In digital marketing and SEO there is no one-size-fits-all strategy or a formula for a guaranteed success. To make the best decisions for your company, it’s invaluable to follow the trends and listen to established voices of the industry. Further we offer a short interview with one of the SEO influencers that has some useful insights to share.
Maria Johnsen (@iMariaJohnsen)
Maria knows 18 languages which has made her a multilingual SEO, PPC and social media marketing expert. She has managed software projects for well-known IT companies and banks, as well as cooperated with governments and police authorities. Maria owns a company that deals with projects in Europe, North America and Asia. Meanwhile, she consults also corporate clients, agencies and small businesses in areas of SEO, including keyword targeting, competitor research and on-site optimization. She shares her knowledge in her blog and writes fiction and non-fiction books in her spare time.
1.Please, tell us shortly about your success story. What was the big breakthrough moment in your career?
I started my business back in 2008 with campaigns related to search engine optimization, paid advertising and social media marketing. My breakthrough moment was in September 2010 when 5 major player media companies in the UK and the U.S. outsourced their multilingual SEO projects to me. My company Golden Way Media became internationally recognized in such a way that I was awarded social media marketing project for President Barack Obama’s second presidential campaign back in 2012. We had an honor to promote Mr. Obama on global level in various languages. It was an amazing journey. A few years later me and my American team promoted Madam Hillary Clinton on social media and via content marketing. She won Ohio primary.
My company helped many politicians behind the scene in regard to brand recognition and reputation management in Europe and North America. We have also promoted reputation management of Hollywood celebrities such as Mr. Charlie Sheen back in 2014.
2.What has been your biggest digital marketing fail (and what did you learn from that)?
Since I was loaded with projects, I had to outsource two of them to a couple of companies in India and Romania. I paid them a handsome amount of money. They kept promising me and I saw no results of their work. My money was gone, I understood that I was scammed. This gave me a good lesson not to outsource to those who solicit work ever again. I decided to refund my clients and renegotiate these projects with 30% discount with delivery at a later date. Clients agreed and I worked on projects and did the job. They became happy, I lost money and this was my last time I ever outsourced a project. Today I have a team of 25 engineers, software security and SEO experts who are contract based. I love my loyal colleagues. When we have a bigger project, they are there for me.
3. What’s your TOP 1 advice to other marketing specialists?
In digital marketing you should test what strategy works for your business and your client. Don’t copy other people’s strategies. If it works for them, it doesn’t mean it will work for you. Without testing, you won’t know what works. We also test strategies in search engine programming. Why? Because when we design a search engine algorithm, we train the program to do certain tasks correctly for better user experience. Thanks to artificial intelligence, machine learning and deep learning, we create a better search engine that shows the right results based on certain search queries. When it comes to SEO and digital marketing every niche is different. This means you cannot use the same strategy in all niches.