Seeing Success in a Digital Age


As Adtrak continues to make its mark as one of the largest digital agencies in the UK, Managing Director, Chris Robinson gives us an insight into life at Adtrak, including the impact of becoming a Google Premier Partner and how he has helped the business to grow.

Back in 1997 when Adtrak was founded, we were creating directory adverts for media and employed just a handful of people.

Now 21 years later and with more than 950 clients on our books, we have grown to offer all aspects of digital marketing, including web design, internet marketing and paid marketing from our head office in Nottingham.

The speed of change for Adtrak has been astonishing – particularly over the last eight years. Since 2010, we have added a whole suite of new products and services, created four new departments, moved to a much larger office space and grown from a team of 40 people to over 120. I have continuously worked to develop the business, embrace change and lead Adtrak forward.

We specialise in the SME market predominantly and therefore tend to deal with business owners directly. Throughout the years, we have seen hundreds of our clients grow following the implementation of Adtrak’s services. Some now turnover millions each year, rather than hundreds of thousands. To know that Adtrak has worked alongside these businesses for many years is very satisfying indeed and many of our clients have become lifelong friends as a result.

Recently, we expanded the services we provide in the UK across to the USA. This was a huge step for Adtrak and meant that our management team and strategic thought processes had to grow and develop accordingly. We had to become more professional, more efficient and above all, learn to be flexible and adapt to change at a frenetic pace.

All of this was made much easier with the support and advice of my team and I have prioritised the adoption of a culture which allows open discussion.

Over the years, I have realised that as a leader, you must surround yourself with people who have different skills and preferences. Businesses often fail when the leader thinks they are always right, as you create a “yes” culture which can be incredibly demotivating to staff.

At Adtrak we have instead created an environment which allows staff to challenge the thoughts and actions of the leadership team. Staff need a voice – and trust me I would have made many bad decisions had I not listened to them over the years. As a leader, admitting you’re wrong is a sign of strength and not weakness.

This has contributed largely toward Adtrak’s success in delivering measurable and profitable results which builds and grows businesses. At a time when companies are becoming increasingly knowledgeable of digital marketing, this is more important than ever.

We are finding that clients are finally realising just how important digital marketing is. But the industry is now more complex than ever, as the landscape is always updating and changing. Our staff continually need to learn new skills and techniques to ensure we can always offer market-leading advice and solutions.

We invest heavily in staff training and development and I truly believe a key factor to Adtrak’s growth has been putting the right people in the right positions. Digital marketing is all about the people you employ. If you work as a team and value each other’s expertise, you will reap the benefits.

Personally, one of my highlights is seeing young members of staff develop new skills, increase in confidence and grow in stature, progressing from a junior all the way through to senior management, or even board level. Developing people is what makes a company not just a place to work, but a place you enjoy walking into each morning.

In 2016, Adtrak also became a Google Premier Partner and in the same year I was invited to join Google’s prestigious Partner Executive Council, an exclusive global forum which brings together the CEOs and senior executives of leading Google Premier Partners.

Since becoming Partner and being placed on Google’s worldwide Partner Executive Council, I have seen the business go from strength to strength. Our close relationship with Google gives us a real competitive advantage, as we get a unique insight into what will be happening within the digital industry over the next 12 months. This then allows us to prepare for Google changes, rather than being reactive.

Google offers us a huge amount of guidance and working closely with its experts allows us to deliver an above average return on investment for our clients.

In order to be more successful, you have to be forward-thinking. Myself, the board and our management team embrace change and instead of seeing issues or problems, always look for the solution. We are very good at looking to the future, predicting change and acting upon it.

As we continue to expand our services to the USA, and with three American clients already under our belt, the year ahead looks both challenging and exciting. But we love what we do and the digital space is a great one to be occupying.

Website: www.adtrak.co.uk


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