Discussion 2: Since when did you end up selling SEO|digital marketing?
How did you first
get into Search Engine Optimization (SEO)?
12 👍🏽 1 💟
[filtered from 93 💬🗨]
I almost lost my wife when I still don't give a f*ck about what SEO stands for. I am a party kid with gambling addiction. Bars everywhere. Until my 1st baby was born and I don't even have a single penny in my pocket that I can use to buy her one piece of diaper. I then dig deeper to SEO why businesses getting crazy about SEO. I am broke so I don't have any choice but to learn it and improve my skillset that I can monetize. And then now I'm getting better results for my clients not only in SEO space but in all aspects of scaling their business from zero to 6/7 figures.
Sounds like you have what it takes to get ahead in life!
Don't give up, most of the successful people in this world started from nothing.
P.S 2010 is the date when I started helping businesses.
A Web Designer of 17 years that was looking for ways to get recurring revenue model. First started with maintenance packages, then said F it, I'm learning SEO. Started learning, then pitched to a few existing clients. One took the chance with me, and now he's my star client doing very well with it. 2 weeks ago, lost my full-time job and I am now trying to turn my side-hustle into my full-time hustle.
Jessica Foster 🎓
I was a travel blogger and that sparked my interest in Search Engine Optimization (SEO) and website management. I decided to apply for jobs in the industry and landed one doing SEO for a local SEO agency in Seattle (CEO is Conrad Saam, if that matters).
I meditated on industries that allowed creativity and freedom to work remotely. I also wanted the option to do a retainer and have residual income.
I then found marketing. After that I googled marketing agencies and researched each facet of the industry. I joined a few business facebook groups and discovered that you could be fairly proficient in SEO in under 6 months.
I then googled SEO specialists in my area and called each one of the top 10. I offered 50$ and offered to buy them lunch for me to speak with them about Search Engine Optimization (SEO).
I met with a guy who made me his intern working for free.
I then asked if I could get 50% of the money if I brought him clients.
I brought him clients and started my journey of making money while learning SEO. I was then hired at a marketing firm about 4 months after the internship.
In 2009 I worked with marketing for a small travel agency with a very little budget. So I put up a couple of blogs and learned some basic SEO by trial and error. I really hated that company and the completely crazy owners. Idiots. Everyday I just wanted to leave or throw a chair against one of them. But I learned a skill that I continued to develop and a couple of years later I could earn my income on.
As a medical doctor who loves to teach people about their health, I was running some large health social media pages on Instagram but was earning minimally.
I then chose to focus on my website and build organic traffic, that's how I got into SEO and experimenting with getting backlinks.
Later, I realized affiliate websites perform better financially, so I added product reviews. This month, my earnings from SEO is about to overtake what I earn from my medical job.🙂
I just drifted into it 22 years ago with ranking my own sites on Alta Vista and hotbot. When I hit 70 a couple of years ago I started doing SEO for other people and now have a batch of clients who seem to like my work. I also do video marketing and general digital management. If I was a few years younger I'd scale my SEO but I can't be bothered 😄
A walk on the beach, dinner at a restaurant, evening in a bar … Oh sorry, misread the question … I thought you asked how I first got into Sue 😝
Got into an MLM company then realized people were using SEO to recruit people and from there bought a WSO and it just so happened to come with a free ticket to an event in my city.
Went to the event where there were big marketers like Perry Belchor, Ryan Deiss, Roland Frasier, Mario Brown, Chris Winters, Michael X ( I had no clue who they were at the time) and a few others who were there talking about how they're making $10k+ a month doing SEO for local businesses and that's when the lightbulb went off.
What I didn't know is they were pushing their marketing system for like $15k and at that time I was unemployed so I was shocked that they had people lined up paying that.
Oh well, if everyone else is going to be all serious with answers… I've told this story more times than I can remember, so I kind of avoid it now just because, to me, it now feels boring. 🙂
I started out as a web designer, back in '95, using good old HTML (and if I recall rightly, we'd just gotten HTML 2.0 as a standard, which gave us tables, and thus the first way to break up blocks of content by careful use of hidden table layouts). Back then, you made pages lean and fast, because most users were on dial-up modems with speeds like 9.6k baud modems, maybe 28k if they were very adventurous and prepared to spend money on this new 'Internet' thing. 😃
Well, it wasn't long until my first clients were saying "Hey, we love the site, and feedback from our customers has been great … but where are all the millions of people we heard were online?".
It won't come as much of a surprise to anyone that I gave them a straight answer: "I don't know". However, it also shouldn't surprise anyone that I immediately followed that with "But I'll try to find out, and if I find anything that looks useful, I'll let you know".
Now, SEO wasn't a thing yet. It was at least a year or two later that we first started to see and hear that term. In '95 and '96 people talked about "Web Promotion", and that was inclusive of all sorts of techniques and methods of promoting a site, and getting it found and visited.
Banner ads were already around, and there were networks that controlled 'banner swaps', where you set aside an area of your page to show others banners, and in return, your banners were shown on other sites in the network. An organised 'link swap' where the coverage for your link was controlled by how many people saw banners on your site.
There were "web rings" which were kind of like a shared blog-roll, where sites with a similar focus or interest could form a ring, and share traffic between them. These were fantastic. People did a lot more actual surfing back then, clicking links from site to site, because, in all honesty, search engines were pretty crap.
Anyway, I started learning about all of the various ways to promote sites, and whenever I found anything that looked promising, I gave my client a quote for how much I'd want to cover my deeper research and implementation time.
By midway through 1996, I was getting a new type of client approach me. They'd always have heard of me from another client, and they'd all ask "Do we have to have a new website, or can you just 'do that traffic thing' on the site we have?"
By the start of 1997 I was no longer advertising web design at all, and closed down the web design business, as all of the demand (and there was plenty) was in people coming to me for 'web promotion' or 'web marketing'. I included Search Engine Optimization (SEO) in my services, and truly loved learning it all, but the fact is I never called myself an SEO. I was a "Web Marketing Consultant" back when I was literally the only search result for that term.
That was great! I wish I would of known about SEO back then but I was only just a kid, I was born in 1992 😂
I love hearing stories about online veterans, makes me wish I was born earlier so I could experience the early times like you guys have.
Discussion 1: Since when did you end up selling SEO|digital marketing?
How did you end up doing Search Engine Optimization (SEO) [digital marketing is what I mean]?
After graduating from uni, I couldn't get the job I wanted (copywriter at an ad agency) so I ended up doing crappy sales jobs until I saw an ad for a training course. It was all about this World Wide Web thing that was just starting (mid 90s). So I did the course (it was mostly basic web design and HTML but it fascinated me, and I got a work placement at the end of it – working for small publisher who had a website. I was mainly responsible for database backend stuff but I started looking into search engine positioning (that's what it was called before SEO was a thing) and my mind was blown! After reading a few forums and newsgroups I was able to rank my employer's website for commercial phrases (inc some one word generics) in no time. I was hooked from that day onwards. 😀
I started with my own company in a very competitive niche. Then I started looking for a company to bring my website in top but I could not afford the costs from the agency. Then I began to learn about Search Engine Optimization (SEO) every day and night and I ended ranking my website nr 1 for best keywords. After I succeeded I started my second company and destroyed the competition again. I always put my Agency in the footer as a trial. After some companies saw my results from different other niches and called me to bring their websites in top. That was the point when I said wow its time to get more aggressive and sell Digital services to other companies 🙂. Since then I cant stop and became very busy to be honest only from recommendations.
Such a great story
Was On Unemployment and joined an MLM/Network Marketing company then stumbled upon a WSO and it just so happened to come with a ticket to a Free event that was happening in my city.
Went even though I had no clue as to what they were talking about because some of it was Blackhat and they would briefly touch on manipulating Google Suggest.
People there was Mario Brown, Michael X, Roland Frasier, Chris Winters, and a few other big affiliates that were not so big then and at the end of the event the main guy who put it on (don't remember his name) pitched a done for you SEO agency next where they would get appointments for you and all you had to do was close and they were pitching that for like $10k+ depending on what all you wanted and I was in shock that people were lining up to buy.
That's when I knew I had to figure this SEO stuff out.
Sounds like a movie script.
Pursuit of happiness perhaps? 🙂
Hahaha somewhat… what's funny is I didn't have enough money to pay for their $20 parking each day so for the 3 days I parked like 3 miles down the road and walked to the Hotel it was at
Chris Edwards 🎓
I have always been interested in coding. My first was the Sinclair zx80, and sinclair basic language. Moved on to machine code etc.
I then ended up with a publishing business but the old Byte thing was still a hobby. had moved on to an Amiga 500 😛
I got rid of my publishing business and was STUNNED by how server logs would tell me what pages and images were the most popular on a website.
I started building websites in 1995, I came at it from a usability and technical excellence angle, and my sites flew. getting clients was tough as they didn't even know what the internet was.
Fast forward a couple of years and we had Lycos, Alltheweb, Yahoo and a few meta crawlers.
I would build a site, spend the entire night submitting it to AltaVista until by dawn I would be sitting at number one.
People started coming to me to build websites, BUT they were more interested in where the site would rank.
I spent hours pawing over raw server logs (as that was all there was back then, I built an analysing tool so that I could export raw data and query it.
I used the data to improve the traffic flow through the site, and get the users going where I wanted them, and doing what I wanted them to do.
Eventually, things changed, and I went from.
Hey do you want a web page on this new internet thing.
To getting calls like
Hey can you build me a website please and will it appear on page 1?
Hey I have a crap site that isn't doing anything can you fix it for me and get me ranking?
I guess that was the point I became an SEO. I have never considered myself an SEO and the main reason was the way I approached it. the following scenario sums up the way my head works.
I get a call from a potential client and go visit them. The conversation would be, "so why do you want a website then?"
Every one has one, so I need one!
Lots of people walking around with broken bones, why don't you break a bone? <laugh but they got the point>
What do you want your website to ACHIEVE?
And what marketing do you currently do?
How can we combine your online and offline marketing efforts?
if you can measure the results from your offline marketing you can spend it better.
And eventually we would have a website that had landing pages for each
offline advert, we would use different phone numbers in adverts, and we would maximise ROI across the board.
Yet I was a search Engine Positioner to many (I HATE THE TERM SEO ) 😃
I took a Digital Marketing course in college and the professor forced us to find a local client. The course taught us about social media and basic website knowledge, so I had to teach myself better tactics to land a local client to pass the course. I got a local restaurant as a client and convinced them to run FB ads. I passed the course and then realized that I could do learn SEO and make decent money out of college.
Noah Lopata 🎓
I had a retail business back in 2008 and no customers. Started putting ads on Craigslist and people started coming in and buying. Saw the correlation between online driving offline revenue. Taught myself Dreamweaver and built a bad website and nobody came. Next step was figuring out how to drive traffic to the website and the can of worms was opened. Found a blackhat website and started buying junk traffic, that didn't work so I had to learn how to drive real traffic. When I figured out how to do it for myself I started helping out friends and family and it went from there.
I got into online freelance writing about 5 years ago for extra income, slowly built up my Upwork profile (oDesk at the time), and then started taking on SEO copywriting jobs since they seemed SO in demand. At the same time, I starting developing websites for fun, and 5 years later, I do SEO/SEM full time for a company, hold many Google certifications, and have too many clients to count. I say, God led the way for me. It was a total accident!
To add to this ^^ I learned everything I could about digital marketing and SEO, literally gobbled up every piece of knowledge and APPLIED as much as I could. Learnt as I went along, started with one client, that became 2, then 3, etc. etc. Digital marketing is my life. I'd never do anything else, as I'm sure is the same for you guys!!