Lancashire-based digital marketing agency +24 Marketing recently hit £1m turnover for the first-time.

Founder and managing director David Walker had mixed feelings about hitting the milestone because it could have been very different.

“When I first set up +24 Marketing I was 24 and I thought it would take a year to reach my first million,” he told TechBlast’s latest Going 4 Growth roundtable. “How naïve was I? 11 years later we’ve finally hit that mark after a lot of hard work and lessons learned along the way.”

Walker says it’s good to be ambitious but be careful about growing too quickly.

“When you’re an owner managed business you wear every hat going,” he says. “That was the first challenge of running a startup.

“The second one was being over ambitious. We grew very quickly and I over recruited on the back of it. When the P&L didn’t balance up I was three days from losing my home and almost had to shut down.

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“It was a difficult time but the experience made me a better businessperson.”

Thankfully those days are a distant memory for the award-winning digital marketing agency but Walker says you never forget.

“We now have 20 staff and have recruited nine staff in the last year alone,” he says.

“We’re still ambitious but our growth is more measured and much more sustainable.

“We’ve build up a good portfolio of clients and have a reputation for delivering but we won’t risk everything in pursuit of unsustainable growth.”