Why SEOs Should Network Too

This week, Freelance SEO Essex was proud to attend a fantastic night at the Romford Greyhound Stadium courtesy of the Essex branch of the Federation of Small Businesses (FSB). Aside from giving us the chance to have a flutter on the dogs (and running out of luck sooner rather than later!), the networking evening was a great way to meet like-minded businessmen and women from across the county and share contacts and experiences with energetic and inspiring company representatives who bring all sorts of vital skills to the local economy.

So what’s the point of this blog, you ask? (You’re surely not interested in finding out how much we managed to fritter away on ambitious reverse forecasts)! Well, enjoying such a fun and informal night with other business owners got us thinking – why don’t more SEOS take time out of their schedules to attend networking events?

Only a handful of SEOs seem to appreciate the value of striking up a conversation. A natural, genuinely engaging conversation.  Yes, a large percentage of an SEO agency’s business is generated online. Yes, SEO consultants need to make sure they carve out a great reputation for themselves on the web if they’re to be taken seriously by their customers and their peers. And yes, there are plenty of digital marketers out there who will gladly hide behind phone calls and emails in order to remain comfortably detached from their clients. The fact is, we can run our agencies from behind a screen if we really want to – we can Skype our clients if they need to catch up, and we can send them a myriad of reports if they want to see how they’re doing. It’s how a lot of SEOs choose to run things in order to keep up the pretence that optimising a website is a dark and mysterious art that just can’t be understood by the average Joe.

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But we’ve always thought that if you can’t build great relationships face-to-face, you’re missing out on those kinds of great opportunities that only come about by talking to people. The traditional way of doing business still has a place in today’s tech-driven economy and we want to categorically encourage more SEO companies, large or small, to get out there and meet their clients (and prospective clients) in the flesh. We think it’s the only way the industry can move forward and become more open and transparent, and we believe clients should be wary of companies and freelancers who avoid face-to-face meetings at all costs, as chances are they can’t provide you with real solutions when it comes to the crunch!

What do you think? Are you happy to keep your SEO company at arm’s length, or would you prefer to have regular meetings with your account manager to make sure everything’s on track? Everyone works differently, but we’re interested to hear what you have to say.

Read more: Freelance SEO Essex at TFM&A 2013! »