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SEO: The art of balancing multiple priorities while remaining laser-focused

Fort Langley, January 5th, 2019

Canadian agency Jelly Marketing likes to mix marketing, communications and public relations to offer a wholesome package to its clients. Its core values are: Courage, Prudence, Humility, Fairness, and Temperance.

As a trusted Google Partner, the agency hosts professional development events, and provides consultations and training for AdWords and Analytics. Jelly Marketing is also part of the Canadian Public Relations Society and a pioneer of the Digital Marketing Certificate.

Jelly Marketing started life in 2013, founded by communications specialist Darian Kovacs. He founded the company with the aim of helping clients understand how the advertising game has changed and how they can ride the wave and change with them. Today the agency has a team of 15 highly skilled specialists in Public Relations, SEO, SEM, and Social Media and it is based in Fort Langley, BC. Its clients range from large and small businesses, to independent artists, and non-profit organizations.

Darian has over 15 years experience in the communications and marketing field. He doesn’t just carry out projects, he is also an active inspirational speaker and educator. He does a lot of work for charitable causes and he has a young – and growing, family. We talked to Darian about SEO and how can this make a difference to company’s visibility and business.

In your opinion, what is key for excellence on SEO?

To excel in SEO, you must practice the art of balancing multiple priorities while remaining laser-focused and methodical. A true Rockstar SEO is one that can write amazing content and successfully pitch it to improve backlinks while still having technical acumen to enhance site design or functionality.

What, in your opinion, are the pros and cons, differences between SEO and SEM (Search Engine Marketing)?

If Search Engine Optimization is a marathon to get website traffic, then SEM (or PPC) is paying to enter the Olympic 100m sprint.

Some cons about SEO are that it takes longer to see results but it has a longer shelf life than PPC advertising. Sometimes it might be very technical and difficult to understand. Another cons is that is at the whims of Google’s updates and if done incorrectly, your website could be de-indexed. Finally, there’s a lots of terminology to learn and need to have some technical prowess to be wholly proficient.

Regarding, SEM (PPC), some Pros and Cons of it is that can be expensive but also very affordable. Takes knowledge and skill to be effective. It can be an effective way to drive a lot of traffic to a site; can track from click to conversion with the Google/Facebook Pixel, build exposure locally and globally and one very important, is that it doesn’t require any patience. But it ends once the campaign is over.

Could you describe what an ideal SEO campaign would look like?

One of the most successful SEO campaigns that we have run here at Jelly Marketing is be the work that we did for custodial engineering company Mastercare. We started it in 2016 and continue working with them until today. We have been working with the brand to improve their search engine visibility. Through our comprehensive onboarding and multiple client meetings, we ascertained their strengths, weaknesses, and pain points.

The biggest issue we found is that the janitorial service provider had consistently been losing market share to their competitors. The Jelly Marketing team consulted with them, teaching them the basics of SEO, Social Media, Public Relations, and paid advertising. But we knew that wasn’t going to be enough to help them reach their goals.

After a comprehensive audit of their website, we built out their SEO strategy focusing on making their website faster and more user-friendly. The results from our SEO initiatives were outstanding:
Ranking #1 for the target keyword Janitorial Services in Vancouver
21% increase in year-over-year organic traffic
1,133% increase in leads since starting with Jelly Marketing

From initial outreach to implementation, we spent a month. Once the strategy, audit, and initial education had taken place, we started seeing consistent results within six months.

How long should a SEO campaign last?

Typically, search engine optimization can take up to six months of consistent effort to really see any tangible benefits. Ultimately, it depends on a number of factors including existing site/new site, site history, framework (WordPress, Drupal etc), site speed, site content, backlink history.

How do you convey to your customers the importance of SEO?

SEO and Public Relations are a must for a comprehensive approach to publicity. It is an essential tool in the digital marketers’ toolbox. A key question we ask our client is: do you want your customers to find you when they search for your company or somebody else?

How do you show results?

We report to our clients weekly and provide 24/7 access to DashThis, which displays the most important metrics to any particular client.

How do you manage clients’ expectations?

Everybody wants to be on the first page for their target keywords and it’s a good goal to strive for. However, being on the first page for a low traffic keyword is essentially pointless for a clients’ goals. They have come to us to improve their website conversions, we set annual goals with our SEO clients so that we all have a roadmap for what the plan is.

What is more important SEO or content?

Both are equally important. Good content that is informative is essential for the end-user, which improves user metrics—one of Google’s ranking factors. But, without backlinks or a pleasant looking site or great site speed, that content is essentially useless.

Is creativity needed on SEO?

A balanced brain is necessary for SEO. That means, knowing when to be creative and when to be technical. Having said that, skilled writers are highly sought-after in the SEO world as well as those who can pitch an idea or a webpage.

What is your personal definition of creativity?

My personal definition of creativity is to be able to make the connections that most people don’t see on first glance. It’s taking the thing that people walk by daily without paying any attention and tweaking it slightly to make them stop and think.

Do you consider yourself a team player?

Yes. It takes a lot of humility to know that you cannot do it alone. It is imperative to know your weaknesses and also know your strengths – I’m a huge fan of the enneagram because it’s a personality test that says you have strong and weak behaviours – we are all dynamic. That people are different and complement each other in different ways.

What do you like doing in your free time?

As a father of three (with a fourth on the way) a lot of my spare time is occupied between running my agency and enjoying quality time with my family. Aside from that I can be found enjoying a sauna, riding a bicycle around Fort Langley, partaking in a spin class, or inside a banana suit.

Thanks Darian!

By Geny Caloisi.

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