Executives and Product Managers
The decision makers in your organization have a lot on their minds these days: shrink-
ing budgets, expanding competition, and out-of-control expenses could keep anyone
awake at night. Why should they be open to your big ideas about SEO? Even if SEO
was the boss’s idea in the first place—or if you’re your own boss—you still need to
know, in a down-to-the-brass-tacks kind of way, what it’s going to take.
Of course you want to approach your corporate decision makers with a clear
vision, a plan, and a lot of cold, hard facts. But there’s a catch-22 here: how can you
know exactly what Your SEO Plan will cost and what it will accomplish until you have
spent some time researching those very questions? Executives aren’t big fans of laying
out cash for an unknown outcome. So we recommend that you start the process by
seeking approval for an initial, investigatory month. That’s roughly 20 hours of labor
at 1 hour per day, and it’s all laid out for you in Chapter 6, “Your One-Month Prep:
Baseline and Keywords.” You’ll spend your Prep Month figuring out what kind of per-
formance your SEO campaign can expect and be able to come back to the executives
with a much more complete plan on hand.
Your initial request will be introductory. Prepare it with the following informa-
tion on hand:
• A general introduction to SEO: what it is and how it is being used in the market-
ing mix by many companies today. For starters, try the “Why SEO?” numbers
from the introduction to this book.
• Your Goals Worksheet from Chapter 1.
• Some telling screen shots showing your competition outranking you, your brand
looking awful onscreen, or any other SEO faux pas you can find.
• A detailed timeline for the Prep Month.
Be sure that this information is presented in the most clear, succinct manner
possible. And be prepared for plenty of questions from around the table: How much
will this really cost us? How long do we have to do it? Do we have the right staff
SEO is such a cost-effective marketing technique that it should be an easy sell.
But change is never easy. Does budgeting your SEO campaign mean that Ellen will
have to take Tim’s Yellow Pages budget away? Will an of SEO mean some-
one is an hour late for dinner each night? No matter how persuasive your numbers and
worksheets are, your plan will need to address the realities of day-to-day operations.
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