Evolution of SEO

The Evolving Role of Search Marketing

Yesterday search marketing guru Rand Fishkin posted this article about how the role of search marketers has evolved over the past eight, and more specifically, three years, as search engines and search behavior has changed. He tracks the metamorphosis of the duties and tactical knowledge that fall under the umbrella of “search engine marketing” and redefined the role.

Fishkin is quick to point out the myriad of disciplines from content strategy to social media promotion to reputation management that affect SEO or have become the responsibilities of an SEO in some cases. He even goes so far as to say that SEO specialists ought to consider changing their job titles to something like “organic web strategist”.

Working With More Moving Parts

But the purpose of this blog post is not to simply regurgitate someone else’s point of view, it’s to emphasize how important it is for collaboration to exist between your search marketing teams and your other interactive marketing teams. It would be unreasonable to expect an SEO to be an expert in content strategy, word of mouth marketing, site architecture and community management. This does not, however, change the fact that all of those elements impact your SEO strategy.

The major search engines are no longer satisfied with simply returning relevant search results, they want to return search results that are relevant to you specifically. They aren’t even satisfied with telling you that a lot of people like a pair of jeans, they want you to know that your next door neighbor Bill likes them and comments on that company’s blog regularly.

Everybody Sing “Kumbaya”

As digital marketers, we are all thinking about these elements, so let’s think about them together. If you’re a developer designing the site architecture, a content strategist developing the tone and delivery of the copy, or the social media specialist promoting that content across all relevant channels, have a quick pow-wow with an SEO. And if you’re an SEO, get to know these people and what they do and how it affects you.

Or better yet, everyone get in a room for a kick-off meeting and have work sessions throughout the life-span of a project. As media converges, so will our duties and the expectations of our positions. We all might experience a momentary lapse in role clarity, but at the end of the day we will not only have a clearer idea of how we individually integrate into the big picture, we’ll have an integrated digital strategy to go with it.

By Alec Painter, Digital Search Strategist


One Response to Search Industry Should Worry More About Integration and Less About Titles

  1. Amelia Simmons says:

    Great article, Alec! I couldn’t agree more. Passing this along to the co-workers!

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