By Gabrio Linari, Last Updated on 27 November 2023
When I first dipped my toes into the world of SEO over a decade ago, it was like stepping into an intricate dance of algorithms, keywords, and rankings—a fine art that demanded both skill and intuition. Fast forward to today, and the landscape has undergone a seismic shift. With tools like chatGPT (and yes, I acknowledge the irony here), the barriers to entering the SEO arena have lowered significantly. This democratization of SEO knowledge is both a boon and a challenge.
On one hand, it’s fantastic to see more individuals taking an interest in SEO; the field is richer for the diversity of perspectives and talents now contributing to it. However, there’s a flip side to this coin. As the floodgates open, the nuanced blend of soft skills, technical prowess, and people management that truly defines excellence in SEO is getting harder to discern. There’s an ever-growing pile of information out there, but not all of it captures the essence of what makes someone great at this profession.
This evolution—or perhaps, revolution—in SEO training is what brings me here today. In this article, I aim to peel back the layers of what constitutes effective SEO training. Beyond the basics, I will delve into the core of what makes an SEO professional stand out in an era where information is plentiful, but true expertise is rare. Let’s explore how to harness the power of SEO training to not just learn the ropes, but to master them.
SEO Training Programs While Doing the Work
At Housing Anywhere, where I served as Head of SEO, I realized early on that continuous learning isn’t just a nice-to-have; it’s the backbone of any successful SEO team. We embraced this philosophy wholeheartedly, setting up weekly sessions to stay current with SEO updates and a comprehensive monthly meeting to implement what we had learned.
But it wasn’t just about passive learning; it was about active, hands-on experience. Each team member was encouraged to pick a facet of SEO they were passionate about – be it content creation, link building, or diving deep into technical SEO. This choice then turned into their mini project. The idea was to let them explore and hone their skills in an area they were genuinely interested in, transforming them from learners to practitioners.
This approach served a dual purpose. Firstly, it fostered a culture of experimentation and trial, essential for growth and innovation in the SEO field. Secondly, it positioned me not just as a leader but as an enabler – someone who facilitated their learning journey and growth. And, of course, we made sure these sessions were not just educational but also enjoyable. It’s important to sprinkle a bit of fun into the mix. Whether it was conducting an A/B test or updating content for EEAT, the goal was to ensure these exercises weren’t just theoretically enriching but also delivered tangible results.
In these sessions, the team learned the importance of test and trial, not just in theory but in practice. They discovered that SEO is not just about following best practices; it’s about innovating, experimenting, and constantly pushing the boundaries. And as their leader, I took great pride in seeing them develop their talents and apply their newfound knowledge in real-world scenarios.
2023 – Expanding My SEO Training
In 2023, as I expanded my consulting business, the key to tailoring courses for different client needs lay in one simple, yet powerful skill: listening. Understanding the unique needs of each SEO team, whether it’s boosting confidence in client interactions, leading strategy discussions, or enhancing technical SEO knowledge, begins with attentive listening. This approach allows me to align my training precisely with what the client seeks, ensuring both relevance and effectiveness.
Adhering to Golden Tips for Success
- Stick to Deadlines and Establish Trust: Setting clear timelines and adhering to them is not just about organization; it’s a matter of respect for both my time and the client’s. In my experience, effective communication is paramount in establishing and maintaining a successful client relationship. It’s about setting expectations right from the start and then consistently meeting them.
- Follow-up Respectfully: Regular, respectful follow-ups and seeking feedback on decisions may seem basic, but they are often overlooked. These practices are crucial in maintaining a healthy, professional relationship with clients.
- Cultural Sensitivity and Punctuality: While punctuality and adherence to schedules are highly valued in countries like Germany, the Netherlands, and the UK, there’s a bit more flexibility in Southern European cultures. However, regardless of the cultural context, being on time, or communicating promptly in case of delays, is a testament to professionalism.
- Staying True to Expertise: One of my guiding principles is honesty about my expertise. If there’s a topic I’m not entirely comfortable with, I prefer to decline rather than overpromise and underdeliver. It’s about maintaining integrity and ensuring that I provide only the highest quality of training.
Older Cases: Tailored Success Stories
My journey in SEO training has been marked by numerous success stories, each unique in its own way. Let me share a couple that stand out, not just for their success but for the personal satisfaction they brought me.
Case 1: F.’s SEO Journey in Italy
One such story involves a bespoke, one-week course I designed for an individual named F. We started with the foundations of SEO and gradually moved towards more practical aspects, such as conducting an audit. In just about three months, F. had absorbed an impressive amount of knowledge and began applying it in the Italian market. His ability to gain traction with local clients and build up an impressive portfolio was not just a testament to the effectiveness of the training, but also a huge source of satisfaction for me. Watching someone grow and succeed in the SEO field is always rewarding, but seeing them do so swiftly and effectively is particularly gratifying.
Case 2: M.’s Broader Marketing Perspective
Another memorable case was with M., a revenue manager for a large hotel group based in London. He sought a more general course, given that his day-to-day responsibilities weren’t solely focused on SEO. The course was tailored to provide a broader perspective on marketing, complementing his existing skills. M.’s engagement with the course and his ability to incorporate these insights into his work offered a clear indication of how SEO training can enhance understanding and performance even in related fields.
These cases are just a glimpse into the bespoke courses I’ve conducted. The real challenge and joy lie in understanding the specific needs of a team or an individual and then delivering knowledge that not only meets but exceeds their expectations. Each training session fuels my drive and brings me immense energy, knowing that I’m contributing to someone’s professional growth and success in the ever-evolving world of SEO.
Data At Hand: The Growing Demand for SEO Skills in 2023
As we move through 2023, the demand for SEO and related digital marketing skills is more prominent than ever. Recent analyses and reports from various reputable sources highlight this trend:
- Upwork’s Report on In-Demand Marketing Skills:
- Upwork’s 2023 report lists SEO as the topmost in-demand skill among marketing professionals. Other key skills include Social Media Marketing, Lead Generation, and Search Engine Marketing. Read more
- CNBC on SEO as a High-Demand Skill:
- CNBC underscores the importance of SEO in the marketing domain, noting its high demand and the potential to command rates as much as $125/hour. Read more
- Berkeley Bootcamp on Digital Marketing Skills:
- Berkeley’s Bootcamp identifies SEO as one of the top 5 in-demand digital marketing skills for 2023, alongside Content Marketing and Social Media. Read more
- Search Engine Land on Emerging SEO Skills:
- This source highlights seven emerging skills every SEO professional should master in 2023, reflecting the evolving nature of the field. Read more
SEO Training for ChatGPT on Images, Prompts and Data Analysis
In my bespoke SEO training sessions, we also cover Artificial Intelligence, particularly the role of ChatGPT in tasks like image creation and data analysis. This involves understanding the importance of skilled prompting. An example is when creating an image for this article: unclear instructions led to unexpected results, showing the need for clear, detailed prompts in AI interactions.
I am fully qualified to provide training on the intersection of ChatGPT, AI, and SEO.
My certifications include ‘Career Essentials in Generative AI’ by Microsoft and LinkedIn, focusing on Artificial Intelligence, Generative AI, and Computer Ethics.
Additionally, I’ve completed courses like ‘The Evolution of Thoughtful Online Search’ and ‘Streamlining Your Work with Microsoft Bing Chat,’ which cover key skills in ChatGPT, Chatbots, and Microsoft Search. These credentials underpin my expertise in leveraging AI tools like ChatGPT for SEO strategy and training.
Conclusion: Elevate Your SEO Game with Bespoke SEO Training
Are you an agency owner looking to invest in your team’s growth? Or a business leader seeking to enhance your internal team’s SEO capabilities? If so, bespoke SEO training could be the transformative step you need. With tailored courses designed to meet your specific needs, you can empower your team to achieve new heights in SEO excellence.
For more insights into a full training journey, check my Ultimate Guide To Training SEO Teams.
Get in touch today to discuss your next bespoke SEO training.