Distilling Digital Marketing: Meet Will Critchlow, Distilled CEO

Titus Sharpe is the president of Expert Market, the UK’s largest B2B marketplace, alongside a multitude of other business facets under ‘MVF’. The businesses operate across 120 countries, with offices situated in London, U.K and Texas, U.S.

Interested in comparing his own entrepreneurial journey to that of other entrepreneurs, we’ve created a new video series, allowing Titus to interview entrepreneurs from a wealth of sectors and gain insight into their experiences.

In this second edition of the series, Titus sits down with Will Critchlow, CEO and co-founder of leading digital marketing agency Distilled.

First Principles First

Over the past 12 years, Distilled has progressed from two friends brainstorming in the front room to a multinational agency, respected as a thought leader in the search marketing industry. Will explains the combination of factors that lead to this.

Uncovering the first principles behind ranking factors has been key to his approach, as he draws upon Elon musk’s mentality for understanding how a system must essentially work at its core, considering the problems it faces. With regards to the current problems facing the SEO world, Will considers how the rise of fake news will affect marketers and internet users.

New Developments

The driving force behind many technological developments in 2017 is machine learning intelligence. The world of search marketing is no different, as Will describes. He considers the impact this powerful yet mystifying process can have, as well as some of the reasons behind its implementation.

One of the challenges with the rise of machine automation, for those who work in SEO, is that it makes the testing process more difficult. Instead of just testing techniques in an A/B method with different groups of users there is now one main user- the “googlebot”- to please. Will outlines how Distilled are tackling this, with their new product: Distilled ODN (Optimization Delivery Network).

Lessons Learned

On a personal level, Will opens up about some of the lessons he’s learned as CEO. He gives his thoughts on a number of topics including hiring, communication, and distinguishing himself as the individual from his role as the head of the company. When asked where he gets his input, he credits some inspirational books and his habit of reading for much of his growth, as well as talking to fellow CEOs and industry voices.

Looking Ahead

What does the future hold for Distilled? In addition to the concrete plans such as to keep developing Distilled ODN, and to do some sector specific research, Will looks forward with a general sense of excitement and ambition: “I see us having more adventures”.