The Relevance of SEO in an Effective Content Marketing Plan In discussion with Aaron Agius

TODAY'S GUEST

Aaron Agius

Aaron is the CEO of Louder Online, a digital marketing consultancy that specializes in Intelligent & Effective Search, Content & Social Marketing. He is married to Gian Clancey Agius, the co-founder of Louder Online. Aaron is one of the world’s leading digital marketers, according to Forbes.
WEBSITE: Louder Online

YOU’LL LEARN

  • About the life of a digital nomad
  • Handling a location independent company
  • How long your blog posts should be
  • The importance of content marketing

Key Takeaways:

[2:12] Aaron Talks About His Family

[5:27] Shane’s Singapore Story

[12:20] The Internet and Modern Education

[14:25] Aaron’s Entry Into SEO and Content Marketing

[21:20] Internet Access While Traveling

[22:30] Aaron Talks About Louder.Online

[24:15] Remote Team Management

[30:39] Aaron’s Firefighting Past

[33:00] Louder.Online’s Specialization

[36:18] Useful Software

[38:46] Aaron Talks About His Books

[41:29] Advice on SEO

[43:20] Why Did Aaron Move to Singapore?

[46:33] What Would Aaron Do With $1 Million?

SEO and content marketing are both great methods for marketing your brand. While they are thought to be two very different forms of marketing, they are interlinked far more than we think. In fact, SEO changes are the most important issue for 61% of B2B content marketers.

Content Marketing Issues

Image via Content Marketing Institute

Using them together can help you achieve your business goals. To help you out, I’ve got Aaron Agius with me. He’s a serial entrepreneur and digital marketer and serves as the CEO of Louder.Online. In addition, he’s a member of the Forbes Agency Council and has authored two books with Neil Patel.

Before we get to how SEO and content marketing can help you, let’s look at some of the differences between them:

SEO and Content Marketing – The Differences

SEO and content marketing have more in common than their differences. However, there are some fundamental differences between the two.

SEO is more on the technical side and has a narrower scope than content. You need to follow certain best practices to get your SEO strategy right. Content marketing, on the other hand, is broader than SEO and is more on the holistic side than the technical.

Now that you know how they differ, let’s look at how you can use them to your advantage.

Using SEO & Content Marketing Together

1. Keywords

Keywords are critical for SEO, and you need to find and use relevant keywords in your content so that you can rank higher in the Search Engine Results Pages (SERPs). They should be used appropriately by following a strategic approach.

You can use the Google Keyword Planner and KWFinder to find relevant keywords. Stuffing a page with keywords can lead to over-optimization which might be penalized by the search engines.

You also need to use your keywords in your title sections and URLs along with the body of your blog posts. Finding keywords and determining how many times your content should feature them is a part of SEO. However, inserting keywords naturally in your content is content marketing all the way. This way, the mix of both can help you utilize keywords properly.

2. User Experience

SEO is all about creating a good user experience for search engine users. Websites which provide a great experience to their users are likely to rank higher up in the SERPs.

You may have all of your technical parameters right such as broken links, error codes, etc.

However, if your website isn’t able to provide a quality experience to searchers, it’ll be pushed down in the search results.

Your website needs to have quality content that can provide value to the searchers. This is where content marketing comes in. You can create high-quality content that gives actionable advice and valuable information to visitors.

Doing this increases their time on page, reduces their bounce rate, and increases their chances of becoming repeat visitors. These factors can help improve your website’s SEO.

Additionally, technical SEO focuses on improving the browsing experience of your website visitors. By increasing the page-loading speed, providing a good sitemap, etc., you can improve the user experience. In fact, a 100-millisecond delay in page loading can reduce your conversions by up to 7%.

These technical factors directly relate to content marketing again. You need faster page-loading speed and sitemaps so that the visitors don’t need to wait long to read your content and can find it easily.

3. High-Quality Content

To get the best out of SEO and content marketing, you need to create high-quality content regularly. Fresh, unique content can index quickly and starts ranking higher in the SERPs compared to low-quality, repetitive content.

Your content should target a particular problem that is faced by your target customers, and it should solve it. You should write your content while keeping this target audience in mind. At the same time, you need to incorporate keywords into your content as a part of SEO. This incorporation has to be done such that it doesn’t seem forced and apparent. If it seems forced, the quality of your content will be negatively affected.

Keywords are one of the most important ranking factors through which the relevance of your website will be ascertained. You need to look for high volume low competition long-tail keywords which can get you higher up in the SERPs with relatively less effort.

4. Backlinks

Each backlink that your website gets is a vote for its authenticity and quality of the content it provides to visitors. One of the most common ways of getting backlinks is by writing guest posts on other blogs.

This is where content marketing comes into the picture. You can write high-quality guest posts for high-authority websites and get backlinks to your website through them. Without quality content, it can be difficult to get approval for a guest post on other websites.

At the same time, if you publish killer content, which is useful for your website visitors, people may link back to it. This can earn you natural backlinks without any extra effort. In this manner, content marketing supports SEO. Remember, linkworthy content is the key to get backlinks.

5. Consistency

As mentioned earlier, you need to come up with high-quality content regularly. Google gives preference to fresh content, and this helps it in ranking higher up in the SERPs. Even if your website doesn’t have a high domain authority, you can expect this content to rank quickly in the SERPs.

Good SEO, thus, means that you need to come up with unique content regularly. This, in turn, means that you’re doing content marketing as well to come up with this content. Through consistent posts, you can increase your rankings in the SERPs.

Final Thoughts

SEO and content marketing are different forms of marketing; however, they are two sides of the same coin.

To get your SEO strategy bang-on, you need to have a solid content marketing strategy as well. By consistently coming up with fresh and high-quality content, you can improve your SEO. This can help you earn backlinks and even improve the user experience.

Lastly, keywords are essential to rank higher up in SERPs, and you can use them naturally only through content marketing.

If you need any assistance with SEO or content marketing, you can get in touch with me.

Full Transcript

Shane: Welcome to the podcast. I am Shane Barker, your host of Shane Barker’s Marketing Madness podcast. Today's episode is about SEO and Content Marketing. We’ll discuss how to create great content and optimize it for better search engine rankings. I have with me Aaron Agius, a leading digital marketer and co-founder of louder.online. He’s a pro at intelligent and effective search and content marketing. Listen, as he shares the best SEO advice and talks about the concept of being audience focused and keyword focus in content marketing. You'll learn how to leverage SEO and to make your content perform better. It's totally worth your time. Alright, so tell me a little bit. So, I mean, I can tell from the accent that obviously you're from the United States, right? Just kidding. No. So like, tell me where you grew up, man. Like, give me a little background on Aaron's life. Aaron: Sure, technically, I am American. I was born in the States but I grew up in Sydney, Australia, since I was one. So pretty much spent my whole life here. That's where the accents from. Shane: Yeah. Aaron: And I decided to, you know, the grass is always greener. Everyone wants to go to Australia. I wanted to get out and go everywhere else. So, I've been living in many places since I started adulting. Shane: Yeah. So, let me just get this right. So, when you were one year old, you decided you wanted to move to Australia? I mean, that's kind of young, don't you think? Aaron: I was very mature. Shane: Very, very independent. What did your mom and dad think? Where they were just like, he's one I mean, what are we going to do? Aaron: I dragged him with me, I'm very convincing as well. So, I persuaded them and yeah we' all moved. Shane: And parents probably needed you to kind of be a kind of a parent figure. I'm your one. So, it's like, that's awesome you brought your parents along. Aaron: Yeah, exactly, contributing to the family. Shane: Yeah, that's good because they obviously needed, I'm sure you're probably bringing in a lot of money at that time. So okay, so let's not digress here. So okay, so you went to Australia, obviously because it's an awesome place that I've been to by the way. Aaron: Good, good. It is, I like it. Shane: Yeah. And then, so your family, big family, mom and dad? I mean, obviously have a mom and dad because I'm you're here so I mean, we don't need to go into heavy detail into that. But like brothers, sisters, what do we got going on? Aaron: Yeah. Five kids. So, bunch of brothers and sisters. Yeah, big family spread out over many years. Shane: Got you. And are you obviously might be a little biased, you think you're the most intelligent out of all the kids? Aaron: It's not that I think I'm most intelligent because everyone else thinks that so, you know, I just run with it. Shane: Yeah, you like, you know, listen, I trust you guys’ opinion. Aaron: Yeah, yeah. Shane: So, it's good. It's good to be modest. I can see we run in that same boat. I don't think I'm really good looking, my brothers say I'm a lot better looking. I don't know. We're not but I just take what he says because that's, you know, I'm assuming he's a smart person. So, growing up in Australia, how long were you in Australia for? So you went to just full school there and all that kind of fun stuff? So, you were there for how many years? Aaron: Yeah, everything, full adulting. Decided to, I moved countries when I was 30, I think, somewhere around there. I moved from Sydney to Ko Samui in Thailand. Shane: Yeah. I've been to Ko Samui. Aaron: So, I was there for three years, which was really good. Shane: When I was there, they put, they kind of disgusted me. They put like a Starbucks, like, “hey, we got to start with Starbucks.” They're super excited about it. I'm like, Oh, that's kind of like that's not why I came here. Aaron: Yeah, exactly. Shane: All Americans run there but I'm like, “Ah not me. Ah, nah, I’m good.” Aaron: Yeah, I have that's the McDonalds all the chains. There's a lot there now. So yeah, you got to go to the islands off Samui now, Cope and Yang, Cotel and that's how each step you go is like 20 years before on the other island. Shane: Yeah. Aaron: But yeah, I moved there with my wife and two kids when they were tiny. Shane: Yeah, got ya. So, we'll go into that, too. So, tell me a little about your kids. How old are your kids right now? Aaron: Seven and eight. Shane: Seven and eight. You got a dog, rumor has it you got a dog? Aaron: I’ve got two dogs now. I got new one about a month ago. Shane: See, I'm going to have to fire my research team because they should have known that. Aaron: Good research. I’m not aware I put that online, but I'm impressed. Shane: Now this is going to be weird, is your social security number? Now I'm going to say it out loud that we can block this out. Aaron: Please do? Shane: I know your pin number too. So, it's not I mean, we're not going to tell everybody it's like and the cool part is I only have like two people that listen to my podcast. Aaron: Yeah, exactly one of them like in this episode, so that's fine. Shane: Yeah, one of them will probably be your wife. So, at this point, it's like maybe we'll have three people and she already probably knows your social. So, you're going to be safe. Aaron: Now I'm staring to understand where you got all your information from. You mentioned my wife. I'm starting to piecing things together here. Yeah. Shane: Yeah, yeah. She's like, listen, here's the deal. We need some leverage with him, right. I don't know what that means but sounds good. So cool. So, you okay, so you grew, you went to Ko Samui, you said what at age 30? Aaron: Yeah, about 30. Did about three years there, as the kids started to need a bit more than what a small island could provide? Shane: Yeah. Aaron: Moved back to Sydney for another couple of years and then have recently as of about a year and a bit ago, moved to Singapore with the whole family. Shane: We were touching on that a little earlier, man. I'm thoroughly impressed with Singapore. I'm going to touch on that probably a little later on the podcast. But yeah, I'm in a crazy city like in a good way man. I was just how clean it is and just everything about it. It was I mean, I didn't see one piece of trash on the ground. It was just… Aaron: Crazy. Shane: Crazy. It's like crazy nuts like so this is my funny Singapore story and I'll just tell you now. So, I was leaving Singapore and I was at the airport. I was like I just had some food you know, and I was getting on a plane you know, kind of close quarters whatever. Oh my god, I really need some gum. So, I go in and I went into the guys like a little Cadbury not a little, it's like a huge Cadbury you know thing and they like 5000 stores at their airport, which is like number one airport in the world or something. It's like you can get lots of like a pool and all the stuff that you needed airport before I go on a flight. I go and there was just this little Cadbury store and I was like, “hey, you know, do you guys have any gum?” And he kind of like did this double take and looked at me like I had asked him for like some heroin or something like, “hey, you got any heroin?” a little bit in the day or something? And he goes, “gum” and he goes, “Yeah,” he goes, “Oh, we don't sell gum here.” Like I was a Singaporean agent or something. Okay, you got... What do you mean? Do you mean by that? He's like, we don't allow gum and I didn't know that. It was like, I guess permission is legal right? I mean, I guess I don't think you can have gum. Aaron: I think it's illegal to sell. If you bring it in, it's not illegal to chew it or something but you know, you don't see it anywhere. No one's chewing gum here. Shane: No and I didn't for me. I didn't know that, you know, but when I asked the guy, he kind of looked at me like, I guess he thought I was a Singaporean because obviously I looked very Singaporean. Aaron: Yeah, yeah, you would fit right in. Yeah. Shane: You have the red beard, they're like, “Are your local?” I'm like, “yes. You need gum because I've got the hook up? I’m just saying if you needed some chewing gum, I could totally hook you up right now.” So cool. Okay, so that's okay. So, we're going to talk a little bit about Singapore later because I am like, I'm kind of in love with Singapore. I mean, you see my Instagram, my last six pictures have been like, “dear Singapore, like I love you and miss you. And I'm going to come back.” And anyway, so they’ve got some good stuff happening there. Next time, you and I are going to have coffee or a beer or maybe do some chewing gum together, something like that. Just go in and do crazy stuff. Aaron: Keep that off, the down low, the whole gum stuff. Shane: I know. Well the unfortunate part is it when somebody listens to this, they can come get you in Singapore. I’m in California, I'm safe until I come back. So anyways, when I come back, we'll figure that out. I'll put money on your books. It's don't know. It'll be fine. Aaron: Thank you. Thank you. Shane: So, did you go to college in Australia or anything or just come out brilliant? We already kind of touched on this a little bit. Aaron: I tried a few times. Shane: Yeah. Aaron: At 18, I kind of moved out and that's the time were you trying to go to Uni as we call it in Australia. Shane: Yeah. Aaron: And yeah, I just couldn't do it. I was doing a Bachelor of Computer Science and so a big degree and just couldn't get started. I started at Sydney Uni went to New South Wales ETFs. I went to a whole bunch of different Unis to keep trying. Every time I failed, but just couldn't handle the, trying to support myself and doing a big course like that at same time. So eventually, the jobs that I was doing on the side, I ended up hiring people that had completed the degree that I was trying to study for. That was the time…. Shane: Ironic. Aaron: Like the time where I thought was not needed. Shane: So, it's funny. So UTS, my brother graduated from UTS. Aaron: Oh really. Shane: Yeah, yeah, yeah. So he went to and that's why we went out to visit him when he graduated. So, he graduated in Film. So, he's in San Francisco doing Film and works for a few different companies. But yeah, that was interesting when you said UTS.  I didn't know that was going to come up in the conversation but was Sydney but…. Aaron: My brother is there the moment. Shane: Oh, is he really? That's awesome. Awesome. Yeah. We, my dad and I went to go visit, we were there for, that was a while ago. I don't know how many weeks, but we just went up the Gold Coast. We just rented a car and went up the Gold Coast and just had, I mean, just, I can't even tell you how much fun we had. Yeah, it was awesome. Yeah, good time. So cool. So, college wasn't really your thing. And that's, you know, it's funny when I think you know, 20, 30 years ago, people were like, you know, “Oh, you didn't go to college.” It's like, now it's like, I mean, I went to college, I got my degree and that's super awesome. And you know how much money of they agree I use? A point 01 percent if that right. I'm not saying, kids that are listening to this, or my son who's in college right now. Continue college son, don't be confused. But for the most part, it's like that doesn't you know, especially with online education, you can get online, right? I mean, that's where I've learned my stuff, I'm sure where you've learned your stuff. It's like, there's just so much information out there. And it's like, it's, you know, it doesn't have to come. And I think there's obviously going to be a huge in the next 5, 10, 15, 20 years where you want to go to Stanford, you don't have to be at Stanford, right? They're going to have that curriculum. And they're working on that right now. Aaron: Yeah, I couldn't agree more. I said the same thing to my younger brothers that “Yeah, there's loads of reasons to go to college or go to Uni but it's not necessary. You don't need to, unless you want to.” And I'm sure there's like loads of stuff that I missed out on. I'm sure the social scene was amazing. Mind you I had a pretty good social scene in my early 20s, anyway. But yeah, look, I'm sure this stuff I missed out on career wise, I'm happy with the direction I took. And I'm always looking to get to somewhere else as quick as possible. So, thinking that I got to skip those years that I would have spent there, and you know, was hiring the people that had that degree anyway, that made sense to do what I did. Shane: Yeah. No, that's awesome. That's awesome. I mean, once again, I firmly believe in that it's like to me, I mean, I've thought about going back and getting my Masters. But it's literally just to get my Masters. It has nothing to do won't further my career, right. I mean, I teach at UCLA. So, I'm one of the only instructors, that’s crazy. I'm the only instructors that I don't have my Masters, or I don't have my Doctorate. And it's because it's a long story short, they came to me and said, “Hey, you have expertise, we're looking for something as a practitioner.” And so that was a weird, you know, situation, I was like, “wow.” Because I was going to go get my Masters because at a local college in Sacramento that said, “Hey, we want to we're looking for somebody like you, but you have to have your Masters.” And I thought, okay, so you have  this this teacher is 65 years old, nothing against 65 year old’s by the way, but that is teaching this marketing class, it literally like they told me like, he really doesn't know what he's teaching. He’s like, “This Instagram thing, just be very careful with the pictures that you post.” You know, it's just like, these are the systems teaching the youth. And it's like, they just haven't done, they don't know anything about it, right? They’ve read some stuff, and they read Facebook, and I'm kind of getting it not really sure. And it's like that since they wanted me to come in but they're like, you have to have your Masters. And I'm like, but why does my Masters matter? This was another college not UCLA. And they go, “well…”, and they didn't really have an answer other than that's how it's always been like, you have to have your Masters. And I'm like, “yeah, but you're looking for a Masters and somebody that's done it, right?” Aaron: Yeah. Shane: I mean, that's what you're looking for. And that's what you want. So anyways, it's just, you know, one that will all go out. Aaron: That's amazing. Same thing on LinkedIn, or any other job site that you're going to and people have that as a requirement for any of the jobs and it just put a lot of people off actually applying. And I just ignored that. Like back when I was looking for jobs after you know, when I should have been in college. I just started ignoring and it’s amazing how many people, if you just ignore it and just pull, you can actually cut through the noise? Especially. Shane: Yeah. Aaron: The world experience, like you were saying. Shane: Yeah, and I think that's what it comes down to, you know, it's, it's just interesting. I think it's a lot of that old school, you know, way of thinking they’re like, hey, you have to have a degree to get that. I mean, I get it that a degree says that you know, you set a goal and you did it. But… Aaron: Yeah. Shane: It's like how much you really, man I was. So, I graduated and what was it? Geez, I think 2003 darn. That was and I waited ten years to graduate. I'm like, I went to school with Jesus. I don't know if you know Jesus. Aaron: Literally. Shane: I literally yeah. He has a Bible and some other stuff. But no, I mean, I feel like an old old dude when I explained that, but like, when I was going through school when I graduated, I graduate high school 93. So, let's do the math on that. The internet was like not even the internet, right? I mean, when I jumped on the internet, like when I went to school there, the internet was like Windows, the cloud, the school that I went to, there was one entrepreneurship class one. And that was it. Like, there was nothing that was all about, like, hey, go to school, train yourself and then go to work for a company. And for me, I was like, I just don't know if that's for me. You know, like, I don't that's not really my calling. Aaron: I couldn't agree more actually, as you're saying that. I'm just trying to think there's a book that I read a long time ago that was on a lot of this stuff. I'm trying to think of the name I literally have on the shelf over there. It's a really good, a really good book that would fit in really well guy named Michael, someone and I had to do with education and a new way. Anyway, I'll find I'm sorry. I'll find it afterwards. Shane: Yeah, find it and shoot it over as I'd love to listen to it or at least I say read it. But I've seriously but like 50 books. And for me, I'm all audible. Like if I go to read a book, ADHD kicks in, and I'm thinking about what should I do tomorrow? What should I wear? And hey, what I want to do here, and then I'm just like, drooling on my book that I shouldn't even about my wife laughs like these books back here. They're all fake. Like, I haven't I haven't read any one of these…. Aaron: Empty shelves. Shane: Just for show. It's literally like, know, the sad part is I actually do buy the books because I'll buy them and then I assume that through Audible, I'll highlight them. This is in my perfect world of having all kinds of time. And it just it's never happened that way. Never. And my wife said, why do you keep buying these books? I'm like, because I'm going to… anyway. Aaron: She knows everything makes me look bad. Shane: Exactly. Yeah and she's like, keep spending that money. You're doing a great job. His books are getting highly used. Highly, highly use. So cool. So how did you okay, so you didn't go to college, but you were hiring people in college? Like, how did you jump into like the SEO thing and the content game? Like how did that I want to hear that backstory there? Because I'm intrigued. Aaron: Yeah, so my whole employment history was all in it, and doing it jobs, which I was good at, but it was not enjoyable. It was all reactive, you know, fixing people's problems all the time. So, I work for people like Microsoft, and I built big networks, and I did all sorts of stuff for a bunch of years. And then I think I was 28-ish, 29, something like that. My girlfriend and I at the time decided we were going to sort of pack up going on extended trip, which happened to be Thailand again. And so, we were living in Copenhagen, just off coast. And only in Avila, you know, it's really cheap to live really well over there. So, we were doing that for a long period of time. And while we were there, we're just thinking we need to find a way to be able to do this indefinitely, the whole strong currency live on a cheap currency, the whole JO arbitrage play. So, we got to investigating how do we how do we stick this together? And around that time, you know, we started looking online. And people you know, this was early days, people saying they're making money online and everyone thought it was bullshit, right? It was just something that people were saying people scamming each other. But you know, we thought there had to be some sort of truth to what was going on. So, she was in marketing previously working for IBM and not before a lot of the digital stuff was happening. And I was, I was in it. So, we combine our skill sets, did research online figured out people were making money online, like are we going to give it give this a crack. So, we moved back to Sydney, and spent about 14 hours a day at least absolute minimum every day for about four moms’ trying to work out what it all was. And that was like literally just in front of a computer saying, Well, people say they make money on social media on search on this on that. And then Okay, well, which channel we're going to choose. And we chose SEO because we didn't have any money at the time. And it was what we did have was time. So alright we will do the work in earning that, earning those results. So, we did that we went through, okay, well, what are we actually going to rank, and it was about, we don't with them, we have to build websites, we don't we don't build websites. So, it was a lot of stuff sticking all together. Eventually, we fell on affiliate marketing, and just driving traffic to other people's websites. So, at the beginning there, we started driving, ranking sites driving traffic through to hotel on a combination booking website and taking $1 a click or some commission based on the sale and that started working really well. And you know, we one day it was four months and we made 40 cents online. And that amazing a lot we were high five ng and jumping around because it proved that it's real. And you can make money online and what we knew then as the same thing we know now, you know, the internet can be almost infinitely scalable and highly automated in different ways. So that next day we turned 40 cents into $400 just scaling up what we did. And then it continued scaling from there. And we spent the next couple of years doing the same thing traveling around the world doing it from hotels in Rome and Japan and all sorts of stuff where we went outside of hotels and accommodation, we're doing speed dating and flower delivery and all these different industries. And it worked really well. And then we started getting a lot of friends and people saying, well, you can do that for your own sort of web assets. Sure, you can tell me how to do it for my small business, you know, help me get this one ranking and get traffic. And that's where the consulting side sort of kicked in. And that also started helping small business and sort of tried all our way through to medium and eventually enterprise. But that agency and consulting side, this is what really stabilize the peaks and troughs that came with affiliate marketing. Affiliate marketers will tell you. Shane: Yeah. Aaron: As we picked up the right kind of clients, the agency ladder online was born. And yet we're still doing the same thing today 11 years later. Shane: So that and you said your girlfriend so now it's your wife, correct? Aaron: She is my wife. Yes. Shane: It's good that she told me in the thing that the interview that I had with her about what we were going to do to make it weird for you or whatever the goal was, I don't know. Aaron: I like weird man. I do like weird. Shane: You so love weird. She knows me. She's making those what I like I get it; I get as awesome as awesome. So now is it true that when you guys made that 40 cents, that was the night that you guys conceived your first child was that how excited you guys where was at 40 cents. That was that pivotal point where…. Aaron: I'm just thinking of the best way of putting this. The excitement happened a lot quicker than being able to conceive. Shane: Got it. That's all you had to say. Aaron: I was very, very excited. Shane: At least you’re honest. I just want to your stories are matching up with your wife told me so I just I don't want to make this weird. I just want to make sure that we're good. Aaron: It's good. It's just a few year later. Shane: That’s awesome. Okay, good deal but I'm not here to question your timelines, I believe you. So, we have a lot of parallels. But what's interesting about this is that that I like to travel but the only thing that I haven't done is gone places for like six months or a year. So, I think you've taken that next level of commitment. So, I've done a good amount of traveling and when this when was there was a time when you guys like pretty much sold everything right? I mean, there was like a point where you guys said, hey, this was kind of what we're doing here. And then what was that was that when you guys were back in Sydney and then said, hey, let's Aaron: That was when we first went that trip that I just explained going to Copenhagen living there. That was the end. And you know, even though we did go back to Sydney to try and figure it all out, it was just part of continuous travels, it wasn't that we literally move back there. That was a very freeing time. And with no kids at the time, that was what enabled the travel to go for longer periods of time and think it was four hours workweek came out in like 2007 or something like that or to the night. I don't know, we read it while we're in the middle of our travels and just thought, oh, wow, that's a lot of stuff that we're already doing. And that that also like, there's some things that we could be doing that align more and so we just continue doing it didn't even know that being a digital nomad was a thing where it wasn't really a thing at the time. And then I realized, well, part of those people that are doing that and still doing it today, so we just kept going to the right places. And we really enjoyed it. I look back fondly on those times. Shane: Yeah, I mean, the traveling settings. And when it comes to traveling, there's always you know, there's ups and downs with travel, I guess, is what I'm saying, you know, when it comes to internet and stuff like that, I mean, can be somewhat of a challenge sometimes in different countries obviously not in Singapore, like Singapore is like, you know, they're like pretty much %G Not really, but they are right. It's like this next level when it comes to tech stuff. But I mean, how did you guys get through that kind of thing? Because I mean, there's obviously when you're traveling, it's I mean, I did, I'll give you an example. I was in Santa Monica, doing a keynote, I went for a week to do this old travel thing. And it was awesome. But like the internet was, you know, which is sometimes a blessing, right? I mean, you know, unless I have projects and stuff I need to get done. But how did you work through that. Aaron: So the only time I really experienced big issues was probably Thailand, where we were staying on the island, sometimes the whole island dropped out power wise and so during those times, I usually go out for maybe half a day, at one time, I went out for four days, which was a national emergency. Shane: Right? Aaron: During those times, I mean, I got on the phone, and we've always had a team. So, phones still worked, at least at the beginning, we've always had a team to sort of cover some things, you know, while those issues happened but I didn't notice too many big issues. A lot of the stuff we were doing when it was affiliate marketing was a do it through like on an APS on a virtual server somewhere else, I didn't need a lot of bandwidth on my end just to be able to connect in and then run things off that different tools and whatnot. So yeah, we handled it and then a lot of the other times was in hotels and they have fairly decent internet compared to like, some of the private line will good. Shane: And you guys aren't doing like I know some of the guys that I've traveled with, like, you know, they do a lot of video stuff and all that. I mean, that's when you run into issues, right? When you're trying to send you know, one, whatever one gig across or whatever it is, you know, then there can be some issues but sending emails and stuff. It doesn't take too much bandwidth. Aaron: Not exactly. Shane: Yeah. So how big is your guys’ team? So, you guys have what is it louder that’s online right? Aaron: It is louder thought online. It fluctuates and there's many people in different capacities. But I'd say between 50 and 60 at the moment. Shane: No gotchas. Aaron: You guys, full time, part time contractors, a whole lot of different structures and setup fully distributed globally as well. Shane: That's awesome. So obviously everybody's a remote team. Aaron: Yeah. And the interesting thing is, you know, that's common nowadays, but we've been around for 11 years and from day one, we wanted to have people in different countries. And we started with India, Philippines, Eastern Europe, we've done it all. And we have people in all those areas at the moment. But it was a real learning curve, you get a lot of people saying they want to outsource or have a remote team, there wasn't a lot of instruction on how to when we were doing it 11 years ago. So, it was a lot of trial and error in figuring that all out. And we stuck to it. And it's done a lot of good for us, it means that we can deliver things overnight. I mean, we've got people working on all time zones, we have the right people in the right countries supporting the right clients, there's a lot of good. And while it used to be harder to convince clients that this is normal, you're going to get the best service and all that sort of stuff. Now people don't really blink an eye what we're doing, and so it's worked in our favor. Shane: That's awesome. Yeah, we mean, we have a lot of parallels, because my team is all remote as well. And then I have I'm here in Sacramento, California, and, and my team is all over. And it's that's one of the I mean, there's a lot of obviously, it's you know, it's like I get a lot of trial and error of trying to get it going and what software's to use and all that. But once you get a good cadence in place, I mean, I do love the fact that I can, you know, it can be five o'clock in California, I talked with the client and then in the morning time I have it done. And I'm like, how did you get that done? Like they don't understand. Like, I'm like, I run a 24-hour clock and they're like but that's illegal. And I go no it's not when you have time zones. And I'm like why people all over like that's the whole point of this is that I have this continuous clock that can go I mean, what you guys use software wise I'm Is it like, you know, slack and Trello and…. Aaron: So many things so and I worked on and trialed a bunch of different tools for managing remote teams and eventually just went off that and back to the basic one. So yeah, we've got Trello, don't use it hardcore, use base camp, where most of our columns at the moment, Skype, and then slack email, wi

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Shane Barker is a digital marketing consultant who specializes in influencer marketing, content marketing, and SEO. He is the Co-Founder of Attrock, a digital marketing agency. He has consulted with Fortune 500 companies, influencers with digital products, and a number of A-List celebrities.

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