MozCon 2024 Recap

Jun 10, 2024It Depends - An SEO Podcast, SEO

Jay is back from MozCon and he has a lot to share! Check out the latest episode of It Depends to learn more about what industry leaders are saying. 

 

What is MozCon? 

MozCon is a two-day SEO conference held in Seattle, focusing on big-picture topics in the industry. The key takeaways from the conference include the importance of building a strong brand, the impact of AI on SEO, the need to rethink data analytics, and the call to do better in the industry. The speakers emphasized the need to focus on brand building as a way to differentiate from AI and provide unique experiences. They also discussed the challenges of tracking data accurately and the need to shift the focus from exact numbers to directional trends. Overall, MozCon is valuable for experienced SEO professionals and those in leadership roles.

Takeaways

  • Building a strong brand is crucial in the age of AI and commodified information.
  • AI can’t replicate human expertise, experience, and trust, so it’s important to lean into these qualities.
  • Data analytics in SEO is becoming less reliable, and it’s important to focus on directional trends rather than exact numbers.
  • The SEO industry needs to do better and move away from checklist approaches and low-quality content.

 

Transcript

Lindsie Nelson (00:00.845)

Welcome back, Jay.

 

Jay (00:04.078)

Well, it is good to be back in the land of long winters, but currently sunshine and back from the land of clouds and rain and sad music.

 

Lindsie Nelson (00:19.341)

send some coffee, you know, Seattle’s really, it’s known for coffee too, right? Because of the rain and the sad music. they need some, some pick me ups. I feel that.

 

Jay (00:28.494)

Yeah.

 

Yeah. A shout out to my, my Instagram buddy who was a barista in Seattle for a million years that recommended Monorail espresso, which I hadn’t been to. I’ve been to the, I think all the, the really great coffee shops in Seattle, except for that one. And apparently they’re like one of the oldest espresso shops in the country. And they happen to have a location in the convention center that we were spending time at. So it was super good.

 

Lindsie Nelson (01:00.877)

It was perfect. Well, so we don’t dance around the topic anymore. Jay was in Seattle last week at MozCon, which is what we’re gonna talk about today, right? So tell us what MozCon is. Let’s start there and then we’ll get into kind of a recap and some of the fun things that you took away from this conference experience.

 

Jay (01:21.614)

So, assuming that some of our listeners don’t work in SEO, if you do, hopefully you have an idea of what’s going on, but we’ll dive into more specifics. But, so like Moz is an SEO software company. They do, I mean, they can track your rankings. They can help you with keyword research and all sorts of stuff like that. They’ve, they’re one of the originals. They’ve been around forever.

 

MozCon has been around for, you know, I tried to, people mentioned at the conference how long it’s been going on and I don’t know, it’s been at least a decade. I tried Googling that answer, you know, tip, hey Moz for your MozCon website, maybe put a timeline or something, those are fun factoids, but whatever, it’s a two day conference that they host in Seattle, which is where their headquarters is.

 

Lindsie Nelson (02:09.069)

Hahaha!

 

Jay (02:18.638)

and it’s two days of almost entirely SEO. There’s a little bit of divergence, but not much. It’s kind of like Ted Talk style where there’s just one stage where speakers are talking about like big picture topics. So none of this like, you know, there’s 15 different presentations happening at 10 a And then there’s also another one you really want to go to at 10 15.

 

Lindsie Nelson (02:44.045)

Mm -hmm.

 

Jay (02:47.086)

when your 10 a isn’t done yet and you’re gonna miss like 90 % of the content, it’s just one room. Everyone’s watching the same thing. You know, some of the biggest names in the world of search marketing are talking about what they think is important. And because it’s that format, it’s a lot of like high level big picture stuff. You know, this isn’t a place to go learn how to do link building, but it is a place to go see like.

 

Lindsie Nelson (03:09.74)

Mm -hmm.

 

Jay (03:15.278)

If you are in the world of SEO or follow it closely, people like Lily Ray, Will Reynolds, Rand Fischke, and Brittany Muller are all like celebrities in this world and you get to see them all on one stage doing their thing, talking about what’s going on.

 

Lindsie Nelson (03:29.229)

Yeah.

 

Lindsie Nelson (03:34.349)

and getting their insights. I mean, yes, search and SEO are constantly evolving, but I feel like the last even three months have just been kind of a wild ride for us all. So I think getting this really interesting kind of peek into what others are hearing and seeing and experiencing, super interesting. And I don’t know about you, but I love being in a room full of just people that are interested in.

 

similar things and you have random conversations and just things that really start to like spark fun ideas.

 

Jay (04:11.054)

Yeah. And, you know, there’s, I mean, there’s a ton of conferences and there’s like, there’s SMX in the U S is probably the other big really search focused one. I’m sure I’m forgetting somebody, but so many of the other conferences get into like the tactical or they get into other topics, you know, they’ll get into advertising or email or whatever it might be. Cause there’s just like a lot of slots to fill and they want to attract a wide audience.

 

Lindsie Nelson (04:28.173)

Mm -hmm.

 

Jay (04:40.27)

I think MozCon, at least for like the US conferences, like I guess maybe Brighton in the, there’s a US Brighton, but it’s small, whatever. My point is, I think Moz is like a state of the industry for the SEO world. What these folks are saying, their words are going to shape like what a lot of SEOs do for years to come. So I think it’s.

 

Lindsie Nelson (05:06.477)

Mm -hmm.

 

Jay (05:07.598)

An important event for that reason just to like level set on where the hell are we? What is going on? What do these people think our industry is turning into? What do we need to prioritize? How does that align with what we’ve been doing in our view of it? All that good stuff. You know, it’s thinking an important event for our industry because we don’t have like, you know, Google talks about search at like Google I .O. and whatever, but they kind of like avoid SEO.

 

Lindsie Nelson (05:35.181)

so small.

 

Mm -hmm. They don’t want us to know things. But I think this is really important to the overall transistor.

 

kind of our brand and what we stand for. It’s really staying in the loop of what’s going on and what we’re doing next and how we take this information and really apply it to our clients. And there’s just like no checklist approach, which we kind of continually hear over and over again. So, all right, well, so that’s MozCon. We know what it is. So you have a few key takeaways. How many are we going to walk through today? And let’s just dive into it.

 

Jay (06:18.062)

Yeah, so I think I’ve got four on the rundown here that I want to make sure we talk about that are, you know, I’m probably forgetting something really important, but you know, if you want the like, should I go to MozCon? What did, what did we learn? What does the SEO world need to focus on or what is the SEO world going to focus on for the next six, 12 months? These are, these are my four. so the first, everyone was talking about brand.

 

you know, it had to be more than half of the presentations were either totally focused on brand building or it was like an important thing they talked about. You know, I’d have to guess that the Moz folks maybe pushed that as like, this is our focus for the year, but either way, everyone’s thinking about it. So, you know, this is the idea that we’re in a world where like,

 

just information and answering questions has been commodified. And Google has been taking over more and more of that. AI overviews are taking over a ton of that. And, you know, I think I’ve set a version of this for like a decade now of if you, if you say that like the advantage your company has as like an e -commerce website is, you know, we, we have like great prices, great customer service. You hear that a million times.

 

Lindsie Nelson (07:25.421)

Mm -hmm.

 

Lindsie Nelson (07:43.789)

Mm -hmm.

 

Jay (07:43.822)

It’s like, well, yeah, but everyone just goes to Amazon. So like, what’s, what’s the actual reason they come to you? So it’s that, but it’s also, there’s a lot of websites that have built on like, we answer a lot of questions that people type into Google and that’s how we get customers. Well, that’s not going to work anymore because AI is going to answer a lot of those questions. So you need to find other ways to get people to remember you, give them reasons to come to you.

 

Give AI reasons to talk about you. Give people reasons to share your links. This has been, like we were not clueless to the importance of brand, but I think the introduction of AI into search results and just featured snippets being a thing for years now and growing in popularity and just so many websites can AI spit out.

 

Lindsie Nelson (08:16.845)

Mm -hmm.

 

Jay (08:42.382)

decent answers to questions really reinforces that like if you have not been on the brand train, you need to jump on because it is moving fast.

 

Lindsie Nelson (08:44.237)

Right.

 

Lindsie Nelson (08:54.093)

I think that this is also, again, this is not surprising. This is not new. I think this is just a further amplification of this topic for sure. But I think this also really speaks to the need to work with other marketing folks. SEO cannot exist in its own void where we’re just doing SEO for SEO.

 

The brand is so much more encompassing than what we do from a search perspective and understanding all of the pieces of the pie. What are they doing offline? What kind of events are being held? What is the brand voice?

 

That is so important and we can’t do SEO without that information and it can’t just be like, yeah, I farm out my SEO to somebody and they just do it. Like, no, it is a part of an overall strategy. It cannot just be something that you say, I have this guy and he just does my SEO. Like, that’s not how it works.

 

Jay (09:57.358)

Yeah. And I think the maybe most important thing is we talk about like renting versus owning traffic and visibility and share a voice and things like that. And like, you can have a great social media presence and then they can change the algorithm or introduce a new feature and you get wiped out. You can rank for a bunch of stuff on Google and get a lot of traffic. And again, they changed the algorithm. They add new features. You get wiped out.

 

Lindsie Nelson (10:09.901)

Mm -hmm.

 

Jay (10:26.606)

Your brand is something you own. Like if you build a memorable brand that people care about even in the most insignificant way, like, boy, I think it was, I’m gonna butcher this. It might’ve been Ross Simmons that was talking about like buying a pinball machine and needing parts. I apologize. I wasn’t planning to talk about this.

 

Otherwise I would have looked up the presentation, but you know found some like terrible 90s looking website of some some dudes that fixed pinball machines and had parts and they are just like they cared about how these things worked what problems people actually had and Just you know if you if you’ve dug into 90s internet like it was a lot of work to get a site on there So you had to be passionate about whatever silly thing you were talking about?

 

Lindsie Nelson (11:14.509)

Mm -hmm.

 

Jay (11:25.998)

in order to go through all that trouble. So it doesn’t mean you have to be Apple or Amazon or something like that. It means you have to say what makes us special and make sure people can understand that. And that, that like transcends the medium of how people get to your site because good brands get shared on Reddit, good brands get shared on Twitter, good brands get shared in text messages and Slack groups. And that’s again, something that you own.

 

Lindsie Nelson (11:43.949)

great.

 

Lindsie Nelson (11:48.397)

Mm -hmm.

 

Jay (11:54.703)

That’s not something that the algorithm can take your brand away.

 

Lindsie Nelson (11:59.085)

Mm -hmm, right, right. And I think that’s something that is kind of a hole in a lot of SEO at this moment. And it’s good that that is the number one takeaway here is that that focus on why you matter. Why does this site matter? Why should somebody buy from here rather than just, we’re going to build your traffic by 500%.

 

Jay (12:22.894)

Yeah, cool. Should we move on to the next one? It’s a shocker. There’s a lot of AI talk.

 

Lindsie Nelson (12:27.501)

Next one, let’s take away number two.

 

Shocker. my gosh, what is AIJ? I don’t even know. No, I’m just kidding.

 

Jay (12:36.526)

I know. You know, I think the big thing, not surprising given that like AI overviews and the idea that chat GPT could displace Google’s share of search, I mean, as a direct threat to the SEO industry. So, you know, don’t expect people to come and say like, all right, AI’s here, SEO’s done. This…

 

Lindsie Nelson (12:54.157)

Sure, sure.

 

Jay (13:03.502)

this conference is going to be the farewell ceremony to our industry. Nice knowing y ‘all. No, of course they’re going to take an optimistic approach, but I think it was a practical optimistic approach, you know, tied into brand a lot where, Hey, we recognize AI is going to maybe take away a lot of top of funnel stuff or drastically change it at the very least, but.

 

Lindsie Nelson (13:30.605)

bright.

 

Jay (13:32.462)

AI can’t replicate the things like experience, perspective, bias, community. And we need to lean into that more. That idea of expertise, experience, authority, and trust, whatever order that’s in, whatever order the E’s are in. It’s been a thing for a while in the SEO world. And that is something that AI can’t do.

 

Lindsie Nelson (13:54.829)

Right.

 

Jay (13:59.854)

People might trust the answers they get from AI, but they’re only gonna trust it because AI has sourced those answers from a trustworthy place. AI doesn’t have experiences, AI doesn’t have expertise. It can be really good at doing certain tasks that’s different from being an expert.

 

Lindsie Nelson (14:09.453)

Mm -hmm.

 

Lindsie Nelson (14:17.389)

Sure. Mm -hmm.

 

Jay (14:20.622)

So leaning into that and using that as like your differentiation strategy for AI, it’s not an easy thing to do, but it’s the thing to do. And people were pretty optimistic that there is a path forward.

 

Lindsie Nelson (14:35.373)

Mm hmm. Yeah, I think it’s going to be a conversation and an evolution very much over the next years too, of how we use AI, what it looks like. I think it’s the most intriguing thing too is going to be how users and consumers really

 

you know, use AI, I guess, especially as it’s being integrated more into Google search. There’s been a lot of theories about what it’s gonna do for clicks. And again, that top of funnel versus lower in the funnel. And all of this right now is very assumptive. We don’t have the data or information to know what it is gonna look like in 12 months.

 

So being optimistic I think is the only way to go about it and it’s good at least that overall people are looking at it positively.

 

Jay (15:26.574)

Yeah. And I think the last thing on AI is like not getting blinded by the hype. You know, the chat GPT coming out a year ago, whenever it was, was a big deal. But I think a lot of what’s happened since then has been really the hype, just getting out of control. The dollars being thrown at AI have been crazy. You know, if you, Google’s been doing AI for a long time.

 

Lindsie Nelson (15:31.917)

Mm -hmm.

 

Lindsie Nelson (15:51.789)

Yep.

 

Jay (15:56.686)

And I think their thought based on what we saw them rolling out and the things that we could actually like see and touch was we’re gonna have AI enhance everything we do. You know, before chat GBT there was AI could auto -complete your text messages or your emails. AI could do real -time spell checking. AI could suggest formulas in Google Sheets.

 

Lindsie Nelson (16:11.757)

You’re right.

 

Jay (16:25.998)

There was all these things that were just like, if you, if you looked back 10 years compared to now, or compared to the day before chat GPT was released, the like amount of AI enhancement that Google made was astounding, but it was just all of these little things. And you know, we could imagine a world where like Google was able to just keep doing that for another five years. And then again,

 

Lindsie Nelson (16:37.165)

Mm -hmm.

 

Jay (16:54.03)

You know, we look back and we’re like, holy cow, our lives have been turned upside down by AI, but we just didn’t really notice it along the way. Cause it was just like, this is really cool. This is really helpful. And, but then there’s this direct to consumer chat bot thing and it’s, my God, this, you know, it was zero to 100 in terms of the perceived change. And Google has been just chasing after like, we can do that too.

 

Lindsie Nelson (17:05.261)

Yeah.

 

Jay (17:23.374)

We can do that better. We can find different uses for it. And you know, if you, you know, this, this statement could look really foolish and a week, but if you look at how much Google has seemingly rolled back their use of AI overviews, that might, and you look at like the amount of traffic going to chat GPT compared to when it first launched there, you know,

 

Lindsie Nelson (17:24.845)

Mm -hmm.

 

Lindsie Nelson (17:39.053)

Right?

 

Jay (17:50.67)

this I’m going to type to a chat bot instead of use Google or traditional search. It might have been a little blown out of proportion.

 

Lindsie Nelson (18:01.837)

And I know I’ve said this in a previous podcast and in many conversations, but it was like when voice search was a thing, like nobody’s ever gonna type again. They’re only gonna talk to their phones. And it’s like, no, that didn’t happen. Does it happen a little bit more? Yeah. Did it change some queries and how people use it? Yeah. But people still type into Google more than they ask their whatever device they have.

 

Jay (18:18.126)

Yeah.

 

Jay (18:24.942)

Yeah.

 

And it’s, it’s mostly turned into, you know, it hasn’t been like the, the movie her where everyone’s just like talking to assistant 24 seven. It’s been around the edges. It’s older people that were never good at typing, especially typing on a phone use voice to text a lot because it replaces something that they weren’t good at and didn’t want to do to begin with. Or we use it to turn off our lights or open our blinds or whatever, but.

 

Lindsie Nelson (18:38.093)

bright.

 

Lindsie Nelson (18:42.925)

Mm -hmm.

 

Lindsie Nelson (18:55.917)

Mm -hmm. It’s helpful. It’s a tool.

 

Jay (18:57.006)

It’s not like the iPhone is shipping without an on -screen keyboard anymore.

 

Lindsie Nelson (19:04.397)

Right, right, right, we like to jump into the most extreme scenario that this could be. All right, let’s move on to 3J, what’s three?

 

Jay (19:14.318)

F your data. we’re going to try and keep this a clean podcast. I don’t have to check that explicit box when we, when we upload, but, there, Dana D Tomaso did a whole section or a whole presentation basically on this, but, Will Reynolds and Ross Simmons got into it. I think Tom Capra talked about a little bit as well, but not just the idea that like, you know,

 

rankings fluctuate and are personalized and it’s hard to track, but you know, we’re, we’re many years into ATT, you know, the, the iPhone asking you to track, on every app and we’re a decade into like half the population uses an ad blocker and ad blockers are only getting better. Just like we need to come to grips with the reality that.

 

analytics was never reliable and it’s only getting worse. Which I’m so happy about this because I’ve been saying this forever. You know, I’m certainly not the only one, but like one of the most frustrating things about digital marketing has been we have Google analytics. So we know exactly what’s going on. We know exactly what’s what our marketing dollars are giving us. You never knew. You don’t today.

 

Lindsie Nelson (20:30.701)

Mm -hmm.

 

Jay (20:37.742)

And you’re going to know less and less every day that passes. And so we need to think about like total return on SEO investment. We need to think about like, can we measure share of voice? Can we measure production outputs? Can we measure, I mean, we can measure conversion rates. Like we, we know pretty much how many people get to our site and how many buy things. We don’t know how they got there. I mean, we know how some of them got there.

 

But we don’t know how many people got there because the whole idea of like cross device tracking and stuff like that just went out the window with with Apple’s privacy settings. So I’m I’m happy about that because it’s it’s something that’s needed to change basically from the start. Like we know a lot of things with running a website, you know, that we wouldn’t know.

 

Lindsie Nelson (21:20.685)

Mm -hmm.

 

Jay (21:37.134)

If we ran a physical store, I mean, whatever you can track coupon usage and stuff like that. But it’s not that we have all the data and other sales channels don’t. We have different data, but it’s, it’s very flawed and we just need to recognize that and stop lying to ourselves, stop lying to our bosses, to our clients, whatever about.

 

Lindsie Nelson (21:44.205)

term.

 

Lindsie Nelson (21:53.389)

Mm -hmm.

 

Jay (22:06.958)

like we know exactly what’s happening because we don’t.

 

Lindsie Nelson (22:09.357)

Mm -hmm. Well, and I think it’s important to see it as trend information, right? This is relative. It’s good as a comparative set of like, well, this is what we can see from this. This is what we can see from that. But getting away from I can tell you from experience and I’m sure you’ve experienced this to Jay being on a client call and they’re like, why is this number too greater than that number? And it’s like, well, that was like.

 

two sessions, like it’s marginal error, right? Like there’s, it’s not exact. None of it’s exact. But if we can use it to tell stories and get an understanding of how people are experiencing your brand, your site, what they like, what they don’t like. But when it comes down to like, there were 3 ,642 conversions on this page. It’s like,

 

Jay (22:41.038)

Yeah.

 

Lindsie Nelson (23:07.373)

And those were all from Organic Search. Well, were they? I don’t know.

 

Jay (23:10.414)

Yeah, yeah, and so I mean like actionable thing that that Dana talked about was we get into again we have we have exact looking numbers so that’s how we report on things. So you know there’s a millions of of website reports out there that have things like last month we got

 

3523 purchases through organic search. A year ago we got 3 ,467 and it’s like neither of those numbers are accurate. They might be different levels of inaccurate but like giving that exact number and then saying you know whatever that is we’ve got 45 more purchases this year versus last year aren’t we awesome? Like no we’re…

 

guessing at this stuff. Google Analytics is guessing at this stuff. And so use round numbers and then talk about the direction of the change. Don’t worry about the exact. Say we got, we got 3 ,500 purchases last month, 3 ,400 purchases a year ago, and we are up whatever that is 12 % and focus on the up 12 % more than the 35 versus 3 ,400 because to your point,

 

This is trends. This is directional information It’s still flawed but lean into that in the sense that We’re not going to pretend we have the exact numbers when we don’t it’s so silly that Google Analytics gives us down to like the 100th decimal point of Conversion rate when we don’t know how many conversions we actually got

 

Lindsie Nelson (24:59.949)

And I guess for clarity, we’re not saying reporting doesn’t matter or that we shouldn’t look at this data, right? It’s that it’s how we look at it and how we interpret it. Is that correct?

 

Jay (25:13.07)

Yeah, yeah, it’s don’t it’s not like we’re gonna not report or we’re gonna take traffic out of our reports But again, what’s the directional impact and let’s stop kidding ourselves with these, you know? we have a 1 .59 % conversion rate like that is such a silly thing to report just say say you have 1 .5 or Say you have one or say you have two just round to a whole number It’s close enough because again

 

Lindsie Nelson (25:20.493)

Yep.

 

Lindsie Nelson (25:32.461)

Mm -hmm.

 

Lindsie Nelson (25:36.333)

Sure.

 

Lindsie Nelson (25:40.3)

Right?

 

Jay (25:42.798)

We don’t know how many conversions we actually got. Google Analytics does not know how many conversions you actually got. So saying we had 0 .59 % conversion rate is just ridiculous. Focus on did the conversion rate go up or down? Can we tie that to things we did? That’s what’s important.

 

Lindsie Nelson (26:04.941)

Yep. Okay. All right. Final takeaway, Jay, what is what is our number four here?

 

Jay (26:12.398)

All right. I just wrote do better. there was, there’s a lot of talk about this and it was pretty clear that the SEO industry is, is at least to some degree fed up with the state of, of the industry. I don’t think anyone that was talking at MozCon would even off the record to say that they agree with the, the verge article about SEOs killed the internet, but

 

there’s there’s definitely some recognition that this whole idea that everyone can do SEO and you need to do like titles and meta descriptions and follow a checklist and answer questions led to a lot of crap. And there was in in some cases very explicit language around the idea that a lot of the SEO work out there is just

 

Lindsie Nelson (26:56.749)

Yep.

 

Jay (27:09.358)

this is good enough and that’s not good enough. So I think, I mean, I think there was a, not necessarily that these same people were saying that like, you could just follow a checklist and do SEO. I mean, some of them made checklists or whatever, but I think the SEO world and the people that were like the biggest celebrities, you know, a lot of the folks that were talking at MozCon had spent years kind of,

 

building the SEO community and making it very inclusive and trying to just like grow the industry. And I think when you do that, a lot of what you say as it gets recycled and repeated, and there’s all these blogs and how -to guides and whatever, a lot of the information gets watered down. And there was just, there’s,

 

Lindsie Nelson (28:03.789)

Sure.

 

Jay (28:07.854)

currently a need for talent in the SEO world. There’s been a desperate need for talent over the years. Like there’s a lot of SEO work that needs to get done and there were not people to do it. So like that was probably the right approach. But what happened is we got this world where again, there’s just a lot of garbage out there. You know, we have talked about it plenty on this podcast. And I think the, you know, again, there,

 

Lindsie Nelson (28:29.869)

Mm -hmm.

 

Lindsie Nelson (28:34.701)

Yeah.

 

Jay (28:37.358)

These folks are not saying like, this is our fault, look what we did. But they were saying we need to do better. We need to like change. And a lot of that is also because of AI. You know, like these crappy listicles and FAQs. AI can do the same thing without someone going to a website.

 

Lindsie Nelson (28:54.349)

They’re so easy. Yep. Yep. Yeah. Absolutely. Well, one step at a time, right? And, all right, Jay, any other final takeaways? I have a couple of questions for you to close this out.

 

Jay (29:04.782)

Yeah, all right.

 

Jay (29:13.166)

No, hit me with your questions. Let’s do it.

 

Lindsie Nelson (29:15.565)

Okay, so favorite presentation or speaker, something that you were like, yeah, this was my favorite walk away.

 

Jay (29:24.686)

I’m going to go with Will Reynolds, who founder I think that’s his title at Sear. So, but he’s so he’s like an objectively bad speaker. He doesn’t he doesn’t have like a clear start to finish in his presentation. This one he started out with like, there’s this kid in Philly that

 

has these shirts that say minimum on it and that that’s like his brand or whatever. And you know, this kid’s had like hard times and you know, I, I tweeted out, a link to a shop, go buy his shirts. It’s like, what are you talking about? Like why, why is this kid special? Like, how do you know him? what’s cool. Whatever. I bought us, I bought a hoodie. Cool. But, it was such a,

 

Lindsie Nelson (30:08.045)

Where are we going here?

 

Lindsie Nelson (30:20.525)

Of course you did! You were like, yeah, I’m gonna buy the kids hoodie. Why not?

 

Jay (30:24.334)

Yeah. but like it, there was no transition from that into his presentation, but he’s just like, he’s abrasive about things like where you could probably, you could probably watch like Lily Ray’s presentation, which was about like there, you can’t do checklists and say,

 

You know, like, I just need a better checklist or, you know, I need to, you know, focus on different things or something like that. Wills was like, your stuff is not good enough and it needs to be better. And Google is going to take all your traffic unless you focus on like building community and stop just doing this nonsense that is like, we got traffic or whatever. Like his, his first slide was like, I took all.

 

Lindsie Nelson (30:56.845)

Mm -hmm.

 

Jay (31:19.886)

overall the web content for the agency and our traffic went down 40 % or something like that, but we got more leads. We got more revenue. Cause we focused on the right stuff and not just like ranking for SEO agency or whatever it is. So, you know, whether or not people can all act on what he said effectively, like, Hey, that’s not everyone can.

 

be a big success in any industry or walk of life. That’s fine. But there was just like no mincing words is just, I’m not happy with the way things are going. This is how I think it needs to be. And I’m going to make it just painfully obvious how I feel. So I like that.

 

Lindsie Nelson (32:07.085)

It’s like the, you know, that hard talk from your dad where he’s like, hey, you’re making some stupid choices guys. Think about it, all right? And he’s not. Okay, all right. So do you think that this conference is valuable to like a non -SEO person or is this like, if you are an SEO person, you should go otherwise, like it’s a waste of your time. Like who should go to this conference?

 

Jay (32:15.246)

Yeah, running with that bad crowd.

 

Jay (32:37.518)

So, I mean, I guess caveat that I think a lot of conferences are not a good idea if you’re like the first year of your career. Like, whatever, even if you’re in an entry -level job, I think you need to feel comfortable doing your job before any conference is gonna be helpful to you, because it’s gonna be taking stuff that it took you six months to learn and throwing a new version of that at you in 30 minutes.

 

And you’ve got to be able to like absorb that and connect dots and everything like that. That said, MozCon, I think is for people with a lot of experience. So one, you’ve got to be someone that has been doing SEO for years, where it’s just like how the industry has changed, how Google works, or your best interpretation of how Google works, how to do SEO like…

 

Lindsie Nelson (33:07.213)

Mm -hmm.

 

Lindsie Nelson (33:32.429)

Sure.

 

Jay (33:34.67)

You’ve gone through several iterations of that in your own experience and you’ve seen a lot of these trends. You’ve experienced a lot of it because this was, I think I said upfront, not a tactical conference. It was not, here’s my 10 step playbook for keyword research and you can go learn something that you can apply tomorrow. There was stuff like templates and ideas and tools and stuff that were thrown out.

 

Lindsie Nelson (33:54.605)

Sure.

 

Jay (34:03.726)

But I think the real value of this conference is like, how am I going to evolve what I’m doing over the next one to two years? And that’s just not something that like everyone has control over or just has like the experience to really run with. So yeah, SEOs with a lot of experience, this is for you. If you are someone that…

 

Lindsie Nelson (34:13.805)

Mm -hmm.

 

Lindsie Nelson (34:18.541)

Sure.

 

Jay (34:30.222)

is like a director of digital marketing or whatever, director of content. You know, there’s all sorts of titles like that where we’re like a team of SEO people report to you and giving them direction, shaping their strategy is an important part of your job. Then yeah, I think this, this would be a good experience for you. But if you’re like, I’m a, you know, junior SEO, or I’ve been doing it for two years or whatever. And I’m mostly like writing blog posts and stuff like that.

 

I think this won’t be good for you. And I mean, I talked to a couple of people that like, you know, one of them, there’s like these two gals that did SEO for a, I’m trying to remember. It’s like a property management company or something like that. So they’re trying to get like apartment communities to rank in local search. And they just, they thought like it sucked. Cause it was just like, nothing was applicable to what they did every day.

 

Lindsie Nelson (35:19.277)

Sure.

 

Lindsie Nelson (35:23.821)

Mm.

 

Lindsie Nelson (35:29.549)

They couldn’t make their job better. There wasn’t something tangible for them. It was much more people building long -term strategy and thinking about the industry as a whole. Okay, cool. Last question, would you go back? Would you go back next year, the year after that?

 

Jay (35:49.134)

Yeah, I mean, you know, there’s, there’s a lot of good events out there and, there’s other things that I’ve done in the past that I would like to go to again, or conferences I’ve never been to that I’d like to check out. But, you know, I would honestly like to make this an annual thing and short of, you know, if it’s like, I can only go to one conference a year, maybe there’s something that takes priority, but.

 

Yeah, if time and budget allows, like I, this was my first MozCon. I don’t know how I never went to one before. I’ve had opportunities and just didn’t prioritize it, but it was great. I would definitely go back and it, you know, as someone who is like running an agency, trying to build out like team process and, come up with strategy for clients or sell strategy to clients and things like that. Like this spoke straight to me. and there’s people that I’ve like,

 

Lindsie Nelson (36:42.541)

Sure.

 

Jay (36:47.437)

known for years or at least followed for years. So seeing all of them in one room was great. This is really good.

 

Lindsie Nelson (36:53.965)

Yeah, good. All right, Jay. Well, thank you for all this wonderful information. I think this was really interesting to kind of have that breakdown of what you pulled from it. And we’ll talk again soon. Thanks, Jay. Bye.

 

Jay (37:10.894)

Sounds good. Take it easy, Lindsey. Bye.

 

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