October 2015 marks over 10 years since I started my career in SEO. It all started back in October 2005 when I first discovered SEO and started testing tactics and learning all I could! I grew from having limited SEO knowledge to speaking on the main stage at global conferences like SMX and Online Retailer.
Many things have changed over the last 10 years and I decided to put together 10 tips from my 10 years in SEO & Online Marketing.
1. Aim to build a brand for your self – Start by making your own blog, Twitter, Facebook page, Google+ and use the same name across multiple channels. Add content weekly and keep your users updated also aim to have exclusive content where possible. It is also highly important to build an email list on your blog because you can continue to tap into this user base on a long term basis.
An example of some blog content which I have made over the years that has done quite well –
http://jamesnorquay.com/an-interview-ex-member-matt-cuttss-search-quality-team/ (An interview with an ex-Googler in Sydney)
http://moz.com/ugc/increasing-organic-seo-traffic-by-400000-unique-visitors-a-month (A case study on traffic growth for a client of our business)
(10 Tips to get more traffic from Google Images)
+ 100’s more online!
Aim to build content so great that even the competition will love it (example below) that been said content has slowed on the James Norquay blog recently!
2. Find a mentor who can help develop your career – Finding someone who you can call for advise on life and business is highly important. I have had numerous mentors over the years in my career from numerous areas been client management, business development and building technical skills. You can always learn something from someone more skilled and with more experience so be sure to listen and take notes!
3. Learn where your skills lie and hire people to help build out other areas of your business – You quickly learn that you can not do everything in business and sometimes it pays to hire people who can assist in building out other areas of your business or add to your own skill set. For example you may be fantastic at client management though you might be lacking in sales skills so this might mean you need to hire a business development management for your business.
4. Learn when to say NO to some new business – You simply can not say YES to every lead your business receives. Be sure to pre-quality all new leads and ask questions.
– Ask questions such as who are the main competitors.
– Find out what work has been done in the past on the clients sites, this is highly important with any digital work especially with SEO projects as they can carry potential legacy issues.
– Know what the expectations are of the business.
– Try and get to understand the budget break down for digital of the business.
– Find out what internal resources they have to assist your business.
My company Prosperity Media usually only accepts around 35% of leads we receive the other 65% are not the right fit for our business.
5. Stay active on social media, help people where possible and contact industry leaders – Staying active on social media is highly important for developing your business. It can also be a great way to gain new business leads. Further to this do not be afraid to contact industry leaders and be sure to look for opportunities to help industry leaders where possible because it can help with future content amplification (example attached)
6. Stay up to date with industry news and keep clients informed at the same time – Staying up to date with the latest trends online is a great way to build your knowledge on a daily basis you need to spend at least 30 minutes reading blogs and absorbing information. Two great sites I recommend for this are:
– Inbound.org – A great site made by Moz & HubSpot
– GrowthHackers.com – A great site made by Sean Ellis.
– SearchEngineLand – A great site for search engine news.
Also be sure to keep clients in the loop with news in the market. Clients are usually busy and they do not have time to read every blog online so you need to inform them of the latest updates if they are highly important send the updates over instantly though it also pays to send weekly updates!
7. Try and get press for your business or your own personal brand –
Always be on the look up to get involved with round up posts or take the opportunity to respond to press calls on sites like Source Bottle. One press lead and link to your site can lead to 100’s if not 1000’s of visitors to your site so it is worth spending the time to help reports out!
8. Try and attend conferences and also try to get a speaking spot at events – Conferences are a great way to meet people in the industry and share stories. You also have the opportunity to learn new tips and network with like minded individuals. Also try and speak at conferences I have spoken at many over the years and it has been a lot of fun along the way and they act as a fantastic way to generate new business leads.
9. Test new marketing software each month because the right tools and software can save you plenty of time – From Accounting CRM’S to link research tools you really need to test new tools because having the right tools can save your business and staff hours on a monthly basis.
Some great tools we are using currently include:
– Trello – A great tool for to do lists and team management
– Asana – A great tool for team management.
– Freshbooks – A Great tool for accounting and finance management.
– Ahrefs – A great tool for link analysis and research.
– SEM Rush – A great tool for monitoring search traffic for competitors (PPC/Organic)
– Link Research Tools – A great tool for link research, Link analysis and management.
– Screaming Frog – A great tool for large scale site analysis up to 50,000 page range.
10. Try to take time away from SEO and Digital make time for hobbies and stay active and focus on having a positive mind – You need to learn to switch off on weekends and do other things. Picking up hobbies such as going to the GYM or playing a sport are a great way to forget about the week gone by. Also try to limit work and work emails on weekends and make the time for you!
About the Author:James Norquay has worked in the SEO and digital marketing field in the Australian market for 10 years. James started working in the field by developing his own network of content websites. These sites generated over 20 million unique visitors, which he later sold. He then moved into consulting, working directly with companies such as Virgin Mobile, Open Colleges, David Jones, Woolworths, Apparel Group, Maurice Blackburn, Travel NT and Citi Bank to drive SEO and inbound marketing growth.
He currently works as Consulting Director at a high performance SEO and Inbound Marketing Company called Prosperity Media based in Town Hall – Sydney. The team works with ASX listed companies, funded startups and mid-sized business.