Interview with Alix Charles

Let me introduce our next marvelous woman PPC, Alix Charles. She is the CEO and Founder of her marketing agency, Alix Digital. Her passion for the Pay-Per-Click Advertising industry is fascinating, please welcome Alix and her career story. 💕

 

Interview with Alix Charles

 

Share the story of how you first got into PPC?

I started my marketing career in-house after studying Arts Marketing at University and running several ‘passion projects’ on a freelance basis. Whilst working in-house I began to learn more about PPC and soon realized this was something I wanted to do a lot more of. I started in a digital marketing agency as a PPC Junior and the rest is history.

What was the proudest moment of your PPC career?

It was at a point where I was working for a really cool agency and I worked my way up to a consultant level. Before I knew it, I was pitching to a very well-known household name. My Managing Director sat next to me and a very experienced SEO sat on the other side of me… I could feel myself sweating in the chair (gross, I know!)… I explained a concept and an approach that I believed would work for them and answer an issue they currently had. The marketing manager took a deep breath, leaned back in his chair, and sighed (at this point I was thinking I screwed up) before saying “I’ve spoken to many companies today and that’s the first time someone has hit the nail on the head”. That was the moment where I realized, I knew my abilities had the power to help businesses of all sizes.

Do you struggle with maintaining a healthy work-life balance?

I must confess, I am a workaholic. I struggle to switch off, I am always checking accounts, results and sniffing out how businesses can improve their marketing. However, I’ve gotten a lot better recently.
When I first set up the business, I worked from the spare room in my house but with work being so close I soon found myself working ridiculous hours — sometimes from 6 am to 11 pm. That’s when I realized I needed an office to force myself into having a door to close behind me and a commute between me and work. This helped a lot!

Have you ever experienced any problems or challenges as a PPC because you’re a woman?

No problems as such, however, I have had my fair share of imposter syndrome… I found this to be the case in the past and in one job (at this point an experienced PPC) I constantly felt like I was winging it and one day someone would ‘find out’. It took about a year in the company before I stopped feeling that way and developed more confidence in my abilities.
I recognize that imposter syndrome does affect men too, so I’m not sure how much I can attribute it to being a woman.

Have you ever had any advantages or benefits as a PPC because you’re a woman?

Running a (currently) all-female-team has been great for winning work with other females. I feel like it can be easier to create a bond quickly and a few clients and prospects have said that they like the fact we’re both women-led companies.

Are there any differences in how you’re treated as a female by clients?

I wouldn’t say so, maybe a little more in the earlier days but 10 years on and it’s a very different world. I recently took a (brief) maternity leave and informed clients that I would be handing it over for a short period of time. I was only off for 2 months in the end but ever since all my clients who were with me at the time still ask me how my baby is doing which is really nice.

Has a client ever underestimated you because you’re a woman?

I don’t feel that I have been underestimated based on my gender. Although at a networking event a man asked if I could do some training for his company and said “you’re a pretty girl so the boys would appreciate that”. I know he thought it to be a compliment but it made me feel like I wouldn’t be taken seriously and I decided not to work with them.

If you could wave a magic wand and change something in the PPC world, what would it be?

Honestly? I would like Google reps to recognize that calling us up to encourage us to spend more is very frustrating — neither agencies nor clients appreciate it! I would also like LinkedIn Ads to be less expensive… a girl can dream, eh?

What about being a PPC do you enjoy the most?

I love how in PPC you can see how all your efforts and hard work impact results for a client. Knowing a business is excelling because of the work I or my team do fills me with joy and pride. Seeing a business grow in size, transform over time and improve with my help is a reminder as to why I do what I do.

About the Author

Eve I

Eve is the PPC analyst of Hellbent Digital, Inc., also a regular author on the DisplayAdsDeepDive blog. In the last few years, she lived as a digital nomad on four different continents with her husband, mostly in South East Asia.

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