Guest Post by Chad Godfrey, Director of Online Marketing at BuyerZone
Happy New Year!
As 2012 approaches its end, it's a good time for reflection. I'd like to take a brief minute here to share some important things I've learned over the past year, as well as focus areas that are top of mind heading into 2013.
Keep Calm and Carry On.
This is what the British Government encouraged their public to do in 1939 at the beginning of WWII, a time of great uncertainty for British citizens who had a menacing military operation heading their way.
Liberties should not be taken in comparing Google algorithm updates to the biggest war this world has seen, of course, but one could say the motto of "keep calm and carry on" translates well into a time when SEO teams and Content teams all over the world are struggling to find a tailwind.
Great things are rarely accomplished or sustained in an environment of panic. We cannot control when Google will release its updates, nor can we control what they will target and to what extent. We need to accept this and remove emotion from decision-making and communication to the fullest extent possible.
This past year has been ripe for panic mode, but our best work was done when we elevated above the temptation of panic and stuck together.
Focus on Sustainable Growth, Not Short-term Fixes
One thing I learned in 2012 is to focus on SEO growth, not on "fixing"a site to address each Panda rollout. 'Fixing Panda', if you will, is a fool's errand. Trying to pontificate what each of the 23 algorithm updates has specifically targeted is a significant drain on team morale and bandwidth - not to mention a near impossibility.
It would be irresponsible to not analyze the underlying themes of these updates, but I've decided there is a healthier, more productive way to view these updates. It starts with changing the conversation from scrambling for fixes to planning for growth.
At BuyerZone, we no longer ask ourselves, "What did this recent update target specifically and how can we change course immediately to address it?" Instead, we now ask ourselves, "Are we sticking to the aggressive, thoughtful plan of improving our content and SEO in an effort to drive growth?"
We answer "yes" to this question each and every day and we are starting to see the payoff. Most importantly, the team is thriving as we target growth and speak in terms of growth.
Get Out of the Way!
We've all heard the saying "hire the right people and get out of the way." In my role and from my perspective, there is truth in this statement.
A well-oiled machine requires the right parts and impeccable timing. The spark needs to fly when expected. The axils need to turn the wheels.
Similarly, a well-oiled SEO team needs to have experts in various areas, and each expert needs to contribute their expertise in those particular areas at the right time and in the right cadence. It starts with having the right people.
For example, a technical SEO expert needs to ensure the site is crawl-able and indexed. A great writer needs to update the blog regularly with outstanding content. A social media maven needs to be promoting our content non-stop and effectively. As content becomes more and more critical for sustainable growth, a content editor needs to proof articles for quality and professionalism.
When all of these people are communicating effectively, understanding their key role in elevating the greater good, and pushing for creativity and innovation constantly, then you have something.
Set the strategy, keep it on course, and let the professionals execute.
I wish everyone a very happy and healthy 2013 and plenty of SEO GROWTH!