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Enterprise SEO & Stakeholder Buy-In

Enterprise SEO & Stakeholder Buy-In

BoostROAS SEO Weekly Podcast, Dec 2022

Amanda King

December 02, 2022

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  1. My Country, Anna Price Petyarre. We acknowledge the Traditional Custodians

    of country throughout Australia and their connections to land, sea and community. We pay our respect to their Elders past and present and extend that respect to all Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples today.
  2. floq.co what’s what the foundations 01 stakeholder buy-in 02 talking

    to developers 03 proof of concept 04 impact of changes 05
  3. Mindset because you need understand 2 things: 1. You are

    a cog in a much larger machine. 2. Changing the title tag on one page is really unlikely to move the needle.
  4. Politics because people are hard, particularly if they feel you’re

    threatening their job or questioning their authority.
  5. 9 Know what your new initiative / financial request process

    is – and follow it! Know when you need to have proposals ready by to plan for the new year. Particularly if you’re looking for a big budget or a lot of people… Process, process, process
  6. Because in order to get someone to buy in, you

    need to understand what matters to them.
  7. • Sarcasm and humour rarely land the way you want

    them to, particularly in virtual or asynchronous channels • Speak to their level (technically and metaphorically) • Sometimes the best way to build a relationship is to ask for a small favour A few reminders about communication in general
  8. In house process • How do they report on value

    internally (ROAS, revenue, profit, CLTV) • Does the legal team have a cheatsheet? • What are the brand dos and don'ts? • What are your release cycles, financial years? How do they determine priority of work? • How do things get approved in and out of budget cycles? Stakeholder preferences • Follow them on all public socials (Linkedin, Twitter) • Lean into the banter • Ask questions, rather than make statements • Ask them what they care about (no reason to hide it, it benefits you both if you have a clear understanding) • Get to know their team, including PA’s • How do they talk — do they focus on competitors, the customer, or their revenue? Business Cases • Brand team (brand and customer sentiment) • Customer service team (NPS and direct customer feedback) • Paid media team (revenue impact) • Competitors • Industry studies and stats from Google and others getting to know you…
  9. Educate yourself about empathy, understand how people (including yourself) make

    decisions, what we’re motivated by, and the different ways people communicate, because we aren’t rational creatures, as much as we say we are
  10. When you’re looking to get buy in from anyone, you’re

    essentially tapping into and manipulating behavioral science to understand what types of levers to pull, and then learning the specific triggers for each person. TL;DR we fool ourselves into thinking we make decisions rationally. We make them emotionally, then justify them rationally. Use this to create an emotional, aspirational story when looking for buy in as well a providing the numbers to later justify it.
  11. what should be BAU is an easy shortcut to build

    trust Do what you said you’d do by the time you said you’d do it. Respect their time, because it’s probably more valuable than yours.
  12. Talk to their level, and never punch down. Everyone has

    valuable feedback or knowledge that has the potential to make or break your partnership. The SEO world is full of weird and often childish jargon (link juice, anyone?). Speak in the most straightforward language possible and use metaphors if needed — some common ones include: • Going to the doctor • Going to the gym • Moving house What’s your favourite metaphor?
  13. • Ask to be introduced to as many people as

    possible. • Run training sessions — at least for those teams that will be executing your work — as a mandatory. • Present and talk up SEO at all-hands meetings for your department, showcases, and QBR’s. • Use the rule of three: if by the third email you still aren’t getting the information you want, pick up the phone. • Be useful outside your specific job description how do I expand my stakeholder circle
  14. treat the time you have with them as a rare

    and valuable thing Be Organised Before you get in touch with any stakeholder You should make their lives easy by: • Respect your stakeholder’s time − For emails, get to the core of your ask quickly and be clear about what you want from them, and how it’ll help them − For meetings, set a clear agenda, and use the shortest amount of time possible, 15 mins is ideal • Have a business case ready if you’re going to be asking them to do something (and as their agency, you probably should be, otherwise, why are you getting in touch?) • Remind yourself of what you’re getting in touch with them about so it’s fresh • If you can’t explain it in 30 seconds using simple language, revisit and make sure you can • Be clear on how it’ll benefit them 1 Know Your Stuff 2
  15. and make sure you’re fully engaged when working with them.

    Anticipate Before you get in touch with any stakeholder You should make their lives easy by: • Come up with answers to their likely objections • Know their KPI’s and what matters to them • Have data on hand to reinforce your business case • “Strong convictions loosely held” • Be fully present in the moment and genuinely take on any feedback they offer • Re-educate gently if it’s needed – ask questions like “Where did you hear that?” 3 Listen Actively 4
  16. 24 How to educate gently 1:1 or small department sessions

    • Helpful for stakeholders you’ll be working with more frequently • Allows for more specific questions and less public embarrassment • Takes more of your time New starter or onboarding packs • Get them while they’re fresh • Relatively low effort, potentially high impact • Asynchronous communication can be impersonal Create advocates • Creates a network of SEO advocates you’ve trained and who understand the benefit for their department • Have “office hours” for questions • You can’t directly control what they say, where or how they say it
  17. my not so secret weapon in getting buy in Proof

    of concepts. Why? Because it’s a low stakes ask. “Hey, I’ve got this idea and all it’ll take is one writer and your third most popular product to prove. Should take 6 weeks to validate my hypothesis.” is an easier as than “Hey, let's spend 100K on this wild idea that may or may not work”. Think iteratively rather than waterfall.
  18. you aren’t there to decide on the solution. you’re there

    to clearly articulate the problem and what a good solution should look like. when you’re talking to developers
  19. talking to devs using their language: JIRA tickets & user

    stories As an {role}, we want to do {goal} in order to {benefit}.
  20. find patterns where you can find patterns and articulate scale

    • Most of the time different subdomains or subdirectories will be owned by different teams • Break up the issue into business lines • Learn regex, tap someone who knows regex or include it as acceptance criteria for your JIRA ticket
  21. technical issues at scale (bloat, cannibalisation, crawled not indexed) •

    Assume it’ll be difficult to get access to crawl logs • Develop a hypothesis to fix the problem (e.g. The index is bloated because the old version of the site never got fully redirected) • Justify a proof of concept through case studies or competitor research • Get a pre-yes from developers • Write a JIRA ticket geared towards shared understanding
  22. there’s no one way to analyse at scale. I relied

    on time, proof of concepts and screaming frog. learning python is useful, as is sql.
  23. Never underestimate the impact of humility, asking for help to

    scope a build, being curious, and asking questions.
  24. DEV COORDINATION Consulted with dev team about how best to

    put content in the product hierarchy Technical buy-in TARGETED TOPICS Reviewed topic intent, historical opportunity and vendor positioning to write Matching keyword intent LIMITED WRITERS With limited capacity from the editorial team, it got done through the willingness to do the writing myself. JFDI challenger telco builds longtail through product content incremental increase in purchase when content was a part of the journey 21% DUE DILIGENCE Worked closely with legal team to understand their red flags in order to write and publish content smoothly. Understanding risk
  25. competitor research • Use a combination of The Wayback Machine

    and third party tools (ahrefs, SEMrush) to line up changes in the market to changes in strategy as evidenced by changes to the website • Use your own historical clients in the industry • Be a forensic investigator, be curious and follow the white rabbit • Know when your client has changed their market proposition • Use Google Trends to gauge brand interest • If you can, get ahold of their brand sentiment research, including historicals
  26. Back yourself when you go into business impact conversations, a

    few guidelines • Have multiple sources for an impact estimate, one of which is ideally a proof of concept. • Proof of concepts are a shortcut to trust. This happened to you on your website. Not a competitor. Not a random talking head saying so. • K.I.S.S. (Keep it Stupid Simple) • Always bring it back to what’s important to the business: the strategic focus, how they talk about value. • Build the emotion in the pre-yes and present both emotion & logic in the justification.
  27. 38 5 takeaways It’s never about you. 1 Learn as

    much as you can about what makes your main stakeholder and the business tick. 2 Make no assumptions, always validate before presenting something back to the team as an opportunity. 3 Strip out the jargon and speak in the business’ language. 4 Proof of concepts may just be your new BFF. 5
  28. about amanda email: amanda@floq.co SEO Consultant Seasoned Has worked in

    the SEO industry since 2010, across agency, in-house enterprise and start-up, in the US and AU. Process-compliant Working enterprise for a highly regulated industry means there’s clear understanding of different compliance processes Data- & product-driven Built, led and executed on the Data & Analytics product offering. Including executing CRO. Solution-focused There’s no assumption the solution I’m putting forward is the best one. The goal is to find the workable middle ground. 01 02 03 04