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Forget SEO, Think Long Run

| Posted in category Internet Marketing Search Engine Optimization SEO Tools


I may get fired for writing this post but the heck with it. It’s time to vent. About SEO, online marketing, priorities, goals and, quite simply, a sense of purpose in business, and life. As you read, ponder these two short and simple words: long run.

Today marks exactly one year and 18 days since I got into web marketing. Too much for some, too little for others. Just enough time for me to sit back and reflect. Hence this post, full of outpourings on the state of SEO and internet marketing - the way I see them through my long run lens, more on which in a moment. But first...

A story

I had a terrific economics professor, Eric Hinderliter. Brilliant, funny, strict. Many dreaded his class; many failed. Which is why I decided to sign up :)

To illustrate slumping economies, he would quite literally slump to the floor, books, pens and all, fallen professor symbolizing a declining economy. He joked, he acted, he sang. He once asked us to write a letter to our grandmas explaining Ukrainian economic crisis in simple words.

I walked out of his lectures exhausted, enlightened, with a slightly screwed up GPA, and a lesson that I will remember for life.

Whatever you do, think long run.

In other words, see the big picture, set priorities, follow your goals. Separate the "important" from the "noise".

Let’s see what I mean and how this all ties in with SEO and online marketing.

Long Run vs. Short Run. Can you tell the difference?

  • You chain smoke. And drink. Beer. Daily. ("Come on, it's just beer!") Life's good, for now, and that's all that matters. Well, that looks like short run.
  • You run marathons. For fun, for fitness, for the challenge, for the throbbing feeling of being alive and for the day when, aged 100, you do yet another marathon, just like in the good old days. In literal and figurative respects, that’s a long run.
  • You go to college just because. Plus your mom tells you to. So you spend next 4 years driving your parents into debt for the next quarter of a century. You flunk tests. You don’t give two shizzes about learning. That’s short run.
  • You are passionate about web design. You feel a severe lack of skills and want to go to school to learn, with a vision of one day becoming a great designer. School may or may not help, but nevertheless…. That’s long run thinking.
  • You are an average guy, doing average work, earning average money doing things that you mostly hate. That’s short run. (And I sure hope you quit that job. Soon.)
  • You are a young photographer, blazing your trail, earning little but head over heels in love with what you do. You refuse to compromise your passion for the sake of short-term rewards. That’s long run.
  • You are an SEO software user. You don't know much about SEO and you care not to know. Why learn when you’ve got the best SEO software in the world ? You have no SEO strategy, no online marketing strategy, and you get upset at the software: it has failed to bring you to page one. That’s short run thinking.
  • You own SEO tools, too. They are your helpers but not the decision makers (YOU are). You read up on SEO and realize that neither SEO tools, nor SEO itself, is an end-all. They are part of the big picture – inbound marketing (or just marketing if you are feeling pretty integrated already) which is part of the even bigger picture – great product, or service that you make better each day. An even bigger picture? You actually enjoy your life while doing all this stuff. That’s long run.
  • You are a self-proclaimed SEO "guru" running a cheap (oops, sorry, "affordable") SEO agency. You promise clients first page rankings in the next 24 hours. You build links to dubious sites, using dubious schemes. Your days are numbered. For a very simple reason – you are all about short run.
  • So, let me ask - which guy are you?

Do you think "long run" in your business and life?

Think, reflect, share.

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