Celebrating 10 Years of Results Repeat with Ellen Thompson

Founder and CEO of Results Repeat, Ellen Thompson

This month, Results Repeat marks a decade of delivering exceptional digital marketing solutions.

To acknowledge this major milestone, we sat down with Ellen Thompson, a driving force behind our journey of growth and innovation. 

Ellen founded Results Repeat with a mission to redefine how businesses approach digital marketing, leveraging SEO, PPC, website development, and cutting-edge strategies to achieve measurable success. 

Her insights into the industry and the agency’s evolution offer a glimpse into our commitment to excellence and client satisfaction.

As we celebrate the 10th anniversary of Results Repeat, what initially inspired you to start the digital marketing agency, and how has the vision evolved over the past decade?

I started Results Repeat because I was ready for a new challenge after stepping down as CEO of the previous company I founded. About ten years ago, I decided it was time to move on and explore new opportunities. Initially, I was on the lookout for the next big tech start-up. 

During a Thanksgiving dinner conversation with my brother, he suggested, “Instead of waiting for the next big thing, why don’t you hang out your shingle and go into marketing consulting?” That idea stuck with me. So, in early 2014, I launched the Results Repeat website and signed my first client. By June, I hired our first paid employee, which is why I consider June our anniversary month.

Founding Results Repeat wasn’t my original plan, but it turned out to be the perfect opportunity to build a top-notch digital marketing agency. Now, a decade later, we’ve grown to a team of 30 employees with a thriving client base.

Can you share some of the most significant milestones and achievements that Results Repeat has accomplished in the last 10 years?

We hit our first major milestone pretty quickly. Just two years in, the Philadelphia Business Journal named us the third Best Place to Work in the small business category. Since then, we’ve received multiple Best Places to Work awards from the Philadelphia Business Journal. In 2020, a year when many agencies struggled, we made Inc. 5000’s list of Fastest-Growing Private Companies. We’ve also been recognized as one of the fastest-growing companies in the Philadelphia area by the Philadelphia 100 Forum. Plus, we won four US Agency Awards in 2021. 

On a personal note, I completed the Goldman Sachs 10,000 Small Businesses program. This experience taught me to work “on” my business instead of “in” it. This new perspective laid the foundation for a number of strategic partnerships with other agencies for new leads and growth opportunities. This shift also allowed me to delegate more responsibilities to our Directors. An organization’s strength lies in its ability to operate independently, and I’m incredibly proud of our team for stepping up and taking the reins.

What strategies or decisions do you believe were pivotal in achieving the rapid growth and success that Results Repeat has experienced?

After completing the 10,000 Small Businesses program, I returned to the office with a new vision. I told the team, “Instead of hiring more sales reps or investing heavily in Google Ads, let’s build a network with other agencies and refer business to each other.” This approach felt more sustainable for the long-term.

This shift in strategy proved invaluable during the pandemic. Like many companies, we faced a significant downturn in the first few weeks of lockdown. Then, about six weeks later, we began to see an increase in revenue. Having that nationwide network of agency partners allowed us to navigate the pandemic’s challenges and even achieve growth during COVID, which was rare for small businesses at that time.

Early in the pandemic, before PPE and government support were available, I was committed to not laying off any of our team members. I was ready to go into the red to keep everyone on staff. The entire team rallied together to meet this goal.

Another key to our company’s success is the kindness and dedication of the team. Some of our employees have faced serious challenges in the past few years. When these emergencies happen, the entire organization pulls together and helps each other get through these difficult times.This unity and support are truly remarkable.

How would you describe your leadership style?

My leadership style has definitely evolved over the past 10 years. In the beginning, I was a bit of a micromanager, overly focused on details and often getting bogged down in the minutiae. Now, I’ve learned to trust my talented team leaders and delegate effectively. This allows me to maintain a high-level oversight of the company without being involved in every single detail of daily operations. The shift has not only made me a better leader but has also allowed our leadership team to thrive.

When you were building the Results Repeat team what qualities did you look for, and how have your key team members contributed to the company’s success?

We quickly realized that our most successful team members are those who are smart, quick to figure things out, and resonate with our company’s culture and lifestyle. While working from home suits many, it’s not for everyone, and that’s okay.

The people who thrive here genuinely enjoy their roles and see them as careers, not just jobs. They are dedicated, eager to improve, constantly curious, and always looking to learn. Plus, they have a deep empathy for their teammates and clients, which makes all the difference.

Results Repeat has been recognized multiple times as one of the best places to work. What do you think sets the company apart in terms of workplace culture?

Our top employees genuinely care about each other and the work they do for our clients. They dig in and aim for excellence. If the results fall short, they aren’t satisfied. They always aim to do their best. When clients see that you really care and are committed to making things right, they stay loyal to your business. This kind of dedication can’t be taught, but it’s essential for retaining clients. That’s why we have clients who’ve been with us since day one.

We’ve built a team of good-hearted, dedicated individuals, and that truly sets us apart.

What are some of the biggest challenges Results Repeat faced in the digital marketing industry, and how has the agency overcome them?

One of our biggest challenges has been managing team dynamics. The strength of any agency lies in its people. If even one person isn’t fully invested, it can create significant issues. Over the years, we’ve had team members who weren’t engaged or were distracted by other jobs. Their lack of focus impacted both our clients and our team.

When an uncommitted employee leaves, their workload falls to a new team member, who must work hard to regain the clients’ trust and deliver optimal results. This can also be quite challenging.

That’s why having a dedicated team is so important for success. Many of our team members have been with us for years, and retaining top talent helps us retain clients. This continuity is invaluable to our customers.

Digital marketing industry continues to evolve every day. So staying ahead of these changes requires a commitment to professional growth. Each of our team members needs to be aware of upcoming industry changes to stay competitive. That’s why we provide an annual professional development budget for our team members to strengthen their skills, learn new ones, and prepare for the future.

How have you seen the digital marketing industry change over the past decade, and how has Results Repeat adapted to these changes?

I think the biggest changes to the digital marketing world are happening right now. 

Our daily tasks—building websites and generating leads through SEO and paid advertising—remain the same, but the tools we use are evolving. SEO still focuses on creating valuable content for users, and we continue to help clients reach new audiences with Google and Meta ads. However, the major shift in the past year has been the rise of Artificial Intelligence.

With 42% fewer marketing job openings compared to a year ago and an unemployment rate of 7.9% for 20-24 year-olds, many recent marketing graduates are really struggling to find their first professional jobs. Why? In many cases, AI can now perform many tasks, which were once the bulk of those entry-level roles. 

So, where do we go from here?

We need to ensure our team remains client-facing, skilled in analytics, and capable of explaining insights to our customers. They must be adept at pivoting and problem-solving.  These are the skills AI can’t replace or replicate. This human touch is invaluable to the overall client experience.

Moving forward, our team needs to acquire new skills while continuing to deliver exceptional service to our clients, just as we have for the past 10 years.

Looking ahead, what are your goals and aspirations for Results Repeat in the next 10 years?

I’m thrilled to be celebrating 10 years of Results Repeat. Reaching this milestone is a significant achievement that not every agency gets to experience. I’d love to be here for our 20th anniversary, surrounded by many familiar faces.

The next decade will be a different journey than the first. While our core mission remains the same, the tools we use are evolving. AI and emerging technologies are transforming what it means to be an agency. We must adapt to stay ahead.

This will be challenging, but I’m confident we can rise to the occasion. Over the next ten years, I hope to see us grow significantly, innovate with new technologies, and develop our team to thrive amid these changes. 

Although the ways we present ourselves and generate leads for clients will change dramatically, I hope we’re a digital marketing leader that helps our clients realize their visions.

What advice would you give to aspiring entrepreneurs who admire your achievements and wish to follow a similar path?

If I were to offer some advice, it would be to chart your own course rather than following our exact path. The industry has changed dramatically since 2014. If I were starting Results Repeat today, it would be a completely different organization.

I recommend that the next generation of entrepreneurs embrace new technologies to boost efficiency and productivity. Use these tools to pave your unique path to success.

Thanks Ellen! Congratulations on ten years of Results Repeat! 

As we celebrate this major achievement, the entire Results Repeat team renews our pledge to innovate and lead in the digital marketing landscape, guided by Ellen’s visionary leadership and the collective passion of our organization.

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