Year after year, certain search engine marketers seem to always be on the cutting edge. Their content is on point, they are in tune with the market, and they rarely run into trouble with Google updates. These gurus have the upper hand not because they are any smarter than the rest of us but because their SEO philosophy is solid.
What’s an SEO philosophy and why is it important?
“Only a fool swims against the tide,”-Warren Buffet
Your SEO philosophy drives your methodology. It informs how you think about every part of the work that you do, the content you build, the links you seek out, and the way you perceive search marketing in the wider Internet world.
There are thousands, perhaps even millions, of SEO and digital marketers in the world, but they all fall into only one of two categories:
1) Against the tide.
2) With the tide.
“Against the tide” swimmers:
These are the marketers who are always on the lookout for how they can game the system or find a loophole in the Google algorithm. It used to be called “black hat SEO” where they’d use link-wheels, private blog networks, spammy links, cloaking, keyword stuffing, etc. Many of these methods worked for a time, but because it wasn’t adding any value or helping users (thereby going against Google’s guidelines) they were eventually found out and their rankings dropped like a rock. Their “swimming against the tide” approach ended up costing them clients and rankings; all of their hard work accounts for nothing today.
“With the tide” swimmers:
The happy campers in this group are a lot smarter. They don’t care about chasing the next new thing for short-term results, because they know that there is only one way to win online, and that’s with a long-term approach. They derive their ideas from a mindset of getting value for the user. The more helpful their content, the better! This is why blog posts from Neil Patel are now 3,000 words long and include detailed reports, breakdowns, how-to videos, and studies, all of which are extremely helpful. Neil Patel will never have a problem with traffic or new clients because his philosophy, which informs his methodology, all revolve around how to offer the BEST user experience. Have you seen a video from Baclinkos Brian Dean? Anyone who watched enough of these videos will become an SEO superstar in no time. They both focus on great value and in return, they not only get highly targeted traffic but followers and brand evangelists.
It’s actually pretty easy to predict if someone will be relevant in the SEO industry five years from now. Just look at their approach. Is it “How can we provide the best for the most people?” or is it ”How can we get the most for the least?”
The thing is, if you work with good content that you’re proud of, not only are you free of worry from search engine tune ups, you can freely promote that content anywhere and it will have the kind of quality that will make it go viral. It will return to you ten times what you put out.
People know when they’re being duped. They sense it. There’s an intangible feeling that whoever wrote this doesn’t really give a damn whether or not I read it learn from it, they are just trying to put out a bunch of stuff quickly to sound like an authority.
There are billions of pages of information out there and my feed is full of people trying to get my attention. But there are only a handful of people I actually care about clicking on.
Now let’s talk about Guy Vaynerchuck.
If there was ever a guy who embodies giving value, it’s him. It’s not just his warm personality, though. He is always delivering ideas that are smart and actionable. If he’s talking about how to get new customers for a restaurant, he’ll include specific ways to do get those customers THIS WEEK. Problem with your podcast? Here’s what you can do right NOW.
If he says “this is an interesting read” it probably is!
And this is the whole point of my post: he’s sincere! You must be sincere.
He effortlessly “swims with the tide” due to his right-headed philosophy rooted in his sincere desire to see people win. To me, he comes across like this:
“Hey you, yes YOU, who happens to be reading this right now while you’re cooking dinner, worrying about your business, and 100 other things. I’m just like you, but here’s something I found today. What do you think?”
He reaches out to grab your attention above all the noise. He is not an SEO marketer per se, but his underlying philosophy is always informing his work, and his audience adores him for it.