“Make SEO Simple Again” – the podcast.
I share inspiring stories of people from all walks of life who happen to work in Search, Digital, Discoverability, and/or Marketing.
As recommended by Search Engine Journal, Make SEO Simple Again is an audio podcast available on Spotify, Audible, Stitcher and Apple Podcasts. Rather talking about SEO execution, strategy and tactics, Make SEO Simple Again is dedicated to sharing the stories of people who work in various marketing verticals.
Hear Clearscope co-founder Bernard Huang talk candidly about his 10 years of failing.
Listen to me star-struck and too afraid to ask Martin Splitt anything about SEO.
Feel encouraged as Judith Lewis recounts what it was like being a female programmer and SEO in the 80s and 90s.
And maybe, just maybe, you’ll pick up a few things about SEO along the way from Jamie Indigo, Lily Ray, Mordy Oberstein, Steve Toth, Nik Ranger and Victor Pan.
Meet the guests.
- Bernard Huang
- Bibi Raven
- Judith Lewis
- Cindy Krum
- Eric Carrel
- Mordy Oberstein
- Nik Ranger
- Martin Splitt
- Chima Mmeje
- Victor Pan
- Jamie Indigo
- Lily Ray
- Itamar Blauer
- Jenny Li Fowler
- Taylor Berg
- Jamar Ramos
- Emily Brady
- Jason Brown
- Christina LeVasseur
- Craig Campbell
- Krystal Taing
- Steve Toth
- NIki Mosier
- Peter Macinkovic
- Amanda Jordan
From homeless to $150,000 monthly recurring revenue – in this episode I explore how Bernard Huang, co-founder of Clearscope (AI-assisted content writing and keyword research) sees life in the framework of systems (and how you can too). And we have an honest conversion on what it means to fail, how we both responded to failing at various stages of our lives, and how we lean into our failures to fuel our ambition.
Starting from social media marketing, Bibi fell into affiliate SEO by accident (without knowing that it was SEO) and when people started asking her to land backlinks, this was how she began building her empire. Her business is called Bibibuzz and while we don’t go into the specifics of how she achieves success with her email outreach campaigns, there’s plenty of insights and little tips you can pick up on.
- Bibi has been published in SEJ – ‘7 deadly sins of link building’
It’s not in every conversation where someone says, “I was in porn” or “I was a spammer”. But Judith Lewis is not your average person and that is 100% why I wanted to share her personal journey as an entrepreneur, as a female in a male-dominated industry, and as a fellow human being.
In this episode, Judith recounts how her mother had to fight for her so that she could enrol in a programming class in high school. She reveals how isolating and challenging it was (and is) as a female SEO professional. Judith opens up about sexual harassment and assault and also provides a number of supportive communities that women in SEO can turn to.
Cindy Krum is the CEO and Founder of Mobile Moxie, a Denver-based SEO consultant and SEO tool developer, specialising in mobile search engine optimisation and ASO.
In this episode, Cindy reveals a funny story of how she fell into mobile marketing and by the end of this episode, you will have doubt of her expertise and passion in mobile-marketing. From critiquing Google and what excites her about Search, you can tell that she really loves what she does.
- Follow Cindy on Twitter
- For Make SEO Simple Again listeners, you can get a 14-day trial of SERPerator, Page-oscope, and App Rankalyzer by using coupon code ‘SIMPLE’ – visit Mobile Moxie.
“The realm of link-building is always changing.”
Backlinks, whether earned, acquired or bought are the bane of many SEOs. Yet, Eric Carrell, co-founder of a link building agency, has found a way to scale it and charge a premium for links. Part of his success comes down to a few things: leveraging strengths of others, careful selection of clients, and taking care of one’s mental health.
In this episode, we talk about work/life balance and Eric shares that his company, dofollow.io is still finding its mission.
“Links are the architecture of the internet” – Eric believes that there is a responsibility when it comes to link building. Find out more about his values, his opinions, and how he found his way into what he does.
Starting as a content writer (because he was a native English-speaker), this was Mordy Oberstein’s foot in the door.
“It is sort of the perfect synergy of creativity, science, art, depth and content all at the same time.”
Years later, he is now the Head of SEO Branding at Wix, after being the CMO of Rank Ranger.
But did you know, prior to the 2007/8 GFC, Mordy was a property manager?
In this episode, Mordy shares his personal journey and expresses his love for his favourite team in the NFL (sorry folks).
Nik Ranger is a Senior Technical Lead SEO Specialist at StudioHawk meaning that she is no stranger to site migrations and Semrush webinars.
Like many of us in Search, the pathway is often not linear and from a civil engineering graduate position, her internal question of “what do I want out of life” has lead her to be a recording artist, touring as a professional electronic violinist, taught music in Cambodia, and moving between state lines in Australia.
- Follow Nik on Twitter
- Watch Nik give site audit
In a previous episode, Cindy Krum said something that made a whole lot of sense to me. She suggested that Google should invest more resources into the public-facing Googlers.
Because when it comes to SEO, all of us turn to them (John Mueller, Martin Splitt, Danny Sullivan, Gary Illyes) and bombard them on a daily basis with our questions on how the Google search algorithm works.
And this is why I’m excited to share this conversation I had with Martin Splitt because I want to show that he is a human being outside of his work.
Being a freelance content writer is a hard gig. Being a freelance content writer based in Nigeria is even harder. But Chima has forged a path – it took her 2 years to do so, and in this episode, she shares how she did it and the challenges (both internal and external) she has overcome.
From imposter syndrome, white privilege, to being the best at what you do, Chima leaves no stone unturned and I am honoured to share her incredible story of perseverance.
- Follow Chima on Twitter
- Follow Chima on LinkedIn for lots of hot takes
- Buy her “10x topic authority” course
In this episode of Make SEO Simple Again, I chat with Victor Pan who is a Taiwanese-American. He also works in the SEO space at Hubspot and previously held a role in an agency.
Victor talks about his privileges, his perspective on planning ahead and being curious, his desire to make the world a kinder place (especially for his children), and reveals a whole bunch of things with being an Asian.
She is one of the loveliest human beings on the planet and boy does she know her technical SEO! In this episode of Make SEO Simple Again, I have the great pleasure of chatting with Jamie Indigo who is now at DeepCrawl.
Having once managed an eCommerce website that had 5.7 million products, Jamie has handled her fair share of dumpster fires. She also continues with her private consulting at Not A Robot.
In this episode, we discuss the ethics of SEO, curiosity, being a female in the industry, and self-care.
- Jamie authors an email newsletter on Traffic Think Tank called ‘Rich Snippets’ – you should consider subscribing!
- Follow Jamie on Twitter
- Jamie has been published on SEJ numerous times:
When it comes to the concept of expertise, authoritativeness, and trustworthiness (E-A-T), two names comes to mind where one of the two is Lily Ray, Director of SEO at Amsive Digital.
In this episode, you will find out a few interesting things about Lily outside of her professional world. For example, did you know that she was touring as a teenager in a band? Did you know that she was a drummer? And why does she enjoy DJ-ing?
“There will always be people talking about you behind your back .. it is part of the process, so you can’t let those haters define what you do because they’re always going to be there so just ignore them.”
I also ask her to share her experiences as a woman in the industry so tune in to find out more!
If you’re a woman in Search/Discoverability, Lily recommends that you join the Women in Tech SEO community.
Itamar Blauer is a SEO consultant in the United Kingdom. He has started various YouTube channels, enjoys swing dancing and guitars.
I don’t usually talk shop but Itamar knows a fair bit about YouTube SEO so if you want to know how to get more views for your videos, this episode is a treat for you.
Jenny Li Fowler
Jenny Li Fowler asked for a Rebel Alliance X-wing pilot LEGO avatar. You can already tell that she is 100% badass.
Because she is and in this episode, Jenny talks about what it is like being an American-Korean, what her day to day looks like as the Director of Social Media Strategy at MIT.
But did you know that Jenny was a news anchor and wanted to be once ever since she was 14? Find out how she transitioned across from journalism and how she sees what she does as a continuation of storytelling.
Growing up in a large and loud Chicago family that also operated a family business, Taylor cut her teeth in digital marketing in the family moving company as a 19 year old.
These days, Taylor Berg is the Director of Organic Growth at Talkspace– an online platform that connects people with a therapy provider.
This is her origin story (and it is a good story).
We may or may not talk about Chicago food, bogans, and her cat called Tuna. Oh, and if you stick around to the end, Taylor explains her recent experiment with GPT-3 involving Screaming Frog, Semrush, Ahrefs and Majestic.
“Black AF” reads his Twitter bio.
Truth be told, I hesitated before reaching out to Jamar. But Taylor Berg, a previous podcast guest told me I HAD to have him on the show. So I got over my own shit and the next 60-minutes is one of my favourite recordings.
Jamar Ramos is the Co-founder of Crunchy Links, a full-stack digital marketing consulting agency (except for social media). In this episode, find out who Jamar is beyond his tweets and get to know him as a real human being.
Being Black, we of course go there.
Emily Brady popped onto my radar when I tweeted for salary expectations. She DM’d me and through that, I was able to negotiate new responsibilities with my boss.
She is a Senior SEO Marketing Manager at Workrise. In this episode, we inevitably chat about local search and I learn how she pursued to become a content writer before falling into SEO. And learn what rhetorical criticism is 🙂
What drives Jason Brown to fight SPAM on the SERPs on a daily basis? Find out (and so much more about him) in this episode of Make SEO Simple Again.
- Follow Jason Brown on Twitter
- If you need help with removing fake reviews, this is Jason’s business: Review Fraud.
NYC girl moves to Denver, Christina LeVasseur (Brodzky) is the brain behind MediaSesh. We talk about bears, taking naps, what it is like being a woman in SEO, and her previous life in public relations.
For the longest time, I thought Craig was an intimidating person. But as you will discover, Craig is a very loveable character and he has a wealth of experience – especially with once running an SEO agency and why he no longer wants to own an agency by himself despite achieving “moderate success”.
New father, course provider, YouTube and affiliate SEO influencer, this is Craig Campbell’s story.
Krystal is a Solutions Engineer for Strategic Partnerships at Uberall, a SaaS business that is based in Berlin. Prior to this, she did 6 years at Rio SEO that also was a SaaS-based local SEO solution.
In this episode, Krystal shares how she fell into her expertise of local SEO, her experience as a person of colour and as a woman in an industry represented by white men, where she continues to expand her knowledge, and her advice on whether you should consider a search career in Agency vs In-house.
Steve Toth is the human behind SEOnotebook.com, a free weekly email newsletter where he shares tactics and strategies to growth your website’s visibility, organic traffic, and conversions.
He was able to get thousands of Featured Snippets for Freshbooks and I ask him how he was able to do this. And since he has held positions in-house, been a freelance SEO consultant, and at an agency, I ask Steve which of these three should someone new to SEO consider and what the benefits are for each.
As you will discover, Steve is a giver and in this episode, I ask him how he got started in the industry, how he manages his mental health to avoid burn out, and he gives some tips on how to grow one’s network.
Moz Whiteboard Friday presenter Niki Mosier shares how she got started in SEO. With 15+ years of experience under her belt, Niki shares her journey from “back in the day” of keyword stuffing to what she specialises in now – technical SEO and local SEO.
Unless you’re in Melbourne or Australia, you probably won’t know Peter Macinkovic. He’s not on the speaker circuit but rather, one of the unknown SEOs who get sh*t done for their clients.
With JB HIFI as one of his past clients, this conversation will leave no doubt that Peter knows his sh*t.
“If you’re talented and do the work it should be enough.” – Amanda Jordan, Director of Digital Strategy at RicketyRoo.
As many of us who find their way into the profession of digital search, Amanda’s story is similar. As someone who enjoyed band, drawing, psychology and excelled at mathematics and physics in high school, she started off in engineering before moving into graphics design.
In this episode, you’ll get to know Amanda in a whole new light – as a BIPOC professional as well as a new mum and she shares the journey of adopting a child during coronavirus and how her world has changed.