Nick Leech started his career in the magazine publishing industry, joining Future Publishing as an Advertising Manager. Leech began selling advertising space for companies in publications including .Net, Internetworks and Business 2.0. In 2000, Leech recognised an opportunity in the market and along with a colleague set up Euston Digital, an agency specialising in search engine marketing. In 2012, Leech was headhunted by the Host Europe Group as its new Group Marketing Director.
Nick Leech sat down with 123-reg to offer his personal experience and give his advice to young entrepreneurs in 2012.
So how did Leech go from selling advertising to running his own successful search marketing business? Leech began with an initial belief that he could do things better, a thought many people in business hold. ‘Euston Digital wasn’t about creating a unique product but more about providing a service that was better than the competition. This was my true inspiration – I knew I could do it better than others.’
Nick Leech is an entrepreneur, despite his own modesty. Realising ones potential is sometimes the main stumbling block, something anyone who wants to start their own business can learn from. While Leech may be somewhat embarrassed to be described as an entrepreneur, his non-traditional path into the business world and story of success should be inspirational to those who might one day takes the plunge. ‘I wouldn’t describe myself as a typical entrepreneur, because I have always seen my investment as low risk. Added to that, the economic environment was better in 2000. Maybe where I am different is I have always seen commercial potential in an idea.’
When you have a great idea and can compete with the competition, there is no need to borrow vast sums of money. ‘When we created Euston Digital there were a lot of people doing things badly, a lot of money was around at the time and there was a serious opportunity if we did it correctly.’
What makes Leech’s story so relevant is that it was not a unique idea, in many ways this is what sets him apart. Leech’s story is one for the masses, an individual who was good at something and had the passion and determination to make it a success. ‘That eureka moment normally costs a great deal of money. What people can take from my experience is to do what you are good at and do it well. The only real cost should be your time and passion.’
It is the Marketing Director’s belief that commitment, passion and skill are essential ingredients for anyone wanting to set their own business up. ‘Working within the service industry, what set us apart was the effort we put in for our clients. Clients saw the passion and the extra effort we were putting in for them. That goes a long way.’
So what advice would Leech offer those wanting to gain a presence on search engines? ‘When you start a business you need to be thinking about how you can rank well on Google. The sooner you do it, the better for your business. There is a perception that this opportunity has been taken by big corporations. However, upstarts are constantly finding way to challenge and even beat large competitors.
‘Do not feel like the ship has sailed. There is still so much potential online.’