SEOmoz announced it’s new feature called SEO Q&A.
Premium members of SEOmoz now have the ability to ask specific SEO questions to Rand and his staff and get actual answers, usually within 24 hours.
Thanks to Rand for giving me some of the little time he has between SMX Seattle and SES Toronto. Here is what we discussed.
Me: I feel that the value of SEOmoz premium membership has increased exponentially with the addition of the Q&A feature. Can you tell us what lead you to this decision and what your hopes are for it’s future?
Rand: We have actually been thinking about it for a long time, and came to the decision that it was absolutely necessary in the SEO marketplace. Our expertise is too siloed at the current time, and if we can share it with more folks and help to grow the membership value, so much the better. You can probably tell that premium membership is now a long term strategy for SEOmoz, as we shift almost entirely away from clients and towards premium membership and more research/testing as our primary revenue stream.
Me: I have become quite a fan of SEOmoz. I sometimes wish I had a way to say thank you. For others who may feel the same way… Is there anything that you would like to see the SEOmoz community do for you? What is an ideal member of your community in your mind and how do they act?
Rand: Wow, well, you’re already a premium member. I don’t think we could ask for much more than that. As for the ideal community – I love where we are. The comments on SEOmoz are almost universally relevant and valuable and the wider blogosphere is generally very positive about us. I suppose the ideal member would be someone who contributes insightful commentary, good questions and never backs down from giving me a hard time when I make a mis-step. I really do rely on the community to make sure I’m doing the right thing and going in the right direction.
Me: Lest anyone think I am just a SEOmoz smooze, I wanted to put out there that I was the loudest and most repetitive voice of dissent for some the steps you took with the ads you placed on your site. I felt that a great thing to have done was to ask your community what they thought of it first. My head nearly exploded over that issue. Naturally SEOmoz is your company and you are ultimately the person to make the decisions, but what role do you see the community having in the future of SEOmoz?
Rand: I just touched on this, but I’d say that the community will start to be an even bigger part of SEOmoz in the future. With our move to very few clients and becoming primarily a hub for search marketing activity, I’m hopeful that we’ll be even more community driven – taking input on features, tools, modifications, direction, etc. I can’t always promise that we’ll do everything everyone asks, but we’ll certainly attempt to serve members, premium and free, as best we can.
Me: This question will be hard to answer due to the large amount of variables, but I hope you will tackle it. I am hoping to highlight the spend on consulting compared to the spend on implementation ratio. Quite honestly I feel the lack of understanding around this keeps alot of people from using consultation such as yours.
Let’s assume that I am a potential client. My site will probably need dramatic changes in order to succeed and I know this and am thinking of using your services. If I were a company with a 50,000 dollar total budget for online marketing a year, what percentage could I use on your services and still have enough budget left over to implement your recommendations?
Rand: If you only have a $50K marketing budget (very tiny by corporate marketing standards), I’d probably suggest hiring a guerrilla marketer full time who can help you achieve some bigger, wider coverage. Hopefully, that person would have some SEO, SEM and viral marketing skills. Once you have a few hundred thousand dollars in your marketing budget and a staff of 3-4 full time online marketing folks, it would be ideal to call in someone like SEOmoz to provide a site review and some training on how to better dive into the world of connecting with customers on the web.
Me: What three things bring you the most happiness and satisfaction in your life?
Rand: My fiancÃ¨e, Mystery Guest is number one. Cooking might be number two, particularly for friends (and when I don’t @#$%! it up). Number three… probably blogging, actually. I love the feedback and the sense of accomplishment I get from helping other through the blog. I think the new Q+A section is almost a more personal microcosm of that.
Thanks Rand, have a great time in Toronto! I will being doing an in depth review of the new SEO Q&A feature from a users perspective in the next couple of days.