Have you decided to use Notion for agency but have a difficult time navigating around this versatile platform?
As you delve deeper, you’re met with an intricate web of features and options. The potential is immense, yet the complexity is daunting. You find yourself spending more time figuring out the tool than actually using it to streamline your operations. It’s like having a powerful engine with no manual.
My journey with Notion at Alpha Efficiency was filled with trials and triumphs. It took me months to find out how to effectively use Notion for agencies like mine.
To save you time, I’ve decided to write this guide and help you adapt Notion to your environment as quickly as possible.
I’ll start by showing you the basics of Notion and how to onboard your team. Then, you’ll discover a system you can apply to boost your agency’s workflows. You’ll save time, reduce stress, and learn how to make the most out of Notion in an agency setting.
Table of Contents:
- Notion For Agencies: How To Get Started?
- Exploring PARA System – The Best Method For Maximizing Productivity in Notion For Agencies?
- How Can Notion Enhance Your Agency’s Workflow
- Can You Integrate Notion With Other Tools Your Agency Is Using?
- Quick Tips For Optimizing Notion For Agencies
- Conclusion – Is Notion Worth It For Agencies?
Notion For Agencies: How To Get Started?
Before diving into the advanced Notion tips and templates, let’s explore how to start with Notion for agencies. Setting up a workspace and familiarizing yourself with its features is crucial to making the most of this powerful platform.
Set up a Workspace for Your Team
To begin your Notion journey, you must create an account for your team. Notion is currently offering four different plans:
- Free plan
- Plus plan (previously called “Team”)
- Business plan
- Enterprise plan
Depending on your agency’s size, choose the plan you believe suits you best. We recommend starting with at least a Plus plan to get a sense of Notion’s full potential early on. This plan also offers features specifically designed for collaboration within an agency business. And what’s most important – it doesn’t limit the number of files you can upload or the number of blocks you can create with your teammates.
After you set up your account and invite your team members, you can start creating pages and databases for each department or project within your agency. Notion templates can be an excellent starting point for this process. We’ve created downloadable Notion templates for agencies, specifically optimized for best practices we’ll explore later in this article.
Get Comfortable With Basic Notion’s Features
To get the most out of Notion as an agency, getting yourself and your teammates comfortable with its powerful features is essential. Spend some time exploring the platform and experimenting with its various functionalities. Here’s a quick introduction to the cornerstone features Notion provides:
- Pages: Pages are the foundation for your Notion workspace. They can be as simple or as complex as you need them to be. You can create pages for projects, team members, departments, clients, or any other aspect of your agency business. Remember, you can nest pages within one another and create sub-pages. This will prove valuable once you start creating a hierarchical structure according to your agency’s needs.
- Databases: Databases are a powerful feature in Notion for agencies. Think of them as a collection of pages. Using them allows you to store, organize, and filter your data. And with the ability to create custom properties and views, you can tailor project databases to fit your agency’s workflow and project management style. You can create various types of databases, such as tables, boards, calendars, lists, galleries, and more. Tailor them to your teams’ needs. For example, you can utilize galleries for your design team’s databases to fit the nature of their work.
- Blocks: Blocks are the individual elements that make up a Notion page. There are various types of blocks available. Simple types include text blocks, headings, images, videos, audio files, etc. Notion also offers more advanced blocks like tablets, calendars, and code snippets. It’s simple to move, resize, or nest blocks, which gives you the flexibility to customize layouts and designs for your pages. We recommend experimenting with different block types to get comfortable more quickly.
By getting comfortable with these basic elements, you’ll be better equipped to take advantage of advanced tips and best practices.
Exploring PARA System – The Best Method For Maximizing Productivity in Notion For Agencies?
At my web design agency, we’ve been experimenting with various methods for optimizing our use of Notion. The PARA method seems to be particularly valuable. By using this method, I’ve managed to create a highly organized and efficient workspace tailored to my agency’s needs.
Developed by productivity guru Tiago Forte, the PARA method stands for:
Each of these core components serves a distinct purpose in organizing your workspace. Many people use the PARA method to organize their private digital life, but we’ve also found it extremely valuable when using Notion for agencies.
In the following sections, I’ll break down each core component and give tips for organizing your agency workflows with the PARA method in Notion.
Projects – Current Priorities for Your Agency
In the context of the PARA system, projects are the tasks or initiatives you’re actively working on. These have a defined outcome and deadline. Projects are the driving force of your agency’s work, and organizing them effectively in Notion can help you stay on track and deliver results on time. Projects require you to be laser-focused.
An example of a project is “create two landing pages for our client.”
Creating a dedicated project database is an effective way to manage projects in Notion. In our Notion workspace, we call it a “Project Wiki.”
Choose the database format you feel best suits your team’s workflow and everyone’s preferences. For example, a Kanban board might be perfect for a team that follows an agile methodology. On the other hand, a table or list view may work better for those that prefer a more traditional agency project management approach.
Once you set up your project database, you can customize it. Make sure to add properties that capture essential information about each project. Here’s what you might want to include:
- Project name
- Due date
- Team members responsible for the project
- Project status (e.g., Not started, In progress, Completed)
- Priority level
- Tags or categories (e.g., Client projects, Internal projects, Marketing emails, etc.)
To help your team stay organized and focused, create different views in your project database that filter and sort projects based on specific criteria. For example, you could create a view showing only high-priority projects or another view displaying projects assigned to a particular team member.
Areas – Mastering Ongoing Responsibilities
Imagine areas as the backbone of your agency, representing those ongoing responsibilities of your business that require your regular attention. Areas are vital for your agency, but they don’t have deadlines. Examples of areas might include:
- Client relationships
- Team management
Organizing and managing areas in Notion is a great way to ensure your agency’s core functions remain strong and healthy. But how to approach it?
I found creating separate pages or databases for each area of responsibility to be effective. Having pages in Notion for lead generation, content, hiring, finances, and more, helps my digital marketing agency stay on track and avoid management nightmares.
Here’s how to make the most of areas in your agency’s Notion workspace:
- Dedicate a top-level page for each area in your workspace to create a clear distinction between different responsibilities.
- Inside each area page, add sub-pages or sections to break it down into smaller, more manageable parts.
- Make it visually appealing and engaging by using various content types. If you don’t feel like placing images and videos all over your agency’s Notion workspace, at least set fun emojis for icons. This might motivate your team members to interact with content and stay updated.
After you’ve set up your areas, it’s time to connect the dots. Link your areas to their related projects and resources using inline links. For example, you can create a relation between your client relationship area and your project database, allowing you to see all projects associated with that client at a glance.
Resources – The Best Knowledge Management Solution for Notion
Here you’ll store all the information you or your teammates could refer to at some point in the future. Think of it as a Notion Wiki for your agency.
Articles, templates, case studies, how-to’s, training materials, ideas, or software documentation – anything that helps your team succeed in their work should go into your knowledge base in Notion. For example, you can include an article on the pros and cons of AI website design to help teammates understand for which tasks they can use this technology and when to avoid it.
To create a resource library in Notion, start by setting up dedicated databases. You can choose the format that best suits your team’s needs. But downloading Notion templates tailored explicitly for agency needs is a quicker option.
Here are some tips to make the most out of your resource library:
- Add custom properties to your resource database to highlight resource type, topic, associated projects or areas, and other relevant details.
- Use tags or categories to group similar resources. For example, you can tag resources by department (Design, Copywriting, SEO) or by content type (Tutorial, Template, Case Study, Ideas, etc.) This will make it easier for your team to access the desired part of your knowledge base quickly.
- Attach files or embed content directly into your resource database, so your teammates can quickly access the information they need without leaving Notion.
- Connect resources to their related projects and areas. For example, you might link a client onboarding template to your Client Relationship area, ensuring that your team has all the necessary tools at their fingertips.
- As an agency owner, you can create your personal Notion Wiki to store your thoughts and ideas for turning your business into a 7 figure agency.
Remember that your resource library is a living, breathing part of your agency. Regularly review and update your resources to ensure they remain accurate, relevant, and valuable.
Also, encourage your team members to contribute with new resources and share their knowledge. A collaborative and supportive environment is critical to success when using Notion for agencies.
Archives – Decluttering Your Notion Workspace
Now let’s explore the final core component of the PARA system. Archives are like the attic of Notion for agencies. There you can store information you no longer need in the active workspace but that you think might be helpful for future reference. This could include completed projects, outdated resources, or historical data of your agency.
Creating a well-organized archive system in Notion will keep your agency’s workspace clutter-free and laser-focused on your current priorities. Here’s how to get started with creating archives in Notion for agencies:
- Choose a format that suits your needs. For example, you can create a single page with sub-pages for different categories. Another option is to create a database with filters and sorting options. Don’t be afraid to experiment.
- Organize your archives in a way that makes sense for your agency. You can categorize them by date, project type, client, or any other method that works best for your team. For example, our Notion workspace has Project Archive, Daily Notes Archive, Products & Services Archive, Reading Archive, etc.
- Use clear and descriptive names for your archived items. This will make it easier to find specific information whenever you need it.
As you wrap up projects or find irrelevant resources, move them to your archives. Regularly reviewing your active workspace and archiving items lets you keep your Notion environment clean and focused. It’s how you can guide your team’s attention toward their current tasks and responsibilities.
Also, while your archives might not be part of your day-to-day workspace, it’s still crucial to have easy access to them when needed. Ensure your team knows where to find archives and how to utilize Notion’s powerful search functionality to locate archived items quickly.
How Can Notion Enhance Your Agency’s Workflow
Notion is a powerhouse platform that can revolutionize your agency’s operations, streamlining processes and fostering collaboration. With its versatile features and the PARA system in place, you’ll see improvements across all aspects of your agency’s workflow.
Using Notion for Daily Management and Real-Time Collaboration
Notion’s capabilities extend beyond organizing projects and resources. It’s also a powerful tool for daily management and team collaboration. By leveraging Notion’s features, you’ll foster a more connected and productive work environment for your team.
We advise you to create a centralized task management system in Notion to track and assign tasks for your team members. By doing so, you’ll be able to easily add tasks, set deadlines, and assign them to the appropriate people. At Alpha Efficiency, we call it “Daily Inbox.” With everyone’s tasks visible in one location, your team can stay organized, prioritize their work, and ensure nothing falls through the cracks.
Agencies can also use Notions to create meeting notes and agendas. This way, you can ensure that everyone on the team can access the information discussed. By maintaining a record of meetings, your team can quickly reference past discussions, track action items, and stay informed about decisions made during meetings.
Also, Notion can help your team members share feedback. For example, on the Daily Plan page, you can add quick links to the content you’re currently working on. You can collaborate with them in real time to find the best solution by mentioning others in the comments and asking them for quick feedback.
Planning and organizing your agency’s content in Notion
A well-planned and organized content is crucial for any marketing agency. Notion’s versatile features provide the perfect environment to plan, create, and manage your content, ensuring your team stays aligned and produces high-quality work.
Here are our quick tips for planning and organizing content in Notion for agencies:
- Set up the content calendar: By creating a content calendar in Notion, you can give your team a clear overview of upcoming content pieces and their deadlines. Customize your calendar with properties like content type, status, assigned team member, and publication date. This way, everyone can easily see what’s on the horizon and prioritize their tasks.
- Content review and approval: Streamline your content review and approval process by setting up a workflow in Notion. Create a system that clearly outlines the review stages, assigns responsibilities, and tracks the progress of each piece of content. This ensures that your content goes through the necessary checks before publishing, guaranteeing quality and consistency.
- Organizing and storing final content: Organize your final content pieces in a dedicated database or folder system within Notion. Creating a central repository for your completed work will make it easy for your team to access and reference past content, repurpose it for new projects, or share it with clients. It will particularly come in handy in the case of website content migration.
Using Notion for Client Relationship Management
Client relationship management is vital for any agency building long-lasting partnerships and delivering exceptional results. And Notion offers a comprehensive solution for this. With the proper setup, you can ensure your team stays organized, informed, and proactive in meeting your client’s needs. You can even organize your workspace to make tracking the client outreach process easier.
Here is a quick guide on how to use Notion for CRM:
- Creating client databases: Create a client database in Notion to store essential client information, such as contact details, links to their websites, company background, and preferences. Centralizing this information will make it easy for your team to access and reference client data whenever needed, improving communication and ensuring a personalized client experience.
- Tracking clients’ projects: Use Notion to keep track of client projects, setting up dedicated pages or databases for each project. Connecting your client databases with your project management system gives you a clear overview of your clients’ ongoing work and associated deadlines. This will help your team stay on top of their tasks and deliver projects on time.
- Keeping track of meetings: Document your client meetings in Notion, using shared pages or databases to capture agendas, discussion points, and action items. By maintaining a record of client meetings, your team can easily reference past conversations, track progress, and stay informed about any decisions made or feedback the client provides.
- Keeping track of client-related tasks: Utilize Notion’s task management features to assign and track client-related tasks. This way, you can ensure your team meets its responsibilities and deadlines. Integrating client tasks into your daily management system is a powerful way to ensure your team remains accountable and focused on delivering exceptional work for your clients.
Utilizing Notion AI to Automate Time-Consuming Tasks and Enhance Agency’s Workflow
Notion’s AI assistant can help your agency automate time-consuming tasks and enhance your workflow. It allows you to save time, increase efficiency, and allow your team to focus on more strategic and creative work.
Here are just some of the benefits of Notion AI for Agencies:
- Extract insights from a page: Artificial intelligence can analyze the content of a page and extract key insights. This makes it easy for your team to grasp the main points quickly. This feature is handy when dealing with large volumes of information or complex documents on a tight schedule.
- Summarize messy meeting notes and pull out action items: You no longer have to deal with messy notes after long meetings. With the “/summarize” command, you can convert them into clear, concise summaries. Also, with the “action items” command, you can quickly analyze a page and get the list of things you committed to doing next.
- Quickly format your ideas so you can share them: When creativity knocks on your door, capturing ideas as quickly as possible is essential. But this often results in unorganized lines of text you think might only confuse your teammates. You can ask Notion AI to create a bullet list with all essential items.
- Quickly gain insights from user research: Some of the user experience survey questions are open-ended. If the group of survey participants is large, it can be very time-consuming to analyze each answer to understand the sentiment behind it. In Notion, you can ask your AI assistant to create a list of common answers and points users made during your survey.
If you’re curious about how AI can benefit other aspects of your business, such as in a DevOps context, check out our article on how can a DevOps team take advantage of artificial intelligence.
Can You Integrate Notion With Other Tools Your Agency Is Using?
One of the many strengths of Notion is its ability to integrate with a wide range of tools and platforms commonly used by agencies. I highly recommend you connect Notion with your existing tools. This way, you can create a more cohesive work environment and increase your agency’s efficiency. Here is a list of tools and platforms you can integrate with Notion.
Integrating Notion with other tools allows you to centralize your work processes, reduce manual data entry, and ensure that information flows smoothly between platforms. This saves time and minimizes the risk of errors and miscommunication.
For example, if your agency uses Google Drive for document storage, linking it with Notion can be a game-changer. Everyone within your team will be able to access, share, and collaborate on documents, spreadsheets, and presentations directly from your Notion workspace.
And if you’re already using Trello due to its visual project management approach, integrating it with Notion can help you get the best of both worlds. Syncing your Trello boards with Notion databases allows you to keep track of small tasks while taking advantage of Notion’s powerful organization features.
Also, if you’re using Slack for communication, you can integrate it with Notion and have your messages always within reach.
Quick Tips For Optimizing Notion For Agencies
As we’re nearing the end of this guide to Notion for agencies, I’d like to share four quick tips to help you get the most out of this platform:
- Save Time By Using Notion Templates for Agencies: Take advantage of Notion templates explicitly designed for agencies. These pre-built layouts can save you time and effort when setting up your workspace, as they include tailored structures for project management, client communication, and resource organization.
- Create team-specific pages and databases: Design dedicated pages and databases for each team within your agency. This way, you can ensure everyone can quickly access relevant information and resources within your Notion wiki. For example, creating separate pages for design, development, and marketing teams with databases that cater to their specific projects and tasks. This helps you keep your workspace organized, encourages collaboration, and enables each team to work more efficiently.
- Set permissions and access controls: Ensure your team members have the appropriate level of access to your Notion workspace. Maintaining privacy, protecting sensitive information, and preventing unauthorized edits is crucial. For example, you may want to limit client information or financial data access to specific team members or managers and prevent others from accessing such data.
- Invest in team training to get results more quickly: To maximize the benefits of Notion, you need to invest in team training. Introduce your team to the platform’s features and best practices to help them gain knowledge and skills to use Notion effectively. This platform is relatively easy to use, and we’re sure you’ll quickly start noticing the improvement in the overall productivity of your agency.
Conclusion – Is Notion Worth It For Agencies?
After using Notion for a while, it becomes evident that it can be a game-changing tool for agencies of all sizes. As a highly customizable platform that offers a wide range of features (including an AI assistant), Notion can help you streamline your agency’s workflows, enhance collaboration, and keep your team organized.
And by utilizing the PARA system and integrating Notion with various other tools, you can make Notion a versatile and robust solution for project management, content organization, client relationship management, and much more.
However, to truly unlock the potential of Notion for your agency, it’s crucial to invest time in understanding its features, customizing it to your needs, and training your team to use the platform effectively.
By harnessing the power of Notion and leveraging its many features, your agency can reach new heights in productivity and client satisfaction. Start by downloading our custom Notion templates for agencies. And if you need more help getting started with this fantastic platform, feel free to schedule a call with our experts.