Webinar: SEO is a Partnership

Learn more about the importance of the client-marketing firm relationship when engaging in a new SEO campaign. Myself and David, Lead SEO, breakdown the duties and expectations for a successful campaign.

 

Webinar Translation

Alex: This entire webinar is based on the partnership that SEO is all about, search engine optimization is all about. First and foremost, I would like to introduce myself as well as David. My name is Alex Di Sebastian. I am the Internet Marketing Director here at PaperStreet. I have been with PaperStreet for almost nine years at this point. My role has many facets to it in the sense that I was originally a Creative Director, also a Web Director, and now the Internet Marketing Director.

It’s important to note simply because of the fact that SEO applies to all aspects of a website – the design from a commercial level to the functionality, from making sure that you’re doing the latest and greatest, being involved and responsive. Then obviously, just simply from a marketing perspective. That’s my role.

I’d also like to introduce David. David Friedman is our lead SEO associate. David will also be speaking on the webinar a few slides later. We’ll go a little bit in-depth on who David is and his role and what his responsibilities are, and he’ll handle his portion on the webinar.

Let’s begin. The actual presentation, again, is about the partnership of SEO and what’s involved in it. Really, the outline of what we’re going to be going through on this entire presentation is, first and foremost, what is involved in setting up a successful SEO campaign. What needs to be done. Secondly, what our responsibility is from an SEO team versus what the client’s responsibility is. Then lastly is the best practices, really what all of us should be doing, what all of us should be looking out for in order for this campaign to be successful.

Let’s go through specifically understanding what is involved in setting up an SEO campaign. First and foremost, we act as your internet marketing directors. We continually stay up-to-date on the latest changes and the advancements that are happening out in the internet world. I mean ultimately, what that does is it culminates into what our recommendations, and more importantly, our guidelines need to be met so that we can have a successful campaign.

Every SEO campaign that we look at here at PaperStreet is really a symbiotic relationship. In other words, we have just as much interested in it as it being successful as what you want it to be. From the business perspective, if the SEO campaign fails, if we’re not doing a good enough job, then you’re obviously not going to be happy with us and move on to our competitor, of course. We obviously don’t want that to happen.

Fundamentally, we want this to be just as successful as you want it to be successful. We’re reaching out. We have guidelines, we have standards, we have recommendations, we have suggestions, and we have a list of things that need to be complied to in order to be met. That’s really the fundamental part in this entire webinar. That said, we have absolutely, unequivocally found the direct correlation between clients that provide us with timely information and feedback to go with that rank really highly.

It just goes to show that if this partnership is, again, symbiotic, and we are in constant contact with each other, simply put, the more that your firm or company is involved, the higher that you most likely will rank. We’ll go through why. Why that is the case? How that actually applies to us from a standpoint of making sure that we’re doing the best that we can do. Ultimately, it all boils down to becoming an industry leader and becoming the ultimate resource.

Again, think about it from a perspective on PaperStreet’s level, which is we have a multitude of clients and a multitude of different arenas of not only law firms and multiple different practice areas, but some of our clients are in the medical industry. Some of them are veterinarians, etc., etc. From that perspective, there’s no way that we would be able to know the fastest and the in-depth knowledge of everybody’s career or company as well as you would know it.

From that perspective, we need to make sure that we’re constantly communicating to basically say, what can make you an industry leader? What can make you the ultimate resource? How can you supersede your competitors in becoming that ultimate resource and that industry leader? We’ll go through that as well. Again, you’re asking yourself the question, are you that industry leader? Are you the top authoritative figures? Am I the ultimate resource in XYZ phrase that I’m targeting.

The last part of this is the 80/20 percent workload methodology that’s been used for years and years and years. It’s an advertising ad age. It’s been something that people have talked about for quite a long time. But what that means is that it can apply to multiple different things. But in this scenario, what it applies to is we at PaperStreet will do 80 percent of the work. We’re basically going to be involved in setting up. We’re your champion. We’re going to be doing what’s involved the most, but we still need 20 percent of that feedback. We need 20 percent of that communication.

It’s really important to harp on this because it does change the perspective of one to assume that we’re going to be handling the 100% of it. For the reasons I just mentioned, there’s no way that we could handle that, to be honest, just from knowing the facets of your company. In short, it’s definitely not a hands off program. It’s absolutely a partnership, organic in its nature. What that ultimately means is SEO is always deemed as an organic field. It’s constantly changing. It’s constantly evolving. Google, much to our shivering, changes its algorithm quite frequently.

We then as an SEO team, have to stay up to date. We have to make sure that we know what everything complies to. You, as far as the client, should also understand that and know that, and know what has to happen and know what has to change. Again, it’s constant, continual involvement. It’s constant, continual change.

Just recently, for those that don’t know, Google did a later algorithm update, a recent one. That’s actually called the Pigeon update. They code name all of their updates. There has been a Panda update, a Penguin update, a Hummingbird update. The recent one, the most recent one is the Pigeon update. It’s all about local listings. It’s all about local citations and local verifications and being found on a local level. I mean again, to that point, Google is constantly evolving and changing the dynamic of what they’re targeting and what they’re going after.

Without further ado, we’re going to go into the nitty gritty of it, what the SEO team’s responsibilities are versus what the client’s responsibilities are. For that portion, I’m going to hand this over to David, again, who is our lead SEO associate. He can speak to you about the specifics of every SEO need.

David: Hello, everyone. My name is David. As Alex had already mentioned, I’m the Lead Assistant at PaperStreet. I work with Alex on a daily basis to handle the initial setup of your campaign and the ongoing maintenance. My responsibilities include researching effective keyword phrases, auditing the content on your website, performing an initial technical audit, and handle any technical websites related to SEO. This leads me to my next segment. I’d like to speak more in-depth about the responsibilities that we handle for your campaign.

The first part of your campaign involves strategizing and researching effective keyword phrases. When we start your SEO campaign, you have an initial SEO kickoff meeting. We introduce you to the world of SEO and internet marketing. I’m sure you already know, but Alex will be your point of contact for advice and consultation throughout your SEO campaign. His wealth of knowledge, experience and well-roundedness in the web design world helps him to find a solution to any problem that you can throw at him. His great use of analogies makes the world of SEO seem clear to whoever he is speaking with.

Since Alex and I work so closely together, his use of analogies has rubbed off on me. So while I was preparing this webinar, I thought of an analogy and wanted to share it with you all. SEO can be thought of as a symphony with many different instruments working together to produce the magnificent result. You can think of Alex as the maestro, and the instruments are all the different aspects of your SEO campaign working in harmony.

The next part of your campaign is the keyword research. We brainstorm multiple variations of keywords to find out which phrases will drive the most traffic to your website. With Google’s keyword planner tool, we can learn which keywords are searched for most frequently with the least amount of competitors in the way.

Our most successful campaigns have about ten primary keywords that are honed in and reflect the core services and goals of your company or law firm. With our recommendations on the right keywords, this helps to drive the right kind of leads and traffic to your website. Our goal is to attract and target the people who are in need of the services that you specialize in. We recommend reviewing your keywords every quarter or year to make sure they are still in alignment with your company goals and your areas of expertise. We are always here to assist and reevaluating and performing any additional keyword research that might be needed.

The next phase of your campaign, we take a look at here are your content and on-page optimization. We analyze the core content, meaning the practice areas on your website, and make sure that it’s in alignment with the keyword phrases that you have chosen for your campaign. This includes checking to see that your existing content is correctly optimized and meets our recommended 500 word minimum standard.

We examine your title text, your meta descriptions, the headlines on the page, and also the body content. Based on the results of our audit, we advise on any new content that is needed. The new content that is written by our team will be already SEO optimized and in alignment with your keywords. If you already have your own content on your website, we will have our SEO writers evaluate, edit and optimize your copy to make sure it adheres to the SEO industry standards and best practices.

The next part of the campaign would be your site structure and information architecture of your website. We handle the creation of your site structure, or otherwise known as the main navigation on your website. We figure out solutions for where our new pages should exist within your site. The site, if you’re not familiar with it, the site structure and information architecture of your website is very important from a usability perspective. If a potential client is unable to find the right information in a timely manner, frustration will settle in and a potential client might just leave your website without finding the resource that he was looking for.

Our goal is to make sure that this doesn’t happen. However, the full creation of the site structure will only apply if you’re using our complete web design services, meaning we are building you a brand new website or doing a redesign. Otherwise, we’re happy to assist you or your current development team on where to add the new pages to your current website. That takes care of the initial setup of your campaign. I’m going to be speaking about the second part of your campaign, which involves a technical evaluation, and then we work with you to establish your relevancy and authority through content on your website.

As mentioned before in my introduction, we perform a technical inspection on your website to make sure it adheres to industry standards. We perform various tasks that include, but are not limited to setting up Google services like analytics and webmaster tools. Using webmaster tools, we generate and submit a site map, which is basically a listing of all of your web pages directly to Google so that everything is accounted for. In addition to that, we will set up Google authorship, we integrate social media into your website, we check for any broken links, we look for any duplicate content issues along with many other technical checks.

The next part is establishing relevancy through your content. Most of our SEO plans include content planning, editing and writing services. We will work with you to develop keyword-driven content that will drive the correct traffic to your website. In addition, we have revamped our current SEO plans to offer ongoing SEO blogging services. Most of our new proposals include blog posts to be written, optimized and posted for you on a monthly basis to your website. We can’t stress the importance enough of having optimized and sufficient content. Being the industry leader and providing the most content on your subject matter that is in alignment with your keywords is a recipe for a successful SEO campaign.

Moving on to the third part of your campaign, this involves building your authority through link building and social media networking. We put together a link building plan and process that’s going to work in the world of SEO today. It’s no longer about quantity but all about quality. We obtain unique, specified, tailored, natural links that are associated with your industry and your geographic location. This makes it clear to Google the areas and potential clients that you want to target.

We obtain local citations including setting up a Google business page, which is one of the most important listings that you can create. We perform an analysis of your competitors back links and we’ll acquire any applicable links. Black hat tactics is a forbidden phrase here at PaperStreet. We obtain all of your links in a standard and valued, in an ethical and natural manner.

The next part of link building also has to do with social media. With every campaign, we establish and create the design and branding of Facebook, LinkedIn, Google Plus, Twitter and YouTube for your company or law firm.

Ashley, I’m sure you have worked with her in the past. She’s our social media expert and she’s always available to assist you if you have any questions relating to the best practices and standards of social media marketing. We can supply you with knowledge on how to utilize social media in the correct manner and expand your reach to your potential clients.

Social media is a must for any company today. It helps establish your brand and it sends positive signals to Google in terms of your authority as a business and industry leader. In addition to setting up your social media accounts, we establish your Google Plus profile and authorship. Without having Google authorship established, you’re already one step behind your competitors. Google gives precedence to those who are more active on their own network. Simply put, we set you up with the tools to be successful. With professionally branded social media pages, you are ready to spread the word and network about the services you offer on all platforms.

This leads me into the last segment, which is the final part of your SEO campaign. This involves your ranking reports, your website metrics, consultation and campaign evaluation. On a monthly basis, we will send you a detailed report on your current keyword rankings. If you have signed up for our complete SEO report, you will be able to see in more detail your Google analytics, which includes various metrics related to your website visitors. If you haven’t signed up for this report, please feel free to let us know and we will set it up for you. You can e-mail me directly at David@PaperStreet.

The next part is consultation and campaign evaluation. We are always more than happy to consult with you. If you have any questions or if you just want to learn about industry standards or best practices. Scheduled consultation time each month is included in your SEO plan if and when you need it. As mentioned before, Alex will help you to have a better understanding of what it takes to have a successful SEO campaign. Simply reach out to Alex or myself and we will be happy to schedule a time to go over your campaign. In addition, if you would like us to ever evaluate your website from an SEO perspective, we would be more than happy to do so. We can provide an in-depth look into each aspect of your campaign that I just discussed and we can recommend what the best plan of action should be.

That wraps up my segment. I hope that I was able to teach you about the work and responsibilities that we adhere to at PaperStreet for your SEO campaign. I’m going now pass it over to Alex so that he can discuss what is needed from you, our clients.

Alex: Yeah. As David mentioned on both of our e-mails, my e-mail is Alex@PaperStreet.com, David is David@PaperStreet.com, pretty easy. As he mentioned, if you guys have any questions about anything that we do from our responsibility level or anything that we can circle back on, be in the strategy, the research, any of the technical setup, the relevancy of making sure that we comply with what needs to get done for your content writing, if you want to know about the link building that we’re doing and what kind of link building and how we, as David spoke about, how we kind of hone in on the quality versus the quantity.

Most importantly, as he mentioned, you can contact Ashley, who, as you would probably assume is Ashley@PaperStreet.com. She can go really in-depth about industry standards for all of social media aspects as David mentioned. She’s actually written quite a few blog posts on it that we could link you to directly as well as both David and I have quite a few blog posts on our website as well that we talk about from our best recommendations and industry standards.

Let me get to client responsibilities. Really when we look at client responsibilities, what we’re talking about here is where we need that 20% of your involvement that we spoke about before. Everything that David went through would be 80% of what we actually do and go through.

Client responsibilities are making sure that the project is set up properly from the beginning and making sure that we really get honed in properly on what our kickoff, initial kickoff call is, for all of our campaign. As David mentioned, our consultation and advisement time is always available. We’re more than happy to circle back, even from the kickoff call level of saying what are we truly targeting. Is this honed in? Does this make sense? Are we truly targeting the most things that matter?

For example, just recently, we spoke to two of our active clients. One of them in particular was initially casting this pretty wide net of just saying they were going after criminal defense. They did this kind of cathartic look at their own firm and then said, “Well actually, it’s not really all of criminal defense that I’m interested in. What I really only truly care about is DUI.” From that perspective, we were able to change and update the entire campaign so it wasn’t diluted to go after all of the subsets and all of the other subsets related to criminal defense now honed in and surgically targeting DUI.

Same thing with another one of our clients who is in the probate area, almost the exact same conversation. We were casting a wide net including things that were related to tax and other types of litigation that was involved in probate. Ultimately, that’s not what they cared about. When they took this cathartic look at their business and what was driving leads, what was driving traffic, they were able to then say to us, “Here’s what we truly want to target. Here’s what we want to go after.”

First and foremost, let’s make sure that the project is set up properly and that we are in constant communication. That’s definitely something that we look for in your responsibility. The content strategy, as David mentioned, the huge portion of Google’s algorithm is all about relevancy, making sure that you’re relevant on your website for what you’re targeting. This is where we need your communication, your involvement. As David went through, we need to make sure that we have the core content on your website that we’re targeting.

A core content is key. It’s as simple as this. Basically, Google says, “You’re targeting XYZ phrase, I need to see XYZ content on your site.” If it’s not there as literal as that phrase is listed as XYZ, then we need to update the website. We need to make sure that we do have that content there to make it that literal. We need to make sure that we get constant client approval on the content.

We have had several instances where we’ve written a lot of content or moved forward with best industry standards. But then, through whatever political arenas need to happen in a law firm or even in a company, that content takes a really long time to get approved, and then subsequently posted on a website. If that’s the case, you’re not being indexed. The website is not coming to fruition. We’re not getting the return on what we need to post online. The sooner we can that post online, the sooner we can start getting relevancy and the sooner we can start getting a return on that.

Same thing goes with blogging, continual blogging. What that means is for those that don’t know, every time you do a blog post, it actually adds a page to your website. The more pages you add, the more you’re making yourself a bigger target, the more relevant you can become, particularly when you’re introducing the keyword phrases that you’re targeting into the blog post. That again makes it that much more relevant. We need to continually do that. We need feedback. If we are writing blogs for you, then we need approval on those blog posts.

We actually do an advanced sort of idea of what we’re going to be blogging about. We need approval on what those subjects are so that we can make sure that everything is done succinctly so that it goes online in a timely manner. Again, we just touched upon with social media. As I mentioned, I kind of jumped ahead of myself, but Ashley is more than happy to go through all of that.

Social media in a nutshell, it’s not only about putting out information and establishing your brand, but they’re called social media networks. We can’t forget and negate the networking portion of it. We have to be involved, we have to re-Tweet, we have to post, we have to comment. We have to have an involvement on that. If we don’t, then we’re basically just using t as a soap box, and that’s really what Google does not want to see. They actually want to see that involvement and that engagement other than just using it to put information out to the world.

Then lastly, video blogging. We recommend this quite a bit for all of our clients to set up video. Google bought YouTube. It is part of their company. It is absolutely part of their algorithm. Just like we mentioned with continual blogging, you can continually post videos. If you were to do this on a monthly basis or a weekly basis. I don’t think I’ve ever seen somebody do it on a daily basis. But if you were to continually do that, it is establishing that much more relevancy for what you’re targeting.

If you were to write or do a video on XYZ phrase, we can then optimize that video that is going online to be targeted towards XYZ phrase. The title of it can be XYZ phrase. The meta description of that can be XYZ phrase. If you actually talk about it in your video itself, you can actually set it up, which we do for all of our videos that we post, to have transcripts and closed captions included, which actually makes its content ready so that Google can see it has content available, even referencing XYZ phrase, all really good things to help the campaign fundamentally.

Those are all the best industry standards. Those are all things that we actually go through that we do, that you guys should be doing, that we should all be communicating about and moving forward. Fundamentally, it really boils down to us doing this direct client involvement, direct, constant communication, and then going through every month talking about active suggestions and recommendations that we all might have that we can all help each other to basically say, “How do we make this campaign as successful as can be?”

It then boils down to this. We actually put this out there and this is going to summarize and end our webinar here. Let’s ask ourselves these questions. Truly look at yourself in the eyes. Look at yourself from a business perspective and basically go and ask these things. Campaign keywords – are they focused? Are they truly honed in as much as they can be? Are you truly targeting what matters? Not only what matters to the firm, but what’s actually obtainable. Are those phrases that we’re targeting actually realistic?

What that means is that if we’re talking about a law firm, are we just saying, perhaps, let’s just say Fort Lauderdale personal injury. But that is not honing it in to Fort Lauderdale personal injury lawyer or personal injury law firm or personal injury attorney. If we’re just casting this super wide net of saying something personal injury, then that’s not necessarily honing it in and making it focused. More importantly, if the entire firm doesn’t truly care about all about personal injury, maybe it’s about car accidents, maybe it’s about truck accidents, maybe that’s what we should be targeting and that’s what we should be honing in on.

Content. Do we have the content to support your keyword phrases? Again, ask ourselves these questions. Are there pages on your website that are named specifically for the targeted phrases that we’re going after. Do you have valuable content that helps your site rank higher for these phrases. In other words, in short, do you have specific pages that target each keyword phrase directly as we’re going after it? If we don’t, we’re falling short.

We need to make sure that that content is there. Even in related into your content, is it interesting? Is it not just boiler plate? If you look at your competitors and it’s just legal jargon, are you actually making it engaging? , Is it going to convert? Is it something that people actually wants to read, or are we just reiterating what’s in a law book? Again, are you actively blogging? Are you involved in social media? Is it establishing your brand? And are you networking?

Link building. Are we responding to our link building requests? We actively send out verification. We find duplications. Are we clearing that out? Are we making sure that everything is honed in? Are you listed on the directories that are now superseding most listings? Google changed their algorithm update and got it to literally list directories that occupy the top spots. It’s really that anthem of, “If you can’t beat ’em, join ’em.” Are we listed in Super Lawyers, in AVVO, in some of these other legal directories that are listed in the top slots now. If we’re not, we should make sure that we are. That’s all part of link building. That helps your authority. That helps your power of your website.

Do you have duplicates in local listings? Are there attorneys in your firm that have backlinks to their alumni associations from their law school or from their colleges? That’s all stuff that we can absolutely help out with. What it most importantly does is gives you a competitive edge that your competitor can’t link to.

For example, let’s say you went to Yale, let’s say you went to Duke, let’s say you went to Harvard and you’re competitor didn’t, if we can get a backlink from places like those that is absolutely tailored and unique that can help you, and that’s absolutely something that we can assist with. In your local Chamber of Commerce, your local city’s district website, do you have backlinks from there? Most of them allow you to do it. Just list your local business. Why not? Again, it’s giving you a more direct correlation to who you are and what you’re targeting that your competitor might not have or might not have done.

Then lastly, this is something that we’re going to be touching up on in our SEO report that we send out monthly. A really good tip on link building is are you active in your community so that local newspapers and blogs can pick up the success story? That’s absolutely something that you should be targeting, letting us know something that we can link build toward and something that we can move forward toward to help your campaign in general.

Reporting and consultation. Do you read the reports that we send? We actually send out quite a few reports every month. Are those reports actually read in-depth? Most of the reports that we send, we actually give monthly suggestions and tips. Not only just looking at the ranking report, but as David mentioned, we can set up what’s called a complete SEO report which actually tracks and continually tracks your campaign over a six month period. We look here in August, we can then go back six months and it will continually move with that campaign or your campaign to show the progression, to show what’s going on. If you do want to set that up, please e-mail me or David and we’re happy to set that up for you.

Then again, do you understand how the partnership works? Do you have any questions at all? Do you want to speak about the campaign? If so, feel free to give us a call and set up a time. Really, that sums everything up. Again, with you actively participating, we’ll gain authority and relevancy for the website. Think of us as your publishing and your promotion team. We’re your curators and the champions of your content and your internet marketing in general. The return on investment, ultimately will be positive, as long as we maintain that active communication and you guys have an active role. Fundamentally, we look forward to seeing you at the top of rankings.

That sums up our webinar. That sums up our presentation. I’m going to open up the phone lines now. If anybody has any questions or concerns, please feel free to ask.

Okay, I think everybody is unmuted at this point. If anybody has any questions, please let us know. If not, that’s fine. If we don’t have any questions, what we could also do is, again, if you have any direct question that you want to talk about particularly with your campaign, you could also just e-mail us. Again, my e-mail is Alex@PaperStreet.com and David’s is David@PaperStreet.com. Anyone? Questions at all? Over anything? Okay. If not, hopefully we’ve answered everybody’s questions or concerns related to how this partnership works, and we’ll sum up the webinar. We’ll end the webinar. Thank you very much for attending, and we’ll talk to you guys next time.

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