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Approaching 50 years of age, I’m probably a fair bit older than most of the people you see hammering up and down the forums and blogs of the internet marketing highway. I had a “real” life outside of the internet for many years before committing totally to this as a career some 6 or 7 years ago. I’ve worked as a project planner, a production planner a CNC operator and a shop assistant among many other things. I spent most of my working life doubling up as a student. I’m lucky to have been supported by my employers in continuing my education until I was almost 40 years old. Being paid to learn? Now that’s a career!
In 1996 I discovered the possibility of selling on the internet, though it was almost 11 years until I took the plunge and quit my day job confident that I could make a go of it without the safety rope of a regular monthly income. So far, it’s one of the the best decisions I’ve ever made.
Early on I realised that traffic generation was not as precise an art as I would have liked.
Relying completely on SEO for visitors was also not ideal. In fact I’d go one step further and say relying completely on the search engines for your livelihood is like going into a lumberjack partnership with a recently released axe murderer. To coin a very overused cliché, I like to take a more holistic approach. This website is all about that journey.
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It Is More Than A Simple Choice Of Black Hat Or White Hat SEO
Here’s the thing, nothing is guaranteed on the internet. Nothing. No matter how clean and neat and un-self-promotional you think you are, now matter how hard you work. You are guaranteed nothing.
I certainly don’t claim to be a White Hat marketer in the true sense of the word, but I also have never done most of the things that are associated with Black Hat marketing.
You’ll find no advice on cloaking, spoofing, link spamming or trust hijacking here. I don’t do them, and don’t believe they offer a good return for anyone in anything but the shortest of short terms.
On the other hand, I have never once met an individual outside of big corporations who has truly followed Google’s guidelines and built a financially successful website. Not one, not ever.
I’m sure these people exist – but in more than 17 years, and having met probably thousands of webmasters, I’ve never met an independent who has managed it.
Some have claimed they did it… But on closer inspection, they really didn’t. I’m always left wondering if they really thought the links they built, the content they over syndicated the images they ripped or whatever really was “clean White Hat”. I suppose some people’s delusions run that deep. But not mine. I’m just interested in..
Effective Search Engine Optimization
Blue Hat is not a term I came up with. In fact it has been around almost as long as Black and White hat SEO. 1996 seems to be the origin of the term Black Hat, and Blue Hat is mentioned just weeks later. That’s what this site is all about. Effective SEO, solid traffic building. Staying on top of the changes, planning for the future but keeping it loose, ready to shift and adapt quickly.
Offering value but always with the main focus on the prize – the prize being profitable online marketing
This site is updated regularly. Most months I’ll post at least eight or nine articles here, often many more. I love feedback and am always looking for now topics to explore. A good percentage of the posts here are written in direct response to reader feedback.
By far the most preferable way to give feedback or suggestions is in the comment box below – that way the conversation will have value for other readers.
I have a forum at www.scritty.org. It isn’t the most active place for normal members (apologies for that) but the Gold members area is where I handle things like product bonuses for people who buy any of the affiliate links I have here.
A Content Based Approach
Some of the older posts and topics on this website talk more about links and less about the content that surrounds them. Why? Because a few years ago that is what worked, and let’s be clear about it, links still win 9 out of 10 battles today.
Having said that, I’d be a little naive not to have spotted the wind change towards a more content based approach. I moved to promoting my own sites using a new method (of which this is just one of quite a few) in late 2012. The method is not entirely mine, in fact it’s derived from several ideas that top marketers use put together. But it works, and I’m going to stick my neck out here and say it’s likely to work for a long time to come. While Blue Hat Demon (link above) has the guts of it, you might want to have a look here to see straight away what I’m on about,.
Commerciality Out In The Open
Some of the links to products here are indeed affiliate links, but here is the deal.
I only promote products I use regularly and vouch for personally. Not only that, but I nearly always go “deep” into every product I promote. There will often be tutorials, suggestions for the developer, work- around for any issues. If an application starts to fail or loses its edge, then I stop promoting it. You will find some posts on this site dating back over 2 years where I have removed the link – that is precisely because I no longer think the product offers value.
If I don’t like it or don’t use it, I don’t sell it.
I have good working relationships with several of the best known developers in the SEO application industry. Many are lucky enough to be on first name terms with me (ahem..cough cough.. see what I did there ) That means I get the best deals, the biggest discounts, the first look – and quite often a little input into the direction that these tools take over the course of their lifetime. By checking in here, you are going to get the news first.
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