SEO-Alien: Helping Small Businesses With Small Allowances Compete With Bigger Brands and Bigger Budgets in the Online Market Space

We help small businesses with small allowances compete with bigger brands and bigger budgets in the online market space.

Tell us about yourself?

Up until the age of 31, I was competing at a world level in sports. However, my true love has always been computer programming and even when traveling with the team to events or competitions abroad, you would find me carrying my TRS 80 Pocket Computer. I would be writing basic programming games for the most part, but I found it challenging as well as entertaining.

After sports, I had to jump into the ‘real world’. I had to look for work. I could have stayed within my industry in sports, but I did not want a 9-5 paying job, I wanted something different. I wanted to keep my competitive attitude that made me successful sports, so I broke away from the normal and I chose to be a ‘professional salesperson’.

To keep it short, I worked for 3 different sales organizations with offices world-wide. One was in car sales, the second was knocking on doors selling equipment that every homeowner needs. I was with each those two companies for 3 years, and with each I was top 10 in the United States in sales each year.

I wish I could say it was my skills and charm that helped me be successful in sales, but there was more to it, I assure you. I used technology. I had created a website for the car dealership before they even had one. I was collecting email addresses from people when it was difficult to get them. Back in the late 90’s emails were more of a private thing., something moms and dads only used to communicate with their children with in college.

Well, I used that data. I created my own week-end sales, week-day sales, end of month sales any sale of sales I could think of and the dealership would pay for the postage! I would also use excel to download the dealerships expiring leases to my 10lb laptop and sort and send letters to them as well. It was quite successful.

In the in-home sales business, I put the companies presentation that they had in a book and put it on my laptop. It took me months to perfect it. I believe I was the first to do that as well. I would turn the laptop in their direction, place the book I read from behind it, used my remote to ‘flip’ the pages on the laptop… it was like the next coolest thing. People that ordinarily would not have watched my presentation did. Again, this technology was all still pretty new stuff back then. And that is what brought me to my 3rd job and where I am today.

One of the other sales people I became friends with had an older brother in Atlanta that had a website business. He created and sold custom websites to the real estate niche and needed help selling his product. It seemed like a perfect fit for me, so I accepted the opportunity and moved to Atlanta.

During the next 6 years, I learned about website design, online marketing, email marketing, public speaking, setting up booths at trade shows, creating PowerPoints, ColdFusion, HTML and the list goes on and on. It was the best 6 years ever. I learned, travelled, helped design websites and sold websites. One of the things I enjoyed the most was creating online and offline courses and weekly online webinars that helped people better use their websites. It was the best of times, but time was changing things.

The big ‘real estate bust’ was coming, and sales in real estate websites were diminishing. I forecasted this doom a couple of years before it really hit. So during this time I was expanding my knowledge and online skills. I was very interested in Search Engine Optimization, more accurately though, I was interested in how to get on the first page of Google. Back then we did not have Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn or many of what people use today for online marketing, or even SEO for that matter as well.

I learned the old fashioned way of SEO, but I saw a new way of SEO coming. The new way was not going to be good for the people in the SEO camp unless they joined forces with the other one coming; Social Media Marketing.

I alienated myself from the typical SEO’ers. I thought, and still believe to this day, proper SEO is earned over time, not some magic formula (though a formula does exist, its just not magic). I watched some webinar online where some guy was charging people a ridiculous amount to get on the first page of Google and it really ticked me off. I went after his keywords he was advertising as being #1 for and starting taking his spots. I did that to a lot of businesses too. That is when the SEO-Alien was born!

I took the skills and techniques learned getting websites to the top of the Search Engines, invested more time and money learning how to do it the right way, not using black hat techniques. I was an early adopter with WordPress and several other online products that I thought were going to be the future. Wrong about some, but fortunately right on several I started building websites and online marketing packages for any small business that wanted to compete with their competitors or the larger brands ones online.

The SEO-Alien website was created in 2009 and is more of a diary of things regarding online marketing. As an online marketer I kept my own little database of online tips, tricks and references to things I frequently used for Search Engine marketing, content marketing, video marketing and website design, much before social media marketing was even considered as an option. Now the website has grown into one of the most comprehensive blogs on all of these topics and many more. If you have an online marketing challenge you need an answer with, or only want to get better at it, you can find it on the SEO-Alien!

If you could go back in time a year or two, what piece of advice would you give yourself?

Adapt to somethings faster, and don’t be afraid if it fails. When you see change coming don’t be afraid to respond to it. If it becomes successful; you win. if it does not; you learn.

What problem does your business solve?

Large business have large budgets for Social Media marketing and other online projects that are essential for business to compete online. However, Social Media levels the playing field and the SEO-Alien helps small business compete in that challenging, ever changing and ever expanding marketplace.

What is the inspiration behind your business?

I’ve been helping small businesses grow since the beginning, when ecommerce was in its infancy. I want to help you succeed because it’s a win-win situation for all of us!

What is your magic sauce?

No real magic sauce other than doing things the way Google wants it to be done. It may be more time consuming, but it works.

What is the plan for the next 5 years? What do you want to achieve?

In 5 years, I want to be an even better online marketer and help more people succeed and my blog will continue to be one of the top resources for online marketing advice.

What is the biggest challenge you’ve faced so far?

The biggest challenge I have faced so far is learning challenging code needed sometimes to get things to work.

How do people get involved/buy into your vision?

Become a guest author on the SEO-Alien and share your online marketing skills or subscribe to the SEO-Alien and stay updated of all the latest tips and trick to learn more!

Written by Mark Smith

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