Founder of SmartBug Media®, Ryan Malone, Named a ‘Best CEO’ by Comparably

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Leader of Top Marketing Agency Focuses on Company Culture and Work-Life Balance to Boost Employee Wellness and Productivity

 SmartBug Media—a leading Intelligent Inbound® marketing agency that assists businesses in generating leads, increasing awareness, and building brand loyalty through inbound marketing, digital strategy, design, marketing automation, and public relations—announced that it’s founder, Ryan Malone, has been named a “Best CEO” by Comparably. The recognition underscores the fact that SmartBug’s® unique remote workforce model, along with its new Healthy SmartBug initiative, is having a positive impact on its employees. This is the eleventh Comparably award earned by SmartBug Media in the past two years and the fourth award for the company in 2019.

Malone founded SmartBug 10 years ago as one of the country’s few fully remote marketing agencies and has become a thought leader and evangelist for moving companies to a distributed workforce. The remote model has brought the company much success in a short period of time, as SmartBug has grown rapidly, expanding to represent more than 100 clients and employ nearly 80 full-time employees. In addition, SmartBug has been recognized for its achievements time and again, racking up prestigious awards such as: being named to the Inc. 5000 list for the third consecutive year; making the inaugural Adweek 100: Fastest Growing Agencies List; earning nearly 100 Marcom Awards for client work this year alone; and remaining the highest-rate HubSpot partner in the world.

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“Being named a Top CEO by Comparably is not only an incredible honor, but it is also very humbling given the company I share with this year’s winners. It’s an important reminder that in order to have strong leaders, you have to have great people. We have been fortunate to attract some of the industry’s most talented and dedicated people who share an unrelenting drive to deliver customer results,” said Malone. “My ultimate goal is to provide my employees with challenging careers along with the flexibility to spend more quality time with their families and make lifelong memories outside the workplace. From there, everything falls into place, with motivated employees producing great results for happy clients.”

In order to keep up with SmartBug’s growth and ensure his employees don’t fall victim to the fast-paced, demanding, and sometimes stressful working environment of most marketing agencies, Malone recently introduced a new initiative called Healthy SmartBug—designed to ensure the company as a whole is happy, healthy, safe, and resilient. As part of the initiative, the CEO has one-on-one SmartBug Connect calls with every employee each quarter, where the only agenda is to get their perspective on how to improve SmartBug. These calls have produced hundreds of ideas for the company’s leadership team to consider, prioritize, and ultimately roll out in order to improve the health of the company.

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The winners of Comparably’s Best CEOs Awards received the highest ratings by employees who provided anonymous feedback about their chief executive officers within the past year. Comparably, an online career, compensation, and workplace culture monitoring site, uses a data-driven approach to gather information about U.S.-based companies. Each year, it publishes lists of top companies in a variety of categories. There are no fees, costs, or nominations associated with participating.

“The best executives not only possess strong leadership skills that drive business objectives, they are transparent and personally engaged with their teams,” said Comparably CEO Jason Nazar. “The outstanding leaders on our annual Best CEOs list have these attributes and more, according to employee sentiment on within the last year.”

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