When search isn’t enough
Let me preface by saying I am happy that SEO/SEM/Inbound marketing is really beginning to hit its stride as a mainstream part of doing business. The tone of this is going to be, “back in my day, we had to build links uphill in the snow both ways!”.
Part of everyday is to see who is saying what in the local area Charlotte SEO / Charlotte SEM keyword market. This has led me to an awful lot of drive-thru SEO’s profiles and ‘experiences”. You have heard me rant on about Yodle in Charlotte in the past, and this is an extension of that. One of the side effects of the business model that Yodle and its competitors have created is the McSEO.
I go to Linkedin and look at a company like Yodle or LocalReach and see a list a mile long of SEO Specialist, Search Marketing Analysts, and Search Advertising Managers.
For the most part 80% of these self professed search marketing professionals began their search marketing “careers” at the company they are at now.
If your SEO doesn’t go home on the weekend and work on their own projects to make income online then they are data entry specialists. Anyone with a good understanding of how powerful inbound marketing is would never stop putting new sites into motion.
When I look at the career that led to their current positions as McSEO’s I have seen Baseball coaching, auto sales managers, Internships and about 300 others career paths that have nothing to do with SERPS, site designs and what has and does work.
You have seen me on here 100 times discuss the fact that I did not attend a “company training seminar” nor a local “learn SEO” summer camp. I am proud to be “old school” it means trying, testing and learning from data I controlled and created myself.
Training courses that create nothing more than an army of copycats does nothing to advance the thinking of inbound marketing. I think this is a disservice to those interested in learning SEO as well as an issue with diluting what inbound marketing means as a skill.
I will grant the fact that someone at the top of the line must have a good solid understanding of best practices and creative thinking to make this model work. If we are going down the road of “mass producing” experts it is imperative that the person designing these happy-meals be skilled him or herself.
What has always attracted me to inbound marketing and web design for SEO is the creative aspect of giving Google and visitors what they want with the same piece of code. When I devise a way to display good content in a site with dozens of “bucketed” topics I get a sense of satisfaction. By “bucketed” I mean creating a site folder structure that breaks down site topics into folder->subfolder->subfolder hierarchy structure to pass the most relevance down the line.
If that last sentence made no sense to any McSEO reading it, then my point has been made. Learning one system that has been devised to produce the same product for every field, market and keyword defeats the entire purpose of SEO.
While a one size fits all SEO product is great for profits and streamlines a process it completely ignores the fact that every keyword and service breaks down in a different way. If you don’t see the breakdown of a website, or look at a site and think of how I can break-out more pages from the existing content then you are missing half the fun in SEO.
The next time the weekend seminar teacher is explaining how you just input the keywords into the backend of our McSEO CMS system;
* Ask him how blue, red, yellow and black widgets can possibly be sold in all the same ways.
* Ask how some product may benefit from a static image gallery to create more content pages with what you already have.
* Ask him what you do with the predesigned template in the case of selling a more “visual” product.
* How will your site change for products that have seasonal changes?
* How will your website grow at a natural pace so you can achieve not just high rankings on one page but create more entry points as the website matures.
* Seeing what makes a website, service or business model unique and leveraging that angle in what defines a marketing thought process. Creating a large sites with powerful main pages and specific long tailed pages and then making it easy to navigate for viewers while content heavy enough for robots is the fun puzzle every new client should present.
There is a reason all golfers don’t use the same clubs, all houses aren’t painted the same color and all NBA stars don’t wear the same pair of shoes.
There is a difference between teaching people to do something and teaching people to know why they do it a certain way. This lack of the second one cheats those interested n learning to do SEO right, and dilutes the experiences in those pioneering the ideas to do it better.
I guess there is no school like the old school.