SEO is dead and other takeaways from SES

I had trouble falling asleep last night. I was suffering from a horrible jet lag and my mind was still occupied with things I learned and heard at a digital marketing seminar a few weeks back. Me and my colleague Marika were attending the SES in New York City. Which is by the way the best city in the world.
We were excited to get there. Keen to learn new things and experience the city that never sleeps. We both are really bad with directions and had to rely on Google Maps most of the time. Somehow we managed to find the most important places though: Macy´s and Century 21. And of course the Marriot Marquis Hotel, the venue for the seminar.
Here are a few light takeaways from the SES and NYC.

Americans love small talk

Okay, this is nothing new but the immensity of the fact came kind as a shock. Us silent and ”talk only when you have something really important to say” Finns were really in trouble with talkative Americans. They can easily talk for half an hour without really saying a thing! As usual for us Finns, we would have relied on a couple of drinks but it was not really appropriate in the middle of the day. And by the way, there was only one evening bash during the whole seminar which was a kind of a downer.

”SEO is dead”

That´s a phrase SEOs have heard many times along the years. In the past few years Google has been doing some serious changes in its alghorithm to prevent manipulative tactics in search engine optimization. Google is definitely keeping the game interesting. There´s been Panda, Penguin etc. After these changes there is only one thing that is working for sure: with quality content you get good results. People love good content and Google does too.

SEO is marketing

SEO has for a long time been something that agencies do alone for clients. Now it´s the time to change that delusion because SEO is marketing. We agency SEOs should engage our client´s PR, communications and even sales department to do SEO with us. SEO is not just a service you can buy from a third party, then forget about it and expect to get good results. It demands tight co-operation and commitment from both parties.

Forget link building, let´s be friends

You could say that links are the most important thing in SEO. Link building has always been a kind of a hot potato in the industry. Some do it right and some well, some just don´t. In today´s world you shouldn´t talk about link building, you should call it link earning. No more directories, blog commenting, mining competitor´s backlinks etc. Instead, create excellent content, engage people, and build relationships with contacts who can spread it for you.

Hooray for Tulos

It was really nice to notice that the SEM we are doing here in Finland at Tulos is quite similar to how the agencies are doing it in the US. The market it naturally smaller but our knowledge is at a very high level. That made us really proud of our work. Sometimes the best takeaway from a seminar is just to compare the lever of your knowledge and skills with others.

Nerdie girls in New York

We were staying in NYC for a few extra days before the seminar so we could explore the city and experience the energetic atmosphere. We had huge plans about dining in nice restaurants, going to museums, art galleries etc. Somehow it happened that the only places we really experienced were the seminar and the shops. Our bottoms were so tired from sitting through the long seminar days and our feet so sore from all that shopping, that the only thing we were able to do in the evening was watch TV and sleep. Exciting, huh?

Where next?

Tulos is a great work place. One thing that is exceptionally nice is that we have the possibility to do these kind of things. We can attend cool international seminars, learn new things, read good books, meet colleagues around the world and share our thoughts about digital marketing. We are already planning our next seminar trip. Where do you think we should go?

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