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The greatest thing you can do for your kids is focus on yourself. The same thing goes for your employees and your business.”

Digital Third Coast (DTC) is an energetic and results-driven Chicago digital marketing agency founded in 2007 and located in Chicago’s Wicker Park/Bucktown neighborhood. They partner with their clients to create solid strategies that help them make the most of their online presence. As a digital marketing agency, they will evaluate the full spectrum of your business’ presence online and collaborate with you to develop and execute plans to help your business generate more website traffic, leads, brand awareness, customer loyalty, and sales. DTC offers the following services: SEO, Pay Per Click advertising (PPC), and content marketing.

Digital Third Coast

BusinessInterviews.com: What key elements should a business keep in mind when it comes to determining their mobile SEO strategy?

George: How much mobile traffic does your site get currently? Take a look at your visitor analytics and see what percentage of your traffic comes from mobile. If it’s a large enough percentage, it would be in your best interest to create the best mobile experience possible for your visitors since mobile traffic is only going to increase over time. There are different ways to go about moving to mobile depending on your budget. Responsive design is probably the easiest way to keep consistent SEO best practices between your mobile site and your regular site but it is also costly. Having a separate mobile version of the site can be less expensive than responsive design but requires more SEO setup work and ongoing maintenance to make sure the mobile site is keeping up with the main site in terms of SEO best practices. In the end, it’s really going to depend on your specific situation and budget to determine the best strategy.

BusinessInterviews.com: You work in an industry where tactics and strategies are constantly evolving. What are some ways and resources that you use to stay on the pulse and keep up in an ever changing landscape?

George: In short, any way I can. Conferences, blogs, personal relationships…anything that opens up the doors to new information and fresh perspectives. I have attended a few SEO conferences like Distilled’s Link Love and Search Love conference series as well as SES here in Chicago. I also attended a smaller one day conference in the Chicago area called Content Jam. I plan on going to a few content marketing conferences in 2014. I read a lot of industry blogs including Rand Fishkin’s Moz.org, SEO Gadget, Seer Interactive and many others.

BusinessInterviews.com: When you see clients that come with absolutely zero traffic to their websites what are the most common reasons for such disappointing results?

George: I think clients that come to us with zero traffic never really adapted an online marketing strategy in the past. This could simply be because their website is new or it could be that their website was never a major source of business for them previously. One of the most rewarding parts of my job is to get positive feedback from clients that are seeing real ROI come in from their website for the first time. They never understood how much their website can drive sales before and they start to understand the nature of inbound search engine traffic. It’s different than any other type of sale because people are searching for you when they come to your site rather than you searching for them.

BusinessInterviews.com: Can you elaborate on how your industry has changed over the last few years and why that has increased your focus on content marketing?

George: In the golden era of SEO there were many ways to “game” Google and use back door tactics that would increase rankings for highly competitive keywords. Over the last 2 years Google has rolled out a set of algorithm updates that have essentially changed the rules. Things that used to work in the past don’t work anymore. Conversely, things that never used to work like adding a lot of fresh unique content to your site in order to compete for competitive phrases now work better. So, in a way, Google has leveled the playing field. It’s not necessarily harder to rank, but now you can focus on doing the right things and actually see ranking improvements vs having to focus on back door tactics because it was the only way to compete.

BusinessInterviews.com: What are some trends in your industry that you’re excited about or think that our readers should be paying attention to?

George: Search Engine Marketing is becoming a more holistic part of the marketing mix. Marketing in general is changing from more of an outbound effort to more of an inbound effort. SEO is becoming more synonymous with content marketing and PR. Paid search is moving beyond just Google Adwords to other channels like Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn. The marketing lines are blurring more and more each day as these industries mature.

BusinessInterviews.com: How has being a father to two little kids at home (ages 5 and 3) helped you understand the principles of leadership in a deeper way?

George: Parenting has taught me a lot of things about being a leader. These ideas came out of a book I read called “Scream Free Parenting”. The greatest thing you can do for your kids is focus on yourself. The same thing goes for your employees and your business. It’s really easy to lose your temper with your kids and scream at them for something they are doing that is driving you crazy. The problem with that is, as a leader, your emotional reactivity is your biggest enemy. Just like parenting kids, the more you lose control of your emotions, the more you lose respect and authority with your employees.

Another core principle to keep in mind about parenting and leadership is to have the attitude that we are responsible TO our kids instead of FOR our kids (or employees). If you have the belief that you are responsible FOR your kids, you are going to have a tendency to be the hovering/controlling parent.

Same thing with employees, you are going to micro manage them and make them feel like they can’t do anything without you. If you have the belief that you are responsible TO your employees you are going to do whatever it takes to give them the tools to succeed instead of relying on you for everything.

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