients of his own so he could launch his own business.

The trick of letting go of the details so you can get in your personal sweet spot

As a business grows, the person who started it has to figure out how to set it up for success. First, that means the right processes and workflows have to be put in place. The clients must receive their deliverables with the quality and according to the delivery date they were promised. Second, team members need to receive great training to enable them to use the systems effectively.

But the biggest thing is that as the business grows, the founder has to learn how to trust his team enough that he/she can delegate effectively. That’s how things begin to scale rapidly because it’s the point where the founder is able to focus their full attention on the things that only they can do. Listen to learn how Pietro does spot-checks on specific details within his company to stay in touch with how things are going, even though he has effectively delegated.

True entrepreneurs don’t really WANT to be free of their business

It’s always fun to ask capable entrepreneurs like Pietro how they would set things up in their business in order to be away from it for an entire year and come back to see that it’s grown. Pietro wasn’t shy about answering. He feels he’s not far off from that ability, the problem is that he doesn’t really want to have that kind of freedom.

Like all true entrepreneurs, Pietro enjoys his business. It’s the thrill of getting new clients, developing new systems and deliverables, and leading a team that keeps him going. He has more fun at work than he typically does on vacation.

You have to be the small fish in the big pond in order to grow

It feels good to build a company to the point that it’s a leader in its little niche of the industry. But Pietro points out that if you want to continue growing, both personally and as a company, you’ve got to get yourself into a bigger pond. That could happen by adding services to your offerings, pivoting into a different sphere of the industry, or widening your scope across industry lines. It’s the challenge of taking on new things that forces you to grow.

I don’t know many people who demonstrate a growth attitude as well as my friend, Pietro. I hope you take the time to listen. You’ll receive some valuable lessons that any agency team member or owner will do well to heed.

If you are with a consumer technology company planning to launch a new product at CES or are even looking ahead to CES 2019, the Max Borges Agency can help you succeed. To learn more, check out: www.maxborgesagency.com.

Topics Featured In This Episode

  • [1:20] Why Pietro Ranieri is on the show: his story and his experience
  • [2:21] Doing things himself: how Pietro forged his own path into the tech PR space
  • [10:03] Making it past the small team hump to scale his agency
  • [13:41] The trick to letting go of things so you can move into your personal sweet spot
  • [18:06] A trustworthy team is vital to breaking free of the day to day management
  • [22:01] How Pietro stays on a growth path personally, when nobody requires it of him
  • [29:54] The things Pietro is looking forward to
  • [33:04] Pietro’s advice for those looking to start a business

Resources & People Mentioned

Connect with Pietro Ranieri

Connect With Max Borges

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