When Smarter Click Technology Ltd Acquired MDNA Media in October 2016, MDNA's performance director, David Ayre stepped up into the role of Smarter Click's UK Country Manager. As the merged companies focus on developing its programmatic tech within the industry, we ask about the influencers who helped shape David's career as well as his biggest focus for the company since taking the reins in this Q&A session.
What were some of your goals when your career first started out?
Wow, you are asking me to cast my mind back there. I have been in affiliate marketing for over 10 years now and my career spans sometime before that too. I have always been driven as an individual to learn new skills, find more efficient ways of delivering results and my goal has always been to be the best I can possibly be at whatever I do.
Now, that might not be the case for everything I do (sport springs to mind), but within my professional career, I have been very thankful to work with some amazing companies and people that have brought me to where I am today.
How did you find success in your field?
Within the affiliate world, success didn’t come immediately – I was part of an amazing team working in a fantastic agency in Yorkshire when I first came to affiliate marketing. The range of knowledge needed there was vast and the role was exceedingly varied and I learnt a lot there, I have a lot to thank them for.
Moving to London though and taking up the role of Account Director within an affiliate network allowed me to really put the knowledge I had learned agency side to work. I was lucky enough to work with some fantastic brands and agencies during my time here and build some amazing relationships with a wide range of people within the industry.
Affiliate marketing is built on relationships and being able to nurture these relationships (perhaps with the odd glass of wine) is where I have found the most successes both personally and professionally.
You have a range of experience within the industry, who are some of your biggest professional influences?
There are far too many to name in this industry, I have had the pleasure to work for and with some great names, all who have influenced me in their own way. Surprisingly (or maybe not so surprisingly), a lot of my influences have come from colleagues and team members as well as from senior people and clients. I quickly learned influences come from all areas and it is important to be open to receive these.
I am not naming names though – they know who they are already and will get far too excited if they see their names in print.
What is your main focus as Country Manager at Smarter Click?
Smarter Click are a fast growing performance marketing technology company, specialising in full user-journey re-marketing services. I joined in October 2016 to manage the team here in the UK.
Predominantly, and referring back to my point about relationships being key in this industry, my role involves meeting clients both new and existing, meeting great people in amazing networks and agencies and generally getting my teeth into the day to day work.
As a company, we are always looking for ways to over-deliver for our clients and provide industry leading tech and service to our clients. Working with an outstanding team of client services managers, business development managers, tech gurus and design stars, our joint role is to ensure that the technology and service that our clients are receiving is the best available in the industry.
We are obviously keen to work with as many clients as possible as we have a lot to bring to the industry and I spend a lot of my role talking to prospective clients – the favourite part of my role is when clients realise the power behind our tech and start looking for the catch (there isn’t one by the way!)
What would you most like to achieve with Smarter Click in the next 6 months?
Since joining Smarter Click in October, we have seen unparalleled growth of our business due to our very approachable team and transparent nature.
I now want to grow on this and support more and more clients with their needs. We work in an industry that has a lot of big names in it, but often home grown technology will out-perform. I am proud to say I work for a company that has built all their technology in house, I work with a passionate team of people who are always eager to deliver for our clients – I want more people to experience this.
I also want to keep on developing our product – we give clients full access to our data and our technology and regularly gain feedback from clients on campaigns they want to run but have not been able to in the past with other partners. As our technology is built by ourselves, we are always able to adapt to client’s needs and deliver innovative marketing for them – this is what I am working hard at the moment to evangelise about.
What is the biggest lesson you’ve learnt in your career?
Always be yourself – someone is else is always a pale imitation. Truthfulness and transparency is key – don’t be scared to make a mistake, just own up and learn from it.
Oh and relationships are king – get out there and meet people.
To work with Smarter Click or to contact David and the rest of the Smarter Click team, please see here.