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Blueprint Office Hours: SEO Questions You’ve Asked (And We’ve Answered)

SEO Q&A

Ane Krstevska

Strategic thinker with strong analytical and creative problem-solving skills. I partner with companies, CEOs, executives, and entrepreneurs to grow their personal and professional brands, human-to-human 💯 A daydreamer and a night thinker. Creator. Traveler. Coffee drinker. An unstoppable optimist who will help you become the person you want to be.

29th September 2020

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Timestamps:

  • 0:16 How you and Webris decided on what services you’d offer to clients?
  • 4:20 Any advice on how a founder can transition out of the Account Manager role when clients are used to dealing with them?
  • 6:42 If you’re working with a new site with a low DR, would you recommend they hire a PR company?
  • 10:40 How are you seeing India as a Market? Have you seen any success stories in India with the Blueprint Methodology?
  • 15:04 Do you think that the marketing agency market is too oversaturated right now?
  • 19:35 How to successfully handle client acquisition for startup SEO agencies without existing case studies?
  • 23:10 Which Social Media Platform have you found to be the most beneficial for Brand Awareness and Conversion?
  • 26:23 Do you think a backlink from a site from a different industry can be relevant?
  • 32:46 Do you ever do any Keyword Research for your YouTube videos? If so, what tools are you using?
  • 38:17 Would you recommend hiring a high paid experienced SEO or finding newly motivated execs and start teaching them?
  • 40:52 What role did your project manager play in managing operations amongst your team?
  • 42:31 If you start Webris all over again, what would you prioritize at that start to scale as fast as possible?

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0:16 How you and Webris decided on what services you’d offer to clients?

First, we need to look at our core competency and who we want to work with.

What we do is SEO. Anything outside of that (like web development, design, or advertising) are things that either get asked by the client to do or something that we consider to be necessary in order to get the campaign up and running.

The type of clients that we like to focus on are mainly B2B, but we’re doing some E-Comm as well. We’re focusing on getting that $4,000 -$8,000 a month retainer.

Clients usually have somebody in-house to work with us. So, if we’re making recommendations (like things that need to get changed on the website, or contents that need to get published/written) we make sure they have that counterpart on their team ahead of time.

If they don’t, then we’ll constantly communicate with them during the sales process. We’ll make sure that they understand that they’re not going to be able to pay us to do it but we might be able to connect them with a third party that can. But they are ultimately responsible for it.

Keep in mind that a lot of clients might not like that. A lot of you might even lose some pitches for doing it that way. But we can’t always sacrifice the long-term for the short-term. Meaning that just to get a contract in the door, you don’t have to do things that are going to jam you up operationally later on. That’s going to make your service end up not profitable.

The key is making sure you understand the things that you want to do, what your resources are, and communicate that during the sales process. Before anyone signs anything, you need to make sure that you’re not signing up for things you’re going to regret in the future.

4:20 Any advice on how a founder can transition out of the Account Manager role when clients are used to dealing with them?

The first thing is to make sure that whoever is going to take that place is someone who is capable. Make it a slow transition. You want to make your clients know what’s coming down the line. You don’t want to just surprise them out of a sudden and say “Hey, now you’re talking to this person.”

We do this with our personnel too. If I know that someone will be heavily involved in the campaign, I’ll make sure that they’re on kickoff calls or calls to review a deliverable where they’re going to be doing more of the follow-up work.

At the end of the day, clients are not going to care that much as long as the team is doing a good job.

6:42 If you’re working with a new site with a low DR, would you recommend they hire a PR company?

Probably, but you also have to be sensitive and careful to make sure that they can afford one. Any decent PR company is going to cost at least $5,000 a month, so you have to be mindful of the budget that they’re working with.

These types of issues are tough to deal with when you’re already stuck with them, so they need to be identified during the sales process. You can’t just bring this stuff out of nowhere and tell your client that they need to spend 50 – 60 grand a year to build up their domain authority.

If you’re already stuck with it, I would say keep pushing forward. Do what you can with your time if they’re already paying you to do some sort of outreach. You can also try to go through our link building module. There’s a ton of information there that you can use.

10:40 How are you seeing India as a Market? Have you seen any success stories in India with the Blueprint Methodology?

Absolutely. These processes are Universal. If you can speak, read and understand English, then you can take these and put them into effect. There’s no difference between Indian algorithms and US’ or UK’s algorithms for the most part. It’s all about following the best practices.

So yes, people are having success with this methodology all over the world.

15:04 Do you think that the marketing agency market is too oversaturated right now?

No. The market is way bigger than you think.

Just for context. If you compare SEO and advertising, for example, you’ll notice that not everyone is going to do advertising because of the required budget.

If you have a website, one of their first thoughts is “I need to get found, I need visibility” and SEO is usually the first thought to do so. The amount of new websites that are going up every day and the amount of companies that are turning over agencies every day is absurd. 90% of our clients throughout history have come from another Agency. There’s constant turnover in this market and that’s a good thing about this. So many agencies out there do a poor job that there’s always a market for people who are doing a good job.

I don’t think there’s ever going to be an overflow because at the end of the day that’s just the way the market works. The cream rises to the top. As long as you’re continuously leveling up and getting better, then you’re going to be rising to the top while everyone else will be falling to the bottom.

19:35 How to successfully handle client acquisition for startup SEO agencies without existing case studies?

You need to be able to sell the quality of your work. It’s like when you go to a job interview. You need to have the information that’s documenting your process.

Information that’s documenting any website that you’ve worked on in the past. You’d still want to have that and continuously build it over time. Even if you don’t have case studies from a reputable or a recognizable website, you still have to put something together that you can use as collateral during the sales process.

In regards to how to generate leads, you just have to hit people up. Sending a DM still works really well if you have the right pitch and targeting strategy.
It can be tough if you don’t have case studies, I’ll 100% give you that. This is a 100% reputation-based industry. But if you can generate leads through this, you can get the ball rolling and you’ll be able to capitalize on that overtime.

23:10 Which Social Media Platform have you found to be the most beneficial for Brand Awareness and Conversion?

We’ve had great success with YouTube. Video has become the easiest and the most scalable way for us to create content. It is something that we have a lot more plans to do in the future.

I think a lot of people get hung up on videos because they think it has to be professionally edited. It doesn’t. It’s more about the quality of information that you put out through it.

What’s more important than the platform is the information that’s contained within the content. I think everyone in the SEO space should get into the content space, but you’ve got to be saying stuff of value. If you’re not putting out stuff like that, then it’s not only just going to get ignored, it might get torn down online, unfortunately.

26:23 Do you think a backlink from a site from a different industry can be relevant?

Sometimes, it’s going to be difficult to get a backlink from a website that is directly related to the type of site that you’re working on since a lot of them are going to be your competitor.

When it comes to link building, not only do we have to look at the standard metrics (like domain authority or that sort of thing), but we also have to look at the keyword profile for these sites. Usually, that will give you a good indication of sort of the topical relevance of that domain. The closer it is related to the target page or the target site is obviously the better, but in my opinion, it’s more about finding sites that are active, being crawled, and being indexed. Make sure that they are also not getting a bunch of spam links themselves.

So I would say that there is still value in the type of links that you’re mentioning.

32:46 Do you ever do any Keyword Research for your YouTube videos? If so, what tools are you using?

I don’t. There are two schools of growth on YouTube. If you look at a lot of the SEO channels, they’re going to tell you to do keyword research. I believe you’re still going to benefit from it. You’re still going to get more views and you’re going to rank pretty well. But I think YouTube is a Retention platform.

YouTube has a great ability to go wide. If you can get viral, your video will be shown to a lot of people. But those viral videos are not based on Keywords. So, I’m not wasting my time doing keyword research because I’m a more topical base. I’m trying to deliver content that they need right now and are actually interesting to them.

If you want to know how to have success on YouTube, take a look at the kids that have Tens of Millions of views on YouTube. Take a look at how they’re using their thumbnails, the expressions that they put on it, etc.

It’s not about the highest production quality video. YouTube is about retention. It’s about getting people to click and getting people to watch the whole thing. Ideally, it’s also getting them to comment and share that content.

For the most part, a lot of YouTube’s growth and success is about building and nurturing your audience.

38:17 Would you recommend hiring a high paid experienced SEO or finding a new motivated Execs and start teaching them?

If you’re looking for efficiency, you’d want to hire someone with more experience. But if you’re looking for less cost, then you hire someone with less experience.

40:52 What role did your project manager play in managing operations amongst your team?

I think it depends. We don’t have a project manager right now. But when we had a project manager in the past, it was to keep things organized and make sure that all stuff was getting done on time.

42:31 If you start Webris all over again, what would you prioritize at that start to scale as fast as possible?

We did just start Webris all over again, very recently. The thing about agencies is that you just don’t really scale that fast. It takes a while to get the ball rolling. There is no magic switch you can flip to get everything back together. It took us a solid 6 months for us to a point where we could even call ourselves an agency again.

I kind of look at it like starting a fire. If you’re starting a fire in the wilderness, you got to be very careful to nurture that fire and get it to the point where it can grow and sustain itself. Because if you don’t, if you’re too focused on growth and scaling without having the right team in place, you’re not going to have the ability to deliver on what you’re selling to clients.

I think at first you just have to be patient. Get as many clients as you can and just do the best job possible for them. Make sure you have a team in place, and a process that you can grow, scale, and deliver. Then it’s just a matter of generating more leads for the company and selling them in.

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