This post has very few to do with SEO as a discipline, but it's one of those element of truth I've learned in my career as a SEOer. Why today? Because today I’m starting a new job role in London for a different media agency.
What’s the SEO point I want to pass today?
Let me summarize what happened in the past 2 years. When I relocated in the UK, I started working in a pure SEO company to later move into a media agency.
Looking back over the last two years, I can say I have learnt a number of things that made myself more professional and communicative, more client servicing as someone would say.
Not surprisingly, I can confirm the other big lesson: customers always look after their ROI. This shouldn't be a surprise after all, as businesses have to generate money if they want to stay on the market. However, most of the customers I’ve worked with were so big, that more often than not stranded with LOADS of (internal) bureaucracies.
What does this mean for SEO? That your project is going to fail, as SEO - like many other things - means nothing unless it gets done.
When I was working in Italy, I worked for a small family-run Web and SEO agency, where I was in the enviable position of being in total control of client websites. If I wanted some development changes (within reason) I could usually get them done, most of the time without client approval.
I ultimately was responsible for their web sites and visibility, so getting a change regardless it was important or not was just a matter to walk next door to the developer and ask for this nicely.
What I really would like to say?
The point is you can be a big customer with a very respectable brand or a big media agency, but this doesn’t mean you are good at getting the job done if you continue to be trapped with the decisional process.
And what does this mean in term of ROI?
This is the most detrimental thing that can happen. Customers that are more flexible will sooner or later surpass yourself and your revenues will drop off.
It doesn’t sound a very good way to manage the project, is it?
So hopefully something is going to change from now onward, as it looks I’m again going to be in the fortunate position of working with companies who are big enough to understand the value of SEO, but not so big that they did their own SEO.
So, in a theory, I should be pretty much 100% in control over the work and get my job done easily.
Let's see what will happen in 6 months then!!