So, last week we talked about Five Common SEO mistakes that people make, and some of the things that have changed about SEO so that people who were doing a great job a few years ago are suddenly NOT getting great results.
This week, we’re talking about some of the things that have changed for the better, and how the search engines can STILL be your friend!
Transcript – SEO Methods We DO Recommend!
Paula Williams: Welcome to aviation marketing Hangar Flag Episode number 40. Wow, 40 episodes, that’s a lot of episodes. SEO Methods that We Do Recommend. So, I’m Paula Williams.
John Williams: Glad to meet you, I’m John Williams.
Paula Williams: Glad to meet me?[LAUGH]
Paula Williams: I think we’re been introduced.
John Williams: [LAUGH] You think?
Paula Williams: And we are ABCI, and ABCI’s mission is
John Williams: And help all you ladies and gents out there sell more products and services in the aviation world.
Paula Williams: Absolutely. So, you’re welcome to join the conversation at #AvGeekMarketing is our hashtag, or you can join us on Facebook or Twitter or LinkedIn or write comments on our website or any number of things like that, which we really love to hear from you guys.
We get some of our best ideas from you, and it helps our search engine optimizations when you comment on our website, right?
John Williams: Yes.
Paula Williams: Okay. Cool. All right. So, let’s talk about website basics. You have to have a website anyway, right?
John Williams: Yep, and you can’t do it without, in fact, these days a company who put out a website is not deemed to be actually viable.
Paula Williams: Or legitimate, exactly. It’s almost like being in the Yellow Pages in the olden days, right?
John Williams: Yeah, if you weren’t in the Yellow Pages, you didn’t exist.
Paula Williams: Right. So, a lot of people are going to look you up online, rather than or before they agree to meet with you because they want to find out something about your company.
And that website is a nice first impression. So if you have to have a website anyway, it might as well as be as effective as possible, right?
John Williams: Absolutely.
Paula Williams: And by effective, we mean it should be bringing you qualified leads.
John Williams: Yep.
Paula Williams: All right, and SEO, when we talk about SEO (Search Engine Optimization) we’re talking about organic Search Engine Optimization as opposed to paid Search Engine Optimization.
John Williams: Organic is a funny word.
Paula Williams: It is a funny word, but what we mean is not necessarily anything other than pay per click, or paid search placement.
John Williams: Anything but that.
Paula Williams: Right. It’s very cost effective over the long term. And when we’re talking long term, we’re talking 90 plus days, right?
John Williams: Which means it covers a myriad of things you can do with, and to and for and from and with your website.
Paula Williams: Exactly. All right. So the things that we do recommend is to outsource the Nerdy SEO stuff. Right?
John Williams: Nerdy? [LAUGH] Nerdy.
Paula Williams: [LAUGH] Yes, I mean nerdy.
Meaning very specific knowledge of the things that you need to do to make your website square better than your competitors’ websites. There’s a lot of stuff in there that has gotten so technical that we don’t even do it ourselves these days, we actually outsource some of that.
John Williams: Probably a reason it sounds like dirty.
Paula Williams: Yeah.
John Williams: [LAUGH] Because you got to get down and dirty inside the nits and bits and grind bytes of stuff to make it work.
Paula Williams: Yeah, you are going to get code all over your fingers, but-[LAUGH]
Paula Williams: Yeah, and I’m a huge nerd. I did all of our SEO up until 2015, and I loved that sort of thing, but we did figure out that that is not the best use of my time.
John Williams: Not huge, you’re only 5’9″.
Paula Williams: Well, it is-[LAUGH]
Paula Williams: Okay, so I’m not a huge nerd, but.[LAUGH]
Paula Williams: Inside my brain, there’s a huge nerd that loves this sort of thing. But we did figure out that it is not the best use of my time.
And if you’re spending a lot of time doing Search Engine Optimization is probably not the best use of your time either. So, you really want to spend your time on things only you can do that contribute to this and that contribute to the ultimate goal, which is making more sales, so.
John Williams: And it’s surprisingly affordable if you find the right folks, you got to find the folks that are doing it right and doing it with ethics. But it’s surprisingly affordable to get some really good work done.
Paula Williams: Exactly, right. And then you really need to be spending your time on the things that only you can do, which is creating great content that your ideal customers are going to love, you know for your website.
John Williams: Taking care of sales, and finance, and marketing and so forth.
Paula Williams: Right. You also want to be devising a great call to action, or a great lead magnet that will capture contact information on your website, and we’re going to talk about some of your options for that as well.
And you want to also be spending your time doing sales, right? Absolutely, okay. So, why do you need to outsource the nerdy stuff?
John Williams: I thought we just talked about that.
Paula Williams: Because nobody with a real job,[LAUGH]
Paula Williams: Can keep up with the number of changes that Google makes every year, right?
John Williams: Ain’t that a truth?
Paula Williams: Okay, so we talked about this a little bit in our last episode, but we’re going to get a little bit more in detail today. There have been, in 2011 was kind of a watershed year in search engine optimization.
John Williams: Was-
Paula Williams: If you, go ahead.
John Williams: Wasn’t that the last year we did it?
Paula Williams: No, 2015, I did it until last year.
John Williams: Because I know the last year we did it, we were making changes And watching the score still go down. I said now wait a minute, we’re up to speed on this stuff, there are no errors anywhere.
They changed [CROSSTALK] They changed something else, exactly. Probably were changing all this stuff.
Paula Williams: Right, so by the time we went through all of the websites and made all of the changes to catch up with the Google algorithm change, Google would change it again.
John Williams: And this happened several times before we decided that we didn’t know what the hell we were doing anymore.
Paula Williams: This is a clean podcast, right? So anyway. Yeah. But literally, we did not know what we were doing anymore. It was just too frustrating and too upsetting, and that started somewhere around 2011. But being the stubborn, ridiculous person that I am, I still thought I could do a better job than anybody else because of the aviation vocabulary, and because of the need to have great content and all of those things.
John Williams: So, stubborn? Say it isn’t so?
Paula Williams: Right. [LAUGH] But what we figured out is the best thing to do is to create a really great partnership.
John Williams: Yes.
Paula Williams: So that we can combine industry knowledge with search engine optimization expertise.
John Williams: Yeah, because these folks, that is what they do, period.
And apparently, they’re pretty damn good at it.
Paula Williams: Exactly, right. So, 2011 was about 20 changes during that year. Up to that point, Google would only change the search engine algorithms about ten Fewer than 10 times a year. In 2012, it was more than 30 changes. 2013 and 2014 it doesn’t look like as many, but they were more significant changes like Penguin and Panda and mobile-geddon.
If you’re familiar with those kinds of changes, they hard a huge impact on some of the sites that we work with. In some cases, it actually did us some good, but only because we were working our butts off to make sure that we were prepared for those changes, and our competitors were not.
John Williams: Yup RIght?
Paula Williams: So it was way too much work, and way too much specialized knowledge that kept us from doing what we really needed to be doing which is creating content and selling.
John Williams: And it’s not all that easy to keep up with the changes Google makes, because even though they put them out there, you need to be in the right forums to figure out what they are and when they happen.
Paula Williams: Exactly, right. So, just to give you an example, and I’m going to use one of our members as an example of our insider circle. Jeff Stedola, a few months ago, in fact, he’s still in the Reserves, so he flies. Fighter jets. He lands them on aircraft carriers.
And he shoots things out of the sky, right? That is a very specific skill set, and everybody thinks that he’s fabulous, and they want to be Jeff when they grow up, right? It’s fantastic, and we really admire that. Just recently started as a captain of one of the airlines, and it is a very different skillset, and it’s probably not any less challenging.
But he’s doing a lot of training, and spending a lot of time getting typewriting and other kinds of things to make sure that he actually flairs instead of leading hard, which is what you do when you land on an aircraft carrier.
John Williams: Yep, you get ready to ascent and aim toward the deck and you get caught.
Paula Williams: Yep.
John Williams: Trapped, I think, is the word.
Paula Williams: Very different than when you have an airplane full of people trying not to spill their coffee on each other. [LAUGH] So, right, it takes time and money to learn to do things well, right? But somehow with a lot of our clients, they don’t seem to think that this applies to search engine optimization.
They think they can just have somebody do this as a part-time job and get great results. But it really isn’t realistic anymore, although it may have been realistic in 2006, 2005. That isn’t true anymore, the world has changed around us, right? So you’re expecting your fighter pilot to have nice soft landings with your passengers and it just doesn’t work that way.
John Williams: And then hammer the [INAUDIBLE] flies the jet.
Paula Williams: Exactly. [LAUGH] So don’t beat up your people if they’re not really getting great results for you. We’ve actually heard of a lot of that going on this year, where people are getting really, really frustrated because somebody who’s really, really great at SEO four or five years ago, is now not doing so well.
And it’s not necessarily their fault, especially if they have many hats to wear and SEO’s one of them. It has gotten so specialized that you really can’t expect without sending them to school on a regular basis and having them go to these workshops. You know, sometimes a week, every three months is what these people who are really specialized in SEO and spending a lot of money on books and a lot of money on software, tools and other kinds of things.
So, you can either spend that kind of money hiring somebody and making them very specific, or you can simply outsource that and save a lot of money and a lot of time.
John Williams: Yep, because these guys we outsource to that we partner with, that’s what they do and they’re in school all the time.
Paula Williams: Right, exactly. So, you do want to make sure that someone on the SEO team understands aviation terminology and culture. Right. Because there’s a lot of people. We get email all the time saying we can do search engine optimization cheap, or we can do search engine optimization for you really quickly and get you good results.
But there are people who are maybe overseas, and maybe not even great at English, much less really great at aviation language and culture. So, there’s a couple of things that are kind of unique to aviation culture, Aand we know, we laugh in aviation jokes. If we are what we eat, then pilots should eat more chicken.
If you’re a pilot or if you know a pilot, you’re going to laugh at that joke. If you were not a pilot and you don’t know any pilots, you don’t even know why that’s funny, all right? And airplane will probably fly a little bit over gross, but it sure won’t fly without fuel.
[LAUGH] Right, so overfilling with fuel is almost never the cause of an accident, but we know that, other people who are not in aviation may not. Truly superior pilots are those who use superior judgment to avoid those situations where they may have to use their superior skills.[LAUGH]
Paula Williams: And you’re laughing. Why are you laughing?
John Williams: No, because somebody else said the only way you get superior judgment is to have things go wrong.
Paula Williams: [LAUGH] Through experience, and the only way you get experience is through inferior judgments.
John Williams: That’s right.
Paula Williams: [LAUGH] That’s true, and that one may be true of things other than aviation But there is a culture, and there is a vocabulary that is specific to aviation people.
So, you want to make sure that whoever you get to do your search engine optimization understands that, especially if they’re making any changes. Two words that are used on your website. You want to make sure they speak the language, they get the jokes, they understand the nuances. They say humor is one of the more sophisticated intellectual processes.
[LAUGH] Which is cool, it makes it a lot more fun. That’s one way to to find out if your SEO people know what they’re talking about, is tell them aviation jokes and see if they laugh.[LAUGH]
Paula Williams: Okay. Right. So, what you need to be doing, and what your team needs to be focused on is creating great content.
You know, what do your customers want to read, hear or see? You want to be creating great articles, audio and video that will help them do their jobs better and get better results out of their companies and things like that. So, to learn more about that and to get more help with that, you might want to look at episode eight where we talked about the editorial calendar.
And what we talk about there is how you can look at some of the aviation publications and think like a magazine editor and think about, what is some great content that I can put together that is really going to help attract people to my company and make us seem like a thought leader.
Make us be, I thought, not seem like, right?
John Williams: [LAUGH] Exactly.
Paula Williams: Episode 20 on Educating-
John Williams: You were trying to catch me, weren’t you?
Paula Williams: Exactly. Episode 20 on Educating Customers, how to create materials that help educate your customers and make them better at whatever they do and help them succeed.
In Episode 23, on using video, video is great content for your website. You can take those hours and hours and hours and hours that you’re spending looking at SEO algorithm changes and changing all the metadata on your website and instead do some more creative things. Take it up a level and create some great video, some great articles, and other things that are going to make a big difference on your website, right?
Okay, another thing that you can do is to create a great call to action. So, when people come to your website, is there some kind of a form, or something that they need to fill out to get something from you that they want. So, a tip sheet, or a consultation, or any number of things that is going to really give them a reason to give you their contact information and help you follow through with the sales process.
So that’s another way you could be spending your time other than making those metadata changes and all that nerdy stuff that your SEO team is now going to be doing now that you’re outsourcing it, right? Okay. Another thing you should be doing. Another thing that I’ve had to be doing more, spending more time doing, and that is selling.
And I started spending more time selling this year, and we’ve been a lot more successful because of it. Since we’ve gotten this off my plate, we’ve been able to take some vacations and we’ve also been spending more time making sales calls and making sales presentations, and it definitely shows up on the bottom line, doesn’t it John?
John Williams: What, they let you out of here to go on vacation?
Paula Williams: Yes.[LAUGH]
Paula Williams: We’ve been on vacation twice in the last year, and we never would’ve thought about that before we were outsourcing SEO to somebody that we trusted because I don’t really even know or care anymore when Google comes out with an algorithm change, because I know that’s covered, and I know our partners have that taken care of.
John Williams: Exactly.
Paula Williams: So I can be laying on a beach in Hawaii-[LAUGH]
Paula Williams: [LAUGH] Or making a sales call. [LAUGH] Either way, I think I’m probably doing a lot more good than I was before when I was working on those details, the search engine optimization. All right, so download our SEO Tip Sheet from ABCI1.com/SEO.
And we’ll have a lot of these tips there that you can use that checklist to To look at the search engine optimization that you’re doing, and what things you should be doing yourself and what things you might want to outsource. So, seven ways to get more traffic to your website and that is relevant, qualified traffic.
John Williams: Absolutely.
Paula Williams: So, go sell more stuff.
John Williams: America needs the business. And our buddy Zig Ziglar said that long time ago.
Paula Williams: Absolutely, and subscribe to our podcast on iTunes, Stitcher, or Google Play and please do leave us a review.