How do you get found online? How do you generate leads to your website that can actually pay for your services? How do you attract the right people rather than just hearing crickets when you open your website?
In today’s episode, we’re uncovering all of this with search engine marketing expert, Heather Lutze.
Breaking free of corporate “cubicle” jobs well over fifteen years ago with nothing more than a dream of entrepreneurship and a basement computer, Heather built her business into a multimillion-dollar Denver SEM company—the Findability Group.
Heather founded Findability Group in 2000, in response to all the frustrated website owners who had paid good money for beautiful, high-tech websites that weren’t bringing in business.
As for her “street cred,” Heather spent three years training advertisers in Paid Search techniques for Yahoo! Search Marketing.
She is a member of the National Speaker’s Association (NSA), a sought-after Vistage International Speaker, and has shared the stage with Tony Robbins Business Mastery in Fiji and London.
Least to say, she’s a legend and we’re honored that she’s a guest on the show.
Heather shares with us the EXACT recipe you need to follow to be found online.
I promise that if you listen to this episode, take notes, and implement what she shares with us, you will be findable online.
Watch the Podcast 👀
Listen to the Podcast 🎤
Show Notes 📓
✅ Watch Heather’s Findability U on YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCDnL4nKrmhkbf5eVIYOqICA
📷 Watch the video version of this episode and subscribe for updates on YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLYAr3nGy6lbXrhbezMxoHTSCS40liusyU
🎤 Thank you to our sponsor, Libsyn Studio (formerly Auxbus)! Want the best podcasting solution out there? Learn more here: https://www.libsynstudio.com/
🚀 And as always, don’t forget about all the mind-blowing free resources at https://speakerflow.com/resources/
Read the Transcription 🤓
Taylorr: Welcome to another episode of Technically Speaking, we’re your hosts, Taylorr and Austin, and in today’s episode, we are talking about one of our most favorite subjects, and this is search engine marketing. Now, particularly, not SEO, not even, necessarily, paid advertising, but how to be findable; now, for those of you listening, who know that word, you’ll also know today’s guest. We have brought on SEO search engine marketing, paid advertising, website design extraordinaire, Heather Lutze. Now, Heather believes that being findable, using all of the digital mediums that we have is more important than just SEO, because SEO is simply just a tactic.
Being findable is a way of living inside of your business and being able to be found online can be a bit abstract for us, it can be difficult to wrap our heads around all the things we need to do just to be found in a Google search. And just because you rank for some unique keyword that you coined doesn’t mean that you’re findable, doesn’t mean that anybody is searching for that keyword except for you over and over again.
So, in today’s episode, Heather breaks down amazing, easy, simple to follow tactics and strategies to be able to become more findable online. I promise you, if you listen to this episode, take some notes and implement what Heather has to offer, you will be more findable online. As always, we hope you enjoy this one and we’ll see you in there.
Austin: All right. Boom. We are live.
Taylorr: We did it. We’re here.
Austin: I’m so happy to be here. Heather, we’re so happy that you’re joining us. Thank you for carving out some space on this Friday to chat.
Austin: Yeah. Honestly, this is one of our favorite topics and it’s also one that we get asked about all the time and we know enough to be dangerous, but, certainly, you are an expert, and so we’re very excited to be picking your brain, so, again, thank you.
Heather: I’m the expert, I’ll have to check in and see what my clients think about that, but I’ll be right back.
Taylorr: Well, it sounds good.
Austin: We’ll put a poll out, tweet us or something, people.
Taylorr: Leave a comment.
Austin: Okay. So, we’re going to get into the nitty-gritty in very short order.
Heather: Okay. Let’s do it.
Austin: As our listeners know, though, we do a little bit of digging before we get into the show, get prepared for our conversations and your website is beautiful, so we’ll start there, as it should be, I suppose, given the situation that you’re in.
Heather: Not this clearly.
Austin: On your about page, you listed that your favorite food is cupcakes, and so I’d like to pose a short philosophical debate here with you. Okay.
Taylorr: She’s like, what could come of this?
Austin: James Robo, if you’re listening to this, this is for you, because you were the one that originally turned me onto this subject.
Heather: Okay. Okay.
Austin: This is the cake versus pie debate. Okay.
Heather: Oh gosh.
Austin: So, give us your take here. What is the preference between cake or pie? Do cupcakes, truly trump pie at the end of the day, and if so, why?
Heather: Yeah. Wow. Gosh. I’m a baker, so I bake every weekend.
Heather: Gosh, I most definitely think I’m going home with the pie.
Taylorr: Oh, wow. Was not expecting that.
Heather: There’s nothing better than a fresh homemade cherry pie. Nothing.
Taylorr: Oh, wow.
Austin: Cherry pie too.
Heather: Vanilla ice cream. It is.
Heather: It trumps every cake I have ever had.
Taylorr: I just got goosebumps.
Austin: Yeah. Wow. My skeleton, I could feel it going, get high.
Heather: I know, right? Nice, homemade, flaky crust.
Taylorr: Oh God buttery.
Austin: Yep. Oh.
Heather: I’m high, all the way.
Austin: Okay. So, I’m with you. I’m a hundred percent with you. Here’s the thing, and this was the point that I made to James, and so I’m going to parrot that here, but, I don’t think I’ve ever had a pie that I didn’t at least a little bit like, even the gas station ones that you get on a road trip or whatever, they’re not homemade pie, obviously, but they’re not that bad. Cake, on the other hand, I’ve had a bunch of cake that is not very good.
Austin: And so, that’s my logical take. James brought up a good point, though, and he said that the spectrum of cake versus pie is the difference, because you can have a really bad cake, but you can also have a really, really great cake. And so, the top-end of the cake spectrum, he says is better than pie, whereas pie sits more evenly in the middle.
Heather: And there are fewer pies.
Taylorr: That’s true.
Austin: That’s a good point. Yeah, exactly. Thank you for helping us settle the debate, I think pie is the move here.
Taylorr: We’re solving big problems here at Speaker Flow, you guys.
Heather: When I had my agency here in Denver, we had some very critical interview questions. They were cat or dog, mustard or ketchup, beer or wine, would you like to weigh-in?
Taylorr: Oh, yeah. Okay.
Heather: Ketchup or mustard.
Taylorr: Cat, ketchup, beer.
Austin: Cat, ketchup, beer.
Heather: You would not be hired at our firm. Go ahead.
Taylorr: That’s okay.
Austin: Wow. Those are hard lines in the sand, Heather.
Heather: I don’t care what you would’ve interviewed like. How about you?
Austin: I think I would probably choose the exact same order there. Yeah.
Heather: Cats? Cats? Cats?
Austin: Yeah. Well, okay, so we have to contextualize this, right? Because Taylorr and I both have cats and dogs.
Taylorr: We do.
Austin: Here’s my take, though. Dogs are very energetic, and I am a very low-key person, and so I have to rise to the occasion to meet my dogs where they’re at, which I do happily in instances. But my cat will just sit on my lap forever, I will be locked in stone there and, honestly, that’s my preferable state, is just chilling.
Heather: I got you.
Austin: So, I think that’s the reason, I love both, I’m a chill person, the cats meet me where I’m at.
Taylorr: Can we answer any of those three questions favorably?
Heather: One of the memes when I first started internet, do you guys remember, with the dog sitting behind the computer? Do you remember that meme?
Taylorr: Oh, yeah.
Austin: I’ve seen a few. Yes.
Heather: It’s like; you can be anyone you want on the internet.
Taylorr: That’s funny.
Heather: It was great.
Austin: That’s so funny.
Austin: So, would you have answered those questions opposite, all three of them?
Heather: No, not exactly opposite. I would’ve done ketchup, dog, and wine.
Taylorr: Wow, fascinating. Yeah.
Austin: So, one out of three in common. Well, good to know, if we grab hotdogs at some point, Heather, we will be on the same page in terms of how that should be.
Taylorr: That’s exactly right.
Heather: I don’t care if it’s a damn Chicago dog, I’m having ketchup. Get over it.
Taylorr: That’s exactly right.
Austin: I’m with you.
Taylorr: Heck, yeah.
Taylorr: For sure. So, another bit of research we saw and it’s at the very bottom of your about page, it’s just mentioned offhandedly.
Taylorr: You’ve been on Oprah and, apparently, you’ll tell us the details if we mention that?
Heather: Moving on.
Taylorr: So, you won’t share the details.
Heather: I had a makeover on Oprah.
Austin: No kidding.
Heather: Yeah. I had a sex pot makeover. Yes, I said it on a podcast.
Austin: Good, I’m glad. Wear your heart on your sleeve.
Taylorr: That’s right, we got the advisory label.
Heather: If you put sex pot and Oprah, you’ll see everything you ever wanted to know about my Oprah experience.
Taylorr: Holy crap. That’s crazy.
Austin: There we have it.
Taylorr: Well, that’s fun.
Heather: It would’ve been infamy.
Austin: I have homework now, so that’s exciting.
Heather: Make sure your wife’s not in the room.
Austin: Okay, noted. Noted.
Austin: Oh, man.
Taylorr: Well, this is going to be an awesome episode. SEO is a topic that, I think is a little scary for a lot of folks that are listening.
Taylorr: And it can be daunting and the internet, God, what cesspool sometimes, and how do you compete and what about the budgets to do so? So, getting your expertise at the table today is going to be awesome. Now, again, we read on your about page, it sounds like, kind of like, this started really early on in the internet marketing days, 2000 is when it seemed you identified the gap between people having beautiful websites and people not being able to find them, and you also mentioned wanting to get out of the cubicle and do an entrepreneur.
Did you just stumble into this space; did you just always know you wanted to be in the internet marketing world? How did that whole thing happen? How did you really identify that gap?
Heather: I was fired six times in my twenties.
Heather: And my husband’s like, maybe we should look at that self-employment thing, that might be a good idea. What do you think? Because I was too bossy to have a boss. I was 20 something, I had the world to set on fire, man, I don’t want anyone telling me what to do.
Taylorr: I know what that’s like.
Heather: I had my box packed at my last job and they were interviewing for my job, which I think was hilarious, and I knew they were, and I had my box packed, I was ready to go. And I had one last training that they had paid for, which was for Yahoo search marketing, learning how to spend more money with Yahoo and paid search. So, off I went, I think in California, I can’t remember where I was, and I met this gal at the front desk of the hotel, and she turned out to be Mary O’Brien and she was one of the envisioning founders of Yahoo. And we hit it off and she hired me almost instantly to be a trainer for her, so I went back and said, see ya, wouldn’t want to be ya. And bolted.
And that was when I started my professional career and I traveled all over the country, training million-dollar advertisers, so advertisers that spent a million dollars or more a month with Yahoo and paid search, at the time. And Yahoo had about a 26% search market share at the time, so we were going to take Google any minute now. Well, we don’t Yahoo it, do we, gentlemen.
Austin: We don’t.
Taylorr: I Yahoo it.
Austin: I don’t know if I’ve ever Yahooed something.
Heather: So, we gave the good shot, but that’s how I got my training, and then from all the access to all these amazing companies that I was training, I started my agency. And so, I had an agency in Denver here for 15 years. Yes, there was an internet back then. I was selling websites like hot watches in the inside of a jacket. I was like, hey, want a website. Yes, you do, this is good. And they’re like, a what? You can make me a what?
Taylorr: Is that a business card?
Heather: That’s alright. That’s how we started, is selling websites like hot watches, and then it just, kind of, went from there.
Austin: Wow. So, okay, I’m curious about this meshing of worlds for you here, because it seems like in the internet marketing world, you have people that go way hard and deep into the paid search arena, and then there are also those that go into the more organic side of things. And so, you just described paid search with Yahoo being kind of where you started and then that segued into website development, which, obviously, crosses many thresholds in the marketing world, but I think, primarily, is focused on the more organic side of marketing. And so, you’re blending together experience of a couple of different worlds, so can you speak to that a little bit, some of the observations you made, I guess, as you moved from one arena to the other?
Heather: Yeah. You could nerd out with the best of them with SEO, right? I was going to search marketing conferences and speaking at search engine strategies and OMI and all these different conferences and trying to be the smartest, usually, the only girl in the room, it was great. Never a line at the girls’ bathroom at a search marketing conference.
Taylorr: I can imagine.
Austin: That’s pleasant.
Heather: You should take pictures because it was empty and I’m like, okay, we have a problem here, people. But here’s the deal, is that, yeah, if you’re a practitioner, my son is a Maserati mechanic, you get certified to Maserati, you live and breathe and eat Maserati, all day, all life, right? And he loves it. And that’s how SEO people are, right? They get together and they geek out and they talk about all the different algorithm equations and at some point, I was just like, You know who’s getting left in the dust here is business owners. Because for the first time in their professional life, they don’t know a thing about what they’re hiring for, absolutely nothing. And that’s a very intimidating place to be.
So, as a professional speaker, you can imagine that you want all the benefits of online marketing, but it’s a holistic attempt, so I call it findability; I think SEO, as a phrase, Search Engine Optimization, is highly misunderstood. And if you think about findability, so human intent through data. So, when I have the right tools, free tools, to be able to tap-in with human data and then create content based on that trend, if you will. So, I’ve worked with tons of speakers, and they all want to rank under speaker keywords. And I can tell you from years and years that it’s like, oh, this is a great example.
I’m not going to call anybody out. But I’ll never forget, I was at, I don’t know, a couple of years ago I was at an NSA conference and a guy comes up to me and he’s like, I’m number one under motivational humorist. And I’m like, okay, you’re.
Taylorr: Who’s searching for that, buddy.
Heather: I’m like, okay, here we go. Of course, I’m a nerd, so I’m pulling it up. I’m not going to say anything to him, but I’m like, zero searches. But there were six speakers that were hot and bothered about that page and they were going to be on there, come hell or high water. And so, I had to kind of have a nice come to Jesus meeting saying, look, you cannot just make up keywords that sound good. You’re not a motivational humorist; you’re not an entrepreneur futurist. If you make up, I would say uniqueness is the enemy of findability, the more unique you’re trying to be, you got your acronyms, you got your unfindable domain name, you got your unfindable keynote titles, you got your unfindable book titles.
So, we spend and have been trained as speakers to create unique content 24/7, right? We’ve been trained to do that since the dawn of time. Have a unique selling proposition and have a unique this and a memorable this, and that’s great once people find you, but a great example is my first book was, ‘Findability Formula: The Easy Non-Technical Approach to Search Engine Marketing’. Now, I could have said SEM, I could have said SEO, but I, actually, got ahold of someone at Amazon Advantage, when it was Amazon, and I said, can you tell me which one gets more search volume in your search engine of Amazon? Is it SEO, SEM or Search Engine Marketing or Search Engine Optimization? And she said, oh, by far Search Engine Marketing.
So, that’s what I put in the subtitle of my book. And that’s what I put all throughout the description of my book and the keywords of my book. So, to have the tools to be able to align what you’re a genius at, you can start off with something very, very unfindable. Like futurist superstar, completely unfindable. But then you say, key secrets to closing more sales; closing more sales is a findable attribute, the name of the book is not. So, if you can just look at the search results, look at the dropdowns when you go and you’re looking at a search result and you type in your phrase, look at the dropdowns. There’s a fantastic Chrome add-on called, keywordseverywhere.com.
Taylorr: It’s my favorite
Heather: And Keywords Everywhere is 10 bucks for a hundred thousand credits. I go through that in a week, but I’m sure most speakers, probably, wouldn’t blow through that anytime soon. And then when you’re, actually, searching, it will tell you whether people care about that topic or not. So, when you look and you type in something in the search box and you see the dropdowns, the suggested search, you will see the search volume per month over the last 12 months. Make your decisions, I would say, put your ear to the search engine results page, listen to what it is telling you, if there are questions there; answer those questions in videos, in blog posts, in any kind of content you create.
Make sure you focus on those questions because those are the most often asked questions that Google has aggregated and are now showing you there for a reason. Go to the bottom, look at the suggested searches at the bottom, make sure to be talking about those things, but bottom line is, if no one ever searched for it, then you’re wasting a terrific amount of time becoming unfindable.
Austin: Oh my, okay.
Taylorr: Yeah, I love how practical that was.
Austin: Everybody, stop, take out your notebooks, write this down. This is going to be one of those episodes, so buckle up. I want to take a.
Heather: That’s what my husband says every day, buckle up.
Austin: As the best of us.
Heather: It’s really tragic; it makes me very sad, because a lot of speakers spend a tremendous amount of money to become unfindable. One thing to write down is uniqueness, right? Is the enemy of findability, but more importantly, guessing is expensive.
Austin: Guessing is expensive.
Austin: True. Yeah, a hundred percent.
Heather: You’re welcome to guess all you want, but we have the power and the tools now to not ever have to guess again.
Taylorr: That’s right.
Austin: Yeah. What you’re talking about here is what is, essentially, a shortcut, if you’re paying attention, you can trial and error forever and, eventually, you’ll probably narrow it down if you’re paying attention and watching the numbers, but do it proactively, I think is what I’m hearing you say.
Austin: Can we double-back for just a second here, because I think I want to contextualize what we’re about to get deeper into here? And that’s, really, what search engines are doing, why this is important in the first place. And so, for those that don’t have any sort of base understanding here, Heather, can you explain why, what you’re talking about right here matters in the context of being found?
Heather: Sure. I think, especially, when you’re talking about meeting planners, is what everyone’s, kind of, salivating over, right? Is getting in front of meeting planners. The meeting planners have a lot of risk, right? If they hire the wrong speaker, they could look bad, the event may not go over well, the attendance may drop, things of that nature. So, what they’re doing, typically, historically, I’ve seen speakers look for resolutions, so we’re having an issue with culture because we’ve merged with another company.
So, they’re searching for corporate culture phrases, or maybe they’re having some other morale boosters, or something is happening in the organization or in the industry of that association that the meeting planners have been tasked to bring a speaker in for, right? So, we want a speaker on the future, we want a speaker on the past, we want a speaker on whatever. So, the problem is that speakers spend so much time trying to rank for speaker keywords, that they lose sight of what their thought leadership is; when anyone says, oh, I want to be a speaker, what do I need to do? I’m like, what are you an expert in? And sometimes they don’t know. And I’m like, if you don’t know what you’re an expert in, how are you supposed to create content to speak to that industry?
Heather: So, you have to remember that meeting planners are looking for specific outcomes, tactical outcomes that they can bring to the party. I think that the days of having someone who says the same story every time, I think there might be a place for that, but right now, I think in the near future. Speakers or meeting planners are going to be even more vigilant about booking experts and thought leaders in their space, and they’re going to expect actionable takeaways and learnings and measurement from that hire.
So, do not get caught up in making up words that no one’s ever going to search for, and it just breaks my heart because I see all these websites, they’re gorgeous, great headshots, no one ever asked me for a one sheet, by the way, I’m still waiting.
Taylorr: Yeah, that’s right. No one ask for that.
Austin: Yep. So, the reason that it matters is because we have to connect with what people are looking for, right? Is that the main thing that I should take away from what you just said there?
Heather: Yeah. So, I’m not the first person to talk about newsjacking, but if you want to get in front of your ideal customer, let’s just say it’s a conference planner or something, then you have to be an expert in all the issues and problems that conference planners face years after COVID, right? You’re giving them specific knowledge of the pain they’re currently experiencing. So, if you are in sales, you’re going to talk about how to get butts back in seats, right? If you are in customer engagement or employee engagement, then you’re going to talk about how to get people to engage in-person again versus zoom, right?
So, you need to news jack what’s happening in the world and then report back in with your filter, about how does that affect a meeting planner? Or how does that affect someone who might hire you?
Taylorr: That’s right.
Heather: So, you can throw a bunch of stuff out and hope it sticks on the wall, but it’s exhausting and it’s expensive, if you’re making up your own content, you’re making up blogs, you’re making up videos, it’s never going to be found, unless you have a massive audience already established, then it’s fine, right? But a lot of us don’t have massive audiences, we have to be really strategic about the content we create. And just by understanding that Google is where people will go, I will Google it on Google proper, I will Google it in Google images, I will Google it in Google video, also YouTube, right?
I will Google it in Amazon; these are just human behaviors that people are doing in different formats, right? So, we have to be mindful that we can talk about our own stuff all day long, but that’s not going to move the needle unless we are connected with the people that are, actually, going to hire us.
Taylorr: Yeah. And what a good way to build trust too, right? Somebody types in their problem, they know what their problem is, they type it in on a search engine and then boom, you show up solving that problem, lo and behold, you’re not having to go cold.
Taylorr: Your ability to build trust digitally, it skyrockets when you’re front and center, helping people solve their problems, and that’s the thing I think about SEO that maybe people can lose sight of is, they’re kind of more focused on, I wouldn’t say more passive ways of generating revenue. But I would say just other tactics of generating revenue that they can lose sight of the fact that when somebody types in a problem in a search engine, they’re problem aware. And if you show up for that, and help them out, they’re probably going to be a step closer to hiring you or having that conversation with you than they, otherwise, would have.
Taylorr: Am I tracking that?
Heather: Yeah. My book marketing espionage, really, turns out on its ear, right? It says, if I’m someone who is looking for you, not you as a name, but you as a thought leader, I’m going to put that into Google and search there; I’m going to put it into Google images and see what images come up into that. I may go to YouTube and search for that same concept, they’re just looking desperately for thought leaders, and it’s challenging because I know as speakers, we get pulled in a thousand different directions. Every time we attend a webinar or something, we’re told that that person is the absolute answer to your prayers, in regard to marketing, which is rarely true. And it has to be a holistic, it’s not just SEO. Okay.
So, you have to be mindful of, if you are going to invest, what have you already got nailed? Is your website up to date? Does it look great? Does it representing who you are? Do you blog? And blogging on very specific topics that you see in search results, answering those questions in search results, and then taking that content and then syndicating it, so turn that blog post into a syndicated graphic that can go across all of your social media. The idea here, gang, is to get people from social media to your website; it is not just to get likes and followers and comments, that’s great.
But the end of the day, they’re only going to hire you, in most cases once they go to your website. So, social media is great, but it’s not about national chocolate day, and if I see another Maya Angelou quote, I’m going to poke my eye out.
Taylorr: All the bandwagons.
Heather: Okay. I’m sorry, I don’t need to see national hug your cat day. No offense, gentlemen.
Taylorr: From the cats.
Austin: No offense, it’s fine.
Taylorr: It’s a good callback.
Heather: That’s not social media.
Taylorr: That’s right.
Heather: So, it can be very confusing. And I will provide you, with your show notes; I’m going to give you a link to the digital copy of my marketing espionage book.
Heather: And I’m going to encourage everyone to please, for the love of God, read the book. Fire people that are not producing for you, in a nice way, and start, really, thinking about, is my marketing house in order, is my website jamming and am I blogging? And if you’re thinking about a podcast and your website sucks, you’re not blogging, you’re not posting video.
Taylorr: Don’t bother.
Heather: The podcasting is a squirrel.
Heather: Squirrel, squirrel, squirrel, squirrel, just shut the squirrels, right? And just get your basic elements down and be a thought leader in a way that meeting planners are going to search, period. When you got all that hooked up, then you can look at a podcast or whatever you want, but first things first, guys.
Taylorr: Heck, yeah. Thanks for setting the priority there, by the way. I think it’s hard for some people who don’t have; you live and breathe this, right? So, 2000, practically, the dawn of the internet to search engine marketing coming up, basically, right?
Heather: And I’m going to give myself a little.
Taylorr: I hear you.
Heather: A chin lift, that’s what it is, I think.
Taylorr: Yeah, the chin lift. So, for those who aren’t in the world of it, how do I prioritize all of this? Is it the website first and then blogs and then podcast, some other way around. So, it’s really cool of you to break down that priority, I think that’s just a golden nugget right there.
Heather: Yeah. Get your housekeeping in order before you start doing other erroneous things, man; if your website isn’t like rock, you’re not a thought leader, by the way. I get a ton of eye rolls on blogs. I don’t have time for that.
Taylorr: That’s right. That’s what we hear too.
Heather: That’s so hard. It’s so hard. There are a couple of hacks, if you guys want to talk about tools, because I, absolutely, love tools.
Austin: Let’s do it.
Heather: Not just the two of you, by the way.
Austin: Shots fired. This is so good.
Taylorr: Wow, so it’s going to be this kind of show.
Austin: Dang. We talked about pie, I’m talking humble pie right now, is what I’m getting served. Holy cow.
Heather: I’m sorry, guys. I opened the door and just had to walk in.
Taylorr: That’s fine.
Heather: So, there’s a tool called Jasper.ai, have you guys heard of this tool?
Heather: So, Jasper.ai is an artificial intelligence writing tool. And what you do is you’ll go in there, you’ll give it the theme, you’ll give it like, three biggest mistakes speakers make when hiring marketing professionals. And then you give it like, I want a witty tone and then you give it a couple of other ideas and it will, literally, write the article for you.
Austin: Wow. And you recommend this as an SEO expert?
Heather: It is good, it’s not going to be highly personalized, obviously, to you, but it’s D O N E, done.
Taylorr: That’s right. Not perfect.
Heather: And then you can go back, and you can tweak it for your own personal style, but the problem is that cadence, right? We need to feed Google on a regular cadence. Meaning, every Tuesday at 10:00 AM, you can train Google to come back to your site every Tuesday at 10:00 AM if that’s when you post your blogs. Okay. Another great, easy tool that you can use, is a tool called Word Art. Word Art is those silly word cloud tools, I’m sure you guys have seen them; they used to be everywhere, on t-shirts and the whole nine yards.
The thing about Word Art is that you can go in and import all the words from any given page on your website and create a word cloud to understand what it is you’re saying in the article. And so, the biggest phrases that come up in the word cloud are what Google thinks that page is about. I put my whole chapters in there and then I said, oh, what’s the generalized theme of my chapter, am I hitting it? Or am I not hitting it? So, Word Art is great, you guys might want to check that out and you can, actually, put your URL of any existing asset online and you can run a word cloud.
And I make all of my content writers’ use that, so that we’re all on the same path of this content needs to rank for these things and answer these questions. And you don’t have to have a big, I know all the fancy, big tools you can imagine, but it’s about just taking small steps, if it’s not your genius, it’s not your job. Okay. If it’s not your genius, so if you don’t feel comfortable with it, turn on your phone and start dictating, there’s a tool called Otter, there are a ton of them out there and Rev, and you can download the apps, lock yourself in a hotel room and walk around with an outline and dictate your next book. You know what I mean? So, you have to be creative because, usually, most of us are a team of one.
Taylorr: That’s right.
Heather: Right. And SEO is important, but SEO is a slow boat to China, it is not a quick fix.
Heather: Because remember, guys, Google was founded indexing Stanford content, that’s it. Student and professorship content. Remember the Dewey Decimal System, anybody remember that?
Austin: My library remembers.
Heather: If you don’t remember, you can tune out right now. But that was just an excuse to figure out how to find stuff in the library, right?
Heather: Now, the Google algorithm is this Dewey Decimal System on steroids. It’s trying to figure out every page you can see on the internet and where does it go, right? Where does it go in the index? That is it, it’s a voracious hungry search engine, you don’t feed it, you’re not going to get the attention from Google.
Austin: Man, that’s another good line.
Taylorr: Man, golden nuggets. So, I have a question for you, we get a ton of pushback when we mention this idea of SEO and a couple of different categories, but one of the things is like, well, I want my thought leadership to come from me, personally, and if I’m answering something on Google, it’s not authentic, and I’m like, I’m talking to robots and not humans, so I’m just going to ignore it. Heather, you seem opinionated on this subject, so I would like to hear your opinion about this phrase.
Heather: Good luck with that. I want as many people advocating for me, okay? Google is an advocate, but you get to say whatever you want about that topic, but if a meeting planner’s typing in employee engagement and you’re not talking about employee engagement, you’ve made something up that’s supposed to be employee engagement. You can write whatever you want about that topic, that’s not forced robotic content, but it is up to you to figure out, is that what the common people, the people that are going to hire me, they’re not, I would say, humans, are not nearly as complicated as we like to make them, they’re very simple.
I need a speaker on employee engagement, right? I need a speaker on corporate culture; I need a speaker on hiring practices. So, if you don’t want to talk about how meeting planners talk and you’re trying to build your tribe, right? Your group of people that follow you. You have to understand that if you’ve spent all your time trying to build followers and socials, and you’re doing reels and you’re doing TikTok, is any of that moving the needle, right?
Heather: And that’s fun stuff, I love all of that stuff. I’m just, kind of, showing my age, I don’t love it as much anymore, but I know it’s there and I keep track of it. But at the end of the day, if you’re not being a thought leader and you’re not creating content that’s findable, you are lost. You are spinning your wheels like no one’s business and you are not seeing any results. And that’s tragic.
Austin: Totally. And there is a balance to be had here, right? Because we have to, at some level, at least, write the content that people want to read. You’d think that’s sort of a given, and because of that, we have to sort of play by Google’s rules so that we can get in front of them, in that we have to have the right components there, right? So, what’s the balance between authenticity and also still feeding Google what it needs to get it in front of people, can you do both?
Heather: Yes, you can. It’s a little tricky. That’s why I think recording yourself, that’s how I’ve done my last two books. And people tell me that they can hear my voice when they read the book. And I think that you have to find a modality that feels really comfortable to you. And if I have a list of keyword phrases, I just have to bake into my conversation, that’s easy, right? There are tools out there that will tell you exactly how much people search for those keywords, they will tell you exactly how much content to write based on what’s ranking in the top 10, if you have that kind knowledge, are you not going to use it? Think about the hack for the phone book, can anyone remember phone books?
Austin: Oh, yeah.
Taylorr: Yeah, those things you sit on.
Heather: Tiple A Plumbing, you think they’re doing.
Austin: Call Triple A plumbing.
Heather: Per ad, right? They’re doing SEO on their Yellow Page ad, because they want to be in the front of the book.
Taylorr: They named their whole business after that.
Taylorr: We’re not even going to write a blog at this point, you guys, people have named their whole business.
Taylorr: Just to be on the first page of Yellow Pages.
Heather: That’s right. And that was SEO before SEO, right?
Taylorr: Yeah. That’s right.
Heather: If you want to work twice as hard and you want to spend tons of money on being unique, be my guest. But if you want to really be in front of meeting planners, like it or not, a robot is keeping you from them. Because the robot is not easily tricked. So, it is looking for Stanford professors on that one keyword phrase, if you’re not writing about those things and you know you have access to the data that tells you, that’s on you, but just understand the risk.
Taylorr: You heard it here, folks.
Heather: Understand the risk of not listening to that. That is unprecedented free data, right? And as individuals and entrepreneurs, we have VIP access to this data where even 10, 15 years ago, you wouldn’t, and guessing is expensive. So, I’m not saying that every single article that you write has to be SEOed, but you need to be tapped into what people are thinking, maybe human intent through data, right? You have to be a thought leader in a way that, I have a video, you guys go to YouTube, type in keyword stuffing. I get tons of questions about keyword stuffing. Do I just put thousands of keywords on the page? Think about the mullet, so if you only do this, the mullet.
Taylorr: Think about the mullet, I love where this is going. What a good look by the way.
Heather: The Mullet and Billy Ray Cyrus has the best mullet I’ve ever seen in my life. Google it.
Taylorr: For sure. Undoubtedly.
Heather: So, business in the front, party in the back, right? So, when you’re titling anything from a video to a blog, even to hash tags, you have to think about business in the front, party in the back. The business in the front is employee engagement, right? That’s the business, you’re telling Google right out of the gate, that’s what my article’s about. Then maybe you do a dash, a colon, and then you say, three kick ass ways that every business owner, whatever, right? You’re going to make up and have fun, that’s the party, right? You can say whatever you want in any way you want. You have to have swag, which means sales, winning, aggression, and goodies, right? We love doing that, right? Those acronyms, as speakers.
Austin: Of course.
Heather: So, do that in the party in the back, but you’ve anchored it in, so just doing the mullet on videos, doing the mullet on your articles on how you name your images, just think about the fact that you have to give Google a little bit of help to understand what it is that it’s reading and what it is that it’s indexing. And if you’re just doing the party, no one’s coming.
Taylorr: Heck, yeah. Wow. What a nugget.
Austin: Remember the mullet, people.
Taylorr: Remember the mullet. The mullet, it almost sounds like a dance, but maybe that’s another.
Heather: It would be a good name for everything. Raging mullets, right?
Taylorr: Yeah. This is wow. Yeah. So, thank you, first and foremost. We said this in a recent episode too, but you always know, and I know, Heather, you know this, but you know who an expert is based on how they can take something abstract and distill it down into concrete, practical, easy to understand methods to be able to achieve a certain outcome. And you have certainly done that on our show today, thank you so much; I know you mentioned the book that people can download. Where can they go and find that?
Heather: Well, I’m going to send it to you and, hopefully, you’ll put it in the show notes.
Taylorr: Great. Okay. Perfect. Then we’ll just put a link in the show notes.
Heather: Obviously, it’s on Amazon, you can search for it. But YouTube, findability and the letter ‘U’, because I couldn’t get university.
Heather: I have 180 videos that I’ve created last year that ticks off every single question you could possibly think of in my YouTube channel.
Heather: And I, specifically, built, hey, guess what guys? I built the videos based on what people were searching.
Taylorr: Wow. Who would’ve thought.
Taylorr: Who would’ve saw that coming?
Austin: Taking your own medicine, Heather.
Heather: But now, if someone says, what about that keyword stuffing thing? I’m like, I have a video for that, and you shoot it off, right? So, it can also be one of those things where you have this great collection of videos for all the most annoying questions you constantly get from everybody. You could just say, here it is, and here it is, and here it is. But you already know that, so speakers, don’t be so creative that you’re making yourself unfindable; use the resources of the internet, keywords everywhere, Jasper.ai, and I have a ton of them, but be, really, strategic around, your time is the most important asset you have.
If you’re creating content that no will ever see, that is tragic. So, read the book, go to YouTube, do everything you can to try to add this to the mix. And remember it’s about findability, it’s about understanding human intent through data, it is not S E O, that is a tactical application, it is not something you do. Does that make sense?
Taylorr: Heck, yeah. That’s perfect. Heather.
Austin: So good.
Taylorr: What a way to sign off, thank you so much for coming on the show today. And, guys, listen, if you like this episode, like it, rate it, subscribe to it. And if you want more awesome resources like this, go to speakerflow.com/resources.