I had a moment of déjà vu yesterday. I went to a law blog and read through the first post wishing their readers “Happy Veterans Day”. Right now it’s a week before Christmas. I thought “meh, I’ll come back to this one in a bit”. I opened the next blog on my list and started reading the first post wishing me another “Happy Veterans Day”. Honestly, I thought I was in a time loop like Bill Murray. Okay, well maybe there was a mistake, and I moved on. I opened the next blog on my list and started reading the first post wishing me, in fact, another “Happy Veterans Day”. At this point, I realized what was going on. Each blog was connected to a single firm, was named similarly, and was designed exactly the same.
I’m new to SEO practices. I will admit that fact outright. However, I know sales. I know sales enough to know I’m a terrible salesman, but still better than most people. I wasn’t hired to be a salesman, even though my emails to people sometimes sound that way. I’m grateful for that, but my point I want to make is simple. Numbers don’t lie, but people do.
I come across tons of law blogs that are terrible SEO driven monsters that, if a real person spent 10 seconds reading, would agree wholeheartedly. I wondered if these types of blogs were worth it and began to do some research. Come to find out, I work at a great company. I’m not trying to brown-nose; honestly, I don’t care enough. What I did find was that LexBlog believes what I believe and that’s the power of human connection.
My parents were Realtors and I lived very comfy in my country club lifestyle that they provided me. Neither had a college education. Heck, my mother didn’t get her GED until her 30’s. They taught me that people made business and that human connection was more important than anything. They would take clients out to lunch, drive all over to meet people, and send cards/gifts for holidays. They took care of people and didn’t ask for anything in return. There was even a case where my mother made a woman dinners for several weeks, after which, the woman sold her house through a different realtor (I believe because they were family). My mother wasn’t upset by this at all. She didn’t help the woman for a potential sale. They were in the business of helping people and in return people sent them business.
I used this mentality of human connection to sell watches years ago. Traditional watches are still around and people wear them for all sorts of reasons. In the few years I fixed and sold them, I never cared to be a salesman and I wasn’t. However, dawning that attitude of wanting to help people and make connections, real connections, made me one of the top salesman of that old watch company. I even remember several instances of customers breaking down emotionally. Those customers were grateful for being treated like human beings.
SEO takes the human out of sales and attempts to put humanity into an algorithm. Businesses that rely purely on SEO practices tend to measure success linearly in order to fit into the self profitizing formula. Humanity is not a formula. Now, I’m not saying that data isn’t important. Ignoring data is just plain silly, but when it comes down to relying on quantitative, qualitative, and anecdotal evidences for success, don’t think that quantitative is everything. Quantitative is all numbers. From my understanding, SEO is all numbers. SEO practices ask how many clicks can I get to my website? How many users have visited today? I know that roughly 80% of the internet is robots. So my question, why would I care how many visitors are generating hits on my website? I guess I would care if they were buying whatever it was I was selling.
To reiterate my point: human connection is something very powerful. If you as a blogger or as a business owner rely purely on numbers, you’ll miss the bigger picture of what success really means. You’ll find yourself just doing donuts in the parking lot. You feel yourself moving, but you’re not going anywhere.