Monday, July 4, 2016

Inbound Marketing And Doublespeak

You won't likely hear the phrase "damage control" in business circles. Instead you'll hear the much more benign and deceptively pleasant, "reputation management". This is because today's business persons, like most people, prefer soft and safe language. Doublespeak or soft language, if you will, is a powerful tool that takes the bite out of language and is designed to make reality more palatable for those who persist in delusion. To use doublespeak is to engage in deception and is wholly dishonest at its core. It changes nothing and does nothing positive. Instead it conceals the truth and deceives those on the receiving end of it.

Reputation Management

Courtesy:
pithypropertymanager.files.wordpress.com
"Reputation Management" hit the inbound marketing scene just a few years back but don't be fooled by any company or representative that dresses it up, it's damage control plain and simple. So how does it work? It goes something like this.

A business might have clients whom go online and say something unsavory. Business owners then pay their inbound marketing firm to go online and reply to or delete these "negative" comments, video, etc. Even more troubling is the fact that reps performing this service will often attempt to silence dissent by lying about the customer, trashing their reputation/business, or act in a dismissive manner as though legitimate complaints are nothing more than hot air from a buffoon. Reputation Management Specialists will even go as far as submitting complaints to social media websites in order to have the complainers account suspended. In the eyes of search engine marketing reps whom handle reputation management, there are no legitimate complaints; they're all negative, all wrong, all lies, and all need to be dealt with accordingly.

What Happened To Customer Service?

courtesy: http://www.whale.to
In years and even decades past addressing dissatisfied customers was known as customer service and companies had people in house that handled these types of issues. Reputation management services are carried out by people whom don't even work for the company they're representing. Furthermore the majority don't even have a customer service background. This is an unhealthy way of dealing with customer dissatisfaction, discontent, and there are often consequences to going this route. Paying your SEO firm to handle unhappy customers can wedge a further divide between you and your clients. It is often said that good news travels slowly and that bad news travels quickly. Once you hand off customer service responsibilities to someone outside your company and to someone who's only interest is in silencing people you can bet that your customers will begin talking more aggressively and loudly. Reputation Management does nothing to fix a business' reputation nor it's problems with its customers. Instead it serves to exacerbate existing issues.

Who Can Help A Business With Its Online Reputation?

Courtesy:
socialmediaexaminer.com
A business is best served by addressing online customer issues itself. A dedicated staff member or team can work with unhappy clients online to resolve issues properly. There also exists those inbound marketing firms that offer services which help eliminate and manage errors, trolls, and misinformation but these companies do not address customer service issues. Instead they will work with social media sites and other businesses to get problems corrected. Here at Next Revolution SEO we believe that customer service issues belong to the business they're attached to. We also help our clients get spam, trolling, etc. removed from sites but we never support a business silencing unfavorable opinions or comments online. Furthermore we oppose doublespeak, soft language, instead encouraging open, honest, and blunt discourse.

If you need help managing your online reputation...don't call us, we don't want any part of that. If however you need help managing your social media accounts and legitimate interactions with your customers online, that we would be happy to help with.



~Scott (President, Next Revolution SEO)

Phone: 714-820-9935
Website: www.nextrevolutionseo.com

Email: websuccess@nextrevolutionseo.com

fuck you David Brudnicki.

Friday, May 13, 2016

Inbound Marketing Without The Bullshit: Part 2

In my previous post I wrote about some of the unrealistic expectations and misgivings some search engine optimization clients have. The focus of this post will shift to the industry I am apart of. This business and industry have supported my family for over a decade but that's not to say I'm always proud to be a part of the community. To be frank there are times where I'm rather ashamed and embarrassed of my contemporaries, competitors, and even comrades. Working in the retail during the earliest years of my youth taught me what the word cut-throat meant but when it comes to cut-throat business one must stand in awe of the inbound marketing industry.

Dishonesty Has Many Faces

Courtesy: thesun.co.uk
The online marketing industry isn't atypical in its dishonesty, disingenuous individuals, or ambiguous and often misleading sales pitches. In fact these issues/problems permeate American business though perhaps not as egregiously as they do the SEO industry. Here are some all too common issues that plague this industry.

Buzzwords - Buzzwords are a tool used by the ignorant and dishonest both in and out of business. In SEO sales circles these words are used to distract and cover parts of a service or topic that people wish to avoid. SEO sales persons will toss out words like "guarantee, free, and may even inundate prospective clients with a ton of industry jargon which allows them to sidestep questions or answer them without ever really saying anything. Beware the inbound marketing sales person or rep whose smile extends through both ends of the phone. Advertising online isn't all sunshine and rainbows but they'd love for you to believe it is.

Guarantees - There are no guarantees in online marketing campaigns and anyone who tells you differently is lying. Of course there are those marketing firms that guarantee that certain things will happen to your website but what they won't ever tell you is that these things happen to all websites that start an SEO campaign. Instead they'll act as though your sudden and unexpected results are a product of clever marketing work which in turn makes you think they are something special. All new inbound marketing efforts result in a jump, albeit a temporary one, in the rankings. If a marketing firm starts throwing guarantees at you keep in mind that Google itself posted information online that definitively proves that all SEO guarantees are bogus Several other respected publications have done the same. Please consider reading those. There are then those marketing firms that claim people such as myself use the no guarantee philosophy as a shield against accountability; which itself is another form of bullshit. Marketing firms that don't get results and aren't accountable don't thrive for 10 plus years. There are an incredible number of factors that make or break an SEO campaign and the fault can not always be attributed to a mismanaged campaign or firm. Sometimes its fierce competition, a willfully ignorant and parsimonious client, the rep handling the campaign, and even just misfortune. It's advertising for god's sake...not a miracle and instantaneous retirement plan.

Little Whispers - I've never seen so much underhandedness as I have working in the inbound marketing industry. Not only are scam artists lurking around every corner ready to steal clients away from solid marketing firms but some of the legitimate companies resort to outright lies to lure clients away from companies that are providing them with great results. The sales reps who worked for the company I was employed with just prior to starting Next Revolution SEO were scandalous. They would tell people that their current marketing firm wasn't doing something right, omitting something, or just screwing things up. This was followed up with "Of course we can fix that for you" while wearing a sinister grin that would embarrass the Grinch. I would have had no problem with this had they not openly admitted it was all horseshit used to lure clients away from campaigns that were working well. If you're looking for integrity it isn't easily found in the inbound marketing industry. Be wary of those firms and reps that are quick to point out faults with your current marketing campaign or use that as a lead off and don't cancel your current marketing plan so hastily. Do your research, ask questions, and leave emotion out of your decision making.

Open Communication

Jenn and I founded Next Revolution SEO with the sole intent of providing businesses with solid and comprehensive search engine optimization services minus all the crap that usually comes with them. 10 years on we still take great pride in offering honest services.  We encourage all of our clients to not only openly communicate with us but our competitors as well. If they are happy with us but want something we aren't currently offering, contacting us can and does add new services to our list of services. Moreover we are more than happy to put you in touch with our clients so that you don't have to take our word for anything since there's clearly a conflict of interest there. One more thing...if someone tells you they can make you number one in the "search engines" but don't mention Google they're deceiving you. Being number one in some obscure search engine is meaningless and you're being taken. Food for thought...

~Scott (President, Next Revolution SEO)

Phone: 714-820-9935
Website: www.nextrevolutionseo.com

Email: websuccess@nextrevolutionseo.com

Thursday, May 12, 2016

Inbound Marketing Without The Bullshit: Part 1

Courtesy: http://priceofoil.org
I've been working in the SEO/Inbound Marketing industry for over 14 year now. Over the years I've seen many aspects of this industry change dramatically. Whether it's new Google algorithms, skyrocketing prices, the time it takes to see results, or marketing firms coming and going...I've seen it all. If there are two constants in the world of search engine optimization however it's most assuredly client expectations and the lies disreputable firms tell both existing and prospective clients. In this post I'll be dealing with client expectations. I'll deal with industry lies in a future post.

Client Expectations And Disappointment

At the risk of being perceived as an ostentatious ass I will say this. Search engine optimization clients are among the worlds most pedantic and difficult to please. Your hard work might get them results much sooner than either you or they expected yet some will continue to mull over the most mundane details and find fault where there is none. Details mind you that have next to nothing to do with these prodigious and unexpected results. Some will even express dissatisfaction over not achieving even greater results in such a short time. All this despite their early results being atypical and having listened to you explain to them in great detail not to expect anything solid or consistent for 9 to 12 months.

Courtesy:
theclumpany.files.wordpress.com
Not all of this is the fault of the client mind you. In some instances the clients that sign on with us do so only after being wounded; having been mislead, over-promised, and outright lied to by other online marketing firms. Burning clients in this manner is a sure fire way to ignite skepticism in people of business, more specifically online marketing clients. Unfortunately this skepticism isn't always of the healthy variety and often leads to frustration and further disappointment for both the client and their marketing firm. Inbound marketing clients, especially those that have had bad experiences, need to remember that online marketing takes time, consistency, and money. Actions such as cutting a marketing budget, taking a month off, cancelling and moving to another firm, etc. all do damage to a clients rankings and are effectively like throwing money out a window.

Provided a marketing firm explains how inbound marketing does and doesn't work before a client signs up, the onus remains on the client to keep expectations realistic and to be consistent as well as patient. Most marketing firms...well the reputable ones anyway...are going to be working hard to get their client rankings and the online exposure they desperately want and need. Clients that want good results and the best bang for their buck need to back off and allow their marketing firms do their jobs. Clients that harass their marketing firms, threaten to cancel when their website doesn't appear in the number one spot after just two or three months, and tell their marketing team they don't know what they're doing, are creating a toxic relationship with their marketing team. What type of person hires an expert in a given field and then tells them they don't know what they're doing or that they're doing their job incorrectly? These are the actions of arrogant persons who probably shouldn't be wasting their time or money on marketing because they are insatiable and ignorant when it comes to search engine optimization. Without exception, all SEO clients are at the mercy of Google. Their marketing firms must play by Google's rules and abide by their time frames. No amount of frustration, anger, impatience, or nagging is going to change the way the game is played. Clients have a better chance of finding immortality than they do causing change at Google. Never tell your marketing firm, "I know it takes time but.....". One does not get more dishonest or absurd than that. If a prospective client can not or will not wait for results they should refrain from starting an online marketing campaign; it's as simple as that.

Here at Next Revolution SEO we tell every client, well before they sign on, that online marketing requires time, consistency, and patience above all else. We do not make guarantees and we will dissuade prospective clients from signing on with us or any other firm if we see that they are incapable or unwilling to accept the truth about online marketing campaigns. There are plenty of online marketing firms that are all too happy to accept money from anyone and any business; we are not one of those companies. We want all of our clients to succeed in business and seek to build a strong rapport with anyone who comes on board. We don't believe in bullshit and can help any business, big or small, given they come to terms with what inbound marketing is and isn't. We also ask that our clients give us the time we need to do our job. If you've been mislead by another firm but still need marketing for your online business be sure to drop us an email or give us a call. We are more than happy to answer any questions you may have.

~Scott (President, Next Revolution SEO)

Phone: 714-820-9935
Email: websuccess@nextrevolutionseo.com