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Is Your Relationship with Your SEO Company Healthy?
Have you ever had the misfortune of working with a client or customer that you just flippin’ hated? The kind of person who questioned your every move, wouldn’t let you do your job and just made life horrible for you and your employees?
I’ve been working at Blue Corona for more than three years now, and I’ve had the pleasure of working with dozens of clients who love what we do and trust us 100 percent. Of course, I’ve also worked with that one percent who put up roadblocks at every turn and made it very difficult for me to have any success – and, of course, they used this lack of success to justify further vexation.
So without further ado, here are the top 8 things you can do if you want your SEO company to hate your guts (and be the stumbling block to your own online success!):
8) Working with two companies at once
We like to think of our business as forming a relationship with yours – that’s just how we work best. But here’s the thing – when was the last time you had a relationship with two people at the same time (and it worked out for you)?
In our experience, having to work around your web company is a disaster waiting to happen – things don’t get done on schedule, things get lost in the shuffle, they’re not done the way we want, etc. Sometimes your web company may even change things without telling us, which can lead to major problems.
7) Not communicating with your SEO company
You’re busy – hopefully even more so since once you hire us! But if this thing is going to work, there has to be open communication between us. It’s not the technical stuff – we have a stellar copywriting team who can find pretty much everything they need to know about your industry on their own (we’re already experts in the HVAC, plumbing, fire protection, electrical, and remodeling space…just to name a few!). What we do often need from you are the little things – updates within your company, special deals you’re running, etc. – anything we can use to make you stand out.
Sometimes, we don’t hear about awesome things our clients have done until weeks or months after the fact. This leads to a situation where we’re scrambling to put up a press release or blog post about a major award, community event, or huge sale way behind the curve!
6) Being overly focused on one specific goal (that might not even matter!)
This is one that happens all the time. What happens is somewhere along the line, someone told the client that the best way to improve their traffic and leads is to rank for one specific keyword. Quite often, these are the same people that use some of the more unscrupulous SEO tactics in order to attain that goal. So when the client switches to us, we may change some things around that cause them to “lose” that keyword – which they might not be too happy about!
Here’s the thing: we’ve talked before about how rankings are one of the least important SEO metrics you can look at. This is especially true now, with so many Google updates recently that almost no one sees the same Google results page anyway! In an environment as fluid and undefined as SEO, it’s best to allow some freedom to pursue the areas that bring you the fastest/largest ROI. And, of course, it’s almost impossible to discern where that will come from in advance. Our content marketing strategy is based on a well-rounded website that attracts leads and values, well, value over cheap SEO gimmicks.
5) Wanting to micromanage
It’s perfectly understandable for you to want to be in control of what goes up on your site – it is one of your primary public faces, after all. But think about this situation:
You’re an HVAC contractor about to replace an air conditioner in a home. Everything starts out smoothly, but now every five minutes the homeowner pops in and wants to make sure you’re doing a good job. Now you have to stop what you’re doing and wait for them to tell you to keep going. Unfortunately, they’re busy too, and sometimes you have to wait a few days for them to get back to you.
Would drive you nuts, right?
That’s basically how it feels when we have clients who want to approve every piece of copy we write before it goes live. And while we know we don’t have the same subject matter expertise as you do, we do know a lot – we’ve been doing online marketing for contractors for a long time! Let us do our work, and we’ll get you more of yours.
4) Trying to steer the ship
In addition to the clients who want to micromanage everything, I’ve also had the pleasure of working with clients who read an SEO book once back in 2005 and now want to create their own strategies.
Let me take a break here to say that I love it when clients want to add to their plans – that’s not a joke, I really do. Recall what I said above – if you have something interesting and that you think would provide genuine value, PLEASE share it!
That said, there is a lot that goes into SEO these days – you can’t just buy 1000 backlinks and stuff your meta keywords and expect to rank. The whole content marketing team at Blue Corona keeps our finger on the pulse of Google’s changes, with the intention of creating sites that add value for the users, for your business, and for the web as a whole. To do this, we need to do things our way! We find it’s easier for both parties if you focus on letting us do what we think is best for your site.
3) Not committing to the relationship
Every company has to sell its services – we do it, our competitors do it, everyone. And most of those sales pitches start off the same way: “I was on your website, and I noticed all these deficiencies…”
Most of our clients take these calls in stride, and will either ignore them or potentially bring them up during a meeting. Others completely fly off the handle and immediately call us to ask why we’re not handling the problem. We’ve even lost clients to some of these types of sales pitches, only to watch their rankings and traffic drop off significantly within weeks.
When it comes down to it, all SEO companies use different strategies. At Blue Corona, ours involves creating high quality content that drives qualified visitors to your site, where they will be able to easily convert into leads. With this in mind, we pursue a variety of different strategies, including content marketing, pay-per-click advertising, search engine optimization (SEO), and social media marketing. Can we fix everything at once? No – no one can. That’s why we stress the relationship part of our business model – we don’t require long contracts, but we work much better if we feel like you’ll be around for the long haul.
2) Constantly wanting to make changes
Any time you have someone else working on something for you, you’re going to run into situations where you want to make changes –corrections to site content, additions or subtractions to plans, etc. A few of these every now and then are fine. In fact, they’re a good way to show you’re invested in your online marketing. Where it becomes a problem, however, is when you’re requesting several changes a month. This interferes with our ability to pursue the plans we want to pursue and, of course, makes it harder for us to make you more money.
1) Demanding immediate results
If you want immediate SEO results, I can help you – just bring the cash and meet me in the alley at midnight. What I mean by that is, like all good things, SEO results take time. Sometimes six months. Sometimes a year or more. There are countless unpredictable ranking factors – Google itself has said it calculates more than 200 ranking signals in its algorithm. If you want instant SEO success on the cheap, you’ve got a couple of options:
- Invest in pay-per-click advertising
- Hire a bunch of guys in India to get you thousands of backlinks every month
Warning – minor language ahead!
SEO takes time, and when a new client scrutinizes our work every single month because they’re not seeing the results they think they want, it makes the relationship difficult. Patience, hard work, and dedication – those are the keys to SEO success!
At Blue Corona, the number one thing we value above everything else is our relationship with our clients. If you’re looking for long term SEO success with a proven company, give us a call today!
About The Author: Blue Corona is a data-driven online marketing company with offices in Gaithersburg, MD and Charlotte, N.C.
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