- Growing up in the UK, moving to the US and culture-shock that ensued
- Growing up using computers and the Internet and how that experience pushed him to learn HTML/CSS on his own
- How blogging eventually led him to a career in digital marketing, and how that led to SEO
- The difficulty of landing his first true SEO gig
- Optimizing for a PPC company
- The challenge of finding his voice within the industry
And much more!
In the news
We talk about:
- The impact of Coronavirus on the SEO industry as well as our personal lives
Finally, we have a deep dive into another important topic — diversity in the SEO industry.
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By Jacob Stoops — 4 months ago
We talk about:
- How Andrew’s career began 20 years ago as a broadcast journalist working at the BBC with a focus on cricket and fut ball
- How the emphasis placed on creating fresh and timely content around the sports stories of the day really opened his eyes to the power of building traffic online
- His time as Web Editor as Newsworks
- His management of the website for the Marylebone Cricket Club (MCC)
- How it all led him to found his own SEO consultancy Optimisey
- What it’s like running the Optimisey SEO meeting
- His Optimisey YouTube video series
- And more.
We also touch on the news:
This episode's deep dive
And last but not least, we dive into a few overlooked SEO fundamentals including:
Post Views: 628
- How often simple analytics configurations seem to be overlooked
- The use of site monitoring tools and how they can help businesses
By Jacob Stoops — 6 months ago
We have an amazing episode in store for you today as we have not one, but two guests!
We had such a free-flowing conversation that we ditched the traditional format (as you will soon find out) and we covered a ton of topics including:
- Ashley and Jamie’s backgrounds and career progressions into SEO
- Their amazing friendship
- Why they love technical SEO
- Dealing with impostor syndrome and self doubt
- Public speaking and writing
- The conference circuit
And so much more.
00:00:01.380 –> 00:00:21.510
Jacob Stoops: Alright. Hey everybody this is Jacob Stoops we are back for another episode of the page to podcast and today we have a very, very special episode where we have not one, but two guests and I will let you know who those guests are in a moment. But first, I’ve got to say hi to Jeff.
00:00:21.870 –> 00:00:22.560
Jeff Louella: Hello everybody.
00:00:22.710 –> 00:00:24.630
Jacob Stoops: And everything. Make sure we don’t skip Jeff.
00:00:26.190 –> 00:00:31.860
Jacob Stoops: And then guests. Number one is going to be Miss Jamie Alberico. Jamie, how’s it going
00:00:33.000 –> 00:00:38.370
Jamie Alberico: I’m so sad to be that guy. First thing in the podcast, it’s out there we go.
00:00:38.700 –> 00:00:39.000
00:00:40.740 –> 00:00:41.160
Jacob Stoops: You. I am
00:00:43.110 –> 00:00:46.920
Jacob Stoops: I gave you the Midwest pronunciation with the Bad accent. So I am
00:00:48.810 –> 00:00:49.620
Jamie Alberico: Okay.
00:00:49.740 –> 00:00:50.250
00:00:51.390 –> 00:00:52.740
Jamie Alberico: It means else King
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Jacob Stoops: What, no.
00:00:54.390 –> 00:00:54.660
00:00:55.980 –> 00:01:01.980
Jamie Alberico: Alberico means elf King, Jamie means usurper.
00:01:02.430 –> 00:01:02.760
00:01:04.950 –> 00:01:11.400
Jacob Stoops: Well, I would say, I was gonna say Game of Thrones. Because of you, soccer, but elf is more Lord of the Rings, so
00:01:11.670 –> 00:01:13.380
Ashley Berman Hale: Or D, amp D do it on
00:01:13.440 –> 00:01:25.410
Jacob Stoops: there or there you go that’s that’s probably a better a better reference, but I actually don’t play d&d so the other person speaking, surprise surprise is Miss Ashley Berman Hale. Hi. How’s it going, Ashley.
00:01:25.650 –> 00:01:26.730
Jamie Alberico: Good. I couldn’t keep
00:01:26.730 –> 00:01:28.140
Ashley Berman Hale: My mouth shut, until you
00:01:28.320 –> 00:01:29.160
Jacob Stoops: Enjoy your now.
00:01:29.610 –> 00:01:30.960
Jacob Stoops: Did I pronounce your name right.
00:01:31.350 –> 00:01:31.950
Ashley Berman Hale: No.
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Ashley Berman Hale: Yeah.
00:01:37.080 –> 00:01:38.430
Ashley Berman Hale: Thank you very much.
00:01:38.730 –> 00:01:45.030
Jacob Stoops: Yeah, there’s nothing like face palming the the intros and messing up somebody’s name immediately. So
00:01:46.020 –> 00:01:47.220
Jacob Stoops: Can wish I was the
00:01:47.520 –> 00:01:50.670
Jacob Stoops: Was the first time I’ve done that. But it’s but it’s not you think I’d learned
00:01:51.960 –> 00:02:01.470
Jacob Stoops: Cool. So thank you everybody for being here. I know in Jamie’s case she’s kind of out on the West Coast. So it’s a very early morning so
00:02:02.040 –> 00:02:10.560
Jacob Stoops: Extra Special that she has decided to join us. I did want to make a few remarks and tell a quick story before we kind of dive in.
00:02:11.340 –> 00:02:24.510
Jacob Stoops: The one, one thing is I wanted to pay a bit of tribute my wife’s Grandpa. We just came from his funeral. This weekend and today actually would be his 100th birthday.
00:02:25.290 –> 00:02:40.800
Jacob Stoops: So he decided to to not wait we had planned a surprise birthday party for him on this this past Saturday, and we were, we had had hired a an old
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Jacob Stoops: Style crooner we had had because he’s a Italian we had had a nice Catholic
00:02:49.890 –> 00:03:00.480
Jacob Stoops: BLEEP something sent from the actual Pope in Rome, we had had the governor of Kentucky, the President of the Cincinnati Reds all kinds of people.
00:03:01.680 –> 00:03:06.540
Jacob Stoops: provided some really special things for him to honor his 100th birthday.
00:03:07.020 –> 00:03:18.120
Jacob Stoops: Unfortunately, about three weeks ago he passed away and he pulled one over on us. So instead of going to a surprise 100th birthday party. We went to his funeral this weekend.
00:03:18.390 –> 00:03:37.500
Jacob Stoops: But today, would have been his actual 100th birthday. So what I can only hope is that he, his wife preceded him by about five years is that she called him up to spend his hundredth birthday with her. So Hank Picciano if you can somehow, hear me, we love you and we miss you already
00:03:39.210 –> 00:03:41.100
Jacob Stoops: So now, now that I’m
00:03:42.540 –> 00:03:48.750
Jacob Stoops: A little sad. Sorry, I’m trying goes, it’s still a little Ross of trying to do. I’m trying to hold it back here, but
00:03:49.830 –> 00:03:57.990
Jacob Stoops: Wanted to tell the story of how we were able to book both Jamie and Ashley at the same time and
00:03:58.770 –> 00:04:08.100
Jacob Stoops: I hope that it didn’t come across super creepy. But basically, when we were thinking about Season two. And we were trying to figure out, okay,
00:04:08.400 –> 00:04:23.670
Jacob Stoops: Here’s everybody that we’ve already talked to, and here are the people and it’s a large group of people. You guys are extra, extra special. Obviously, but it’s a large group of people, because there are just so many fantastic SEOs in the in the space and honestly
00:04:24.720 –> 00:04:29.550
Jacob Stoops: We’re going to try to interview every single one of them, because there are so many, but it could take years.
00:04:30.270 –> 00:04:39.420
Jacob Stoops: Which is a good thing. Since we have a podcast but basically we when we had thought about who we want on Ashley and Jamie were kind of close to the top of the list.
00:04:40.170 –> 00:04:51.750
Jacob Stoops: And so we had started, we had started reaching out to people and especially in cases where you don’t directly know each other’s but you are kind of tangentially connected
00:04:52.380 –> 00:04:58.950
Jacob Stoops: As we were in a, in a few cases, you just kind of go through the the different channels. The, the email.
00:04:59.250 –> 00:05:10.770
Jacob Stoops: We use you use whatever’s available to us. So Jeff was connected to Ashley through a text Slack channel. I was connected to to Jamie through Twitter.
00:05:11.220 –> 00:05:21.060
Jacob Stoops: And then we had found somehow emails. I think we pulled them from Jamie, I think I called your email from your website.
00:05:21.780 –> 00:05:33.090
Jacob Stoops: I think it’s not not a robot, which I want to ask about that. And then I somehow we found Ashley’s here. I don’t know. But anyway, so we’re reaching out and we’re in the process. And it’s occurring on the same day and
00:05:34.080 –> 00:05:46.500
Jacob Stoops: We came to found out to find out that not only were we both reaching out to you guys. At the same time, you are literally sitting in the same room while we’re trying to schedule this so
00:05:47.670 –> 00:05:55.410
Jacob Stoops: I’m sure that especially because you didn’t know us directly. It was like these creepy guys trying to schedule us for a pot.
00:05:56.610 –> 00:05:57.030
Jacob Stoops: Yes.
00:05:57.390 –> 00:06:00.330
Jamie Alberico: Actually these guys want to schedule a murder. What are you doing,
00:06:00.420 –> 00:06:00.780
00:06:03.330 –> 00:06:03.960
Ashley Berman Hale: Numbers.
00:06:06.750 –> 00:06:07.140
Jacob Stoops: Vary
00:06:08.580 –> 00:06:09.060
Jacob Stoops: But you guys
00:06:09.210 –> 00:06:09.870
00:06:12.990 –> 00:06:29.610
Jamie Alberico: Ashley had just ordered some some birthday brunch for me. And we were at my kitchen table and drain eggs Benedict and something to listen to a local bit around here. And yeah, we both got the same message like hey, she just got an invitation for pitch to
00:06:30.780 –> 00:06:31.230
Jamie Alberico: The oh
00:06:31.410 –> 00:06:32.370
Jeff Louella: Yes, funny.
00:06:32.910 –> 00:06:40.560
Jacob Stoops: Well luckily it all. It all worked out. You guys are a good sports and we appreciate you all coming on. So,
00:06:42.210 –> 00:06:54.930
Jacob Stoops: As as everybody who listens to this podcast knows the hallmark is origin stories backgrounds and what it’s like to be to be an SEO and since we have two
00:06:55.560 –> 00:07:03.780
Jacob Stoops: Guests on this podcast, we’re going to be doing two interviews and depending on timing will probably skip, skip the news. Maybe we’ll
00:07:04.350 –> 00:07:22.560
Jacob Stoops: We were going to maybe talk about tech SEO boost, but I think we can skip that for now. But we’re going to be doing to background story interviews and then later on a deep dive into just general technical SEO. So who wants to go first. Who would like to step up to the plate.
00:07:23.250 –> 00:07:23.760
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Jamie Alberico: Oh you have see
00:07:29.880 –> 00:07:35.160
Jacob Stoops: All right, Jamie. Since it’s six in the morning or seven in the morning there and you’re
00:07:35.700 –> 00:07:37.140
Jacob Stoops: Fresh on game.
00:07:37.830 –> 00:07:41.280
Jamie Alberico: Yeah, yeah, I was bitten by a radioactive search engine.
00:07:42.570 –> 00:07:44.460
Jamie Alberico: My Uncle Ben and now I’m here.
00:07:44.790 –> 00:07:45.660
Now you’re here.
00:07:46.920 –> 00:07:50.460
Jacob Stoops: Miss Peter Parker Pedro Parker. Oh.
00:07:54.480 –> 00:08:05.550
Ashley Berman Hale: What was I here, for I got frustrated with other jobs and I like to tinker. All right. Um, I mean we can tell the long story if you want actual details. Is that what this podcast is about
00:08:05.550 –> 00:08:08.640
Jacob Stoops: Right, exactly. I was gonna say well podcast is over a
00:08:10.110 –> 00:08:11.940
Jamie Alberico: Couple of little one liners are like
00:08:13.140 –> 00:08:14.160
Jamie Alberico: cash the check.
00:08:14.550 –> 00:08:14.760
00:08:16.950 –> 00:08:20.190
Ashley Berman Hale: I think that was Jamie’s really good job of loving it back to me because
00:08:20.910 –> 00:08:23.430
Ashley Berman Hale: There for me to call not it. So I will get started.
00:08:25.590 –> 00:08:31.710
Ashley Berman Hale: I have a degree in art history which is fantastically useless in the traditional sense.
00:08:33.120 –> 00:08:40.050
Ashley Berman Hale: But I, I love it. Critical thinking is something that is a little bit tough to teach. If you don’t have it. So thank you, college for giving me that
00:08:40.950 –> 00:08:51.600
Ashley Berman Hale: And the first non waitress job I took or non dish dish washing and a bar or non making coffee was a sit down job at a small startup.
00:08:52.050 –> 00:09:02.190
Ashley Berman Hale: Where I had to answer, answer emails for people who are too busy to answer their own emails and pretend to do that. So that was how I got started made friends with the CFO did some audience because I’m picky as hell.
00:09:02.850 –> 00:09:19.980
Ashley Berman Hale: And knew that there was money missing saved him a bunch of money. They got bought out by Overstock and so we got tossed in I got brought down to the exact office there to help out and had someone say, here’s a giant fucking spreadsheet. This is pay per click. Can you figure it out.
00:09:21.390 –> 00:09:26.670
Ashley Berman Hale: And that was tough. And I said, I don’t like this. And I like cool. How about XML sitemap, have you heard of those
00:09:27.750 –> 00:09:35.940
Ashley Berman Hale: So the way that I got started as just trying to figure out how to do that for a big site with lots of inventory. I went and asked questions in a forum, I believe so strongly and
00:09:36.360 –> 00:09:44.640
Ashley Berman Hale: Sharing public information and helping each other. So while I was asking and waiting for an answer. I decided to answer some other questions and got stuck here.
00:09:46.170 –> 00:09:58.800
Ashley Berman Hale: God there’s ultimate nerd forum environments for me to learn in and for me to be moderately accepted by and then I kind of hopped around a bit and found myself very comfortably nestled in the technical SEO spot for a software company.
00:10:00.690 –> 00:10:00.960
00:10:02.640 –> 00:10:03.210
Ashley Berman Hale: High five.
00:10:04.710 –> 00:10:14.130
Ashley Berman Hale: High five. That’s, I mean, I’m still a really good. Well, no, I’m not. I’m still a really good dishwasher and a moderately okay waitress. So I’ve got backup plans.
00:10:14.730 –> 00:10:16.590
Jamie Alberico: How many friends today. Gary Owens now.
00:10:17.070 –> 00:10:17.820
00:10:19.020 –> 00:10:20.250
Ashley Berman Hale: My, my arms.
00:10:21.690 –> 00:10:23.370
Ashley Berman Hale: Around children. So, you know,
00:10:25.170 –> 00:10:26.640
Jamie Alberico: fallback plan is ready.
00:10:28.740 –> 00:10:40.350
Jeff Louella: Yeah. During the dark during the.com bust. I went to bartending school because I figured the internet was going to go away. And I was like, you know, one thing people like to do when times are bad is drink so
00:10:41.670 –> 00:10:57.030
Ashley Berman Hale: I believe it. My family owned a bar and like the Dyess state in the tree. So my family were bar owners in Utah, and actually under brewery in Montana and they always did. Okay. Because whenever there is, you know, a lot of money or religious oppression beer helps. Yeah.
00:10:59.100 –> 00:11:03.120
Jamie Alberico: And actually makes really good homemade Kula and it’s almost Christmas Ashley.
00:11:03.240 –> 00:11:04.260
Jamie Alberico: I know well
00:11:04.350 –> 00:11:08.940
Ashley Berman Hale: I will bring you a batch. I’m making a local New York match. But then I’ll be back to Colorado. Nice.
00:11:09.450 –> 00:11:12.240
Jeff Louella: Guy have three gallons of lemon cello going on back here for
00:11:13.110 –> 00:11:15.030
Ashley Berman Hale: Them. He’s not lying it people
00:11:16.770 –> 00:11:21.810
Ashley Berman Hale: Dang. All right, jack you got plans later I’m gonna hang out with you.
00:11:21.990 –> 00:11:23.790
Jeff Louella: All right, let’s do it. I got tons of stuff here.
00:11:24.600 –> 00:11:26.160
Jeff Louella: The whole wall whiskies over here to
00:11:27.510 –> 00:11:30.150
Jamie Alberico: Why are we not doing this from just garage.
00:11:30.420 –> 00:11:31.080
Jeff Louella: Come on.
00:11:31.590 –> 00:11:34.080
Ashley Berman Hale: All right, Jamie I deferred you long enough. Now you have to tell
00:11:34.380 –> 00:11:43.770
Jamie Alberico: Magical story. I did the coffee kicking. I was supposed to be a player, right, which is a weird thing to say. And I guess I can certainly do that.
00:11:44.190 –> 00:11:59.520
Jamie Alberico: But that’s where my degree is in my passion was like, I’m gonna write plays and comic books, and then the recession in 2008 head and call times were longer than normal. And I’m trying to contact my student loan folk and find some way to pay them and he
00:12:00.810 –> 00:12:03.840
Jamie Alberico: You know, I was waiting tables at a sushi bar and
00:12:05.010 –> 00:12:12.690
Jamie Alberico: Wasn’t really glamorous bit and got into basically any job that would get me away from cutting my fingers and carrying
00:12:14.010 –> 00:12:15.750
Jamie Alberico: His family without being pushy, the end of the day.
00:12:20.790 –> 00:12:23.760
Jamie Alberico: It’s a really where my stories prematurely.
00:12:26.640 –> 00:12:29.010
Jamie Alberico: Like I did other things at some point somewhere.
00:12:31.320 –> 00:12:44.160
Jamie Alberico: I was a blogger Outreach Manager. That was my first gig, which is pre Penguin on if you are trying to connect to me on LinkedIn. Right now, I would offer the pro tip of remove
00:12:45.510 –> 00:12:48.720
Jamie Alberico: link building from your title before you send that letter.
00:12:48.720 –> 00:12:54.570
Jamie Alberico: Susan, thank you. I’m sure you’re a lovely human I’ve just been hurt before by choosing to copy pasta.
00:12:56.730 –> 00:13:04.320
Jamie Alberico: To the job and house for e commerce company. We like to me doesn’t products and I look back and go, Oh, it’s so cute little that
00:13:05.550 –> 00:13:12.750
Jamie Alberico: actually ended up working for Ashley. So here’s where I story interconnected. Yeah.
00:13:14.010 –> 00:13:26.580
Jamie Alberico: I interviewed a local agency and then local Jeannine the first interview, do you think is great. Like, we’re gonna put you on a video interview with our had tech SEO. We were like team Tomahawk
00:13:27.510 –> 00:13:27.960
Ashley Berman Hale: Yeah, that’s
00:13:28.380 –> 00:13:29.970
Ashley Berman Hale: Bad racial appropriation.
00:13:31.500 –> 00:13:33.570
Jamie Alberico: Sorry, I’m stating historical facts.
00:13:33.600 –> 00:13:35.370
Jamie Alberico: admitting to whitewash history right now.
00:13:36.720 –> 00:13:38.580
Jamie Alberico: And we’ve learned better and we’re doing better.
00:13:38.610 –> 00:13:41.100
Ashley Berman Hale: I just have a lot of apologies in life.
00:13:44.130 –> 00:13:57.390
Jamie Alberico: Hashtag relatable well interview with Ashley, I’m there was this this magical creature who knew all this world of technical SEO is just like a PG podcast. What kind of language. Can I bring to the table right now and reenact
00:13:57.780 –> 00:13:58.950
Jacob Stoops: Wherever you’re comfortable with.
00:14:00.870 –> 00:14:01.320
Jacob Stoops: George
00:14:02.760 –> 00:14:03.000
Jeff Louella: You’re
00:14:03.870 –> 00:14:05.760
Jamie Alberico: In trouble if I tell if I
00:14:06.120 –> 00:14:11.640
Jamie Alberico: Tell the internet that it was love at first Cocker so I’m interviewing with Ashley and we’re talking
00:14:12.360 –> 00:14:26.160
Jamie Alberico: I don’t remember what the deal was I think about previous job and what it was like waiting tables and somehow the story of an individual thing rather cantankerous king came up and actually
00:14:29.100 –> 00:14:33.060
Jamie Alberico: Miss, miss a big like always being a cock sucker. When you’re that guy.
00:14:34.830 –> 00:14:41.430
Jamie Alberico: On a moment we bonded and the person that hired me immediately most tech out to john Schilling, at that time, because they took us. He goes, where
00:14:41.820 –> 00:14:48.780
Jamie Alberico: And the bathroom children have both Marketing SEO traditional style and dev didn’t really have a new should have our own just yet.
00:14:49.410 –> 00:15:01.590
Jamie Alberico: I picked them several months they, you know, kick it back to me and be like, Yeah, I want you to join the team and that time I like waiting for Android little cards like, Hi, thank you so much for the opportunity to interview I really want to work with Ashley.
00:15:04.050 –> 00:15:16.770
Ashley Berman Hale: And I will do anything once somebody flatters me and we have great chemistry. So it was, it was awesome, because it was really important to me to always do some peer collaboration with technical SEO, in particular, just like you do peer reviews. When you’re coding
00:15:17.850 –> 00:15:22.050
Ashley Berman Hale: And it’s really important to me to reach back and bring more women, along with me so
00:15:23.730 –> 00:15:34.410
Ashley Berman Hale: I wasn’t far ahead and I’m certainly am a decent click behind Jamie now because she’s, she’s had a really fast trajectory. But the fact that I can bring more women on to a technical team was really fucking awesome.
00:15:36.180 –> 00:15:40.080
Jamie Alberico: It was 100 recent article women on that game. Yeah, yeah. There were two of us.
00:15:41.370 –> 00:15:41.640
Ashley Berman Hale: Math.
00:15:41.670 –> 00:15:42.030
Jeff Louella: Jackie.
00:15:42.780 –> 00:15:43.290
00:15:45.840 –> 00:15:47.040
Jeff Louella: It’s awesome. So
00:15:47.640 –> 00:15:58.080
Jacob Stoops: So I think the first thing I would ask is what is it about technical SEO that excites both of you will like why because there’s there’s all kinds of different types of SEO like
00:15:59.070 –> 00:16:06.090
Jacob Stoops: Depending on like different bat. It’s like you almost get to pick and choose what kind of SEO you like to do, and I feel like
00:16:07.650 –> 00:16:22.620
Jacob Stoops: You kind of have to be able to dabble in a little bit of everything. But I feel like over the course of time people develop their specialty based on you know what they what they enjoy most. So what is it about technical SEO specifically that you guys enjoy
00:16:23.580 –> 00:16:32.460
Ashley Berman Hale: I like thinking about the evolution of it. I always think of the adage that, you know, back in the day, everyone was their town doctor and you’re going to college. This was also your dentist.
00:16:33.060 –> 00:16:41.370
Ashley Berman Hale: Let that sink in for a second and then, you know, we started getting better and getting specialist. So I think we’re in a really cool time of SEO where there are these deep specialists.
00:16:42.600 –> 00:16:51.360
Ashley Berman Hale: I got into technical SEO because I was just so curious. Like, that seems so smart and clever and an interesting
00:16:53.310 –> 00:17:01.170
Ashley Berman Hale: That I wanted to learn it and I wanted to learn from smart people. Also, I am just a shitty marketer, like the anti marketer. I can’t write
00:17:01.770 –> 00:17:17.460
Ashley Berman Hale: Like if someone asked me write a blog, I would rather quit my job I’ve come close before a video the nine. The people who hired us who were very gentle and patient, they definitely gave up after making me white write one blog, and I, I just, I can’t promote and so for me.
00:17:17.490 –> 00:17:21.510
Jamie Alberico: For like 4000 words, it’s still one of the best resources on
00:17:23.580 –> 00:17:24.780
Jamie Alberico: Security at that time.
00:17:24.900 –> 00:17:25.830
Ashley Berman Hale: Yeah, well, I
00:17:26.160 –> 00:17:29.790
Jamie Alberico: Wrote Gordon Duff and beautiful.
00:17:31.050 –> 00:17:33.390
Jamie Alberico: White Paper, essentially. So let me give you credit
00:17:33.810 –> 00:17:34.080
00:17:36.240 –> 00:17:43.500
Ashley Berman Hale: Yeah, not liking it. It’s really hard, whereas the technical stuff. I am a voice and a snoop. And that’s why I like the Internet.
00:17:43.860 –> 00:17:54.840
Ashley Berman Hale: And I snoop on people in my free time and I snoop on your site during work time and that’s why I love it. I like to go find problems and tinker and figure out what somebody busted and how we can make it better.
00:17:55.860 –> 00:17:56.400
About you, James.
00:17:58.410 –> 00:18:10.860
Jamie Alberico: Oh, I fell in love with technical SEO I missed it. I was hired for cascade and as a marketing SEO went to work on the blog and all that, but in my domain was, you know, monitoring our
00:18:11.430 –> 00:18:19.800
Jamie Alberico: keywords and we were, I think, the second or third largest e commerce site for restaurant equipment on suddenly all of my rankings just
00:18:20.340 –> 00:18:29.100
Jamie Alberico: fell out they’ll drop the bomb dropped them and maybe we can figure out what’s going on. And that led down and it’s really good 11 day binge.
00:18:29.520 –> 00:18:43.740
Jamie Alberico: Like some people go to Vegas when they go on a binge. I went like an 11 day binge of like trying to figure out what happened to this website. And at the end of it. It was a home of homebrew CMS, the result we had to break the site. Fine.
00:18:44.880 –> 00:18:59.340
Jamie Alberico: And kind of start from scratch. I had to go here and learn about how to map all of the specific content together, how to figure out when things were no longer useful. That’s my son yelling at us right now, by the way. Hi tank boy. Say hello to the internet.
00:19:02.460 –> 00:19:11.310
Jacob Stoops: By the way, I super impressed that you managed to keep talking without breaking stride as you let your cat in and open your curtains. That was pretty. That was pretty awesome.
00:19:12.300 –> 00:19:16.290
Jamie Alberico: Sorry internet tank takes precedence on all matters. Yeah.
00:19:18.390 –> 00:19:22.830
Jamie Alberico: That’s, yeah. I fell in love with mechanical co authoring getting that chance to
00:19:24.060 –> 00:19:35.100
Jamie Alberico: Say what we say a dying site. We have to go through to make a series of very dramatic changes and that rebuilding at home growing CML and increasingly great band of it.
00:19:37.950 –> 00:19:40.020
Jeff Louella: I think it comes down to a lot of
00:19:41.040 –> 00:19:55.350
Jeff Louella: A lot of people get here, and that’s one reason I love like the origin story he’s because we all get here in different ways and whether you’re coming from a technical background or not it. We all one thing we have in common is that curiosity to dive deep
00:19:55.680 –> 00:20:00.930
Jeff Louella: And 11 days to their I spent. It’s funny, I used to do web development and
00:20:02.070 –> 00:20:19.020
Jeff Louella: Most of my friends were on AT LIKE AFTER MIDNIGHT AND ONCE A while I’m not on online as much that late night. But when I am. It’s still the same people, same developer guys like cuz it’s like some reason my brain starts tweaking and start doing well at like 11 o’clock. Yeah, so
00:20:19.080 –> 00:20:22.740
Jamie Alberico: That weird golden hour of Cannibal logical brain that
00:20:22.770 –> 00:20:25.320
Jamie Alberico: Yeah, we do later in the evening.
00:20:26.760 –> 00:20:38.130
Jeff Louella: So it’s fun. And I’ve spent many, many, many hours just like going down a rabbit hole and no one ever know like at the end of the day, my wife will be like, what are we doing go four in the morning, not just like
00:20:38.670 –> 00:20:45.510
Jeff Louella: I don’t know. I was trying to get some code work and sometimes it’s just you missed a period somewhere and now it’s two in the morning and
00:20:45.780 –> 00:20:46.020
00:20:47.070 –> 00:20:47.760
Jamie Alberico: fancy clothes.
00:20:51.090 –> 00:21:01.710
Jeff Louella: So, and then having that like coming into the SEO side of things, really, kind of, it’s interesting. It’s one thing I have trouble with with new guys coming into SEO. It’s like
00:21:02.610 –> 00:21:07.290
Jeff Louella: I want to learn technical SEO and I’m like, are you willing to stay up for 10 days and try
00:21:07.890 –> 00:21:21.180
Jeff Louella: Out some piece of something that just drives you crazy. You can’t go to sleep until you figure it out and and you can’t teach that, of course, and it’s one of those where we trying to figure out what like how do I get that into a lot of my team. How do I get into them and
00:21:21.930 –> 00:21:23.010
Jamie Alberico: Either. How do I do that.
00:21:23.100 –> 00:21:29.790
Jamie Alberico: Cheryl ambition interview process. You just give them two pieces of drinking a paperclip go kidnap and see
00:21:30.810 –> 00:21:33.720
Jamie Alberico: If they can do is that you’re new to this.
00:21:34.020 –> 00:21:34.950
Jeff Louella: Never thought about that one.
00:21:35.250 –> 00:21:36.210
Jacob Stoops: MacGyver style.
00:21:36.690 –> 00:21:45.900
Jamie Alberico: Yeah, I mean I was figuring out how to make an unusual shape spec for they had the actual app items when
00:21:46.350 –> 00:21:56.730
Jamie Alberico: I was a game changer for me a call. I can go ahead and make all these API calls. And I can begin to reuse this work and, you know, each time I do I swap out, pick up, pick and choose configuration and
00:21:57.210 –> 00:22:12.270
Jamie Alberico: Let me scale up so they get good pieces learning to be a Technic technical SEO is after you’ve gone through and burn yourself out on an insane rabbit hole that you know showed you some great things as to how do I read that information.
00:22:13.980 –> 00:22:19.020
Ashley Berman Hale: You’re failing nine and 10 times tinkering around then SEO technical SEO for you.
00:22:20.040 –> 00:22:26.220
Jamie Alberico: So you want to fail, like a flying SPACE MONKEY and plume of fireworks and we have a career for you.
00:22:27.690 –> 00:22:41.250
Jacob Stoops: One thing I am finding interesting is I think three out of four of us have a background in the in the arts. So I come from a graphic design background. We’ve got an art history background.
00:22:41.760 –> 00:23:00.390
Jacob Stoops: And then kind of a playwriting background. And it’s like, That’s not very technical stuff I’m I mean I’m sure there is some technicality to it, but it’s not like code in as my in laws say Jake works on computers and really don’t, um,
00:23:02.190 –> 00:23:05.190
Jamie Alberico: I mean, check out gun applies the code and the playwriting
00:23:05.220 –> 00:23:05.670
Jacob Stoops: Right and
00:23:06.060 –> 00:23:07.890
Jamie Alberico: They got enough one a bit of fire and three
00:23:08.940 –> 00:23:22.410
Jacob Stoops: I just wonder where the not even necessarily the the technical SEO. The, the SEO part of it. But with that kind of a background amongst all of us, where do we feel like
00:23:22.980 –> 00:23:26.340
Jacob Stoops: The, the need and the passion because I’m very passionate about.
00:23:27.150 –> 00:23:36.060
Jacob Stoops: Technical SEO as well, although I don’t like to be bucket it as a technical SEO. I like to be bucket it as just more of a general like jack of all trades, but
00:23:36.630 –> 00:23:49.800
Jacob Stoops: There is a certain passion for getting in and getting my hands dirty and, you know, with a website and coming from a graphic design background. I just wonder like sometimes. Where did that come from.
00:23:49.890 –> 00:23:50.340
Ashley Berman Hale: I just
00:23:50.730 –> 00:24:06.780
Jacob Stoops: I can’t even put my put my finger on it because graphic design is more art, whereas I feel like technical and coding and building websites is a little bit more science. So I don’t know, maybe I feel like. And I guess I needed some balance in in the second half of my life.
00:24:07.380 –> 00:24:13.710
Ashley Berman Hale: And I have I have pretty strong feelings about that after being chastised for mocking my degree.
00:24:15.210 –> 00:24:19.530
Ashley Berman Hale: Listen, my dad looked at me and rolled his eyes and he said, good luck paying for college on your own.
00:24:20.160 –> 00:24:25.050
Ashley Berman Hale: But art history is one of those degrees, where people are like, what the hell are you going to do with that so
00:24:25.800 –> 00:24:29.430
Ashley Berman Hale: I will tell you that the greatest thing I learned from my degrees to spend time looking
00:24:30.150 –> 00:24:39.030
Ashley Berman Hale: And critical thinking. Because what you can do is you can uncover individual parts of a painting or learn about someone’s life or what was going on in the culture was going on in the economy.
00:24:39.570 –> 00:24:42.270
Ashley Berman Hale: With diseases were being spread based on the iconography.
00:24:42.750 –> 00:24:51.210
Ashley Berman Hale: And when you look at someone site, you’re essentially stripping back layers of. Where are they getting their imagery. What’s the content. What’s the history of the site and how many hands gone through
00:24:51.870 –> 00:25:01.860
Ashley Berman Hale: And then you pull back further to see what the bones are and where the skeletons are hidden the bad ones, the broken bones. I don’t know where I’m going with this. Yeah, but
00:25:01.890 –> 00:25:06.810
Jamie Alberico: Someone redesigned it and it was like that fresco about the will and his woman repainted.
00:25:07.140 –> 00:25:07.860
Ashley Berman Hale: Oh yeah, the none.
00:25:07.980 –> 00:25:10.530
Ashley Berman Hale: None that repainting yes we have done many
00:25:11.520 –> 00:25:12.540
Sites in our life.
00:25:13.860 –> 00:25:23.490
Ashley Berman Hale: But it does feel like there’s a really good intersection of I think Fine Arts and Humanities help teach people to be open about humans and to look critically
00:25:24.090 –> 00:25:37.380
Ashley Berman Hale: At what they create. And so while I have a laughable degree to some people, and I’ll be the first to make a joke. I really don’t think I could do what I do today without having spent the time and learning how to unravel the story from that degree.
00:25:39.030 –> 00:25:46.410
Jacob Stoops: I think that’s a great point night I honestly I never thought about it that way. And I remember being in college and thinking a little bit. The
00:25:47.220 –> 00:25:53.400
Jacob Stoops: The same thing as I was kind of getting getting deeper. Maybe that’s why it never actually worked worked out for me.
00:25:54.000 –> 00:26:11.850
Jacob Stoops: In terms of the graphic design in college and kind of taking that into A into a career because I was worried about money and how I was going to pay for things and so on and so forth. And it’s not necessarily unless you’re really, really, really good or really rare.
00:26:11.850 –> 00:26:16.770
Jacob Stoops: Talent not saying SEOs aren’t talented, but I think
00:26:17.850 –> 00:26:19.380
Jamie Alberico: At that again from the machine.
00:26:19.770 –> 00:26:21.030
Jamie Alberico: Right, while you’re in a job.
00:26:21.060 –> 00:26:35.010
Jacob Stoops: Great. You don’t even know. Exactly. Exactly. And I think like the timing for me was just right because this is like mid 2000s. And as I was flaming out of college SEO was
00:26:36.570 –> 00:26:47.640
Jacob Stoops: A great opportunity that not a lot of people could could do at that point in time. And I was like, well, well, there’s my differentiator. There’s what, there’s. What can make me unique and I feel like a lot of people
00:26:48.540 –> 00:27:08.580
Jacob Stoops: Ended up like that, in terms of looking looking for something else and not necessarily knowing what it was and not being able to put your finger on it. But before you know it, you’ve got a job in SEO at that time. Not a lot of people knew how to do which made it incredibly valuable.
00:27:09.900 –> 00:27:12.450
Jacob Stoops: Yeah. Was it was pretty that’s kind of
00:27:12.720 –> 00:27:14.700
Jamie Alberico: My philosophy.
00:27:15.960 –> 00:27:36.090
Jamie Alberico: And I find that my analytics philosophy is if if L statements for trying to muscle. So I absolutely deplorable and how good your do my mid term on the meaning of the word completely terrible back knowledge now deeply, deeply value that code is just living, we’re looking at it. Yeah.
00:27:37.980 –> 00:27:55.980
Jacob Stoops: So one thing I detected and Ashley, I’m calling you to the carpet again. And the reason I’m calling you to the carpet, not necessarily calling you to the carpet in a negative way we do talk a lot about self doubt and imposter syndrome and how
00:27:57.000 –> 00:28:11.940
Jacob Stoops: Powerful that can be and based on kind of what you had said about the writing and not necessarily feeling like you’re a good writer. And I’ve actually i feel like i’ve read your, your stuff for quite a while so like I think you’re doing something right.
00:28:13.830 –> 00:28:22.350
Jacob Stoops: Like, do you ever feel a sense of imposter syndrome and like self doubt. And I don’t know, I just, I always like to dive into that ask
00:28:22.770 –> 00:28:23.670
Jamie Alberico: You actually
00:28:25.470 –> 00:28:29.580
Ashley Berman Hale: Do I every single waking minutes, um,
00:28:30.600 –> 00:28:31.410
Ashley Berman Hale: No, I think that
00:28:31.470 –> 00:28:38.460
Ashley Berman Hale: You know, it’s a pendulum. I think that, in general, I feel like I am utter bullshit at most things
00:28:38.970 –> 00:28:46.470
Ashley Berman Hale: But the one thing that makes me feel good about myself and about the work that I’m doing is when I can help somebody else, whether it’s to solve a problem or
00:28:47.130 –> 00:28:53.280
Ashley Berman Hale: To get a better job I end up being this random career counselor and helping people get good jobs which I actually like I love doing.
00:28:54.960 –> 00:28:59.610
Ashley Berman Hale: But I, I really struggle with my knowledge and I had to come to terms with. I’m never going to be the
00:28:59.820 –> 00:29:05.220
Ashley Berman Hale: smartest person in the room. But if you’re the kind of person that surround yourself with smarter people like you’re in pretty you’re in a pretty good spot.
00:29:05.490 –> 00:29:12.840
Ashley Berman Hale: And I may not be the most clever, but I do like to learn and I have an appetite to learn and to try to understand so
00:29:13.410 –> 00:29:21.600
Ashley Berman Hale: imposter syndrome is really, really, really, really real. And I suffered in other areas of my life, including being a parent and playing a sport, but
00:29:22.230 –> 00:29:28.500
Ashley Berman Hale: If you can find one thing about yourself that you can put work toward that you can feel good about I’ve found that it allows me to sort of keep going.
00:29:29.010 –> 00:29:40.770
Ashley Berman Hale: And when I can’t. I call Jamie and she usually tells me to buck up that I am an important person with, you know, capital T thoughts and I deserve to be here and I can help people so
00:29:41.340 –> 00:29:46.620
Ashley Berman Hale: But it is something I struggle with. And it’s not even this passive struggling, it’s, I mean, I can’t even tell you I have
00:29:46.950 –> 00:29:54.450
Ashley Berman Hale: So I have OCD, but like obsessive thought patterns and one that’s been in my head for about 17 years is waking up and just wanting to scream into the void Mia, what the fuck am I even doing
00:29:54.990 –> 00:30:11.070
Ashley Berman Hale: What is this like and you could probably go back through my Twitter and see like how many times I’ve actually tweeted tweeted that out is like what am I even doing to help. Um so yeah I don’t recommend it but if anyone wants to talk about the old capitalized syndrome from here.
00:30:11.220 –> 00:30:25.320
Jacob Stoops: Understand in the reason I asked was, and I hope it didn’t come across as rude. Um, I saw I suffer from it as well. It’s like it’s, it can be crushing sometimes and for me.
00:30:26.160 –> 00:30:42.840
Jacob Stoops: Part of digging myself out of it was that this podcast going and feeling like, hey, I am good enough to go and talk to all of these really smart people, and I do know enough to be able to hold my ground.
00:30:43.560 –> 00:30:53.640
Jacob Stoops: With some of the best best folks in the in the industry and there’s just, it’s not just here, it permeates a lot of different parts of my life, and it is it is a daily
00:30:54.420 –> 00:31:08.580
Jacob Stoops: A daily struggle, and I know like it has been other than SEO. In general, probably the most frequently reoccurring subject across every episode of the podcast. So in the industry for whatever
00:31:09.300 –> 00:31:22.050
Jacob Stoops: Reason, you’ve got a bunch of people suffering from imposter syndrome. And it’s, I just, I find it quite amazing because of how many smart people there are, that people
00:31:23.190 –> 00:31:32.760
Jacob Stoops: That are that are that are incredibly, incredibly talented don’t seem to believe in their self and I just keep asking why, why is that, and
00:31:33.330 –> 00:31:45.030
Jacob Stoops: I think one of the best things that can come out of this podcast is to let people know. Like, you’re not alone. Some of the best people in the industry have self doubt literally all the time.
00:31:46.710 –> 00:31:48.600
Ashley Berman Hale: All the time. All the time and
00:31:48.690 –> 00:31:50.700
Jamie Alberico: I think our industry is made for it, though.
00:31:50.910 –> 00:31:51.720
Ashley Berman Hale: Yeah, it really is.
00:31:52.950 –> 00:31:55.260
Jamie Alberico: Our end everything we do.
00:31:55.740 –> 00:31:56.040
Jacob Stoops: Yeah.
00:31:56.130 –> 00:32:02.010
Jamie Alberico: I’m there is very much the chance. You’ve been down this rabbit hole for so long. You come back up. You like Melbourne coast.
00:32:03.360 –> 00:32:09.540
Jamie Alberico: You’re no longer sure if you’ve gone full broken Roomba or have you figured out something incredibly valuable. Yeah, yeah.
00:32:09.990 –> 00:32:17.940
Jacob Stoops: And I feel like there are times, especially if you work on the agency side. I haven’t necessarily experienced this quite as much in house but like
00:32:18.780 –> 00:32:37.890
Jacob Stoops: There’s a lot of pressure and you can be the the best SEO, but if you’re putting a situation where there’s just no opportunity to succeed, doesn’t really matter how good of an SEO, you are. For example, if a client doesn’t implement your recommendations and then nothing
00:32:37.890 –> 00:32:39.300
Ashley Berman Hale: Happens right so
00:32:39.570 –> 00:32:48.210
Jacob Stoops: I think even the best SEOs go through a lot of failure and hopefully a lot of success as well, right, or we wouldn’t have jobs, but I think there’s a fear of
00:32:48.780 –> 00:32:55.620
Jacob Stoops: Failure with our clients as well as success and sometimes it’s in our hands and a lot of times it’s not
00:32:56.610 –> 00:33:08.910
Jacob Stoops: And I think for me, like there are times when that part of its crushing like okay, what can I say to make them think differently or to make them realize that hey, this is actually
00:33:09.330 –> 00:33:16.950
Jacob Stoops: We’re doing. We’re doing well, even if the results don’t fight look like it yet, stuff like that. So there’s a lot of pressure.
00:33:17.700 –> 00:33:21.840
Ashley Berman Hale: Well, sorry. Is it okay if I hop back in here cuz yeah
00:33:22.380 –> 00:33:35.640
Ashley Berman Hale: Well, and you’re dealing with such smart people. Right. I might think I’m clever and then I take two days off to roller skate and drink myself into oblivion, and come back and the entire industry has changed. So it’s very easy to feel like you’re slipping.
00:33:37.080 –> 00:33:44.550
Ashley Berman Hale: But I, I really, really love this new trend that our industry has of kind of coming together to support each other because I have a pretty big gap.
00:33:45.150 –> 00:33:54.540
Ashley Berman Hale: In my SEO career as far as paid jobs and it was because of the toxic environment and the culture that we were in it just didn’t feel good it felt kind of gross like there was some shitty things happening.
00:33:56.220 –> 00:34:05.460
Ashley Berman Hale: But now I i love that people are talking more to each other. If you don’t know Mary Davies and the industry. She has created groups that help people and give them a safe place to talk about
00:34:05.760 –> 00:34:16.740
Ashley Berman Hale: Their personal struggles that I find really incredible. And for me, personally, I’ve I’m trying to be very brave capital, be brave, about talking about my mental illness and my doubts and the bad days that I have
00:34:17.430 –> 00:34:25.950
Ashley Berman Hale: And I have felt not only accepted but embraced and holy shit, I still have a job like some of the stuff I say in public. I can’t believe but
00:34:26.460 –> 00:34:30.990
Ashley Berman Hale: Being able to be out there and be vulnerable hasn’t hurt my career as far as I know.
00:34:31.740 –> 00:34:41.340
Ashley Berman Hale: But I would just encourage anyone if you’re in that place and you feel any sort of really from talking about it. You’re in good company and not in good company. As in, like, hell yeah let’s have a depression party.
00:34:42.900 –> 00:34:52.860
Ashley Berman Hale: Because I have thrown other parties that are better, but you’re in good company in that there’s generally some really compassionate people here that can empathize and can stand by you.
00:34:53.460 –> 00:34:59.880
Ashley Berman Hale: And sometimes that’s all you mean like sometimes I get a lot just from going to Jamie’s house or meeting somewhere and working side by side without even talking
00:35:01.290 –> 00:35:04.170
Ashley Berman Hale: I’ve worked remotely for 10 years. So that’s very important.
00:35:05.220 –> 00:35:07.290
Jamie Alberico: Yeah, come on, really.
00:35:08.160 –> 00:35:08.730
Ashley Berman Hale: You’re three
00:35:09.180 –> 00:35:13.890
Jeff Louella: Now you’re if three of being removed, I guess, somewhere around there and I do
00:35:14.400 –> 00:35:24.810
Jeff Louella: sometimes miss having that camaraderie in the office where you you can’t talk about some of the stuff that’s on your, you know, things that are on your team. I mean, I really feel after watching a lot of the tech SEO boost stuff.
00:35:25.350 –> 00:35:35.550
Jeff Louella: I’m like, wow, I think, I think I need to really step up my game because 80% of that was about Python and machine learning, which
00:35:35.970 –> 00:35:45.900
Jeff Louella: I do think has you know a place. It just seemed like a whole conference based on it kind of made me like think overnight. I’m all of a sudden going like, I’m so far behind. I think it’s just why
00:35:47.760 –> 00:35:49.170
Jeff Louella: I always felt like I was pretty
00:35:49.170 –> 00:35:56.280
Jeff Louella: Much always a little bit of a step ahead. But I think one. Now we have with there is such a great tech community.
00:35:56.730 –> 00:36:03.330
Jeff Louella: That it’s like, oh, I think the tech guys aren’t the ones that are out there like pounding your chest, saying, look at me, and think now we have
00:36:03.990 –> 00:36:13.590
Jeff Louella: More of that community. And you know what the tech SEO slack group that were in there and I’m just like, wow, there’s like a million tech SEOs i thought i was like a one of a kind.
00:36:17.490 –> 00:36:21.120
Jeff Louella: And now there’s just yeah like that whole conference. I was watching going okay
00:36:22.650 –> 00:36:25.410
Jamie Alberico: I mean jr was like, and I made my own internet
00:36:25.470 –> 00:36:25.980
Jeff Louella: Yeah.
00:36:26.310 –> 00:36:27.510
Jamie Alberico: The bar was raised.
00:36:28.200 –> 00:36:33.810
Ashley Berman Hale: Yeah, the best like I swear to God, if I wasn’t married. He’s in trouble because those brains.
00:36:34.560 –> 00:36:41.730
Jacob Stoops: Looking I’m smart and like, I’m like, people like Jr. I’m like damn it I blame you. It’s your fault for being so smart, and I’m so
00:36:43.260 –> 00:36:43.410
Jacob Stoops: And
00:36:43.920 –> 00:36:44.490
Jeff Louella: So,
00:36:44.790 –> 00:36:45.930
Jeff Louella: He’s got that Southern charm.
00:36:45.960 –> 00:36:48.000
Ashley Berman Hale: Tuesday. Oh yeah, well,
00:36:49.080 –> 00:36:50.640
Jamie Alberico: Cupid, though, and I think we need to I
00:36:50.640 –> 00:36:51.270
Jacob Stoops: Know, I know.
00:36:51.990 –> 00:36:52.590
Jacob Stoops: Matt.
00:36:52.650 –> 00:36:54.750
Jacob Stoops: Was being facetious. This
00:36:56.220 –> 00:36:56.490
Jamie Alberico: But
00:36:56.550 –> 00:37:02.340
Jamie Alberico: Something that I’ll share my story here about feeling stupid and Ashley really being there for me because it’s like
00:37:04.770 –> 00:37:17.700
Jamie Alberico: So we went to tech. Are you into Google IO together. My first I, oh, I think it was 2016 HF, we went to. And if you’ve ever been to IO, you can go to
00:37:18.450 –> 00:37:32.400
Jamie Alberico: This panel to panel to panel with the most amazing experts in their field who knows so much on are bringing so much to move the community forward on to celebrate. I spent the day
00:37:33.150 –> 00:37:40.770
Jamie Alberico: Together concert every year and I spent the concert in bathroom so 27 hyperventilating and having an absolute panic attack.
00:37:41.220 –> 00:37:48.810
Jamie Alberico: On why I was there on how I had taken a spot from someone who could event here and using this information actually done something with it.
00:37:49.770 –> 00:38:00.900
Jamie Alberico: It was it was a terrible, terrible sensation. But at the end of it. I learned to offer myself grace and in those moments where I am clearly the dumbest kid in the room.
00:38:01.410 –> 00:38:12.450
Jamie Alberico: And that’s okay because I’m still in the room, and I’m willing to ask those questions that seem so one on one. And I feel like I’m willing to
00:38:12.960 –> 00:38:20.940
Jamie Alberico: Learn from people who are a lot smarter than me so Ashley prides herself on and curating up selection of really, really beautiful and brilliant people
00:38:21.900 –> 00:38:37.290
Jamie Alberico: Being around her and I learned to get there myself learn that it’s okay to feel like I have no idea what I’m doing. Like that’s officially now my happy place is an absence of gravity just picking a point in my horizons. Right.
00:38:38.250 –> 00:38:50.640
Ashley Berman Hale: Yeah, I, I considered a special talent to be surrounded by people that are smarter than you and then instead of feeling self conscious. If you can find comfort there and excitement there, then you’re you are good. I’m going to do.
00:38:50.670 –> 00:38:52.200
Jamie Alberico: Like roller derby for the ego.
00:38:52.500 –> 00:39:01.050
Ashley Berman Hale: Yeah, yeah. I’m also the worst roller derby player, but if you can find comfort in getting your actual ass kicked. Then it’s for you.
00:39:02.280 –> 00:39:03.690
Jamie Alberico: Humble here again because you just
00:39:03.720 –> 00:39:05.340
Jamie Alberico: Want on fallible brawl.
00:39:06.990 –> 00:39:09.570
Ashley Berman Hale: Oh yeah, I wonder, be prom queen, you guys.
00:39:09.630 –> 00:39:11.070
Jeff Louella: I’m so nice.
00:39:11.400 –> 00:39:13.050
Jacob Stoops: How long have you been doing roller derby.
00:39:13.350 –> 00:39:28.980
Ashley Berman Hale: Um, two and a half years, something like that. Not very long. It’s the first sport. I’ve ever played and I am an overweight, you know, working person who sits down for the last 36 years of my 36 year life. So it was a trip and a challenge. But heck
00:39:30.090 –> 00:39:38.580
Jacob Stoops: What, like what puts you because roller derby is not something like people do very often. So like you’re sitting around two or three years ago, like
00:39:40.140 –> 00:39:43.920
Jacob Stoops: Maybe I think I’ll go do roller derby like how did that come about.
00:39:45.060 –> 00:39:54.900
Ashley Berman Hale: So, um, I have two very fabulous daughters and the oldest one was into real interview she had read a graphic novel called roller girl, which is a fantastic graphic novel.
00:39:55.500 –> 00:40:01.290
Ashley Berman Hale: And she was interested in doing it, but I didn’t know anything about it. And we found out that there was a local team for adults and juniors
00:40:02.910 –> 00:40:11.550
Ashley Berman Hale: And she wasn’t quite old enough, and so I told her that I would give it a shot and see how this whole roller derby thing worked and
00:40:12.300 –> 00:40:20.670
Ashley Berman Hale: I gave it a shot and definitely threw up like my first night there, but was like dude, this this gear is expensive. I have to do this three months. Otherwise, like
00:40:21.150 –> 00:40:26.760
Ashley Berman Hale: I’ve made a financial mistake which makes me nervous. So I stuck on for three months and just kept going.
00:40:27.270 –> 00:40:33.150
Ashley Berman Hale: It’s a, it’s a funny environment. I know it seems you know a bit abrasive. But I will tell you that I have found
00:40:33.720 –> 00:40:44.040
Ashley Berman Hale: More community with other women there than I have any other place in my life more acceptance more diverse women, they will absolutely murder you on the track, but they’re the first ones to pick you up off the floor.
00:40:44.970 –> 00:40:56.700
Ashley Berman Hale: Constant compliments and encouragement, so maybe I’m there for the ego. I’m not the best roller skater. But it just feels really good to be around genuine people that want to see you succeed, but also are not going to go easy on you.
00:40:57.150 –> 00:40:59.190
Jacob Stoops: And that are going to elbow you in the face.
00:40:59.850 –> 00:41:09.720
Ashley Berman Hale: Sometimes I mean that’s not fully legal, but hey, but you know they’re the first person is to drive you to the ER and bring you a muffin while you’re waiting for the x ray so
00:41:10.950 –> 00:41:24.180
Ashley Berman Hale: So it’s a really solid community. I would say that, you know, when we work on computers so much. I would encourage you to get a hobby that involves your hands or physically wearing yourself out that’s been really important for the balance of my mental health to
00:41:26.340 –> 00:41:30.960
Ashley Berman Hale: Anyway, joined realtor becomes skate with me to cover letter b.com alright, just kidding.
00:41:31.050 –> 00:41:31.650
Jacob Stoops: Farther
00:41:32.640 –> 00:41:38.550
Jacob Stoops: Now, forgive me for my roller derby knowledge are there men’s roller derby circuits.
00:41:38.610 –> 00:41:39.120
Ashley Berman Hale: There are
00:41:39.180 –> 00:41:40.710
Jacob Stoops: Indeed, wow.
00:41:40.770 –> 00:41:50.670
Ashley Berman Hale: Yeah, there are Myrna which is my favorite acronym is the one and it’s the men’s roller derby Association. There’s a great team in Denver, where Jamie is there, same all over the country.
00:41:51.210 –> 00:42:05.880
Ashley Berman Hale: Still pretty female dominated. It’s a for women by women volunteer run sport all nonprofits. So we have a pretty strongly, but in the men’s roller derby women are also welcome to join. So usually when I meant to be one or two women.
00:42:07.770 –> 00:42:09.660
Ashley Berman Hale: But yeah, get out there strap on your skates.
00:42:09.900 –> 00:42:12.570
Ashley Berman Hale: I had no one to help you come up with a penny Derby name.
00:42:12.720 –> 00:42:14.190
Ashley Berman Hale: I got you. Oh.
00:42:14.670 –> 00:42:19.740
Jeff Louella: No, I’m gonna be taking my daughter to we were she’s found a new love for roller skating.
00:42:20.250 –> 00:42:30.630
Jeff Louella: And I mean, she’s only nine now but she’s I told her I was gonna take it a roller derby and she’s super excited but then the the league that’s around here went on break. But it could THEY COME BACK THE END OF JANUARY so
00:42:31.560 –> 00:42:36.960
Ashley Berman Hale: We’re on break too but Jeff, you said ping me offline because my nine year old was the one who got me into it.
00:42:37.020 –> 00:42:40.650
Jeff Louella: That’s awesome. Well, hopefully it doesn’t get me into it into it but
00:42:43.020 –> 00:42:47.070
Ashley Berman Hale: But it’s hard to roller skate and not smile so straps escapes on
00:42:47.430 –> 00:42:57.840
Jeff Louella: Agreed. Now, they were fun. We go out there. We every kid in my house has a sport and my one daughter. We finally found. She’s an artist. She’s the artist of the family, but we found her sport, which is roller skating so
00:42:58.020 –> 00:43:06.750
Ashley Berman Hale: Isn’t that crazy how it works. Um, so, Jacob and Jeff, if you’re okay with this. Since we talked earlier a little bit of imposter syndrome. I’m going to
00:43:07.230 –> 00:43:22.650
Ashley Berman Hale: I’m going to say off topic. Real quick, and want to put them on a last thought out there on that item is just that we’ve had a lot of suicides in our industry, the past few years, there’s been I think I know this. There’s been too many one is too many. But there’s been too many
00:43:23.700 –> 00:43:35.280
Ashley Berman Hale: So I just open invitation. If anyone out there is Phil and rough and wants to chat. I am wicked good at bad memes mom jokes inappropriate comments and drunk texting, so
00:43:36.960 –> 00:43:39.480
Ashley Berman Hale: Just reach out and talk to someone. Yeah, I would.
00:43:39.990 –> 00:43:43.380
Jacob Stoops: I would say the same. I would offer the same invitation. I’ve
00:43:44.460 –> 00:43:51.540
Jacob Stoops: I mean, not everybody has been able to have experience with people going through that I do have
00:43:51.990 –> 00:44:05.340
Jacob Stoops: Experienced not necessarily myself but somebody very close to me has been battling with that and having those types of thoughts. So I’m maybe a little more well suited than than, than the next person. So I would also offer
00:44:06.660 –> 00:44:09.840
Jacob Stoops: Community to anyone that needs to talk and
00:44:11.130 –> 00:44:17.100
Jacob Stoops: Please reach out reach out you’ve got you’ve got friends, you’ve got family. Don’t let it go too far.
00:44:18.420 –> 00:44:19.470
Jacob Stoops: Don’t let it go too far.
00:44:20.820 –> 00:44:22.440
Jacob Stoops: Okay, we just got
00:44:22.620 –> 00:44:27.150
Ashley Berman Hale: Really really taken like I am so sorry I’ve cried twice so
00:44:27.210 –> 00:44:27.900
Jacob Stoops: It’s gonna be done.
00:44:28.380 –> 00:44:30.720
Jacob Stoops: Once I’ve almost tear it up. So, man.
00:44:31.080 –> 00:44:31.530
God, I’m gonna
00:44:33.270 –> 00:44:34.740
Jacob Stoops: Get me here. Um,
00:44:35.430 –> 00:44:42.690
Jamie Alberico: Well, I think it was monotone robot and I’ve been a beautiful because we are fallible soft, squishy people
00:44:43.380 –> 00:44:52.140
Jamie Alberico: And being real humans is what keeps us together in a world that’s based on ideas and one TV respond partners and
00:44:52.950 –> 00:44:54.900
Jacob Stoops: Those that were not a robot came from.
00:44:42.120 –> 00:45:50.160
Jamie Alberico: Not a Robot coming from Ashley Berman Hale. Yeah, her bio section of the website says, I’m not a robot and she was sharing this off to me.
00:45:51.270 –> 00:45:56.970
Jamie Alberico: Just fantastic getting tickets and make a new branch all together, have an interest in doing well, can I
00:45:58.050 –> 00:46:04.050
Jamie Alberico: Have to Google domains bought the domain fun drinking game. By the way, just go when you get drugged by random domains.
00:46:04.800 –> 00:46:17.160
Jamie Alberico: Robot may have been purchased in one of those moments, a couple of beers and it’s a it’s very effective way to help people understand, you know, I guess, to where I said, all those captures you fill out. I’m not a robot. But I thought
00:46:20.190 –> 00:46:21.420
Jeff Louella: I recently bought a domain.
00:46:22.440 –> 00:46:23.520
Jeff Louella: Lasers and bacon.
00:46:23.610 –> 00:46:25.800
Jeff Louella: Because I figured. What’s cooler than lasers and bacon.
00:46:26.340 –> 00:46:26.820
Jamie Alberico: That that
00:46:29.250 –> 00:46:30.690
Jacob Stoops: We can do with that site. Yeah.
00:46:31.830 –> 00:46:37.710
Jeff Louella: You know that goes right now it’s in the vault of 30 other web domains, I one day, one wants to start so
00:46:39.210 –> 00:46:43.830
Jacob Stoops: Wow, what are, what made you think that and how much you had a drink.
00:46:46.020 –> 00:46:52.710
Jeff Louella: You know, I was looking, I was looking up laser engraving machines. And I was like, you know, it makes lasers cooler bacon.
00:46:54.900 –> 00:46:56.970
Jacob Stoops: Bacon just makes everything cooler, I guess.
00:46:57.300 –> 00:46:59.310
Jamie Alberico: Why are you custom engraving, the bacon.
00:47:00.750 –> 00:47:01.620
Jeff Louella: Know,
00:47:01.680 –> 00:47:02.820
Jamie Alberico: If any wedding thing.
00:47:03.270 –> 00:47:04.020
Jamie Alberico: Could be.
00:47:04.800 –> 00:47:06.630
Ashley Berman Hale: Market market it do it now.
00:47:09.690 –> 00:47:10.560
Ashley Berman Hale: The only thing that
00:47:10.950 –> 00:47:16.230
Jacob Stoops: Does not make cooler what sounds cool is vodka, that that
00:47:16.260 –> 00:47:17.280
I’ve had baked out
00:47:18.870 –> 00:47:19.410
Jacob Stoops: Bad
00:47:20.640 –> 00:47:22.350
Jamie Alberico: flavor to it. That’s not okay.
00:47:23.730 –> 00:47:27.840
Jamie Alberico: Yeah, yeah. I’ve been working a Bloody Mary, but that’s the only time she
00:47:27.840 –> 00:47:30.510
Jamie Alberico: Really apply practical application of that about God.
00:47:32.430 –> 00:47:32.970
Jacob Stoops: I’m
00:47:34.230 –> 00:47:36.300
Jacob Stoops: writing and speaking so
00:47:37.740 –> 00:47:47.490
Jacob Stoops: Jamie nationally. I feel like you guys both do a mix or a fair amount of both writing and public speaking.
00:47:48.600 –> 00:47:58.290
00:47:59.520 –> 00:48:08.910
Jacob Stoops: Video with Martin, um, how did that come about and and after that question. I’d love to get into the public speaking side of things, but I wanted to ask
00:48:08.940 –> 00:48:09.990
Ashley Berman Hale: You. I mean, is
00:48:11.550 –> 00:48:17.760
Ashley Berman Hale: I just would do. That is so cool that you are that person. I just know it tickles me. So yeah, thanks for bringing that up because it’s pretty bad.
00:48:18.240 –> 00:48:18.510
00:48:19.830 –> 00:48:25.680
00:48:26.700 –> 00:48:28.020
Jamie Alberico: That started
00:48:29.460 –> 00:48:36.540
Jamie Alberico: Doing migrations international talk to Brighton SEO. I think that was my second or third talk ever you want to count meetups as well.
00:48:38.160 –> 00:48:49.890
00:48:50.430 –> 00:49:01.230
Jamie Alberico: I’m terrible at time zones absolutely awful at it ended up being like three in the morning seven my leg TARDIS bath road my blue hairs all a frenzy on
00:49:01.920 –> 00:49:08.070
Jamie Alberico: The screen based up and they realized oh my face, my face was like 15 feet wide right now because that’s the Google office.
00:49:08.880 –> 00:49:16.350
Jamie Alberico: And I just happen to be lucky enough to me bar, and as he he had just joined the webmaster team, I believe, Brighton was one of his first talk
00:49:16.980 –> 00:49:23.070
Jamie Alberico: On and just had a really lovely time talking with the team and he will show up too bright in with our blue hair becomes
00:49:23.700 –> 00:49:33.780
00:49:34.380 –> 00:49:39.210
Jamie Alberico: Up to do this video me an amazing producer, your brother chance to meet and she’s on
00:49:40.110 –> 00:49:54.390
00:49:55.440 –> 00:49:59.940
Jamie Alberico: Getting our redesigned first place in 2014 we launched in 2015
00:50:04.620 –> 00:50:16.620
00:50:17.640 –> 00:50:20.970
Jacob Stoops: Still have a lot of trouble with crawling and I say,
00:50:21.000 –> 00:50:23.670
Jamie Alberico: 2014 when we got the project greenlight it took
00:50:24.360 –> 00:50:26.220
Jacob Stoops: He says to them, getting
00:50:26.280 –> 00:50:28.830
Jacob Stoops: Done SEO and 2014 so
00:50:29.160 –> 00:50:32.220
Jamie Alberico: No, no, we were rebuilding the site at that time and
00:50:32.580 –> 00:50:33.270
Jacob Stoops: Maybe a few weeks.
00:50:33.510 –> 00:50:38.610
Jamie Alberico: After Google announced they were deprecating the Ajax crawler the site went live
00:50:39.150 –> 00:50:39.510
00:50:40.560 –> 00:50:46.470
Jamie Alberico: I mean, we definitely did a plane SPACE MONKEY. Like, let’s see what happens. We actually called that project space party.
00:50:47.760 –> 00:50:59.970
Jacob Stoops: Nice. So, so with the with the public speaking, you guys. I feel like both do a fair amount of public speaking and or public moderating. What does that been like
00:51:02.580 –> 00:51:03.330
Ashley Berman Hale: Gary
00:51:06.930 –> 00:51:13.350
Ashley Berman Hale: So I man. I’m a bit of a reluctance speaker, and I’m very not polished, but I really like doing it.
00:51:14.100 –> 00:51:21.180
Ashley Berman Hale: Um, so, hashtag. If you’re, if you don’t have production level value conferences and you want to hang out and talk about cool things I’m game.
00:51:21.900 –> 00:51:30.210
Ashley Berman Hale: Um, but I use it as a way to personally push myself to go deeper into topics as well as just to make friends. So I’ve been working from home for 10 years
00:51:32.190 –> 00:51:35.520
Ashley Berman Hale: So I need to get out of the house, a couple times a year. So
00:51:35.520 –> 00:51:36.180
Jeff Louella: That was
00:51:36.300 –> 00:51:47.100
Ashley Berman Hale: So is pretty important. And then it’s just it’s a bit of a self challenge. So I had, I had a pretty bad speech impediment. As a kid, and took five years of speech therapy so
00:51:47.820 –> 00:51:53.340
Ashley Berman Hale: As a big fuck you to my jeans I decided to do more public speaking as a high school or an adult. So
00:51:53.820 –> 00:51:59.760
Ashley Berman Hale: Part of that is just a little personal renegade but it’s fun. I would love to say that more conferences, though.
00:52:00.330 –> 00:52:05.550
Ashley Berman Hale: Bring more people to present collaboratively like I love presenting with Jamie and with other people that I know.
00:52:06.450 –> 00:52:09.840
Ashley Berman Hale: It helps to get you more bang for your buck again that peer review and peer editing.
00:52:10.800 –> 00:52:19.680
Ashley Berman Hale: And moderating is also fantastic instead of having the same conference organizers. If you’re welcome have other people in the field. There’s just so many cool opportunities there so
00:52:20.160 –> 00:52:26.730
Ashley Berman Hale: Like I said, I’m not a natural speaker, I definitely get nervous. I am known to throw up either before or after or both.
00:52:26.790 –> 00:52:27.060
00:52:28.650 –> 00:52:39.630
Ashley Berman Hale: You just but I still enjoy doing it and really appreciate it opportunities, but it’s it’s wild. It’s weird right i mean i go straight social blackout when I’m up there. Well,
00:52:39.870 –> 00:52:43.500
Jeff Louella: Actually, you also started the rally SEO Meetup group right
00:52:43.560 –> 00:52:45.750
Ashley Berman Hale: Oh, you bring it back, Jeff.
00:52:46.470 –> 00:52:48.180
Jeff Louella: Well, I mean, to go from not being
00:52:48.210 –> 00:52:55.260
Jeff Louella: Liking to speak to starting, you know, the largest Meetup group about SEO. That’s kind of like
00:52:55.530 –> 00:52:57.510
Jeff Louella: I’m jealous that I don’t live in Raleigh, sometimes
00:52:58.920 –> 00:53:03.300
Jeff Louella: I make it up there a couple times, you know, during the conferences and things like that. But at the same time.
00:53:04.080 –> 00:53:13.920
Jeff Louella: The community here, there seems really awesome. And it seems like anyone. It’s like a lot of helping each other grow and and it seems like an awesome community that’s
00:53:14.520 –> 00:53:23.580
Jeff Louella: You know, where we have people like Jr and Patrick and and you know every time I go or see anyone there. I’m like, wow, you all live in Raleigh, like how Raleigh become
00:53:24.150 –> 00:53:33.870
Ashley Berman Hale: Thing. Okay, so I will tell you that is one of my proudest moments. Um, I guess I’m like a little bit of a mama by heart, even though I’m not, I should not be left alone to raise any children but
00:53:34.860 –> 00:53:45.030
Ashley Berman Hale: It was when I was so I had moved to North Carolina after my father and my brother had died and decided on a fresh start moved to a place I never knew and
00:53:46.500 –> 00:53:53.100
Ashley Berman Hale: I just convince my boss to let me use his office space to maybe try to get a few people together off hours to talk about this stuff.
00:53:54.030 –> 00:54:10.500
Ashley Berman Hale: And luckily for me. I was like, do you want to own it. And he said, No, go ahead, which was pretty awesome. But the first local. So here the first rally SEO meetup was definitely in the single digits. And I made homemade pies to try and bribe people to show up, um,
00:54:11.790 –> 00:54:18.090
Ashley Berman Hale: So it started out very, very small. But it was a really, really cool way to develop speaking skills for me.
00:54:18.390 –> 00:54:24.780
Ashley Berman Hale: But also to try to influence the market, a little bit like I told you I took a big long break from SEO because it was a little sticky so back then. I was
00:54:25.290 –> 00:54:35.130
Ashley Berman Hale: On a little bit more of a rampage of kindness. So I made it free and I made sure that they were different types for all levels that they were takeaways and actionable insights and that
00:54:35.670 –> 00:54:42.540
Ashley Berman Hale: All I was trying to do was enable local businesses to either do the work themselves or to know enough to be able to hire without liability.
00:54:43.080 –> 00:54:57.690
Ashley Berman Hale: And that sucker grew. I mean we out group at times. I was just begging businesses like hey, if I can get everyone to buy a beer. Can I, you know, hang out in this corner of your bar for an hour tonight and also if no one’s going to buy beer. I’ll just buy them all. It’s fine.
00:54:58.860 –> 00:55:07.650
Ashley Berman Hale: But it it grew and grew quickly and I can be a little anti social by nature. And so I had a partner after the first year to come and fill Buckley
00:55:08.430 –> 00:55:16.230
Ashley Berman Hale: Who is part of that like Patrick jr group. I think he’s a little header IBM. He’s fantastic but he is a social butterfly so
00:55:16.680 –> 00:55:23.670
Ashley Berman Hale: It was another situation where it couldn’t have been the way it did without partnering with somebody. So sharing is caring and what a cool way to start off
00:55:24.090 –> 00:55:28.740
Ashley Berman Hale: You know, my professional SEO career and kind of restarted after feeling like the industry was a little sad.
00:55:29.340 –> 00:55:39.570
Ashley Berman Hale: But I you know I left it in good hands and they’ve continued to do awesome things and I actually got to go back last year to speak for the 10 year anniversary how how rad, is that it’s like my babies in the double digits.
00:55:40.230 –> 00:55:45.270
Jamie Alberico: It’s awesome rampage of kindness is the most on brand thing I’ve ever heard.
00:55:46.740 –> 00:55:55.110
Ashley Berman Hale: That, that’s good. That’s all right, I got a t shirt rampage of kindness that goes along with them. The relentlessly casual label, I, I also appreciate
00:55:55.410 –> 00:56:07.650
Jacob Stoops: There’s an old at iOS or videos at video game believe called rampage. You should just steal that logo and close rampage of kindness and there you go. You got your own t shirt brand.
00:56:07.890 –> 00:56:10.950
Ashley Berman Hale: Cool, Jacob. Now I’m not going to get any work done today. I blame you.
00:56:10.950 –> 00:56:14.160
Jamie Alberico: Go discounted work branding and work.
00:56:18.900 –> 00:56:25.800
Jacob Stoops: Oh man, I’m so deep crawl, I’d be remiss to not talk about deep crawl. What’s it. What’s it like working the depot.
00:56:26.220 –> 00:56:37.950
Ashley Berman Hale: Ship date is the best I’m you know I’m optimistic but not naive. So, but I left a couple jobs, one that was a really toxic environment, one that was
00:56:38.550 –> 00:56:45.270
Ashley Berman Hale: Great, but just not the best fit. And I was feeling really low on my capabilities to feel like a productive you know employable human being.
00:56:46.140 –> 00:56:53.580
Ashley Berman Hale: And deep called crowd grabbed me and I will tell you I have had so much joy working here with the people that I work with the software.
00:56:54.330 –> 00:57:00.540
Ashley Berman Hale: And just the flexibility to learn so deep crawls uh you know it’s a software. It’s a crawler enterprise level. So it’s like
00:57:01.080 –> 00:57:15.330
Ashley Berman Hale: It’s a lot like Screaming Frog who are amazing people that make a great product, but it’s sort of on steroids, so you’re able to grab historic data crawl in the cloud trend everything. And there’s just a ton of ways to define the data and filter right within the tool.
00:57:15.750 –> 00:57:17.400
Jacob Stoops: It also does it on your computer.
00:57:18.570 –> 00:57:25.410
Ashley Berman Hale: It doesn’t shut down your computer because it’s like, you know, your fan won’t even get hot. So that’s, you know, big selling point
00:57:26.070 –> 00:57:32.250
Ashley Berman Hale: But it’s just a fun tool it’s it’s really interesting. I’ve really enjoyed working here, I would say if anyone hasn’t tried it.
00:57:32.700 –> 00:57:39.960
Ashley Berman Hale: Just ping me I would be happy to run across from you and you can poke around obviously not a salesperson because I’m really into giving it away for free but
00:57:40.710 –> 00:57:48.960
Ashley Berman Hale: I mean there’s cool data. So if you ever want me to run a sample crawl kick it over. I’m happy to do so you can, yeah, if anyone wants to bug me on Twitter. That’s probably the best place.
00:57:49.230 –> 00:57:57.600
Jeff Louella: In the cross seems to have been, you know, I guess the one of the first like SAS platforms to start hiring SEOs, you know, and I see now.
00:57:58.050 –> 00:58:01.050
Jeff Louella: You know, now you’re going to be competing against Patrick because he went over to
00:58:01.680 –> 00:58:12.480
Jeff Louella: H refs. But in general, they’re like, it seems deep crawl like this, the knowledge base has really grown, which is which is great. Like the articles or webinars or something. I look forward to every time they get launched
00:58:12.570 –> 00:58:17.640
Ashley Berman Hale: Oh my gosh, what a smart team, right. So first of all, I could meet Patrick and an arm wrestle so
00:58:17.700 –> 00:58:19.320
Ashley Berman Hale: I’m not right, but
00:58:20.520 –> 00:58:26.790
Ashley Berman Hale: But I might team is really great. The marketing team does a lot of crazy cool stuff so mean, everyone knows like Sam and Rachel and Jen and
00:58:27.240 –> 00:58:34.380
Ashley Berman Hale: Those are people who aren’t traditional SEOs and they’re smarter than most people I know, like they are awesome. My team we’re professional services team.
00:58:35.250 –> 00:58:43.440
Ashley Berman Hale: There’s six or seven of us, depending on the day but also hiring. So if you’re a crazy fabulous curious tech SEO and you want to work with me, which
00:58:43.950 –> 00:58:54.060
Ashley Berman Hale: Godspeed but ping me there too. So the company’s doing well. They just went through Series B funding and I’m just excited to work with more fantastic people, but they’ve really done something special.
00:58:54.510 –> 00:59:04.530
Ashley Berman Hale: In terms of priority to prioritizing data and good things for clients as well as making a really, really fantastic team and hiring obviously humble people right so that’s great.
00:59:06.240 –> 00:59:12.600
Jamie Alberico: So you guys always have a sandwich for me and you guys always have the Chargers that I forgot plane somewhere.
00:59:13.740 –> 00:59:14.280
Jamie Alberico: On a T.
00:59:14.700 –> 00:59:28.140
Ashley Berman Hale: Shirt and Casey spell something like you have like the most. I don’t know. Hearing a material company like we will take care of anyone. So again, if you’re ever curious whether it’s job right here on my site for free, like just paying us for a helpful group.
00:59:28.830 –> 00:59:29.760
Jamie Alberico: Very good human
00:59:30.300 –> 00:59:32.670
Ashley Berman Hale: With sandwiches with sandwiches.
00:59:34.200 –> 00:59:39.390
Jacob Stoops: Oh so want to make sure we’re respectful of time I
00:59:40.440 –> 00:59:52.740
Jacob Stoops: Don’t think we’re gonna have time for news. I think we’re, we’re probably not going to, because we’ve had such wonderful conversation that is flowing. So naturally I don’t think we’re going to deep dive into technical SEO. I think we’ve talked
00:59:54.180 –> 00:59:59.580
Jacob Stoops: Quite enough. I did want to talk about a few more few more things before we wrap up the episode.
01:00:00.240 –> 01:00:13.140
Jacob Stoops: But because you guys have been so awesome to talk to. It’s been one of our most free flowing conversation. So I definitely, definitely. Thank you guys for that. It’s been really good, really good conversation.
01:00:14.640 –> 01:00:27.540
Jacob Stoops: Um, you guys have mentioned several times and I agree. I’ve noticed it. I, I sometimes choose not to take part, because I have a lot of my own thoughts, but you’ve mentioned the
01:00:29.100 –> 01:00:43.830
Jacob Stoops: The level of discourse in the in the industry over probably the last five to five to 10 years and I don’t know. I think I’ve noticed it as well, getting getting better, but it had gotten
01:00:44.910 –> 01:00:54.360
Jacob Stoops: A lot of it’s centered around conferences and whatnot, but it had gotten pretty toxic and pretty nasty there for for a little while. So I was wondering if y’all could
01:00:55.290 –> 01:01:07.020
Jacob Stoops: Talk a little bit about that and why you think it’s maybe gotten a little bit better. Over the course of the last, I don’t know, I feel like maybe the last year, maybe, maybe I’m overshooting that I don’t know but
01:01:07.470 –> 01:01:14.370
Jacob Stoops: I felt it also being really bad and then getting a little bit better. But I don’t know if you guys could talk about that a little bit.
01:01:17.670 –> 01:01:27.000
Ashley Berman Hale: Yeah, I’m awesome well know, Jamie. You go first because I, yeah, I got to the end of something and I pretend like I’ve been drinking a whole time and I will just eat up all the time here.
01:01:28.320 –> 01:01:29.640
Jamie Alberico: But I love listening to your story.
01:01:30.150 –> 01:01:31.320
Jamie Alberico: very articulate and
01:01:31.410 –> 01:01:47.220
Jamie Alberico: You know you’ve always been a great mentor for me and this kind of scenario. I honestly can say I’ve been very lucky and I’ve only really been met with kindness from people at these conferences and support. I like to think perhaps that
01:01:48.240 –> 01:01:54.990
Jamie Alberico: I try and bring up there as well. But there’s no critic of really going to be as harsh as my internal one
01:01:55.440 –> 01:02:08.850
Jamie Alberico: So I think keeping her quiet on focused on when I’m there to do maybe take it away from me and giving attention to some of these more interesting moments that I hear about after the fact.
01:02:10.290 –> 01:02:14.580
Jamie Alberico: I haven’t been the first chance I can speak to a new the kerfuffle
01:02:16.620 –> 01:02:25.890
Ashley Berman Hale: Yeah, and I mean events bring their own level of potential toxicity, the industry and of itself has been a little tough to. So I’ve been in it for about 15 ish years maybe a little more
01:02:26.790 –> 01:02:39.300
Ashley Berman Hale: Um, and I did a lot of volunteer work and forums, that’s how I got that’s how I got started in a lot of it and forums can be a really awful, awful place to be, especially if you’re an idiot and just use your regular name Ashley’s everyone knows you’re a girl.
01:02:41.370 –> 01:02:42.600
Jamie Alberico: Was true man.
01:02:43.230 –> 01:02:45.360
Jamie Alberico: I’m not ever gave me with an androgynous name.
01:02:45.480 –> 01:02:51.300
Ashley Berman Hale: I know that so nice. Um, but it is, it’s been bad, but I think in a lot of the ways it’s getting better.
01:02:51.810 –> 01:02:57.570
Ashley Berman Hale: I just want to call out that, you know, I come from a place of privilege, even though it can be tough to be in tech as a woman.
01:02:58.380 –> 01:03:06.960
Ashley Berman Hale: I am already five steps ahead of some other folks, especially people of color LGBT Q that are out like there’s there’s a stiffness there and
01:03:07.470 –> 01:03:14.850
Ashley Berman Hale: I would really like it to be more fluid where people can come in and present and there’s a focus on ideas. I think we are getting there. I think we have warmed the ground so much
01:03:15.450 –> 01:03:23.370
Ashley Berman Hale: And I think that I can be a bit spicy unintentionally and very clumsy with my calls to try and make things a little bit more better and inclusive.
01:03:23.820 –> 01:03:33.150
Ashley Berman Hale: But for the most part people have been very generous and forgiving in terms of how I approach that and it spawns some really good conversations so
01:03:34.020 –> 01:03:40.140
Ashley Berman Hale: I think we’re getting better and a lot of ways, and I hope to keep saying encouragement in that way. I will see say that
01:03:41.100 –> 01:03:48.900
Ashley Berman Hale: There’s one conference in particular that is really great for me in terms of seeing that as the NGA Atlanta conference to Angular Atlanta conference where
01:03:49.560 –> 01:03:57.930
Ashley Berman Hale: The founder there works hard to make all majority women or people of color and especially women of color speakers without repeating speakers. It’s pretty fantastic.
01:03:59.010 –> 01:04:07.350
Ashley Berman Hale: And it takes a lot of work, like the organizer Zach will be there to tell you, it takes a lot of work to advise any other events, but he’ll tell you that the work is worth it. So,
01:04:08.070 –> 01:04:14.910
Ashley Berman Hale: We’re getting better. I’d like to push a little harder in that area. So leave with kindness, but also psychological safety for everyone to
01:04:16.620 –> 01:04:27.870
Jacob Stoops: Yeah, I agree. And having been so I’ll just, I’ll just come right out with it. I am I dislike conferences and it’s partly because I’m anti social
01:04:28.770 –> 01:04:40.290
Jacob Stoops: A little bit. Although I can be social. But I you know I get uncomfortable and nervous in large groups of people. And so that makes a conference for me not very cool.
01:04:43.260 –> 01:04:47.100
Jacob Stoops: I’m like, I’m just really bad at small talk, and like literally
01:04:47.700 –> 01:05:03.390
Jacob Stoops: It makes me sweat just thinking of having to small talk. Not that I don’t like. I like people just fine. But like in large settings. I always feel super, super awkward, which means just by definition conferences are just not my thing.
01:05:04.650 –> 01:05:17.340
Jacob Stoops: But then there’s also, you know, what types of things go on at conferences with respect to harassment and the way people act towards each other and the, the lack of kindness.
01:05:18.510 –> 01:05:23.700
Jacob Stoops: I’ve run. And I don’t know if you have you guys ever heard the term conference circuit SEO.
01:05:24.840 –> 01:05:25.650
Jacob Stoops: Is that a new thing.
01:05:25.680 –> 01:05:32.940
Jamie Alberico: Yes, I turned out on leave, and I understand you correctly or first do the kind of repeating
01:05:33.360 –> 01:05:33.600
Jacob Stoops: Yeah.
01:05:33.960 –> 01:05:37.980
Jamie Alberico: There’s a couple of key speakers, they tend to get things paid for, you’ve got other people
01:05:38.640 –> 01:05:39.420
Jacob Stoops: Yes.
01:05:39.450 –> 01:05:50.250
Jamie Alberico: Please go to our last represented in our community. And it’s very real that a lot of venues are going to charge money, a lot of money for these tickets and and don’t even pay for the speakers.
01:05:51.630 –> 01:05:52.500
Jacob Stoops: Right, right.
01:05:52.920 –> 01:05:53.820
Jamie Alberico: Very prohibitive.
01:05:54.360 –> 01:05:55.530
Jacob Stoops: There are
01:05:56.730 –> 01:06:08.670
Jacob Stoops: In I’m definitely not trying to lump. Anybody, anybody into this but this story for me is very, very specific to some people that I’ve worked with who
01:06:09.420 –> 01:06:17.430
Jacob Stoops: Were what I call a quote unquote on the conference circuit which means they went to and spoke at a lot of conferences and were looked up to by
01:06:17.850 –> 01:06:28.080
Jacob Stoops: A lot of people as subject matter experts. But then when it came time for them to actually work with me together on certain accounts.
01:06:28.800 –> 01:06:38.310
Jacob Stoops: I found that they fell very, very flat in terms of my expectation of their level of quality and what I actually got from them.
01:06:39.060 –> 01:06:51.840
Jacob Stoops: So that has left me with a little bit of a bad taste in my, in my mouth with respect to what I’ll call certain conference circuit SEO. So just in general conferences are
01:06:52.860 –> 01:07:00.000
Jacob Stoops: Not my favorite thing. But what I have enjoyed seeing recently is the increased focus on
01:07:01.260 –> 01:07:11.940
Jacob Stoops: One acting better treating people better and hopefully fewer instances of harassment. I know women, definitely go through
01:07:12.600 –> 01:07:21.780
Jacob Stoops: A lot and I feel like I’ve never been like Jamie, just like you said, it’s always for me been second hand. I feel like every man definitely knows
01:07:22.110 –> 01:07:27.300
Jacob Stoops: Of a woman who has experienced some sort of sexual harassment. But for me, I’ve never
01:07:27.780 –> 01:07:33.780
Jacob Stoops: It’s never been something I’ve witnessed or anything like that. So I’m always only hearing about it secondhand and I’m less than
01:07:34.470 –> 01:07:50.220
Jacob Stoops: Less than aware of when that that type of thing might be happening. If I were aware. I would definitely definitely speak up. So I’m I feel like sometimes in a bit of an awkward position of wanting to speak up and being supportive but ever being like Johnny on the spot for when an event.
01:07:51.300 –> 01:07:55.350
Jacob Stoops: Happens or transpires so little bit of an awkward awkward.
01:07:56.490 –> 01:08:07.890
Jacob Stoops: Position and I would say so obviously that needs to get better. I don’t know how much that is still going on. But I know it was pretty pervasive in the past and super unfortunate.
01:08:08.430 –> 01:08:18.240
Jacob Stoops: The other thing that I’m really enjoying is the emphasis on speaker balance. I, I, I have a hard time when I see
01:08:19.710 –> 01:08:26.730
Jacob Stoops: An SEO team at a company that is entirely and I’ve experienced this a lot in the past entirely male dominated
01:08:27.540 –> 01:08:31.710
Jamie Alberico: Yeah, they’re celebrating hiring the first female CEO and a team in 2019
01:08:32.400 –> 01:08:34.080
Jamie Alberico: I mean that’s an incredibly sad.
01:08:34.440 –> 01:08:39.810
Jacob Stoops: Yeah, it’s it’s really sad. And I have a hard time with conferences where I look at the
01:08:40.200 –> 01:08:49.350
Jacob Stoops: The speaker lineup and I don’t see a picture of somebody with color. I don’t see a picture of somebody who’s female or you see it, but there’s not nearly enough balance so
01:08:50.070 –> 01:08:58.680
Jacob Stoops: Not something that I think is, is a good thing. And something that I think is trending in the right direction. I don’t think it’s entirely there.
01:08:59.220 –> 01:09:10.920
Jacob Stoops: But I would like to see more more conferences and more companies strive for that balance and not balance for the sake of balance but balance because you really believe
01:09:11.760 –> 01:09:19.470
Jacob Stoops: That that those those people and I’m definitely one of the privileged people really bring value in a different perspective.
01:09:19.920 –> 01:09:27.480
Jacob Stoops: Not just hiring or booking because you need a certain ratio, right. So that’s something that I’m hoping
01:09:28.110 –> 01:09:37.260
Jacob Stoops: Gets a little bit better. But again, as I’ve said before, because I’m kind of an outside observer. I don’t choose to go to a lot of conferences.
01:09:37.950 –> 01:09:48.600
Jacob Stoops: I’m more kind of I feel like routing from the sidelines and trying to push where where I can in my areas of influence which are which are a few outside of my own house so
01:09:50.340 –> 01:10:06.330
Jamie Alberico: I ok here is because that one for me first one I totally understanding the lack of comfort being around that many people I’ve been asked how I seem to to come on stage and my secret ready guys years of practice with a panic disorder.
01:10:06.780 –> 01:10:09.210
Jamie Alberico: Like I have learned how to have a heart attack feel like
01:10:09.210 –> 01:10:18.750
Jamie Alberico: Even the Rolodex prices on keep a calm state so repurpose if you if you’ve been through that you think of it as reclaiming and repurposing all those years of practice.
01:10:19.770 –> 01:10:25.410
Jamie Alberico: And secondly, there are now more groups out here who are advocating to get their women together a presentation together.
01:10:25.710 –> 01:10:33.690
Jamie Alberico: If you are a winless there are used one support women in tech SEO, there is a women in tech SEO Slack channel you can find them on Twitter and on Facebook.
01:10:34.020 –> 01:10:44.190
Jamie Alberico: Joining that conversation. I know some really great conferences coming up that have reached out to them to try and help balance out our speakers find people who are representing very skilled
01:10:45.330 –> 01:10:48.630
Jamie Alberico: Technologies to be on stage and present from their perspective.
01:10:49.800 –> 01:10:53.880
Ashley Berman Hale: Yeah. And if you’re a sweet guy like maybe instead of accepting the panel.
01:10:54.420 –> 01:11:03.210
Ashley Berman Hale: Or accepting the speaking gig. Why don’t you recommend somebody else make it easier on the event organizers because they always say they can’t. But I guarantee there’s someone around you.
01:11:03.870 –> 01:11:08.190
Ashley Berman Hale: Who may be a first time or second time speaker, but has really incredible things to say.
01:11:08.670 –> 01:11:14.670
Ashley Berman Hale: Because I think if you speak too much often you’re missing out on that constant learning that you need in order to stay on top of the industry.
01:11:15.330 –> 01:11:19.290
Ashley Berman Hale: Or if you’re never speaking, then you’re missing out on an opportunity to find in your craft so
01:11:20.070 –> 01:11:29.610
Ashley Berman Hale: It’s great that some people will have reached that pinnacle, and they are trusted and loved and everyone likes to see them speak but it means nothing. If you don’t turn around and homework, you know, two more people up.
01:11:29.640 –> 01:11:31.110
Jeff Louella: So I would say share the spotlight.
01:11:31.590 –> 01:11:43.800
Ashley Berman Hale: And I don’t have a huge network or you know much influence but if anyone out there who hasn’t spoken before wants to speak. If I could put you in contact with anyone or any conference. Like, I’m happy to help.
01:11:44.850 –> 01:11:49.380
Ashley Berman Hale: Said, I don’t have a ton of influence, but I’m willing to use it to just get more voices up there. We should all do that.
01:11:51.150 –> 01:11:59.730
Jeff Louella: Yeah, it’s funny. I’ve been working on a little side project where I’ve downloaded the titles of every SEO speech.
01:12:00.840 –> 01:12:11.280
Jeff Louella: By the last like two years. And my goal was, I was going to try to make like a SEO speech generator that just put out a topic because that’s one of the things when I
01:12:12.120 –> 01:12:25.440
Jeff Louella: Think about doing any type of speaking. I’m like, what am I going to talk about that no one else is talking about. So I was like, hey, and I can want to play with AI and machine learning. I was like, maybe I can make a generator just generates topics. And here’s your next speech.
01:12:26.970 –> 01:12:28.020
Jamie Alberico: I would love to see this.
01:12:28.230 –> 01:12:42.330
Jeff Louella: Play. Yeah, it was kind of gonna be tongue in cheek, because I just wanted to like I wanted to be bad AI to so it made it funny but so that is in the works. It’s. But one thing I noticed was when I would Dee doop. There were a lot
01:12:43.350 –> 01:12:48.930
Jeff Louella: So that was one of the things that were there was a lot of that was like duplicate on air and it made me really think like
01:12:50.100 –> 01:12:56.220
Jeff Louella: You know, going and a lot of it might have been like the digital summits, where people travel and do the same presentation all across the country.
01:12:56.940 –> 01:13:03.090
Jeff Louella: But there were a lot of like the same things we were talking about and that’s one thing with the tech SEO boost conference.
01:13:03.450 –> 01:13:13.530
Jeff Louella: It was like something totally different copy way off guard. Because even last year, maybe a Catalan or one person talked about AI or machine learning and Python and this year was 80% of the people.
01:13:14.130 –> 01:13:24.450
Jeff Louella: Which which was was pretty interesting. But in general, I love the, you know, I want to go out and talk a little bit more, but I really love to do it more in the local level and trying to
01:13:25.080 –> 01:13:30.840
Jeff Louella: There’s not a huge SEO community here in Atlanta. So something I’d like to start to put together and build out
01:13:33.660 –> 01:13:47.100
Jeff Louella: But what I’m just kind of like to end the show just kind of asking a certain question and just kind of advice like if you were someone who was starting off in the SEO world right now. What kind of advice would you give someone who is starting out.
01:13:52.440 –> 01:14:03.840
Ashley Berman Hale: I’m yeah I’m used to always jumping in first here so I’m cognizant of that. I’m sorry. I would just say stay curious and stay kind, um, that’s it.
01:14:04.770 –> 01:14:06.720
Jeff Louella: That that’s just a range of kindness.
01:14:07.500 –> 01:14:08.340
Ashley Berman Hale: Yeah.
01:14:08.370 –> 01:14:10.110
Jamie Alberico: Well, I am page the kindness.
01:14:10.560 –> 01:14:18.720
Ashley Berman Hale: Yes, a rampage of kindness, please. And I have this, uh, this is kind of gross, but I’ve been a professional coaching and stuff like that, where they say hey,
01:14:19.230 –> 01:14:27.180
Ashley Berman Hale: Create a tagline for yourself. And that sounds a little silly, but I have one. And I’ve been using it for over a decade and it’s it’s really done me well and
01:14:27.690 –> 01:14:42.000
Ashley Berman Hale: My personal tagline is stupid work. So that means a lot of different things to me. But part of that is just staying curious and you know being nice to people and figuring out where you can help rather than stand on the shoulders of others. So whatever you do, do good work.
01:14:42.780 –> 01:14:43.860
Jeff Louella: Awesome. What do you think, Jamie.
01:14:46.950 –> 01:14:57.480
Jamie Alberico: I would say that there are no dumb questions engineering a room where you only understand and 20 week of what’s going on. That’s okay. I’ll take notes.
01:14:58.350 –> 01:15:06.690
Jamie Alberico: Ask for the handle. What do you mean by this word, particularly in technology. I have some English. I’m looking in bed with dev teams like stocks.
01:15:07.500 –> 01:15:18.060
Jamie Alberico: And people use different words, getting the same thing on half of our value of SEO is being able to map up those synonyms and translate between these teams.
01:15:18.420 –> 01:15:24.420
Jamie Alberico: Isn’t the end. We all want to make good things. We all have this desire to those good things to be found and
01:15:24.840 –> 01:15:39.450
Jamie Alberico: This is how we get there is by being willing to be humble and say, I don’t understand what that means. Could you explain it. Just keep learning. Even when it hurts your head and you crying about the install
01:15:41.850 –> 01:15:48.480
Ashley Berman Hale: So many times I’ve like cried, and I’m like, I don’t understand. And then an hour later I’ll be like, holy shit, I figured it out like
01:15:48.840 –> 01:15:55.590
Jamie Alberico: Yeah, it’s a crime, and it certainly feels worth it. Like you’re just hitting the wall heading the law hitting a woman suddenly and make sense and it’s beautiful.
01:15:56.190 –> 01:15:57.150
Jamie Alberico: Yes, and have a
01:15:57.270 –> 01:15:57.810
01:15:58.890 –> 01:16:01.590
Jamie Alberico: I think tech SEOs walk that line between the
01:16:02.820 –> 01:16:03.960
Jamie Alberico: Federal ambition.
01:16:08.970 –> 01:16:14.760
Ashley Berman Hale: Yeah, oh yeah, she is sorry last thought. Don’t be afraid to ask them questions. All right. I promise I’m done talking. Yeah.
01:16:17.430 –> 01:16:34.710
Jeff Louella: Awesome. Well, we’d love to thank you for coming on the show me, I think, is such great conversation that we had, I feel that you two together. It was it was a great idea. And we’re trying to put you separately, but I think together me. It was just awesome and made the conversation flow better
01:16:35.010 –> 01:16:35.970
Jacob Stoops: Dynamic Duo
01:16:36.600 –> 01:16:37.320
01:16:38.850 –> 01:16:39.270
Jacob Stoops: Alright.
01:16:39.750 –> 01:16:40.230
Jeff Louella: So my
01:16:40.560 –> 01:16:41.250
Jamie Alberico: Life, mate.
01:16:41.670 –> 01:16:45.330
Ashley Berman Hale: Yes, I love you very much. Jamie, it’s good to have a way
01:16:45.360 –> 01:16:45.990
Jamie Alberico: Of you to bed.
01:16:47.760 –> 01:16:48.750
Jacob Stoops: All right, bye guys
01:16:50.400 –> 01:16:50.970
Thank you.Post Views: 1,020
By Jacob Stoops — 5 months ago
- How he began building websites in high school as part of a class project
- How his early experience led him to building affiliate websites and making money online at a very young age
- We discuss his foray into marketing and optimization in the adult and online poker industries
- How a federal law forced him to change his career arc, which eventually led on to various agency and in-house roles
- The founding of Traffic Think Tank
- What it’s like to run one of the most well-known and reputable private SEO communities
- Coordinating the Traffic Think Tank Live conference
- The news that Bing says 2020 will be the year where keyword research becomes obsolete (while Google says it isn’t)
- The rise of DuckDuckGo
- Deep dive into Affiliate Sites
And much more.
00:00:02.730 –> 00:00:15.299
Jacob Stoops: All right, everybody. Welcome to the Page 2 Podcast I am your host Jacob stoops and I am here with Mr. Jeff, Louella Jeff. How’s it going?
00:00:15.750 –> 00:00:17.340
Jeff Louella: Going well how’s everyone doing out there.
00:00:18.630 –> 00:00:19.650
Jacob Stoops: They can’t answer you, Jeff.
00:00:19.740 –> 00:00:21.480
Jeff Louella: Ah, I was trying this time.
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Jacob Stoops: No.
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Jeff Louella: Not respond on Twitter. How you doing,
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Jacob Stoops: Yes, please respond on Twitter and we are joined by Mr Ian Howells. Ian, how are you doing?
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Ian Howells: Good man, Jacob. Jeff, thanks for thanks for having me on. We
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Jeff Louella: Are very
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Jacob Stoops: Very excited and I don’t want to bury the lead. But if you don’t know, Ian. He is the one of the partners at Traffic Think Tank. And we’ve already had one of his counterparts on I think about 10 months ago, Nick Eubanks who also
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Jacob Stoops: Founded Traffic Think Tank. They’ve got a lot of really awesome stuff going on there, which I’m sure that we’ll get into and then he and I believe you. You’re also, you also have a day job at a soft landing tree.
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Ian Howells: So I did previously. Up until the end of August of 2019 I was leading the the SEO team at lending tree.
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Ian Howells: Yep. Now just affiliate stuff consulting and Traffic Think Tank are kind of the three legs of the stool and
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Jacob Stoops: I had that in my notes and I completely glossed over it. We do take notes here.
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Ian Howells: Before we
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Jacob Stoops: Find people and then I just get on and I just messed them mess them all up or
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Jacob Stoops: In one case I butchered
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Jacob Stoops: Somebody somebody’s name.
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Jacob Stoops: Almost immediately, I believe that was Jamie, I called her out Jericho. It’s Alba Rico and she definitely called me on that.
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Jacob Stoops: Yet Lee, which was a little embarrassing.
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Ian Howells: I mean, it’s better to call better to call a name mispronunciation out early. Right.
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Ian Howells: Rather than it happening over and over and over again.
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Jacob Stoops: The whole thing. It’s like that episode of Friends were Chandler gets called Toby at his workplace and he never corrects them and then you Toby from there on for like six years.
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Jacob Stoops: And he anyways. So in today’s episode. For those of you that have listened, you’ll kind of know what’s coming for any first time listeners. Let me just tell you kind of what we’re going to do.
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Jacob Stoops: The hallmark of this show is kind of the origin stories of great SEOs SEO is not a very old industry and in our experience, nobody tends to get into
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Jacob Stoops: Especially if you’ve been in it for a while, into SEO on purpose. A lot of people come from other places. And we’re interested in figuring out
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Jacob Stoops: What are those other places, and how, how did how did people get into SEO in the first place, and what are their
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Jacob Stoops: What are their backgrounds and even more importantly, we’d like to talk about
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Jacob Stoops: Successes failures, what it’s like to be an SEO day to day. It’s kind of it can be kind of a grind and we like to kind of get deep on
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Jacob Stoops: What people experience on a day to day basis. So that’s kind of part one. Part two. And this is something that we’ve added in Season two is we like to
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Jacob Stoops: We like to talk about what’s what’s in the news kind of current events in the SEO world, which usually ends up with me just yelling about various SEO topics and ranting and complaining, but that’s it. That’s okay.
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Jacob Stoops: Jeff kind of runs runs that section and he kind of balances ME OUT HE’S KIND OF THE even keeled person and I just go off.
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Jeff Louella: Sometimes, AND I KNOW HOW TO TOSS THINGS UP TO YOU, TOO.
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Jacob Stoops: Well, Jeff, I want to, I want to hear just for one wants me being maybe the even keeled person and just being cool and you just
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Jacob Stoops: I want to know what you want to rant about at some point I want to see that.
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Jeff Louella: So all right, I will do some topics, the data Jeff will ramp.
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Jacob Stoops: And then the third, the third leg of the stool in our, in our episodes is typically a deep dive and today’s deep dive is going to be on affiliate sites.
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Jacob Stoops: Which we’re excited to talk about. So if you’re in the affiliate game or if you’re not in the affiliate game and you’re thinking about it. We’re going to deep dive into that topic at the towards the end of the episode so
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Jacob Stoops: Ian
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Jacob Stoops: Let’s jump into kind of the first phase, who are you, how did you get into SEO, what, what’s your story.
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Ian Howells: Cool. So, like you mentioned up top. Ian howls co founder and partner at trek think tank which the short version of that is a 700 plus now person community.
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Ian Howells: Community portion happens in Slack all of the educational kind of training material and resources are all within Traffic Think Tank calm. So think of like distilled you accept not five years out of date now.
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Ian Howells: Is the website portion and then the community. I think is really one of the the big strong
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Ian Howells: Assets for it because folks can ask questions get feedback on campaign ideas that they’re going to have more if you just get stuck on something that’s a good way to
00:05:04.110 –> 00:05:13.710
Ian Howells: Just kind of stop smashing your head against the wall, have a problem and get feedback from from other folks, kind of in real time. But in terms of
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Ian Howells: Getting started in the the industry. I built a website when I was in high school, my cousin and I actually started
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Ian Howells: What would be now called a blog, but then was not called a blog because at that point blogs were literally just
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Ian Howells: Like an online Diary of like what your day was about. So at that point we hated the word blog like rebelled against it completely because that sounded like
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Ian Howells: Stuff that like children, but would do. Right. And we were all a 15 at that point. So like we were obviously, way, way too cool for that.
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Ian Howells: So today would be called a blog started that in December of 99 when I was, I think, a freshman in high school. So, you know, like all cool kids in high school I was sitting around learning HTML.
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Ian Howells: So that was, that was fun, really good for your social life being the kid that you know is figuring out how to build websites but worked out long term so
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Ian Howells: That’s all right.
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Jeff Louella: I was the kid with the Commodore 64 so myself a little bit more, but we would trigger games on the bus.
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Ian Howells: So what’s funny is like I wish I went back that far. We didn’t have a computer in the house until 98 my parents got a gateway and they make splurged and went crazy and got like the six gig hard drive and the 64 Meg’s around like it was
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Ian Howells: It was a dream at that
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Ian Howells: But I built the site with my cousin as a hobby really because other guys in high school, so I took art.
00:06:50.100 –> 00:06:56.100
Ian Howells: In high school, and there were juniors and seniors in my class because like art was just an elective it wasn’t part of a track or whatever.
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Ian Howells: And these guys had built their own website and they were hilarious and it was basically like online short skit type things written out
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Ian Howells: And I wanted to be a part of it. But I was this like dumb freshman. So I was like, well, screw it like we can just make our own. So we built a website and just run it as a hobby for like two years and then I was in
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Ian Howells: Some webmaster forum. I can’t, I can’t remember which one it was. But one of the guys that were on there. This guy, Aaron.
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Ian Howells: He has since legally changed his name to sunshine Megatron he he built t shirt hell calm.
00:07:41.610 –> 00:07:48.870
Ian Howells: And T shirt hell had an affiliate program. And so he painted a bunch of people from the forum and was like, hey, do you want to join my affiliate program.
00:07:49.380 –> 00:07:59.550
Ian Howells: Was like, I have no idea what that is, but maybe so he gave me like the 92nd elevator pitch of what affiliate marketing was. It was basically like just make an account. I’ll give you a wink.
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Ian Howells: Put the link out to your website, if somebody clicks through that and buys a t shirt. I’ll give you five bucks for each shirt that they buy it was like, well, you can make money on the internet like i can i can make money for my website. Tell me more.
00:08:16.380 –> 00:08:16.560
Ian Howells: Well,
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Jacob Stoops: Not only could you make money, you basically had a person with the name of a transformer
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Ian Howells: Not yet. But he was still just Aaron at that point he is a crazy person. I don’t know if he’s like in a bunker somewhere if he is still accessible that you’d be
00:08:33.330 –> 00:08:45.240
Ian Howells: Talk to him but interesting life story, I’m sure. But this was in 2001 so like for two years just built a website as a hobby and
00:08:46.080 –> 00:08:55.770
Ian Howells: That was kind of it and then 2001 was introduced to this whole affiliate thing. And I was like, Okay, this will be great. So put some banners on the site.
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Ian Howells: First month sell like 30 T shirts and make 150 bucks. And I was like, Oh damn, this is amazing because at this point I’m 17 right so the option is either work every Saturday for the like.
00:09:09.630 –> 00:09:21.120
Ian Howells: $5 and 25 cents an hour. I think that minimum wage was at that point, or just screw around on the internet and make the same amount of money each month. I was like, this is beautiful.
00:09:21.660 –> 00:09:29.760
Ian Howells: And then the second month hats and we sell like three t shirts. And then the third month hits and we don’t sell any news like ah shit.
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Ian Howells: Okay, so turn. Turns out we have like the same hundred to 200 visitors to the website every single day. So by month three of promoting literally one thing everyone saw it already. So like if they were going to buy one of those T shirts, they already bought it and we were done.
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Ian Howells: So then it was like okay well I need a lot of traffic and I need a lot of new traffic. And if you ask any 17 year old guy on the internet. What gets a lot of traffic on the web is answers probably going to be the same. It was an adult websites will will say to use the
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Jacob Stoops: Horn, it’s for
00:10:10.440 –> 00:10:12.570
Ian Howells: Clean important. Yeah, yeah, it’s probably part
00:10:13.500 –> 00:10:13.980
00:10:15.930 –> 00:10:26.340
Ian Howells: So that it was like Okay, so here’s how dumb. I was, I had a shared hosting account that was running me like 20 or 30 bucks a month at that point because hosting this still pricey.
00:10:27.810 –> 00:10:38.700
Ian Howells: And I go to one adult site, they don’t even I think they still exist, but they’re not really a thing anymore. They were called T GPS thumbnail gallery posts.
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Ian Howells: Which was basically a big just text list and every day, there’d be like 50 or 100 new links and it’d be like an eight word description and you would click through.
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Ian Howells: And then all of the most of the listings were like third party external people sites and you would build a single page photo gallery with like
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Ian Howells: 10 to 15 thumbnails and then two or three calls to action to try and push people to a pay site to get them to sign up is that the short version of how it worked.
00:11:08.070 –> 00:11:16.620
Ian Howells: Here’s how idiotic. I was, I went to one tip there were two big ones that I knew about through, you know, recreational internet usage, let’s say,
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Ian Howells: I went to the first big one that I know about click through to one of the galleries downloaded all the photos built my own gallery and submitted it to the second
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Ian Howells: Big tip site that I knew about. And instead of pushing an adult site with adult content. I tried to sell them offensive T shirts from t shirt health so
00:11:39.030 –> 00:11:46.620
Ian Howells: Total copyright infringement, because I just stole, I had no right to use those images whatsoever just downloaded them and through them back up on a new page.
00:11:47.100 –> 00:11:58.860
Ian Howells: And then took people that were looking for pictures of naked women, and then said, hey, want to buy a t shirt. So that was about as well as you would expect.
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Ian Howells: To go
00:11:59.820 –> 00:12:01.140
Jacob Stoops: It’s a logical jump, I guess.
00:12:01.350 –> 00:12:12.630
Ian Howells: Right. Because, because I didn’t even like it had not even occurred to me yet that like affiliate programs existed for other things I just knew about this one. So when you only have a hammer.
00:12:13.050 –> 00:12:21.030
Ian Howells: Everything looks like a nail. So I was like, well, okay, I’ll just get a bunch of traffic to look at this banner and surely someone will buy a t shirt.
00:12:21.960 –> 00:12:32.430
Ian Howells: Turns out, no and turns out a small shared hosting account cannot withstand like 70,000 visits in a 24 hour period, at least at that point.
00:12:32.910 –> 00:12:42.900
Ian Howells: So my hosting crashes, the host wasn’t a huge host. So I have the actual guy who owns the company emailing me basically saying like, what the hell are you doing
00:12:44.490 –> 00:12:54.030
Ian Howells: So that was great. A nice bandwidth overcharged that I’ve been had to come up with. But that was my first kind of exposure to
00:12:54.720 –> 00:13:08.430
Ian Howells: Holy crap. There’s way more traffic than, like, I realized, one could get to there were like 70,000 people in a day before the hosting crash. So like it could have been over 100 for all I know.
00:13:09.030 –> 00:13:25.620
Ian Howells: And then, you know, kind of the head smacking like maybe I should try and sell somebody. The thing that they are very clearly looking for not trying to divert them to another. So it was a good lesson, even though it was like a $200 bandwidth bill that I had to
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Jeff Louella: Pay for
00:13:27.330 –> 00:13:30.450
Ian Howells: Which one, you’re 17 is not, you know, super, super fun.
00:13:31.140 –> 00:13:41.340
Jacob Stoops: I think the question that I wanted. So how long did you stay in the in the porn game in terms of, like, working, working on the those types of sites.
00:13:41.610 –> 00:13:50.700
Ian Howells: Until I met my now wife in 2005 okay so that’s so almost four years, four years, yep.
00:13:51.180 –> 00:13:53.430
Jacob Stoops: So you’re 17 at the time and you
00:13:53.430 –> 00:13:53.910
00:13:56.160 –> 00:13:56.310
Jacob Stoops: The
00:13:56.430 –> 00:13:59.610
Jacob Stoops: The only thing I can imagine is a lot of giggling
00:14:01.200 –> 00:14:01.920
Jacob Stoops: And not only that,
00:14:02.370 –> 00:14:04.620
Ian Howells: The novelty wears off pretty quick.
00:14:04.800 –> 00:14:06.660
Jacob Stoops: Well, that’s what I was gonna ask one. What’s it
00:14:06.810 –> 00:14:11.880
Jacob Stoops: What is it like having never like done work for a porn site. I know that there are
00:14:11.880 –> 00:14:19.470
Jacob Stoops: People that do that. And then, especially being that young, how the hell did you explain that to your parents or did you
00:14:20.460 –> 00:14:30.180
Ian Howells: So they knew I was running websites because at the time. I still had to literally like use my mom’s credit card to buy domains.
00:14:30.180 –> 00:14:32.280
Ian Howells: Because I’m 70 like I didn’t
00:14:32.490 –> 00:14:39.750
Ian Howells: So I would literally give her cash and then she would punch her credit card number into I.
00:14:41.700 –> 00:14:45.660
Ian Howells: I can’t remember in my domain GoDaddy. I can’t remember the first place I bought a domain.
00:14:47.520 –> 00:14:54.630
Ian Howells: But they were like $30 a year at the time, like when I first bought a domain, like now it’s a joke it like there’s
00:14:55.200 –> 00:15:00.480
Ian Howells: Some deal. These are like a buck 99 or 99 cents. It’s not ones you want, but still
00:15:00.900 –> 00:15:08.130
Ian Howells: Like at that point 30 bucks a year for your domain plus 20 or 30 bucks a month for hosting like kind of bar was was a lot higher.
00:15:08.490 –> 00:15:20.850
Ian Howells: And so they knew that like this was a thing. And mostly about the hobby site that was that I was running with my cousin until check started showing up at the house and then it was like, what, what the hell is this
00:15:22.950 –> 00:15:29.670
Ian Howells: Yeah, about that. So I think they were thankfully they were super cool about it. They were
00:15:30.420 –> 00:15:39.360
Ian Howells: I guess a good point of context here when I was 17 my parents were 35 and 36 they were 18 and 19 when they had me
00:15:40.140 –> 00:15:52.140
Ian Howells: So they were my age now basically so me having a 17 year old kid. So they still remembered I guess the point is they still remembered kind of being a 17 or 18 year old because
00:15:52.470 –> 00:16:00.990
Ian Howells: They were like 15 months away from accidentally getting pregnant with yours truly. So of all the things that I could be getting into, I think, was their
00:16:02.010 –> 00:16:17.700
Ian Howells: Perspective. This was like that that big of a deal like okay if you turn a 17 year old kid loose with a cable internet connection. He’s probably going to look at porn. Anyway, like screw and if he’s going to make money off of it like it’s not illegal, like what the hell.
00:16:18.810 –> 00:16:19.050
00:16:21.720 –> 00:16:22.860
Jacob Stoops: So where did you go from there.
00:16:24.000 –> 00:16:35.730
Ian Howells: So did the adult thing for a while. A big regret is that I did not push harder on that front. Right. Because once I got to the point where I was making a few hundred dollars a month.
00:16:36.450 –> 00:16:45.600
Ian Howells: I then just got super lazy like being a kid still at that point, like I didn’t have a concept of hey, if you work really hard.
00:16:46.110 –> 00:16:54.960
Ian Howells: And do a lot of effort into this like this can become like a big, full time income level type situation.
00:16:55.800 –> 00:17:03.960
Ian Howells: Like I just had no awareness of the fact that that was even possible, right. I’m like 18 months removed from. Oh my god, you can make money on the internet.
00:17:04.290 –> 00:17:08.880
Ian Howells: So the fact that, like this could be the way somebody supports themselves full time.
00:17:09.630 –> 00:17:16.950
Ian Howells: Just didn’t even seem like a plausible thing. So I would work to the point where I was making like six or 800 bucks a month.
00:17:17.490 –> 00:17:25.890
Ian Howells: And then we’re just kind of let it coast and then if like if money started falling off, I’d build a couple more pages or free sites at that time they were called
00:17:26.640 –> 00:17:34.140
Ian Howells: And get it back to the point where it was up in that six $800 range again and then like repeat just over and over and over again because
00:17:34.800 –> 00:17:40.770
Ian Howells: You know, as long as I was buying video games. And then in college like beer money like
00:17:41.400 –> 00:17:55.170
Ian Howells: It didn’t, you know, it didn’t seem like a pressing thing to you know forgo going out for the night to sit at home and you know Peck away and dream Weaver and make new new pages look. What is the quote night in
00:17:55.230 –> 00:18:10.200
Jacob Stoops: The movie The Social Network. I feel like it’s Justin Timberlake character that that says something to the effect of, you know, what’s cool you think or something like you think a million dollars is cool. Let me tell you what’s really cool a billion dollars.
00:18:11.580 –> 00:18:12.870
Jacob Stoops: If you needed that mindset.
00:18:13.020 –> 00:18:13.920
Jeff Louella: Yeah, I
00:18:14.040 –> 00:18:17.610
Ian Howells: Did not did not have that, I guess, unfortunately, so
00:18:18.960 –> 00:18:31.170
Ian Howells: I kind of plugged away on that for you know, while until 2005 when I met my wife ended up selling the the few sites that I had that were worth selling at that point.
00:18:31.740 –> 00:18:40.500
Ian Howells: The ones that had kind of their own traffic and wasn’t just the hamster wheel of like submit a page get listed get traffic. Three days later, it’s gone. And you just kind of repeat
00:18:41.490 –> 00:18:51.750
Ian Howells: And moved from the adult industry into online poker. So, you know, again, just sticking with like vice marketing, I guess, and going with stuff that
00:18:53.910 –> 00:19:01.200
Ian Howells: I knew from my own internet usage, let’s say, and stuff that had attractive payouts right because the
00:19:01.680 –> 00:19:13.170
Ian Howells: The attractive thing about the adult industry was a a sign up, it’d be worth anywhere from 30 to $50 one time CPA and there was just
00:19:14.070 –> 00:19:30.060
Ian Howells: an absurd abundance of traffic to be had. Right. So, like, getting to the point where you’re doing like I said that six $800 a month level was not hard, like I did not know anything, and was doing that as like a 17 1819 year old kid.
00:19:31.080 –> 00:19:50.220
Ian Howells: So went from that to online poker only really pushed an online poker for like a year because in I think it was October of 2006 the safe port act passes and online gambling in the US, almost disappears overnight.
00:19:50.220 –> 00:19:53.490
Ian Howells: Because all the major credit card processors lose the ability to
00:19:53.820 –> 00:20:07.590
Ian Howells: Run charges for these gambling sites. So I had a good year primarily promoting poker room calm the big draw. There was, it was now $100 like if you got a real money.
00:20:08.280 –> 00:20:19.560
Ian Howells: Verified deposit player you get 100 bucks so started out really simple and kind of scam me were like the weekly poker game that me and my friends did on Tuesday.
00:20:19.890 –> 00:20:25.590
Ian Howells: I just got the other nine guys to sign up through my affiliate link and then it was like, okay, sign up
00:20:26.040 –> 00:20:37.110
Ian Howells: And then get on aim and let me know your name in poker room, and then we’ll start a heads up match and I will just intentionally lose $50 to you.
00:20:37.410 –> 00:20:45.840
Ian Howells: And we’ll call it. Even so, like you sign up for me. I got 100 bucks. I’ll purposely dump 50 bucks to you in game because we can just talk on AIM about like
00:20:46.260 –> 00:20:58.350
Ian Howells: What cards we have and figure out how to how to make this work. So like a a in incentivize traffic, I guess, through real life and then just started building out
00:20:59.250 –> 00:21:16.650
Ian Howells: Fairly simple sites through recounting what I actually did was just word count games that I would actually play online and made like a online poker blog basically just talking about playing online and then having poker room calm ads all the hell over the place.
00:21:17.910 –> 00:21:27.150
Ian Howells: But only got to do that for like a year, which is unfortunate because hundred dollar payouts were really good and in like 2005 2004 or five, six, like right after
00:21:27.780 –> 00:21:36.480
Ian Howells: Chris moneymaker basically made online poker exploded in popularity, there was kind of lots of traffic and referrals to go around.
00:21:37.680 –> 00:21:47.460
Ian Howells: But then it all disappears overnight because of a bill that the Senate passes so I’m near the tail end of college. At this point, I was on the five year plan.
00:21:48.090 –> 00:22:00.540
Ian Howells: I majored in graphic design and I figured like, hey, I can just like I’m already building websites for myself, like maybe I can just get a job building websites for other people. So that’s how I ended up picking graphic design as my
00:22:01.230 –> 00:22:08.610
Ian Howells: As my major. Again, it did not occur to me that, like, oh, I could just work for myself or I can just build sites that that earn money.
00:22:10.110 –> 00:22:18.930
Ian Howells: And so I’m in what was supposed to be my last year of college turned out to be year year four of five.
00:22:19.980 –> 00:22:31.170
Ian Howells: And it just, you know, the bottom falls out, like the all the sites I have are now completely worthless. Nobody will want to buy them because they can’t monetize the traffic either
00:22:31.800 –> 00:22:37.110
Ian Howells: So that kind of reinforced for me that, like, yeah, maybe this whole
00:22:37.830 –> 00:22:44.130
Ian Howells: You know, trying to make money on the internet thing, definitely. It’s not a thing that you should do as your attempt at full time income because
00:22:44.370 –> 00:22:51.300
Ian Howells: Stuff like this could happen where one day you just wake up and because of something that has nothing to do with you all your money is just gone.
00:22:53.340 –> 00:22:59.490
Ian Howells: So the following year in 2007 I am getting ready to
00:23:00.510 –> 00:23:07.950
Ian Howells: Coming into college and as a graphic design, Major, you have to do a senior show with like your art portfolio. Right, so I need a printer.
00:23:09.000 –> 00:23:26.010
Ian Howells: Locally to print all my stuff. And so I pull out the Yellow Book, like the physical Yellow Book. I don’t know if you’re our younger listeners here. Oh remember what the hell it was but there used to be these books that were like 300 pages and had phone numbers for everybody.
00:23:26.100 –> 00:23:26.550
00:23:27.630 –> 00:23:41.220
Ian Howells: So I’m flipping through the Yellow Pages looking for a printer and I come across a listing for pepper jam Internet marketing in Wilkes barre Pennsylvania and I’m 20 minutes north of Wilkes barre in Scranton PA at this point.
00:23:43.290 –> 00:23:59.430
Ian Howells: And I was like, What the hell, there’s an internet marketing company in Wilkes Barre, so then that leads me to their website, it was hilarious. The bad. It’s a super like 19th looking website if you go through the Internet Archive and look at what pepper jam calm, but I think it was
00:23:59.460 –> 00:24:00.360
Ian Howells: Pepper jam search
00:24:00.420 –> 00:24:04.440
Ian Howells: Com. At that point, looks like in like 2007 but
00:24:06.150 –> 00:24:11.910
Ian Howells: I ended up emailing the VP of search can moan with just like, hey,
00:24:12.600 –> 00:24:32.100
Ian Howells: I mean, how’s here’s some stuff that I’ve done, and just talk about like selling subscriptions to porn sites and poker online, not even thinking for a minute that like, hey, maybe this is kind of weird and like that and not the way to get a response from like an actual company doing
00:24:32.160 –> 00:24:33.030
Ian Howells: Internet marketing.
00:24:33.960 –> 00:24:39.360
Ian Howells: Turns out, though it was a great idea because they later told me like that was the reason that he answered the cold.
00:24:39.630 –> 00:24:46.140
Ian Howells: Email was like, Oh, somebody has built affiliate websites before and like gotten traffic through search and monetized it
00:24:46.560 –> 00:24:54.930
Ian Howells: And so had I not mentioned it, and was just like, oh, I’m a local college student at Mary, would I was wondering if there were internships or whatever he probably would have completely ignored me
00:24:55.920 –> 00:25:07.740
Ian Howells: But that got me a phone interview in person interview then internship my last semester of college and then college graduation was a Sunday that Monday I started at pepper jam full time.
00:25:08.970 –> 00:25:17.730
Ian Howells: Six months later I was running the SEO team at pepper jam in fairness, it didn’t even really exist when I got there was basically can the BP in one writer.
00:25:17.940 –> 00:25:26.490
Ian Howells: So he looked at it, it’s like, Okay, great. Here’s somebody that knows SEO like let me just dump this chunk of work off on him and he can run with it.
00:25:27.600 –> 00:25:38.580
Ian Howells: Short version three years later pepper jam cells to gtsi commerce down in Philadelphia. That’s where I meet Mr. The Willa. And my boss for like the nine minutes that he stuck around
00:25:40.140 –> 00:25:44.250
Jeff Louella: And though that was interesting times. I mean, Pepper jam. When we we bought
00:25:45.510 –> 00:25:57.480
Jeff Louella: We bought pepper jam for its affiliate network. Yep. And then it was interesting. And then like learning when we peel back some of the skins on the onion, see what’s behind there there was some fun things we found, but
00:25:57.540 –> 00:25:58.920
Ian Howells: Oh, it was garbage.
00:26:00.210 –> 00:26:03.030
Jeff Louella: Yeah, I think they had, like, once they got in there like crap.
00:26:03.240 –> 00:26:13.710
Jeff Louella: We bought, but it’s still around today and it seems like it’s it’s gotten better. But I remember just getting I come into the office and my boss at the time was just like
00:26:14.370 –> 00:26:22.800
Jeff Louella: Hey, we bought a company and they have an SEO team just drive up there and meet them and see see who you want to you know who you like up there and things like that so
00:26:23.550 –> 00:26:30.540
Jeff Louella: Me and Bill Sebald drove up there. I don’t know if you remember that day, but it was kind of it was fun. I think it was meet you, Eric and Todd.
00:26:32.310 –> 00:26:42.390
Jeff Louella: I think that was really the three they might have been someone else or two, but no, it was, it was interesting time and right there. Like, I think we all got kind of got along really well and
00:26:44.100 –> 00:26:51.720
Jeff Louella: And after that, you kind of taught me some things about affiliates and I think we use some or at least I used I’ll say some auto blogging tools that
00:26:52.440 –> 00:26:55.890
Jeff Louella: Got me a little bit of money that I learned I was because I always want to learn to kind of the
00:26:56.640 –> 00:27:10.890
Jeff Louella: The darker side of SEO. And at that time I was I was still somewhat newer I was a developer who moved into SEO when I was at Razorfish, and then right my second job was at GSA and you will learn that a deal size network. He couldn’t do much on
00:27:11.970 –> 00:27:16.920
Jeff Louella: The and every time I would go to a client. So you have to fix this, this and this and they’re like, well, we can’t because our platform is bad.
00:27:18.150 –> 00:27:19.920
Ian Howells: And by the way, our platforms you
00:27:20.460 –> 00:27:21.090
Jeff Louella: Yeah, exactly.
00:27:22.830 –> 00:27:23.730
Ian Howells: slightly awkward.
00:27:25.290 –> 00:27:31.500
Jeff Louella: So that that was always an issue there. But we, but yeah. When I got to meet you at that point it was, it was awesome. And then
00:27:32.010 –> 00:27:38.880
Jeff Louella: I just, you know, was hitting my head against the wall bunch of times there and you had some falling outs between me and some of the
00:27:39.540 –> 00:27:46.110
Jeff Louella: I’ll say I was in a weird position because I wasn’t leadership, but I reported all to the like the major leadership there.
00:27:46.770 –> 00:28:00.510
Jeff Louella: But then with the people in my life I was the only one who wasn’t like a VP or director level with all in all, the VP meetings. And then when I would go back to everyone who was like the same level as me. They wouldn’t want to talk to me because I thought I was a snitch.
00:28:02.760 –> 00:28:04.290
Ian Howells: The plant the leadership.
00:28:05.310 –> 00:28:05.610
Jeff Louella: It.
00:28:06.120 –> 00:28:14.430
Jeff Louella: Was I was caught out that one time in a meeting. They said, like when I was in there like they thought I was the leadership, like a snitch on the leadership. And I’m like, I’m the opposite of that. Like, I’ll tell you everything they’re doing
00:28:15.780 –> 00:28:16.320
Jeff Louella: It but uh
00:28:16.440 –> 00:28:17.040
00:28:18.180 –> 00:28:21.780
Ian Howells: Guys, don’t get me wrong, I’m a terrible employee. I’m not helping them.
00:28:23.850 –> 00:28:31.590
Jeff Louella: And those meetings were just all insane anyway. But, so I would go through things and eventually I just told Bill as I go. I had to leave.
00:28:31.980 –> 00:28:38.310
Jeff Louella: And at that point, they decided that they were going to make be part of the leadership and like, Well, no, that’s not like I’m already made my decision.
00:28:38.970 –> 00:28:46.080
Jeff Louella: But the fun part was I had to the person who was in charge of the platform come to me because I always complained him about how bad the platform was
00:28:46.500 –> 00:28:54.330
Jeff Louella: So like they were coming out with like platform 11 or something and he they tried to get me to stay and become part of the platform team to make the platform or SEO friendly.
00:28:55.170 –> 00:29:06.750
Jeff Louella: Because that was always my plan was like you make the platform better every client, we have on it is better. Why are we trying to sell our clients SEO when we can fix our platform. And we got a percentage of all sales. We could have made it better.
00:29:07.890 –> 00:29:21.120
Jeff Louella: Than I heard like that platform didn’t really do very well and then eBay bought everybody and then it became like, then it was like an interesting I saw how they merge everything packaged it like fanatics com came out from that and then
00:29:21.450 –> 00:29:37.440
Ian Howells: Man, Michael Rubin is like, just like God damn. I don’t know how the hell he talked a bay and the letting him keep fanatics and the official league stores out of that deal and still walked away with two two or two 4 billion.
00:29:38.640 –> 00:29:39.120
Ian Howells: Amazing.
00:29:39.960 –> 00:29:42.120
Jeff Louella: And I see, I’m a big Sixers fan.
00:29:42.630 –> 00:29:47.910
Jeff Louella: And I see him sitting on the sidelines and next to like Allen Iverson and Meek Mill’s and I’m just like,
00:29:48.240 –> 00:29:54.120
Jeff Louella: Not bad. Not a bad job because, I mean, I’ve got, I had a couple meetings with him, where I got the pitch and he was
00:29:54.690 –> 00:30:01.140
Jeff Louella: He’s a smart dude. He was very energetic, you know, and I was great. But it was interesting time where it’s like, once he sold them like
00:30:01.650 –> 00:30:09.570
Jeff Louella: Hey, you started some sneakers out of the back of his mom’s car is kind of like a Amazon story in a way, you know, not as big, right. He’s not millionaire, but at the same time.
00:30:09.930 –> 00:30:11.160
Ian Howells: Thanks. All right, I think.
00:30:12.450 –> 00:30:13.500
Jeff Louella: For billions. Not too bad.
00:30:13.800 –> 00:30:18.000
Jeff Louella: You know and and become a minority owner of the Sixers and running.
00:30:18.240 –> 00:30:19.440
Ian Howells: fanatics and still
00:30:19.530 –> 00:30:24.450
Ian Howells: crushing it just that even if he had nothing else in the past. Just that alone like he’s
00:30:24.840 –> 00:30:28.830
Jeff Louella: Good at anything by rue La La are also some of those others flash sale site.
00:30:28.860 –> 00:30:30.600
Ian Howells: Yeah, real law was rolled in.
00:30:31.770 –> 00:30:42.600
Ian Howells: Mostly for the the email. We bought we being gtsi while I was there CLEAR SAILING so order attribution company out of Ohio. I think in like
00:30:42.630 –> 00:30:42.870
Jeff Louella: I was
00:30:42.990 –> 00:30:44.280
Ian Howells: Out in a lemon
00:30:44.520 –> 00:30:46.440
Jeff Louella: I was the person to introduce them all.
00:30:46.560 –> 00:30:53.790
Jeff Louella: Because I was a I was friends with some people over CLEAR SAILING and they asked me to introduce them to the analytics team.
00:30:55.020 –> 00:30:56.310
Jeff Louella: I was hoping I got a kick, but
00:30:57.360 –> 00:31:00.000
Jeff Louella: I left before that even like fully materialized but
00:31:01.020 –> 00:31:08.640
Ian Howells: But no, that was I guess just to complete kind of the, the career arc overview here gtsi
00:31:09.540 –> 00:31:23.700
Ian Howells: Jeff left very shortly after I got there, Bill Sebald was running the team. Start of 2011 bill Sebald decides he’s had enough. And he gets out of there. So then the hot potato goes to me run the SEO team inside there.
00:31:24.030 –> 00:31:34.830
Ian Howells: Jeff and I were talking before we started recording here. It had like 19 names because they kept hired new creative directors and day one every creative director wanted to rebrand the agency.
00:31:35.640 –> 00:31:47.160
Ian Howells: Eventually eBay buys the thing I lose interest pretty rapidly after we become part of eBay, like HR turned into, literally, here’s a phone number for a call center in Utah.
00:31:48.810 –> 00:31:57.900
Ian Howells: Call them if you need anything, right, like when you have that many employees, like, yeah, you’re not going to have big HR teams in each office, it would be crazy. So it makes sense, but
00:31:58.560 –> 00:32:06.570
Ian Howells: Wasn’t wasn’t for me and to 2012 end up going moving down to Charlotte, North Carolina, where I still am to work at Red ventures.
00:32:07.380 –> 00:32:21.570
Ian Howells: Ran, one of the the SEO teams in there until 2016 left RV in 2016 to head up the SEO team at lending tree and did that from 16 until
00:32:22.140 –> 00:32:33.720
Ian Howells: August of 2019 like I like I mentioned briefly before and now in the meantime affiliate stuff consulting launch Traffic Think Tank two years in a couple months ago now.
00:32:34.410 –> 00:32:39.270
Ian Howells: So always had kind of stuff going on outside of the main full time job. But that’s kind of the
00:32:39.870 –> 00:32:48.510
Ian Howells: The rough shape of the full time work with small agency with pepper jam get bought by a bigger agency in the form of gtsi eBay nine other different names.
00:32:49.470 –> 00:32:55.860
Ian Howells: In house to red ventures, which was a really interesting blend of in house and agency, because at that point.
00:32:56.400 –> 00:33:06.540
Ian Howells: RV didn’t really own their own website properties. It was licensed like it would be branded domains for DirecTV or ADT
00:33:07.470 –> 00:33:16.020
Ian Howells: So it was in partnership with large companies. So we were kind of an affiliate, but kind of in house because all the dev and tech and everything happened internally.
00:33:16.560 –> 00:33:36.660
Ian Howells: And then in house at back to a public company in house a lending tree and kind of getting reacquainted with the pros and cons of being at a large public co with, you know, the pros being most things comp related and the cons being the general speed at which things can get done.
00:33:37.650 –> 00:33:38.310
00:33:40.380 –> 00:33:52.800
Jacob Stoops: So let’s talk about Traffic Think Tank, you guys are two plus years into that. Now, what led to that. Like what’s behind the idea. What’s it like today in terms of running that
00:33:53.400 –> 00:34:05.370
Ian Howells: Yeah, I think what led to it really Eubanks So Nick, did traffic thing tag. The one I guess you would call it on his own. So it was
00:34:06.450 –> 00:34:18.330
Ian Howells: Similar and very different at the same time. So he limited to I think 12 people but higher price point. It was 500 bucks a month.
00:34:18.780 –> 00:34:24.090
Ian Howells: But you had to sign up for the year. So basically he got 12 people to sign on for six grand
00:34:24.630 –> 00:34:34.020
Ian Howells: And then it was a Facebook group at that point. So like a 13 person Facebook group. So these 12 people and Nick. So, a lot more
00:34:34.380 –> 00:34:41.850
Ian Howells: Kind of deeper one on one individual consultation, because there’s only 12 people right like that’s a decently manageable.
00:34:42.540 –> 00:34:54.420
Ian Howells: Number to kind of go more in depth with with every single person. And part of what he did was each month he would do one like guest webinar on zoom right basically just
00:34:54.930 –> 00:35:02.490
Ian Howells: People, he knew from the industry through his own network would just ask, like, Hey, would you, would you be cool with coming on and doing a webinar for these folks.
00:35:03.390 –> 00:35:11.850
Ian Howells: He bought me some really good mine in exchange for doing it, which I didn’t know what was gonna happen when I said yes but like was a very nice Park afterward.
00:35:12.330 –> 00:35:23.100
Ian Howells: So I had done a webinar for him. And then he was starting to kind of come to the end of the 12 months, I think it was in like month nine or something.
00:35:23.700 –> 00:35:26.310
Ian Howells: And I had just made like a very offhandedly like
00:35:26.940 –> 00:35:39.510
Ian Howells: Hey, if you’re going to do TGT again like let me know if you know there’s a way for me to get involved or whatever, like something benign and kind of off the cuff. I had no Nick at that point.
00:35:40.050 –> 00:35:50.940
Ian Howells: Nick and I met into late 2010 or early 2011 through the Philadelphia SEO meetup SEO grill, which was phenomenal and like
00:35:51.600 –> 00:36:03.270
Ian Howells: Just an absurd roster of people. So we can go into that in a minute to so I didn’t know Nick for several years at this point. So just kind of threw that offer out there like, hey, if you’re looking to do more with this thing. Let me know.
00:36:04.500 –> 00:36:12.120
Ian Howells: And he had gotten back and was like, actually. Yeah, I’ve been thinking about that a lot. Like, I think the model makes sense.
00:36:13.290 –> 00:36:23.160
Ian Howells: If it scales up like I think we could scale up membership and bring down the price. So it’s not like you got to sign up for six grand for a year, right off the bat.
00:36:24.000 –> 00:36:32.490
Ian Howells: And kind of reach more people because at that point, you know, and I’m talking about like a history. It’s two years and four months ago, or whenever
00:36:34.650 –> 00:36:44.220
Ian Howells: You think about SEO book in that community kind of getting shuttered because Aaron had decided that he was going to kind of step back from doing that.
00:36:44.580 –> 00:37:03.150
Ian Howells: So that left kind of a void where. Okay, there was a paid SEO forum that ran. I think it was 99 bucks a month. So like not a in substantial price point, like a good gate to make sure that everybody in there was serious, so that it kind of left a void, and then
00:37:04.380 –> 00:37:07.020
Ian Howells: The mas community at that point was in a
00:37:07.860 –> 00:37:18.000
Ian Howells: Let’s call it a bit of turmoil. Right. Eventually, like they end up having to do layoffs and all that stuff that’s part of mothers history now that we don’t have to go into. But there was generally a
00:37:18.390 –> 00:37:30.720
Ian Howells: A lack of I think outside of Twitter but Twitter is very noisy and chaotic. There wasn’t a great like single point of community at least that I was aware of
00:37:31.770 –> 00:37:33.570
Ian Howells: So that felt like
00:37:34.620 –> 00:37:39.330
Ian Howells: To nick that felt like a big opportunity and I was less certain.
00:37:39.870 –> 00:37:51.480
Ian Howells: Matthew Howells-Barby, same kind of general opinion he did a big LinkedIn post about kind of the, the formation of traffic think tank where he says, much the same thing that like he wasn’t as confident as Nick was
00:37:51.960 –> 00:38:07.440
Ian Howells: You had Nick on already. I think one of the things that became probably very clear within the first few minutes of talking to him is that super high energy will make decisions quickly and then once he decides he’s going to do a thing like he’s he’s going to do the damn thing.
00:38:08.580 –> 00:38:19.710
Ian Howells: So he was kind of more bullish on it. I was like, maybe we’ll get 100 members like we can probably get 100 people that are serious enough that they’ll pay 99 bucks a month to join the thing
00:38:20.820 –> 00:38:31.440
Ian Howells: And I guess short story long. It went over a lot better than I initially thought. And it wasn’t until like month three where it was like oh shit like this could be
00:38:31.980 –> 00:38:41.640
Ian Howells: Like this could be a real thing. Like there is more appetite for this than I thought. I think what I discounted incorrectly. In the beginning was the
00:38:42.270 –> 00:38:52.740
Ian Howells: Amount of people that are individual affiliates and are just kind of like sitting in a home office by themselves all day grinding away doing their thing.
00:38:53.280 –> 00:39:06.540
Ian Howells: And people that are like the one online marketing person at their company right like digital is this one person and nobody else in the company knows what the hell they do.
00:39:06.930 –> 00:39:23.730
Ian Howells: They don’t have anybody to bounce ideas off of because again, nobody knows what the hell they’re doing all day and I think I just had a general lack of awareness of how many people find themselves in that situation. And I feel like that’s a need that we ended up filling
00:39:25.800 –> 00:39:27.750
Ian Howells: Hopefully, very well. So
00:39:28.050 –> 00:39:37.920
Jacob Stoops: One thing that occurred to me especially when you mentioned initially. Now, obviously, it’s much lower. Now it’s that initial $6,000 price point.
00:39:38.370 –> 00:39:53.340
Jacob Stoops: And I guess for for me thinking about like fine running that probably Nick being a more confident person than I would be like, Nope, I got this. Is that a lot of money to ask for people and it’s like
00:39:54.660 –> 00:40:04.890
Jacob Stoops: How do you bring enough value to justify somebody paying you that much money with with what you guys are doing that would feel like a lot of pressure.
00:40:05.640 –> 00:40:12.930
Jacob Stoops: Pressure to me. And I just wonder, how do you guys kind of manage that on ongoing in terms of making sure that the value is is there for the for the members.
00:40:13.350 –> 00:40:22.500
Ian Howells: So in the the first iteration. And again, this was 100% next on semi speculating here, but I’m fairly confident, how he basically positioned. It was like
00:40:23.190 –> 00:40:32.220
Ian Howells: Almost like your pre buying consulting time with him right so like it was the original 12 members if I’m remembering correctly. We’re all
00:40:32.940 –> 00:40:46.470
Ian Howells: people that own their own econ business or Legion business right like it wasn’t affiliates. It wasn’t the one full time marketing person at a company. It was the owner of a very small digital company.
00:40:46.950 –> 00:40:55.140
Ian Howells: That basically viewed this as I am purchasing $6,000 worth of strategy consulting from this person who knows what they’re doing.
00:40:55.500 –> 00:41:10.170
Ian Howells: I have a junior person or I can do like I have execution figured out what I need is guidance to make sure that I’m not shooting myself in the foot and that I’m doing smart things, I think, was basically the the rough
00:41:11.040 –> 00:41:20.910
Ian Howells: Outline of positioning there, which in that light, it makes sense, right, because if you think about an hourly SEO consulting right 500 bucks a month is a joke right so
00:41:21.330 –> 00:41:35.160
Ian Howells: I think with that angle it made sense. And then for him. I think attractive 12 people same 12 people, you get to go pretty deep with everybody. So you can kind of have more meaningful connections and results.
00:41:35.910 –> 00:41:44.430
Ian Howells: But now for us. I think the the responsibility part is interesting, I think, as the community has gotten bigger
00:41:44.940 –> 00:41:51.090
Ian Howells: We’ve gotten less and less reliant on me, Nick and Matt right because like first 50 members like
00:41:51.600 –> 00:41:58.980
Ian Howells: Munich and Matt one of us had to answer every single question that came in and slack. And I think as the community has grown
00:41:59.670 –> 00:42:08.340
Ian Howells: It’s now gotten to a point where, by the time I see a question come in, there’ll be three or four answers in a thread already from other people who
00:42:09.090 –> 00:42:16.770
Ian Howells: All know you know what they’re what they’re talking about every once in a while they’ll be like an idea for another whatever that will come in and be like, and maybe
00:42:17.880 –> 00:42:23.880
Ian Howells: Maybe don’t do that exactly but like Core Kernel of the idea is good. Like I would do XYZ
00:42:24.480 –> 00:42:33.150
Ian Howells: And so I think the the kind of self reinforcing aspect of the Community has been super exciting to watch kind of take take shape and continue to grow.
00:42:33.870 –> 00:42:41.850
Ian Howells: But it is. I think it is a responsibility on us to make sure that we continue to produce you know stuff that’s
00:42:42.270 –> 00:42:51.840
Ian Howells: Timely and useful in a variety of situations. I think that’s probably the hard part is trying to make sure that you’re creating guidance and resources that is
00:42:52.800 –> 00:42:57.000
Ian Howells: That are applicable to people in a variety of roles, because we have
00:42:57.720 –> 00:43:09.480
Ian Howells: Members in I think 21 of the 24 time zones working on every industry, you could imagine, right. So you have to try and make sure that you’re really hitting the, the core
00:43:10.050 –> 00:43:18.360
Ian Howells: Of a concept or idea and make sure that it’s actually useful for the community at large. And then the other piece is just ensuring that we continue to tap
00:43:19.950 –> 00:43:26.220
Ian Howells: Other experts in the community come on and talk about the stuff that they’re good at, right. So like having Hamlet. Come on.
00:43:26.700 –> 00:43:31.740
Ian Howells: And do a Python webinar was like extremely useful for a bunch of folks so we try and make sure that
00:43:32.160 –> 00:43:49.290
Ian Howells: You know we we keep our finger on the pulse of what what sort of stuff does the community want and then go out and see, okay, if that’s not like I can’t write Python to save my goddamn life. So when it’s something that like we can’t do go find somebody who can and bring him on so
00:43:49.440 –> 00:43:58.290
Jacob Stoops: Last question I want to ask in it’s not as much of a question is more of like, what’s it like in before we move on to the news.
00:43:59.160 –> 00:44:09.330
Jacob Stoops: You guys are. I think it’s your second event Traffic Think Tank live, which by the way it is. On May 16, it is not in Philadelphia. It’s in Miami.
00:44:10.050 –> 00:44:28.290
Jacob Stoops: For and I’m going to give you a quick promo for non members. It’s $349 for members traffic thing take members. It’s $149 for a ticket. So go bye bye bye attend attend attend, but I want to know. And I asked, Nick, the same question. What’s it like to put on an event.
00:44:28.650 –> 00:44:38.610
Ian Howells: Though was dumb. It was like it was so much more like when you talk like I’ve said a few times. Like my general lack of awareness like
00:44:39.060 –> 00:44:57.480
Ian Howells: I think all three of us were inflicted with that on this one. It was like, Oh, how much work. Can it be into a one day conference, like what could possibly be involved in this. Turns out there’s a dumb amount of work involved in running a conference we did the first one by ourselves.
00:44:58.920 –> 00:45:08.100
Ian Howells: Mistake. I don’t know. It was good that we did it because we realized very quickly. Like, how much is actually involved and how
00:45:08.100 –> 00:45:17.010
Ian Howells: Like, you should just hire a professional. If you’re gonna throw an event like just hire an event planner. And so we had
00:45:18.030 –> 00:45:24.360
Ian Howells: Yeah, it was hectic. So like literally 10 minutes before registration started the morning of the conference.
00:45:24.750 –> 00:45:32.010
Ian Howells: We were still working with the AV guy from the Hilton to try and get us to the point where slides would project onto the screen like
00:45:32.760 –> 00:45:42.510
Ian Howells: Everything was just going wrong like anything that could go wrong went wrong, like it was a good kind of intro, you know, kick in the face for
00:45:43.110 –> 00:45:55.020
Ian Howells: For running an event. But now, you know, thankfully, it still went over fine the presenters, all you know stepped up and delivered and talks were really good getting
00:45:55.410 –> 00:46:05.940
Ian Howells: I think the really great thing was getting all of these people that are used to interacting and slack together in person was awesome, right, because now all of a sudden
00:46:06.390 –> 00:46:15.900
Ian Howells: You have all these conversations happening where then light bulbs are going off, like, Oh, you’re a bubble. Like I recognize your, you know, Avatar and whatever, like you have all these folks who were talking online.
00:46:16.170 –> 00:46:21.390
Ian Howells: Now, getting to meet in person. So that was, that was awesome. And then this year.
00:46:23.160 –> 00:46:33.150
Ian Howells: Version we hired an event planning company they had done one of the earlier mas cons. So not only used to event planning, but also for our particular industry.
00:46:33.840 –> 00:46:48.870
Ian Howells: And that is worth every single penny that a good event planner will charge you because there’s so much stuff that we just had no idea about that she is just breezing through and it makes life a million times easier.
00:46:49.230 –> 00:46:57.600
Jacob Stoops: I feel like it probably gives you guys more of an opportunity to focus on the the content in the in the speakers and the and the quality and not worry about the minutia.
00:46:57.690 –> 00:47:07.530
Ian Howells: And that’s basically our only job this time around, which is great that we don’t have to get on the phone and talk about like Wi Fi connectivity in the room and chair covers and nonsense like that.
00:47:08.040 –> 00:47:15.750
Jacob Stoops: was awful. It’s like when you get married, you have to think about things like paying half people cut your cake for you or just
00:47:18.330 –> 00:47:18.840
Jacob Stoops: God
00:47:19.530 –> 00:47:20.340
Jeff Louella: It was a wedding planner.
00:47:20.970 –> 00:47:21.780
Jacob Stoops: Right, exactly.
00:47:21.900 –> 00:47:23.220
Ian Howells: Right, same, same idea you
00:47:23.460 –> 00:47:30.660
Jeff Louella: Know, I mean, it’s funny, thinking of the same way. So I used to run a homebrew club and we started off and it was
00:47:31.380 –> 00:47:43.290
Jeff Louella: Kind of out of just wanting to meet people in the industry. Next thing I know, we have like 300 members and like, I’m just, I ain’t got overwhelming for me to an extent, especially since I at that time recently had twins.
00:47:44.220 –> 00:47:49.650
Jeff Louella: Which, you know, adds a little, you know, cramped to going okay I’m going out drinking from a with a bunch of guys
00:47:51.510 –> 00:47:52.080
Jacob Stoops: With my kids.
00:47:53.190 –> 00:47:58.800
Jeff Louella: But, uh, but it was like everything they’re just setting it up. And that was just like one night a month and like I
00:47:59.100 –> 00:48:09.030
Jeff Louella: But I always did it kind of like this podcast right we we always wanted to have a good guest. So I was always trying to get like head brewers for all the local breweries and in Philadelphia, that time.
00:48:09.390 –> 00:48:15.510
Jeff Louella: Which there were a bunch and we would come in. We’ve talked about brewing have them like how that kind of like this podcast, how they got into it because
00:48:15.960 –> 00:48:24.690
Jeff Louella: As a home brewer, like a lot of people have dreams that open up their own brewery one day and real brewers will talk you out of it. They’re like, hey, do you want to be.
00:48:26.340 –> 00:48:33.870
Jeff Louella: Do you want to actually be a janitor because 99% where you are when you’re abroad because brewing beer is 5% of actually owning a brewery so
00:48:34.650 –> 00:48:39.450
Jeff Louella: But it was interesting that way. And I always want to being part of SEO grill.
00:48:40.230 –> 00:48:49.380
Jeff Louella: Like I kind of now being in Atlanta. Like, we really don’t have that close connection and I’d love to be able to like build one down here and I just know the amount of work. It’s going to take
00:48:49.830 –> 00:48:56.670
Jeff Louella: And, and, you know, I couldn’t imagine trying to actually have like 5000 people come in for a conference and how much work that actually takes
00:48:58.590 –> 00:48:59.460
Ian Howells: Yeah, it’s
00:49:00.540 –> 00:49:01.740
Ian Howells: It’s funny, like the
00:49:03.240 –> 00:49:15.960
Ian Howells: The finding good speakers and getting people to come and talk and like the logistics of that actually isn’t hard. The hardest part is when you get down to like we can have five
00:49:16.500 –> 00:49:27.360
Ian Howells: Who are the five people that we think are going to get on stage and like deliver something new that hasn’t been rehashed at 50 other conferences already right and so
00:49:28.140 –> 00:49:37.440
Ian Howells: And that’s the like the hard part on the, the speaker side, right, I think, thankfully, we’re in a community where like, generally, people are looking to
00:49:38.040 –> 00:49:49.380
Ian Howells: To share and talk about the stuff that they we, you know, have learned over the years, I think, you know, Nick Matt and I fortunate that we’re connected to
00:49:49.980 –> 00:50:02.790
Ian Howells: Folks like Jon Cooper, who generally don’t do the conference speaking thing like he’s not out there that’s an accent se es every season, you know, given it is same presentation over and over again.
00:50:03.840 –> 00:50:15.600
Ian Howells: But when we hit him up and we’re like, hey, we’re bringing a conference basically to your backyard, you’d like two hours away. Do you want to come speak like he’ll say yes and come to it.
00:50:15.600 –> 00:50:16.560
Ian Howells: So I think we’re
00:50:16.620 –> 00:50:31.140
Ian Howells: fortunate in that respect to it’s really just all the the minutia of like the actual logistical of event planning portion of it. That’s the hard part. And like I said, hiring a pro to take that weight off of our shoulders is
00:50:32.190 –> 00:50:32.790
Ian Howells: Amazing.
00:50:33.870 –> 00:50:34.350
00:50:35.910 –> 00:50:36.630
Jacob Stoops: So Jeff, what’s
00:50:38.130 –> 00:50:48.090
Jeff Louella: Cool. So it wasn’t really any major I’m going to say news is sweet, but there’s a bunch of little things. And a lot of times you know NEWS TODAY IS LIKE WHEN JOHN MUELLER says something
00:50:49.380 –> 00:50:57.180
Jeff Louella: So there was a lot of that because of his, his little town hall things that he runs, there were. So one of the big things.
00:50:57.930 –> 00:51:06.390
Jeff Louella: Was, you know, search engines get as search engines get better at intent, he basically said like keyword research is not going to go away, which
00:51:07.170 –> 00:51:17.670
Jeff Louella: You know, I look at it all as as much as Google comes out with Burt and all these different machine learnings. It is really based off the data that you’re giving it and that data is content.
00:51:18.630 –> 00:51:23.910
Jeff Louella: And, you know, knowing what search engines. You know what people are typing. It’s still always going to be important.
00:51:25.620 –> 00:51:30.660
Jeff Louella: And even I know like having different affiliate sites out there like and being very nice like
00:51:31.320 –> 00:51:38.340
Jeff Louella: Doing that keyword research are doing that, like research and gentleness, a keyword in an industry is ultra important to be able to
00:51:38.790 –> 00:51:53.430
Jeff Louella: Like if you’re going to start a site on something where no one is searching. There’s no nothing about it. Like, what’s the point of doing that right so so research is super important. I don’t know. I mean, I guess that it’s probably not much to go deeper into that one. But it seems like
00:51:55.500 –> 00:52:05.790
Jacob Stoops: This is where a yellow, yellow about things. So, so if you’re looking at. And this is an article on search engine roundtable THIS WEEK FROM WHAT IS IT THE 10th. It’s from yesterday. Yeah.
00:52:06.180 –> 00:52:12.540
Jacob Stoops: This so John’s response didn’t just come out of the blue. Right. It came in response because it’s
00:52:13.020 –> 00:52:24.690
Jacob Stoops: Beginning of 2020 so everybody’s making their big 2020 predictions. I’m Rick debut. Debut I doubt i’m pronouncing his name wrong and I’m and I’m going to go on record as saying that
00:52:25.140 –> 00:52:43.140
Jacob Stoops: This guy is probably way smarter than me. So maybe I have no fucking clue what I’m talking about. But he is. He is the person in charge of beings overall course search team and he is has essentially predicted predicted that this is the year that keyword research becomes obsolete.
00:52:43.680 –> 00:52:44.850
Jeff Louella: Which it’s coming.
00:52:44.880 –> 00:52:58.710
Jacob Stoops: And it’s just funny. The difference between what people have been you’re saying what people Google are saying and I agree with Jeff and I will say there. I wish there would be more times where we have disagreements, but we seem to be like
00:53:00.090 –> 00:53:12.600
Jacob Stoops: I don’t understand how researching and understanding if the data is available, what people are searching for when that becomes obsolete, like, in what way just because search engines are better.
00:53:13.200 –> 00:53:21.840
Jacob Stoops: At surfacing up a matching content to the particular queries like, Why the hell, wouldn’t we want to know what people are searching for, like, that’s
00:53:22.560 –> 00:53:30.990
Jacob Stoops: Data. Like, why wouldn’t we want that data. Why would we stop looking for that data, all of a sudden, just because search engines are good at matching. It just doesn’t make any freakin sense and it makes me wonder where the
00:53:31.320 –> 00:53:38.340
Jacob Stoops: Where the hell is their head at on the big side that they’re like coming out and saying stupid stuff like this. So I don’t know.
00:53:38.670 –> 00:53:40.200
Ian Howells: Well, I mean what smart.
00:53:40.320 –> 00:53:58.590
Ian Howells: smart decisions on search from bang would be a whole new frontier for us right so I you know bad takes coming from the big team is not something that expands incredible surprising here. Enjoy your 3% market share and continue with your hot takes, I guess.
00:53:58.950 –> 00:54:03.750
Jeff Louella: Yeah now. And it’s funny because there’s another news article out there about being loses out to duck, duck, go.
00:54:04.800 –> 00:54:06.900
Jeff Louella: In Google’s new kind of Android.
00:54:07.920 –> 00:54:11.700
Jeff Louella: They came out of, like, a search ballot and asks countries in Europe, because they’ve
00:54:12.630 –> 00:54:18.690
Jeff Louella: They got sued. You know that because they promote Google on Android devices, you know, makes sense that they would do that but
00:54:19.320 –> 00:54:30.120
Jeff Louella: You know, it also makes sense that that’s kind of, you know, playing a little bit of monopoly, so they they put out a ballot to people in different countries through the EU or what search engines. They want listed
00:54:30.750 –> 00:54:47.280
Jeff Louella: At like that you can change to besides Google. So the idea is like Google is probably going to be default, but if you want to change it. What ones get listed on there. And for most of Europe DuckDuckGo is well actually DuckDuckGo is number two, and every you country.
00:54:48.630 –> 00:55:00.990
Jeff Louella: And being is only in a certain amount of info.com and Queen and privacy Waller all before being so the only one that being kind of beat out DuckDuckGo
00:55:01.290 –> 00:55:06.540
Jeff Louella: Or any of the other ones was in the United Kingdom and we know everything with Brexit. Now it’s a
00:55:07.050 –> 00:55:20.460
Jeff Louella: It’s one of those things where it’s like every other country, you know, Italy, Lithuania, Iceland, Greece, everyone picked up. Don’t go in there. I’m not saying there’s the writing on the wall for being or anything like that, because being is is
00:55:21.480 –> 00:55:29.640
Jeff Louella: It’s funny because we compare them to Google, which is like 90% of everything well being, is it can the rest of world is still a leader to some of that but
00:55:30.210 –> 00:55:36.810
Jeff Louella: It is an interesting approach. What’s going on these days and DuckDuckGo is really pushing privacy, which I think is
00:55:37.560 –> 00:55:44.370
Jeff Louella: It’s interesting. I tried to stop using Google and use duck, duck, go for a couple months and then when I switch back to Google. I was like,
00:55:44.790 –> 00:55:55.230
Jeff Louella: Oh, all these things like complain about as an SEO, like, as a user, I are actually really good. It’s like, you know, pushes my 10 blue links down to the bottom like I missed that. DuckDuckGo does not have that so
00:55:56.640 –> 00:56:01.200
Jacob Stoops: I will say I like what DuckDuckGoes trying to do. I like their style.
00:56:01.620 –> 00:56:03.870
Jeff Louella: But when a duck, duck go shirt on. Yeah.
00:56:03.900 –> 00:56:05.640
Jacob Stoops: Right. Oh, you do have a duck, duck, go.
00:56:07.200 –> 00:56:09.990
Jacob Stoops: I don’t know where you would purchase such a thing. Maybe on affiliate site.
00:56:10.020 –> 00:56:10.740
Jeff Louella: On DuckDuckGo
00:56:12.240 –> 00:56:18.300
Jacob Stoops: But, um, I think the big advantage that being still has is their
00:56:18.870 –> 00:56:30.960
Jacob Stoops: inroads into other markets, similar to Google, like Google builds phones Google Now builds computers. Google does all kinds of shit. Well guess what, so does Microsoft. They have a massive browser with a lot of people still using it.
00:56:31.320 –> 00:56:46.200
Jacob Stoops: They do computers. They do all kinds of stuff. And guess what they’re going to make you use Bing on all of those things. It’s actually surprising, given the amount of users that they have that being isn’t representing representing more of a marketing share but that’s, I think,
00:56:46.770 –> 00:56:57.360
Jacob Stoops: Because Google has basically become so so big that they’re almost a verb. Now I don’t search something I Google it. I don’t DuckDuckGo it I don’t bring it I Google it. So,
00:56:58.020 –> 00:57:11.040
Jacob Stoops: Yeah, that’s it’s, it’s interesting. I don’t know if DuckDuckGo can ever overcome. You know, the advantages that those other two big players have with respect to the business, but I do like their style and I like their tenacity.
00:57:11.730 –> 00:57:19.350
Jeff Louella: And I don’t think their goal is to be bigger than Google, right, because I’m guessing there. I feel they’re pulling stuff in from Google. I don’t know exactly how they get the result.
00:57:19.380 –> 00:57:20.550
Jacob Stoops: Like the anti Google
00:57:21.300 –> 00:57:30.900
Jeff Louella: Yes. And there’s gonna always be a group of people who will enjoy that. Right. So as Google gets bigger and, you know, evil or
00:57:31.830 –> 00:57:43.050
Jeff Louella: And like basically the benefits of them sharing all my data between all the tools is convenient to some things, but some people don’t want all that data shared so DuckDuckGo would be great for that. So,
00:57:44.580 –> 00:57:52.650
Jacob Stoops: We, who is Sundar Pichai is he basically Dr. Evil from the Austin Powers movies. Is that is that who he is now.
00:57:53.940 –> 00:57:54.810
00:57:56.070 –> 00:57:57.210
Jacob Stoops: CEO of Google, I think.
00:57:57.210 –> 00:57:57.570
Jeff Louella: That
00:57:57.690 –> 00:58:08.340
Jacob Stoops: Those missions is don’t be evil, but I feel like increasingly they’re becoming they’re becoming a little bit more evil, just like Facebook. And I just wonder if maybe Dr. Evil running both of those.
00:58:10.170 –> 00:58:19.650
Jeff Louella: You know, I feel, Google. It’s when you have so much data. Right. It’s like, there are certain like they have more data than anyone probably in the whole world right now and it’s
00:58:20.070 –> 00:58:27.870
Jeff Louella: Just being able to make things more convenient kind of seems evil. I remember when they started running ads inside of Gmail and part of it was like
00:58:28.500 –> 00:58:34.080
Jeff Louella: There would be a something that would read your email. So that would give you an ad based off the content inside of your email.
00:58:34.440 –> 00:58:40.920
Jeff Louella: And the world flipped basically like you’re reading my emails and it’s, you know, just like, shut it off right now but Alexa
00:58:41.910 –> 00:58:55.680
Jeff Louella: You know, when we, you know, they’re always listening, but like, are they fully listening or they just listening for the word Alexa, I think some people jump on the evil thing very quickly does not necessarily. I don’t think they’re evil, but I also think that
00:58:57.030 –> 00:59:07.980
Jeff Louella: They can be very easily. Right, and I think they remove that whole, don’t be evil thing out of there. Yeah, so it’s those where we feel you’re not you’re not evil, but you’re also not
00:59:08.760 –> 00:59:17.190
Jeff Louella: You know it, you’re not planting trees where if you search that like other people are doing right and and things like that. So they are definitely a for profit company.
00:59:17.880 –> 00:59:21.420
Jacob Stoops: They start building a Death Star. Then I’m going to be really well.
00:59:21.420 –> 00:59:22.740
Ian Howells: Yeah face fours.
00:59:22.800 –> 00:59:23.550
It’s coming better
00:59:24.630 –> 00:59:29.550
Jeff Louella: Well, when they, when they bought Boston Dynamics right and it’s like they have AI and then they have robot.
00:59:30.630 –> 00:59:39.690
Jeff Louella: It would. That’s where I kind of got, like, oh, but then they sold off Boston Dynamics, but they still, it’s a little creepy, because their AI stuff and putting it in those robot dogs.
00:59:40.080 –> 00:59:44.190
Jeff Louella: Is like things in my dreams and I get like not my dreams my nightmares.
00:59:44.970 –> 00:59:45.990
Jacob Stoops: Jetsons or
00:59:46.650 –> 00:59:51.630
Jeff Louella: One of the two self driving cars like they’re everywhere. They’re doing a lot of things and it’s. To me, it’s
00:59:52.560 –> 01:00:02.310
Jeff Louella: Great because it’s pushing humanity forward to an extent it’s merging us with machines. So we all become cyborgs. But I just don’t want to, like, you know, have all my brain power, run by Google right now so
01:00:03.210 –> 01:00:07.620
Ian Howells: I don’t know, I’m ready to be a cyborg man my hairline is garbage, my eyes are trash.
01:00:07.620 –> 01:00:11.220
Ian Howells: Bring bring out and cybernetics. I am. I’m here for I’m. Let’s do this.
01:00:12.930 –> 01:00:21.600
Jeff Louella: I am also not the singularity is one of those things where it’s it’s coming. And, you know, if it can make me live. I always wanted to be bit by a vampire.
01:00:22.050 –> 01:00:35.190
Jeff Louella: So that can live forever and see like where technology goes. So if I can be on a cyborg. And the same thing happens. I think another way of doing it. The Vampire part like I’m old involved. Like, I don’t want to be a vampire forever right now.
01:00:36.990 –> 01:00:39.240
Ian Howells: I mean like a half here in the gym first before I
01:00:41.640 –> 01:00:43.050
Jeff Louella: Don’t want to be the old vampire at the
01:00:44.040 –> 01:00:46.920
Jacob Stoops: Subconscious and then by be. Oh my god.
01:00:48.090 –> 01:00:48.630
Jacob Stoops: Okay.
01:00:49.230 –> 01:00:58.200
Jacob Stoops: So I want to do a time check. Um, let’s move into phase three, and we’re going to deep dive into affiliate sites and I’m just gonna, I’m just going to
01:00:58.650 –> 01:01:06.030
Jacob Stoops: Caveat this by saying this is one of those places in SEO. It’s such a broad area that
01:01:06.750 –> 01:01:18.300
Jacob Stoops: You should have a base in everything but I feel like the longer that this in the older that this industry gets, the more opportunities that there are to specialize in the chances of you not
01:01:19.200 –> 01:01:33.240
Jacob Stoops: knowing everything is is is high, Python, that’s something I have no freakin clue what it is and I’m going to say affiliate sites, we’re going to talk about it, but I have. I’ve never done it. I have no clue. Not a damn clue.
01:01:33.870 –> 01:01:49.890
Jacob Stoops: What I’m, what I’m doing. So I’m going to rely on you as an expert and Jeff you as an expert to guide me through what’s it like what do you need to think about if you’re in 2020 and you’re trying to run an affiliate strategy.
01:01:51.600 –> 01:01:53.100
Ian Howells: So I think there’s
01:01:54.510 –> 01:02:01.830
Ian Howells: There’s probably two two different paths to to answering. This one is for folks that are maybe
01:02:02.520 –> 01:02:15.840
Ian Howells: Either newer in their career or have been in SEO or digital marketing PR bit in like an agency setting where you’re in, like you mentioned, a very specialized function and then there’s folks that are kind of
01:02:16.980 –> 01:02:25.260
Ian Howells: I guess further in their career, for lack of a better explanation and kind of deeper in their knowledge already for the new folks.
01:02:26.340 –> 01:02:32.550
Ian Howells: It’s great. And I recommend it for everybody that’s working at an SEO agency in that capacity.
01:02:33.150 –> 01:02:36.240
Ian Howells: Because you have to think about everything right like now.
01:02:36.540 –> 01:02:50.160
Ian Howells: The, the horseshit with oh the client will do this and like their pricing is higher, the content that competitors. So like, that’s why they’re not making money. And, you know, on and on and on and on every excuse is gone, right, like it’s just you.
01:02:50.700 –> 01:02:55.770
Ian Howells: And typically WordPress right like it’s you and a content management system and a domain.
01:02:56.160 –> 01:03:12.120
Ian Howells: And if it flops. It’s because of you. And if it does. Well, it’s because you did good things, right. So it kind of is a bit of a put up or shut up for for folks to put themselves into which is great because that’s when you learn stuff that you didn’t know
01:03:12.120 –> 01:03:12.840
Ian Howells: Before
01:03:12.900 –> 01:03:19.620
Ian Howells: Right, you have to get better at pre selling and copywriting otherwise you’re going to get traffic and it’s not going to convert
01:03:19.920 –> 01:03:22.830
Ian Howells: You have to get better at keyword research and planning.
01:03:23.130 –> 01:03:29.880
Ian Howells: Because you’re probably a small new site. So you’ve really got to pick your battles for what you’re going to try and go do
01:03:30.060 –> 01:03:38.820
Ian Howells: Because you’re not going to go outrank the wire cutter or credit cards calm for you know best, small business credit cards or something like that. Right.
01:03:39.210 –> 01:03:53.070
Ian Howells: So it kind of top to bottom through the process forces you to get better at each piece because everything has to work or the end result is not going to happen. Right. And again,
01:03:53.520 –> 01:04:03.360
Ian Howells: You’re the only reason right you you are the lever on every step of that process. So I think it’s a really good thing for for folks to do
01:04:03.780 –> 01:04:09.270
Ian Howells: And then even just taking the like you should want to learn and get better and do new things out of it.
01:04:09.720 –> 01:04:18.930
Ian Howells: It makes you absurdly employable. Right. Like if you are a junior SEO in your first gig and an agency and you’re 12 to 24 months out of school, call it
01:04:19.650 –> 01:04:30.510
Ian Howells: building your own site and putting that on your resume, like, hey, I made this website. It ranks for, you know, a few hundred keywords and gets 1000 visits a month and makes me some money.
01:04:30.810 –> 01:04:39.270
Ian Howells: Your resume is immediately at the top of the pile like as somebody who was a hiring manager at a large mid cap public company.
01:04:40.230 –> 01:04:53.730
Ian Howells: There are like so many resumes come in when we put out a job posting will get like 300 resumes. Right. And I had to get the recruiting team like three things to look for, like, if you see resumes with any of these three things.
01:04:54.840 –> 01:04:59.310
Ian Howells: shortlist like those are the resumes that I want to see in one is they built their own website.
01:04:59.850 –> 01:05:06.060
Ian Howells: Like that just immediately gets you through the hundreds of other resumes into the front of the line.
01:05:06.480 –> 01:05:11.610
Ian Howells: It’s going to get you on the phone. And then if you barf all over yourself on the phone like that’s the end of the road, but
01:05:11.940 –> 01:05:23.370
Ian Howells: You know, if nothing else, like if you’re applying for jobs and not getting a call back as an SEO and you haven’t built your own website and put it on your resume. That’s like the biggest lever. I think you can can pull
01:05:24.540 –> 01:05:26.280
Jeff Louella: It’s, it’s funny because I
01:05:27.540 –> 01:05:33.660
Jeff Louella: I totally the same beliefs and things like that and I you started off building websites myself started
01:05:34.470 –> 01:05:46.380
Jeff Louella: Yeah, I was a DJ went to promote promote myself as a DJ built websites doing that I learned how to use like real audio back then to do streaming. Unfortunately, everybody had like 14 four modem at that time and if
01:05:47.820 –> 01:05:48.660
Jeff Louella: I was a little early, and
01:05:49.680 –> 01:05:50.400
Ian Howells: Just early
01:05:50.820 –> 01:05:58.980
Jeff Louella: Exactly. And then, so things like that when great. But actually when I when I met you and we started, you know, I started learning more about affiliates self.
01:05:59.400 –> 01:06:09.510
Jeff Louella: I’m trying to start up those niche affiliate sites. I think I started one called like barbecue pit man calm and I was selling, you know, talking about barbecue grills on there and
01:06:09.900 –> 01:06:16.200
Jeff Louella: It actually I had a couple different ones. I had one about music, because I love music realized that music wasn’t a great affiliate
01:06:16.590 –> 01:06:32.190
Jeff Louella: You know area because CDs. At the time, like you would get like a nickel or dime off of it while an $800 barbecue grill, you know, and if you’re using Amazon affiliates, you’re getting like 7% so it’s like a, you know, same amount a lot more money and
01:06:33.330 –> 01:06:45.570
Jeff Louella: You know, and then of course you get a little greedy. Sometimes when you start getting some traffic and you start getting a little more spammy to get that more traffic and then eventually, Google, you know, get you get you get on their shortlist, and then they
01:06:46.650 –> 01:06:56.370
Jeff Louella: Then you get banned from it and I’ve learned a lot about that too. So actually, for me, kind of making affiliate site being a little more spammy on it learned a lot more about penalties.
01:06:56.610 –> 01:07:05.130
Jeff Louella: And I did learn a lot about things there. And I say that, you know, when I am interviewing somebody I always say, like, hey, you make a website, even people on my team.
01:07:05.550 –> 01:07:13.650
Jeff Louella: That don’t have like even if you don’t build the website from scratch. But just like the art of getting traffic to your site and natural is like is important and
01:07:15.330 –> 01:07:23.610
Jeff Louella: Doing it to incentivize like hey I I made money off of this now gives me more the incentive to actually try to make it even better.
01:07:24.030 –> 01:07:30.240
Jeff Louella: And that’s kind of where I feel like affiliates are at a lot. I mean, there’s a lot of good affiliates out there. There’s a lot of bad ones, and I think
01:07:31.080 –> 01:07:38.010
Jeff Louella: The bad affiliates especially what I did with that barbecue site was, you know, did a lot of spinning content and things like that that I’m not proud of but
01:07:38.940 –> 01:07:51.030
Jeff Louella: I think in affiliate world there are the good and bad and I, IT’S KIND OF WHAT I WANT YOU KNOW WHERE MY QUESTION IS GOING TO GO. It’s, um, do you think affiliates have a bad like SEO. In general, they might have a bad name and marketing industries because SEO.
01:07:51.120 –> 01:08:01.620
Jeff Louella: Or spam your overall, you know, not me, of course. But other people and in the SEO world there’s affiliates and affiliates kind of get that that more of the
01:08:02.220 –> 01:08:17.850
Jeff Louella: Black Hat aspect of things. So I think there was a lot of affiliate like black hat networks and syndicate and things like that. So where do you feel like with affiliates like as it getting better or is it actually still a world of spam and junk out there.
01:08:18.390 –> 01:08:21.720
Ian Howells: So I think it’s interesting. There are
01:08:22.980 –> 01:08:32.940
Ian Howells: There are obviously different perspective right on affiliates. I think now within the SEO community. I don’t think affiliate has a bad reputation because like
01:08:33.150 –> 01:08:49.620
Ian Howells: How the hell else are you making money, right, like for people that run their own sites like that’s kind of like, unless you’re just running AdSense or display ads like. And I would argue from the display of that I see they deserve a worse reputation than
01:08:49.680 –> 01:08:51.030
Ian Howells: A lot of affiliate marketing.
01:08:52.320 –> 01:08:59.700
Ian Howells: So I think within the industry, you know, pretty widely accepted. I think you’ll have very differing opinions from
01:09:00.120 –> 01:09:11.250
Ian Howells: When I think back to the GSA commerce days like folks that are in house at an e commerce store will have very different opinions about affiliates based on how their network has gone right so i think
01:09:11.670 –> 01:09:21.930
Ian Howells: Some will basically equate if you’re an in house at an E calm place and like digital marketing is not your thing. You’re a product merchandiser or something, an e commerce store.
01:09:22.410 –> 01:09:35.040
Ian Howells: Your exposure to affiliate marketing is probably heavily dominated by coupon sites. Right. And in that view like through that lens. You probably view them as a parasite right because
01:09:35.340 –> 01:09:42.990
Ian Howells: They just rank for my store name plus coupon or coupons and all these people that I would have gotten any way.
01:09:43.320 –> 01:09:51.090
Ian Howells: Are now clicking through here just to get a promo code to put in. So I’m losing money on the ARV because now they’re all using the 10% coupon.
01:09:51.540 –> 01:10:01.200
Ian Howells: And now I’m paying a whatever five 6% commission to this, you know, parasitic affiliate site at the same time, right. So I think there’s still pockets like that where
01:10:01.440 –> 01:10:09.630
Ian Howells: Because a lens that affiliate marketing to view through can be very specific to certain stuff you can come away with a bad taste in your mouth.
01:10:10.140 –> 01:10:21.450
Ian Howells: I think the the flip side to that would be seen stuff like wire cutter getting bought by the New York Times, right, like the name in the US for news, generally speaking.
01:10:21.900 –> 01:10:37.140
Ian Howells: Buying an Amazon affiliate website for almost 100 million dollars i think is a a good temperature read for life okay yeah affiliates, not a joke and like large companies recognize the value and potential that’s there.
01:10:39.300 –> 01:10:40.740
Jeff Louella: How do you go about and
01:10:40.950 –> 01:10:41.250
01:10:42.840 –> 01:10:49.470
Jeff Louella: Not going to ask what your affiliates are or think that, but how do you go apart like and just figure out how to
01:10:50.160 –> 01:10:54.180
Jeff Louella: Pick an affiliate that you want. So you’re going to go, you want to start a new site.
01:10:54.780 –> 01:11:00.030
Jeff Louella: You go through the process of doing your research and things like that. Like, what are some of those steps in that process to
01:11:00.450 –> 01:11:08.520
Jeff Louella: Pick an industry or find out like information about that industry and whether it’s worth to. It’s a lot of work, you know, to build up a site so
01:11:08.880 –> 01:11:18.150
Jeff Louella: You know you don’t want to go into something like, like I said, with music and realize they have zero like even if someone buys something, you get a dime compared to where you get
01:11:19.590 –> 01:11:24.960
Jeff Louella: To ask yeah yeah right where your poker sites that like when you got $100 each one. Like, that’s awesome. I wish I get $100 a
01:11:26.070 –> 01:11:27.600
Jeff Louella: Click the link on my website right so
01:11:27.840 –> 01:11:38.640
Ian Howells: So there I think to two ways. Basically the framework that I use for picking affiliate spots three I line already and backtrack and so the first way would be
01:11:39.210 –> 01:11:46.080
Ian Howells: An industry that I already know is high volume and high dollar right so home security being a good example. I got
01:11:46.470 –> 01:11:54.690
Ian Howells: Cheated On that one because I got exposure to home security when I was at Red ventures. They were. And I think still are a very large ADT dealer.
01:11:55.470 –> 01:12:08.250
Ian Howells: So was able to see firsthand like the amount of volume available in the space and what home security companies are willing to pay out because they’re getting you know that 3040 $50 recurring monthly
01:12:09.390 –> 01:12:20.910
Ian Howells: Purchase with like a 24 month contract. In some cases, right. So, like they’re dealing with real money. So bringing them a customer, it can be very lucrative for you. So what are those kind of large industries.
01:12:21.270 –> 01:12:29.850
Ian Howells: That are going to be around for a long time payouts are really high right those are basically where I make my long term bets like
01:12:29.880 –> 01:12:33.120
Ian Howells: The site is not going to do anything. And it’s first 612
01:12:33.150 –> 01:12:48.780
Ian Howells: Maybe even 18 months, but it’s a iron in the fire that you know I just keep going and the plan is, I’m still going to have this website five years from now, right. So stuff like home security web hosting like those big industries with high dollar payouts
01:12:49.710 –> 01:13:00.630
Ian Howells: The second would be pockets where I see week competition that generally speaking funnel to Amazon, right. So basically anything you can buy on the internet you can buy on Amazon.
01:13:01.200 –> 01:13:06.600
Ian Howells: The Commission structures there. You know what it is, the tracking is there, like, there’s not a lot of unknowns.
01:13:07.020 –> 01:13:18.360
Ian Howells: All you really have to be able to do is the keyword and competitive research and you’re good to go. Like I farm out all the content production I farm on a lot of the link production. So at that point, it’s just like a capital.
01:13:20.490 –> 01:13:27.060
Ian Howells: Application game of, like, where am I going to put funding and you know how, how big of a bet. Am I going to make on each one.
01:13:27.870 –> 01:13:28.320
01:13:29.580 –> 01:13:31.680
Jacob Stoops: You said keyword research is still relevant.
01:13:32.340 –> 01:13:49.860
Ian Howells: I did, I would venture to say for an affiliate, it is arguably the most important thing that you can do because you have to find keywords that not only have volume but have intent and have SERPs that you can crack with whatever site, you’re actually working with alright
01:13:50.040 –> 01:13:51.240
Jacob Stoops: So, suck it being
01:13:53.070 –> 01:13:54.990
Ian Howells: That they’ve been doing that for years already there.
01:13:57.870 –> 01:14:05.910
Ian Howells: And then the, the only other the, the kind of third that I backtracked my two part answer to, and turn it into a three parter.
01:14:06.420 –> 01:14:17.940
Ian Howells: Is just if I either get approached or see an auction for a domain where the price looks right. And then that kind of sends me down the rabbit hole of looking into that industry.
01:14:18.210 –> 01:14:28.140
Ian Howells: Trying to get the scope of how big can this be a trust is really like my go to tool like I’m, you know, aside from when it logs me out, which it does more than
01:14:28.950 –> 01:14:35.490
Ian Howells: I would like, but in general, there’s probably two or three hrs tabs open in my Chrome at all times.
01:14:36.240 –> 01:14:42.090
Ian Howells: Because it is the fastest way to go from like two or three seed keywords to a list of probably 50 keywords.
01:14:42.450 –> 01:14:47.610
Ian Howells: To filtering up. Who are the domains that are kind of owning this space.
01:14:47.910 –> 01:14:52.890
Ian Howells: And then being able to click through right to them and say, okay, they’ve got this many referring domains. They do this much traffic.
01:14:53.130 –> 01:15:03.450
Ian Howells: Let me see where those links come from. Can I replicate that like that becomes like a 20 minute process of being able to size up in industry and have a general gut feeling of
01:15:03.810 –> 01:15:09.660
Ian Howells: I’m way out of my league and there’s no way I’m getting in here. So, like this is either going to be a multi year bet or
01:15:10.050 –> 01:15:24.000
Ian Howells: Oh damn, this looks like there’s something here. There’s people all over, page one that are pretty weak that I feel like you know in six or eight months, I can replicate the mountain quality of content they have and the mountain quality of links that they have. Yeah.
01:15:26.100 –> 01:15:35.490
Jeff Louella: So when you get your, you know, your niche and you you build a site. I am guessing most of time. It’s a WordPress get there. I mean, because it’s just so simple.
01:15:36.150 –> 01:15:44.070
Jeff Louella: There is a lot of, you know, we need lots of content to be able to build that right so I’m guessing. The next kind of approach is
01:15:44.490 –> 01:15:58.110
Jeff Louella: Getting the site structure and start building out content. Is that something you’re writing yourself or is that something you’re kind of going not fiber. But, you know, some other place to get content written and then you just the editorial notes of that.
01:15:58.470 –> 01:16:05.700
Ian Howells: Yep. So thankfully, now I do less than, less than less myself. One of the things I focused on in 2019
01:16:06.510 –> 01:16:11.940
Ian Howells: Was bringing more part time folks on to help me with portions of it, right. So, now, thankfully.
01:16:12.240 –> 01:16:25.170
Ian Howells: I now have a reliable part time person who knows a trance knows how to do keyword research and they can basically build content maps for me. I give them an industry and two or three competitors to look at and they can just go
01:16:25.650 –> 01:16:35.610
Ian Howells: And then come back with a Google Sheet template that I made filled out with what keywords and then I know what pages. Do I need to make. What are the keywords that need to funnel into them.
01:16:36.180 –> 01:16:46.470
Ian Howells: I basically then take those Google Sheets and pass them over to word agents word agents calm and they right now all of my new affiliate content.
01:16:47.250 –> 01:16:48.660
Ian Howells: And so, it all goes to them.
01:16:49.110 –> 01:16:59.970
Ian Howells: The last missing piece I need to fill is then the, hey, we got a Google Drive folder, full of content from word agents, I need all of this in WordPress now and I need the internal links done and blah, blah, blah.
01:17:00.270 –> 01:17:09.540
Ian Howells: That’s the the piece that I’m still kind of rotating through some folks trying to find somebody that I really like that. I’ll continue to work with. But you can kind of
01:17:10.770 –> 01:17:26.340
Ian Howells: D scale each individual portion of the process and have different folks fulfill each part, right, because I am not going to sit here and pick out 800 words about, you know, this camping tent.
01:17:26.430 –> 01:17:37.710
Ian Howells: That and why it’s great. Right. Like there’s people who write for a living, that’s what they want to do. They do that from wherever the hell they want. That’s great word agents just takes care of the content for me now.
01:17:38.430 –> 01:17:40.590
Jeff Louella: You just need Hamlet write you a script and play.
01:17:43.140 –> 01:17:43.500
Ian Howells: Button.
01:17:45.690 –> 01:17:51.570
Jacob Stoops: between him and jr folks to build a search engine or machine learning how to auto produce the content, I bet.
01:17:54.510 –> 01:18:04.530
Jacob Stoops: So Ian on definitely want to thank you for, for your time. We always wrap up, or at least we tried to sometimes we forget and you’ve kind of alluded to, to it.
01:18:05.070 –> 01:18:12.120
Jacob Stoops: To building websites, being a good thing. So I’m going to ask you to maybe provide a different piece of advice, but we always end by saying
01:18:13.020 –> 01:18:24.150
Jacob Stoops: If you were a new SEO you’re you’re fresh out of college or you’re thinking about getting into the industry literally today this moment, what would be the advice that you would give to that person.
01:18:26.970 –> 01:18:33.510
Ian Howells: The, the biggie is building your own site. But you said that’s not that’s not an answer. I can do is I’ll take that off the table. I would
01:18:34.560 –> 01:18:42.990
Ian Howells: If I was still in college. I would look to get an internship at an agency. And if I had just graduated, I would do.
01:18:43.920 –> 01:18:56.760
Ian Howells: Everything that I could to make myself marketable on paper to get an interview at an agency and get a junior level role I hate on the agency model a lot. And there’s a bunch there that I don’t like.
01:18:57.240 –> 01:19:13.020
Ian Howells: But it is the fastest way to get in somewhere see a bunch of stuff happen and learn, kind of as you as you do. And I think starting out your career as a junior person in house somewhere.
01:19:13.830 –> 01:19:22.260
Ian Howells: I think kind of insulate to a little too much into the specific tech stack and the specific goals and like how monetization happens
01:19:22.560 –> 01:19:26.460
Ian Howells: You get a little bit pigeonholed into one way of doing things.
01:19:26.730 –> 01:19:35.460
Ian Howells: Whereas generally at an agency, you’re going to get exposed to multiple different CMS and platforms, you’re going to get exposed to different kinds of people. And if you’re going to be successful.
01:19:35.730 –> 01:19:47.250
Ian Howells: Have to figure out how to talk to clients and other stakeholders to actually get work done. There are a lot of skills that you can hone working in an agency, and I think it’s a good
01:19:47.700 –> 01:19:54.990
Ian Howells: Spot for somebody to spend their first call a two to three years in the digital marketing world doing that work.
01:19:55.830 –> 01:20:06.960
Jacob Stoops: Speaking of agencies Jeff and I worked for one search discovery. So if you are one of those people looking and coming out of college we do college hires every single year.
01:20:07.440 –> 01:20:20.730
Jacob Stoops: And in Ian’s right it is really great experience. You get to work across multiple verticals with a lot of different people that know a lot of different things, especially at search discovery. So I don’t want this podcast to be just like a
01:20:21.570 –> 01:20:25.650
Jacob Stoops: Major plug, but come work with us. We’d love to work with you and
01:20:25.710 –> 01:20:26.490
Jeff Louella: Anyways, rent.
01:20:26.970 –> 01:20:27.270
01:20:28.530 –> 01:20:28.920
Ian Howells: Yes.
01:20:28.950 –> 01:20:33.240
Jacob Stoops: Yes, let’s yell about things in person. So he and where can people find you.
01:20:35.100 –> 01:20:50.310
Ian Howells: So on Twitter, just at Ian Howells Real original and creative with the Twitter handle there otherwise I don’t like I’m the worst solo SEO in the world. Like, I don’t have
01:20:50.880 –> 01:21:04.560
Ian Howells: A website that like advertises my service. I think I NH media com is literally a logo lucky pixel calm is the BBA that I do my consulting on it’s again a logo on on the homepage. And that’s it. There’s not even a contact form.
01:21:05.220 –> 01:21:18.720
Ian Howells: And so really Twitter and inside Traffic Think Tank are like the two places that I hang out and network with with people in the industry. So Traffic Think Tank calm and Twitter at Ian’s house would be the best bet.
01:21:19.680 –> 01:21:32.610
Jacob Stoops: Awesome. I’ll say it again if you want to go to one of the best conferences about building traffic that is going on right now. Go to Traffic Think Tank calm, forward slash live
01:21:33.150 –> 01:21:46.320
Jacob Stoops: The event, again, is in Miami. So nice warm sunny place that most people want to go and it is on May 16 Ian I don’t know how many like if you guys restrict the number of tickets. But how many, how many tickets are left left at this moment.
01:21:46.440 –> 01:21:58.170
Ian Howells: We are, I think, right now we’re 64 65% sold. So there’s like 120 spots left, something like that. Cool.
01:21:58.530 –> 01:22:04.740
Jacob Stoops: Alright, so you hear that there are spots left this episode is going to release on on the following Monday we record ahead so
01:22:05.820 –> 01:22:10.980
Jacob Stoops: I believe that they might there might still be some spots left by that time, that’s only a couple of days from now. But, uh,
01:22:11.250 –> 01:22:26.880
Jacob Stoops: Yeah, go and go and buy a ticket if you want to meet some really, really great people and attend to, really, really awesome about. But otherwise, em, thank you so much for coming on. We really appreciate your time. Really appreciate the candor candor candor. Yeah.
01:22:27.930 –> 01:22:28.740
Jacob Stoops: That’s awkward. That’s
01:22:29.820 –> 01:22:31.020
Jeff Louella: The Rings Kelly appreciate
01:22:32.520 –> 01:22:33.390
Jacob Stoops: It was a great discussion.
01:22:33.810 –> 01:22:37.740
Ian Howells: Now awesome I fun. Thanks for having me guess. Awesome. Thank you.runningPost Views: 1,175