The title to this article is actually fascinating when you think about it! Many businesses believe that if they turn over their online marketing to one of the top agencies, that’s all they have to do…they’re done. Vetting top digital agencies and signing with a great one is only half the battle. There is a lot your company can do internally to maximize your marketing investment. Here’s an action checklist to get you started:
1) Learn everything you can about link development: Eric Ward is the top link development practitioner in the business. You can access his workshops, newsletters and link development nuggets on social media (a must follow on Twitter). Whether you get your training from Eric, or other top link gurus (go with the ones that are well-known and pay the price to learn; real dollars for their knowledge — it is worth it) you will be making a very wise investment. You want to know about white hat link development so you can hold your marketing agency accountable. You want to hire a marketing agency that puts you in a good place with regards to link development, not in trouble with Google. There are very specific guidelines on how to create a balanced link portfolio. Learn about this so you will know if your agency is leading you down a dark path.
2) Go to SEO conferences: There are many of them out there, and you can take your pick, but one that is highly recommended is the Search Marketing Expo Series. All of the highly respected digital marketing agencies present at these conferences. You will gain incredible insights into a range of topics; from keyword research, to local search, copywriting, link building fundamentals, audience engagement and much more. Attend one of these conferences per year, at least. Ideally send several of your staff, too, and have them present their findings from the conference to the others at your office. In this way you hold your conference attendees accountable and the investment in sending them to the conference is maximized.
3) Read up on major digital marketing trends: This may sound obvious, but it takes a trained eye to know which online marketing articles are worth a read and which are bunk. A great way to get started is to use our quick checklist below. Read these top practitioners regularly then branch out from there to people they recommend. That will keep your knowledge base within white hat parameters:
- Moz – Read anything by Rand Fishkin
The above is just a short list and you can add to it when you are ready. If you only keep up with what is on this list, you will learn a lot. Don’t stress about every new Google algorithm update. Instead:
Let things shake out a bit over weeks and months and keep to a solid strategy of providing the best value for your customers. That means you should add the very best content to your site that answers questions, fulfills needs and builds trust. Create this type of content for your social media accounts as well.
4) Attend webinar training sessions. These are ubiquitous across the web, and it takes some knowledge to know which are good and which are largely a waste of time. It is okay to attend webinars on how to use a marketing suite, or how to perform keyword research using a particular tool (in other words, webinars conducted by vendors hawking their software). You will learn some valuable general information, so plan on attending a few of these webinars. Often they can be replayed on demand, so if you’re too busy to attend, you can still gain the knowledge on your schedule.
Longtailpro.com (referenced above) offers webinars on long-tail keyword research that can help you understand the value of this strategy. Sign up for their email list and they will let you know when the next webinar will be held.
Our 4 tips above should make it easier for you to get your internal staff trained and knowledgeable on digital marketing matters. The next step is to let your agency know that your staff is ready to assist to help make your online campaign rocket to new heights. Need more marketing insights? Discover everything you need to know about leveraging your internal marketing resources. Read our Amazon #1 best-selling e-book, it’s free.