What I’ve Learned About the SEO Success Pyramid

Filed in Conferences/Educ. by Matt McGee on May 22, 2008 3 Comments

SEO Success PyramidI’ve now presented the SEO Success Pyramid to two different audiences, and each time I’ve learned something new about it.

Presentation #1

The first presentation was at the Small Business Marketing Unleashed conference last month in Houston. The presentation lasted about 20-25 minutes. In the process of creating and rehearsing that presentation, I learned a lot about the content itself: The blocks on the pyramid aren’t a step-by-step process, but the levels are (almost) a step-by-step process. I realized that the items on the bottom level are all about you or your company, and preparing yourself for success. They have nothing to do with your Web site. The second and third levels are about your Web site. And the fourth level is about what happens off your Web site.

That wasn’t done on purpose; I didn’t figure it out until I was getting ready for SBMU in Houston. Subconscious organization, I suppose you could call it.

Presentation #2

The second presentation was Tuesday night with the great folks at SEMpdx in Portland. This presentation lasted just under an hour. Here’s what I learned:

  • The SEO Success Pyramid might not be suitable for such a long presentation, at least not the way I presented it on Tuesday. It felt to me like one big run-on sentence. When it was over, I felt like I failed the audience of 30-40 that were in the room.
  • If you’re going to speak on a single topic for a long period of time, you need to create natural breaks. When I did the Local Search Workshop at SBMU last month, that 90-minute talk was actually four separate presentations, and I built in Q&A breaks after each one. Turns out that was smart. I should’ve done the same thing Tuesday night with the Pyramid.
  • Printed copies of the Pyramid should be given in advance to everyone in the room. (Don’t know why I didn’t think of that in advance….)
  • I have to come up with a better way to explain and demonstrate why TRUST matters so much. The method I tried on Tuesday felt like something pulled from an X-Files script. Ugh. I think most of the other explanations I used for the pyramid blocks worked, but not that one. And it’s only the most important block. Nice job, McGee. Talk about choking at crunch time.

It wasn’t my best speaking effort. But I did learn from it, and I’ll be much better the next time I present the SEO Success Pyramid. Fortunately, some of the folks who were there on Tuesday were much kinder. Here’s what a few of the attendees had to say:

Gary Pool: Matt McGee | SEO Success Pyramid | SEMpdx
Syzlak: SEMpdx Hot Seat w/M2 – The Epic Review
Todd Mintz: Matt McGee: The SEO Success Pyramid (Live Blogging) from SEM Hot Seat

Thanks to SEMpdx for inviting me, and to everyone who showed up. It was a fun night, and a great learning experience for me!

Comments (3)

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  1. David Mihm says:

    Matt, I do think that handing out printed versions would be an excellent idea. Plus, those of us who were too dumb to bring a notebook could use them to keep track of what you said, rather than just writing on our hands…doh!

    But I think you oughta listen to the response you’ve received from the blogosphere and from the SEMpdx board members — it may not have been your BEST speaking performance, but it still rocked! Thoroughly enjoyable and I am sure that anyone who attended got at least one or two valuable nuggets from it.

  2. Local Hound says:

    I think that “run-on sentence” feeling has to do with chemistry with the audience or the energy… anyway I know the feeling and I hate it.

    However, I often find afterwards that the folks in the audience still enjoyed it and got a lot out of it. And that I just couldn’t FEEL it.

    That is my long-winded way of saying… I bet it was much better than what you are giving yourself credit for.

    I can’t even look at that thing without getting something new out of it :)

  3. What you should do is tie each step to real world examples that you have preformed yourself.

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