Topic: Social

Reputation Social

How to Onboard Your Selected Search Agency [Checklist] 0

How to Onboard Your Selected Search Agency [Checklist] was originally published on, home of expert search engine optimization tips.

Whether for the first time or the tenth, reducing the ramp up period when onboarding a new SEO agency is going to save you time and money. Plus, an effective onboard process lays the path to a productive partnership.

There are two parts to effectively onboarding a selected new agency:

1. Educating your agency about your business, and
2. Understanding their process, workflow and digital strategy for your business.

Here you’ll find a checklist and expanded description of checklist items for both steps.

Search Agency Onboarding Checklist

1. Educating Your New Agency

At my agency, we use a new client questionnaire to build a brand brief for all our clients. Whether you or your agency is compiling the brief, the end product should provide clear answers on your audience, marketplace, competitors, marketing strategy and history, unique differentiators, and success metrics.

To get to know everything about one another, you’ll want to share everything about how you work and learn everything about your new agency’s processes. Even before your first meeting, put together a brand brief about your business to give to your agency.

Here’s your checklist for educating your new agency.

✓ Company overview
✓ Value proposition
✓ Competition and positioning
✓ Goals and KPIs for digital marketing
✓ Analytics setup and KPI tracking
✓ Website hosting and CMS
✓ History of marketing campaign service providers
✓ Audience
✓ Brand voice and messaging
✓ Writing style and tone
✓ Types of content
✓ Any other context

Company overview: Along the way from interviewing the prospective agency to inking the deal, you’ve given the 30-second elevator pitch of your business to people at your new agency, for example, their sales team. This brief is a great way to assure communication of your company’s background to your new agency’s operations team.

Value proposition: What sets you apart from anyone else in your industry or selling a similar product or service? What value do your customers hold when they align themselves with your business?

Competition and positioning: Who are your main competitors that court the same audience as you do? How do you position yourself as distinct within your industry?

Goals and KPIs for your digital marketing: What concrete and defined goals would you like accomplished through your SEO and digital marketing activities? What will you use to measure project success?

Analytics setup and KPI tracking: What analytics software is in place to track the accomplishment of your goals and KPIs? What formal conversions and microconversions are being tracked in your analytics setup?

Website hosting and CMS: How and where is your website hosted and content managed? Will your SEO agency have access to the system?

History of marketing campaign service providers: Who have you worked with before — agencies and vendors — for content, SEO, SEM, web development, design and other digital marketing work? Can you summarize the projects and what worked and didn’t work about them? Be sure to explain if you’ve ever suffered a traffic loss.

Audience: Describe everything you know about your customers — demographics, what they value, what they need and want. Of course there could be a few different types of customers who you speak to.

Brand and messaging: What exercises have you performed to clearly state what your brand stands for and the voice and messaging you use to convey it in graphics and text?

Writing style and tone: Humor, authority, stories, complexity of language — what guidelines can you convey to your SEO agency that communicates the tone of the brand? Inform them of any words that are taboo.

Types of content: What do you want your agency to know about the content you’ve created before and of competitors’ content you’d either like to emulate or avoid?

Any other context: If there’s anything else of note to convey to your agency, this is the place to include it.

2. Understanding Process, Workflow and Strategy

Step 2 of onboarding a new agency is finding out their process and workflow in order to create an expectation for receiving deliverables and responses for requests. You’ll need to get a concrete outline of the search strategy they will be using for your site.

Soon after selection of your agency, you want to become familiar with the inner workings and processes of your analysts and others on your production team, expanding your knowledge of the selected agency beyond their sales team that you’ve been speaking to before this. Here’s your checklist for understanding the process, workflow and strategy to be driving your search campaigns.

✓ What is the timeline of deliverables?
✓ How often is the project plan updated?
✓ How often will you be in communication?
✓ What processes do they have for editing your website?
✓ What schedules and forms do they have for reviewing new content and design changes?
✓ How do their capabilities for implementing recommendations align with your needs?
✓ What commitment to service do they make?
✓ Is your SEO a senior or a junior analyst?

What is the timeline of deliverables? When can you expect to see the project plan, have scheduled calls, and receive audits and reports? Do they run in sprints? You want to understand their tactical scheduling.

How often is the project plan updated? As a living and evolving document, at what interval will the project plan be updated? This is strategic in nature and is key to accomplishing your project goals and KPIs.

How often will you be in communication? What is the communication cadence of your agency team members? How often can you expect to hear from them? How quickly can you expect to hear back from them when needed? Is there a dedicated point of contact for your project?

What processes do they have for editing your website? Do they work through your staff to avoid errors? By a similar turn, what do their processes look like for evaluating links, server performance and other SEO levers?

What schedules and forms do they have for reviewing new content and design changes? In what format can you expect to receive new content or site edits? How are recommended changes tracked as the document passes hands?

How do their capabilities for implementing recommendations align with your needs? Who and what is available regarding labor and resources for education, mentoring, development, content and so on?

What commitment to service do they make? What assurance do they make regarding your dedicated staff and the meeting of your KPIs?

Is your SEO a senior or a junior analyst? How many years of experience do members of your team have? As a point of context, Malcolm Gladwell famously said it takes ten thousand hours of practice to become an expert.

Keys to a Good Partnership

It’s been said before, but the key to a lasting relationship is communication. Ensure you’re communicating with your partner and they with you, and come prepared to do the work to see the gains you want.

Other resources:

We can help your team as an invested partner in your SEO success. Our services are tailor-made to match your goals and audience. For results-driven digital marketing, let’s talk.

Source: Bruce Clay

The One Thing Your Business Can Immediately Take Away from Google I/O 0

The One Thing Your Business Can Immediately Take Away from Google I/O was originally published on, home of expert search engine optimization tips.

Google leads the world in technological advances that affect the way we live and do business. At the Google I/O developer conference this week, we glimpse a preview of how people will interact with computing in the near future.

Google I/O conference

Shoreline Amphitheater in Mountain View, CA, scene of the 2017 Google I/O conference

Kicking off the conference, CEO Sundar Pichai opened a two-hour keynote to a packed audience of developers, tech reporters and others who were joined by viewers in 85 countries watching online to hear what was new from the tech giant, including one overarching announcement:

We have shifted from a mobile first to an AI first world.

This shift into an “artificial intelligence first” world will impact the way customers find your business AND the way you interact with those customers.

Many articles no doubt list the many Google feature announcements coming out of the I/O conference. But here, we zero in on something that all business owners should be aware of as we move forward into this AI-powered, machine learning-based new world…

Focus on solving user problems

One thing becomes clear as you watch the tech giant unveil feature after feature: Each new product is designed to solve a problem. You could say this is the key to Google’s success.

During yesterday’s keynote alone, Google announced many coming AI-enabled features that exemplify this problem-solution strategy. Here are just a few.

  • Google Assistant will be much more connected, even allowing people to type their interactions through a phone instead of speaking them — because there are times you don’t want people to overhear what you’re saying.
  • Google Photos is getting Photo Sharing, a new feature that can recognize people in your photo and proactively suggest sending them the file — because people have a problem following through and sharing their photos.
  • Google Visual Positioning Service will be able to guide your indoor movements through a store such as Lowes to help you find what you want — which solves a big problem for visually impaired people, not to mention the rest of us who need help navigating aisles.
  • Google Lens is a fascinating new AI feature that takes visual identification to new heights. In one application, Lens can remove obstructions in front of a subject, such as a chain link fence (see demo tweeted below), and fill in the missing elements — because people want to be able to take better pictures.

Let’s apply Google strategy to your business. In a nutshell:

Your greatest opportunities as a business are probably hiding under the cloak of user problems.
Click To Tweet

To find the opportunities awaiting discovery for your own business, ask yourself two questions:

  1. What do people complain about in my industry? Complaints expose problems just waiting for a new product, service or technology to solve. This kind of negative feedback also provides clues for how to best engage your prospective customers.
  2. What is difficult or time-consuming for prospective customers to accomplish today? In addition to listening for pain points, also just observe. Look for processes that everyone just accepts, but which require a lot of time and effort to do.

If your business innovates a solution to a problem, you can make people’s lives or jobs easier, potentially jump ahead of your competition, and grow your business.

But even if you’re not going to invent the next great product, by understanding people’s needs better you can offer solutions more effectively. Your marketing campaigns will ring truer (and have better click-through rates!) if they come from a point of empathy.

Solving people’s problems underlies the majority of Google’s advancements. Make it your business’s mantra, too.

Note: You can watch Google I/O to see various presentations live May 17–19 (check out the schedule here).








Source: Bruce Clay

Sales Administrator 0

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Sales Administrator

Saskatoon, SK, Canada

As a Sales Administrator, you will be responsible for leading and executing administrative tasks for our entire sales department. You will have various duties including fulfillment, organizing and executing new tasks as assigned by the Manager of Sales Enablement. As a team you and the manager will be responsible for “enabling” the sales team to run effectively and generate more revenue by reducing administrative tasks for all sales team members.

If you are interested in more than just a 9–to–5 job, are excited by working with a team of committed individuals, and want to make a difference in a young organization, then this is the place for you! This position is not about years of experience, industry background, or academics. It is about being the foundation and backbone so the sales team can run efficiently through process driven tasks. We offer competitive salaries and have a full range of benefits including dental and vision. We are a successful business and the world’s leading platform for media companies and agencies.

Skills and Qualifications:

  • Meeting with the Manager of Sales Enablement daily and weekly to ensure all tasks and responsibilities are being effectively completed.
  • Administrative tasks such as data entry for sales team which may include working with spreadsheets, updating manual metrics, and other administrative tasks as assigned
  • Improve current workflow
  • Assist with executing sales training and sales leadership meetings
  • Assists with front desk Reception coverage for any sick days and vacation days as well as some lunch hour coverage.

Skills and Qualifications:

  • Experience with high scalability, distributed Internet applications
  • Strong understanding of non-relational data stores, NoSQL
  • Bachelor’s degree in software engineering or computer science, or 3+ years experience in a related field
  • Familiar with queuing, memcache, and other scale-out techniques
  • REST-based API design and development skills
  • Experience with Python and/or Google App Engine are definite assets
  • Excellent teamwork skills with an ability to get work done with little to no supervision
  • Automated unit testing and test-driven development

Why Vendasta

Vendasta’s platform empowers agencies and media companies to grow their sales of marketing solutions for small and medium-size businesses. Our system identifies hot leads who are interested in the products you offer and allows you to provide scalable tools at the right price and service model when businesses are ready-to-buy.

Learn more about Vendasta

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Source: Vendasta

Graphic Designer 0

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Graphic Designer

Saskatoon, SK, Canada

As a Vendasta Graphic Designer, you will be responsible for converting conceptual ideas into images, layouts and other designs in a fast-paced environment. The successful candidate will have a comprehensive understanding of how to tell stories visually, how marketing campaigns work, and the ability to inspire, inform and captivate customers. Reporting to the VP Design you will deliver the following:


  • Collaborate with internal stakeholders and teams to establish a vision for design.
  • Establish a comprehensive understanding of the corporate brand guidelines and ensure a strong alignment of style, voice and messaging.
  • Assist in the development of design standards and campaign building that aligns with corporate brand strategy.
  • Conduct ongoing market and user research to ensure that design remains competitive and attracts target customers.
  • Plan design concepts by studying behaviour, trends and competition.
  • Select and employ color, imagery, text and shape to create aesthetically pleasing layouts that clearly communicate key messages.
  • Prototype conceptual drafts and solicit feedback as required.
  • Provide constructive criticism and feedback to other designers.
  • Competently use computer software to collaborate with other designers, complete tasks and back up working files.
  • Effectively prepare graphics and media for usage across communication channels (i.e. file compression, exporting, sizing and testing)
  • Implement finished media across digital and traditional communication channels.
  • Complete projects by coordinating with outside agencies, art services, printers, etc. when required.
  • Collaborate with data analysts to measure the effectiveness of marketing and design.

Skills and Qualifications:

  • Bachelor’s Degree or diploma in fine art, design, marketing or related discipline.
    3+ years experience in professional commercial design.
  • Capacity to create the visual aspects of web pages, emails, print documents, presentations and other marketing materials.
  • Proven graphic design and layout skills with a focus on user behaviour and HCI.
  • Ability to work simultaneously on multiple projects in a deadline-oriented work environment.
  • Extensive experience with the Adobe Creative Suite (i.e. Illustrator, Photoshop and InDesign).
  • Extensive knowledge of content production for digital channels. (i.e. mobile optimization, page load time, file compression, etc.)
  • Experience in 3D modelling, animation and/or gamification would be considered an asset.
  • Strong attention to detail with an original, creative flair.
  • Excellent communication and teamworking skills.
  • Ability to handle criticism and rejection of designs.
  • Collaboration with marketing, product and sales teams to create cohesive designs that reflect our corporate culture and strategic goals.
  • Confidence to present and explain ideas to teammates and stakeholders.
  • Experience editing and updating WordPress websites.
  • Working knowledge of CSS3, HTML5 and JavaScript would be considered an asset.

Why Vendasta

Vendasta’s platform empowers agencies and media companies to grow their sales of marketing solutions for small and medium-size businesses. Our system identifies hot leads who are interested in the products you offer and allows you to provide scalable tools at the right price and service model when businesses are ready-to-buy.

Learn more about Vendasta

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Source: Vendasta

Business Operations Data Analyst 0

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Business Operations Data Analyst

Saskatoon, SK, Canada

As a data analyst at Vendasta you will ask questions and discover the answers. Data Analysts will work closely with our finance department and report directly to the individuals prioritizing their work. You will leverage the interdepartmental analyst group to review, develop and share information and analyses. You will contribute to all steps of the data analysis process including hypothesis generation, exploring and cleaning data, modeling, interpreting, communicating results and measuring the implementation. As a business operations data analyst, you will focus on reporting and modeling financial data.


  • Respond to ad hoc requests from various stakeholders
  • Build, maintain & monitor internal dashboards
  • Help ensure billing is precise and delivered in a timely manner
  • Provide promptly reports on monthly, quarterly, and yearly financial information
  • Review and critique other’s analysis
  • Discover, learn, develop and teach new techniques & methodologies
  • Help prioritize tasks based on business value and urgency
  • Develop and foster a working relationship with other analysts, software developers, product managers, sales, marketing, and executive.
  • Report to fellow analysts, company leadership, and executive
  • Follow Vendasta’s analysis workflow
    • Hypothesis Generation: Work with stakeholders to refine and transform questions into hypotheses
    • Exploratory Data Analysis: Gather, clean, and explore large data sets
    • Model Building: Create a visual and/or mathematical representation of the real world
    • Interpret Results: Understand the conclusions that can be reached and know the implications
    • Communicate Results: Deliver findings to stakeholders
    • Follow-up: Ensure that the data was effectively implemented and measure results

Skills and Qualifications:

  • Familiarity with basic accounting and finance principles
  • Computer Science and/or software development experience
  • Strong statistical knowledge
  • Competent in cleaning and formatting data
  • Proven ability to analyze and model data
  • Experience with user & SaaS Analytics
  • Familiarity with databases and various querying techniques (SQL, NoSQL, API)

Why Vendasta

Vendasta’s platform empowers agencies and media companies to grow their sales of marketing solutions for small and medium-size businesses. Our system identifies hot leads who are interested in the products you offer and allows you to provide scalable tools at the right price and service model when businesses are ready-to-buy.

Learn more about Vendasta

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Source: Vendasta