If ever there was a job that could be considered classified in Toronto, it would be online marketing. Mind you, no-one in their right mind would call any online marketing work a job in the traditional sense, since online marketing is more of an entrepreneurial pursuit.
But job is a catchall phrase so you will have to cut me some slack.
There is one online marketing skill that seems to be dominating the competition for Google first page space today and that is Search Engine Optimization. The sheer numbers of people that are trying to compete for a top ranking is so high that the sites number 20 pages deep here in Toronto.
A friend of a friend of mine is trying to make his mark in this scene here in recent years so I talked to him about how competitive it really is and why. I will reprint that conversation as a question and answer session.
Q) Why the big competition for SEO all of a sudden?
A) I think there are several factors. It’s partially the economy today. More jobs are being outsourced and people are generally more focussed on what’s happening through the internet. This seems to create an interconnectedness that moves the totality of trending ideas much closer together. Take Youtube for example. There are a billion uploads from users every day. People are turning away from TV and tuning in online. In doing so they are exposed to an ever evolving landscape of new ideas as the search results deliver suggestion after suggestion of inter-related ideas.
Q) How did you get involved?
A) Just about the way I described in my first answer. I was looking through some offers that had come into my email inbox from various things I had signed up for online. One of them was a series of free videos outlining an online course that taught the subject. I watched the whole series on
ver the next en days and decided that it might be a good idea to opt for a high end paid course for a change since I had often heard from other internet gurus that this is how they got their start.
Q) What is SEO
A) Ha ha. That is the million dollar question. It is a real complicated thing to answer in a way that makes sense to Jane Q Public. Essentially it is finding out through testing what the search engines seem to favor in terms of the structure of a website’s code, languaging and inbound/outbound linking structure. By making the correct changes using online search data and influencing inbound and outbound linking structures you can give the search engines a reason to rank you higher.
Q) Can this be done DIY
A) In some cases, if the person has a modicum of code development background they could probably influence a website to rank some less competitive search term. Anything difficult, mind you, would be almost impossible and you could do more harm than good in the process. It’s very finicky and requires some really good research software to even begin to get into the more competitive material.
Q)What is the advantage of SEO for business?
A) The advantage is targeting. Most advertising takes the scattergun approach. It is throw at a mass audience and you hope for it to reach those of interest. Online search is a scene. We can easily access data which indicates how many people are looking for a service or product via search terms. This is a steady stream of potential customers that we can simply dip our cup into if we perform the proper strategies and do this slightly better than the next guy in the game.
Q) How does SEO compare to PPC?
A) PPC is great for certain business and product types. It can be useful as a companion approach to SEO in many cases. It has the same targeting component that SEO does. The downside is that it requires constant capital input and people are more resistant to ads than organic search.
Q) What is the cost of an SEO campaign?
A) It varies from $500 a month for small local business to as high as $50,000 a month for a Reputation Management campaign.
Q) What is reputation management?
A) Tough question. It is the same as SEO but instead of ranking one website higher on page one we are often trying to rank 10 competitors websites to drive a negative piece of press off of page one. That’s the reason for the high ticket. It would have to be something really damaging and someone with very deep pockets to need this type of service.
Q) Do you do social media.?
A) Yes and no. It is better farmed out to a specialist that do nothing else but social media. If I take on a social media campaign as part of client strategy then I farm it out to a White Label fulfillment company who is super well set up to handle it
Q) How can people contact you about your service.
Q) Any last piece of advice for someone looking for your type of service.
A) Yes. Make sure to get several video analysis quotes from several people in the industry if you are seeking SEO. You will get a good sense of what they are capable from the analysis. There should be well-documented competitor analysis that really illustrates where you stand and how much new business you stand to gain.