Listrak open house draws a crowd

By on June 28, 2017

Ross and Howard Kramer, co-founders of Listrak, in their proud new home on West Millport Road.

“If you build it, they will come” definitely applies to Listrak’s June 22 dedication and community open house. The digital marketing firm estimates that nearly 1,300 people visited the 93,000 square-foot facility at 100 W. Millport Road in Warwick Township.

Listrak moved into its new headquarters on April 14. It currently accommodates 300 employees and has the capacity for 600.

The firm vacated its former headquarters at 529 E. Main St. in Lititz, as well as two locations in Manheim Township and a smaller downtown Lititz location. The company also maintains a West Coast office in Newport Beach, California.

“Our main reasons for building have been to get all our local employees under one roof, and to have room for expansion,” explained Ross Kramer, Listrak CEO. “We have always valued collaboration, and this new location certainly provides for that.”

Kramer and his father Howard co-founded the company 20 years ago. Growth has been steady over the past two decades, but it has really taken off in recent years.

Listrak more than doubled its staff between 2013 and 2017. Once known for its proprietary email marketing technology for retailers, the company has expanded into new markets, including eCommerce for travel and tourism, and the media and publishing industry.

Listrak’s new facility is designed to promote a collaborative working environment.

Kramer said staying in Lititz was important.

“We travel a lot, and you can’t find places like Lititz. There’s a great community feel, a real ‘Main Street USA.’ There’s a real coming together of business leaders in the community; they’re really involved with the community and care about their neighbors. It’s something you don’t find everywhere. We hold a summit twice a year and our West Coast staff comes here; the sense of community is one thing our West Coast staff always comments on,” he said. “Both Lititz and Lancaster County in general have become their own versions of tech hubs in recent years, and Listrak is proud to be part of that revolution.”

In fact, technology is what brought the company to Lititz nearly 20 years ago.

Kramer, who grew up in Schaefferstown (Lebanon County), explained that Lititz was selected in 1998 for the first office because high-speed Internet was available at affordable rates. Of course, that first facility didn’t have all the amenities of Listrak’s new home.

“That first office on Main and Cedar streets had no bathroom,” Kramer recalled.

From that small space the company moved into a larger location on Sturgis Lane, an upgrade that included a bathroom. Continued growth eventually took them to the much larger building at the corner of East Main and Oak streets, which they used until earlier this year.

An estimated 1,300 people attended the open house at Listrak’s new facility on West Millport Road.

The latest move, with plenty of bathrooms and room to expand, sits on a 27-acre parcel in Warwick Township purchased from Sechan Electronics in 2015.

The goal of fostering creative teamwork can be seen in the building’s design. Focus groups and survey tools were used to engage employees in design discussions. Kramer and other staff members also visited other tech company headquarters such as Google and Facebook to get a sense of their use of space and design elements.

“We focus heavily on collaboration as a team. One thing that’s really important is training; so much of what we do is a specialized tech thing,” he stressed.

Listrak partnered with general contractor Pelger Engineering & Construction Inc., Tono Architects and Bottom Line Contracting as well as other contractors to turn those ideas into reality. The new facility has a sleek modern look accented by soaring windows that provide natural lighting.

“The reception to the style of our new building has been very good. It’s not your typical Lancaster County building,” Kramer said.

By design, the energy efficient windows on the southern exposure are a bit smaller than the larger 50-foot high windows on the northern exposure. Interior lighting is all LED (1,146 lights in all, enough to illuminate 40 two-story homes), and the lighting changes throughout the day based on the amount of sun coming through the windows.

The open space floor plan features a number of glass-sided conference rooms. There is also an on-site gym and café.

Kramer said that health and wellness is part of the company’s core values. So there’s not only a well-outfitted gym, but also a walking trail throughout the property, which links to other walking trails in the area.

The café, known as The Hub, also is part of the focus on health and wellness since it offers good, healthy food.

“The Hub has a double meaning. It’s a computer term, but it’s also a place that brings us together. We can relax there or hold an impromptu creative session,” Kramer explained.

The Hub is managed by TFB Restaurants. TFB also operates Annie Bailey’s Irish Pub in Lancaster and Gravie Kitchen + Commons at Rock Lititz Pod 2.

Kramer added that municipal officials were very supportive during the construction process.

“We’re excited to have Listrak in Warwick Township. It’s a high tech company with good paying jobs that generate tax base for the school district,” said township manager Dan Zimmerman.

Zimmerman pointed out that Listrak volunteered to assist the Warwick region with the update of its joint strategic plan — Forge the Future 2022. Municipal leaders in the region are committed to updating the strategic plan every five years.

“The plan creates a community vision and also serves as an action plan,” he explained.

While there are community input sessions, he said that generally a meeting may be attended by about 100 people. While that’s a good number of people to come out for a meeting, it’s a far cry from the estimated 30,000 residents in the school district.

“We’re always trying to get as much input as we can for the strategic plan. Reaching people is what Listrak does, and they volunteered to use their skills to assist us by creating online response options,” Zimmerman said.

Listrak also shares its thought leadership through an array of helpful free resources such as webinars, whitepapers, toolkits, speaking engagements and the Listrak Insights blog. These were all created to help guide retailers through the ever-changing landscape of digital marketing.

Rochelle A. Shenk is a local freelance reporter and regular contributor to the Record Express. She welcomes reader feedback at raashenk@aol.com.

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