You have a great site, it’s beautifully designed, pixel perfect, and just waiting for one thing…. traffic. You know you need to do some SEO, but it falls out of your area of expertise. You get the spam emails from people promising you to get onto page one of Google.
So who says you have to rely on cold emails alone? We live in a brave new world. A social world with loads of people clamoring around just waiting for you to contact them.
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But how do you cut through the clutter to find an SEO expert who is right for you?
The answer can be found in 140 characters or less: Twitter.
1. Set up a Geo-Targeted Campaign
It’s always better when you can work with someone who you can check out locally and Twitter is the perfect place to find local connections — you just have to cut through the clutter. You can set up a search in search.twitter.com and choose the area you’d like to search, or use more advanced (free) tools like MarketMeSuite to set up what is called a “reply campaign.” Using this you can narrow it to within a mile of your location, and put in keywords and negative keywords to make sure you’re searching for exactly the right person.
2. Check Their Following and Influence
Social Search and SEO are starting to merge, so it’s a good idea to work with an SEO expert who “gets” social. Have a glance at their following numbers. Do they have a solid few hundred followers, or are they brand new to social media. Bring up their name on Klout and Peer Index… what topics are they influential in? (Obviously SEO would be a good topic to look out for!) Generally a score of 40 or higher shows they have some level of experience on social media. If they are new to social, it doesn’t mean you should count them out, but it’s worth factoring in.
3. Ask a Question
Once you have a few results to sift through, you must now set about contacting these leads. The best thing you can possibly do is ask them a question. There are two reasons for this. The first is that you can gauge responsiveness. If someone is going to work for you doing an important job like SEO you want to make sure they are responsive. The second reason is knowledge. Ask them something a little tricky, like, I see you do SEO, How do you feel about duplicate content? You’ll be able to tell from their answer whether they are an SEO cowboy or someone who takes the time to give you a thoughtful response.
4. Ask them to follow you so you can DM them
This shows initiative. To receive a DM they must take the time to follow you. In the DM put your email address and let them contact you. They are the one looking for the job so now it’s their turn to prove it. See if they make the segway from Twitter chat to actual email.
5. Tweet out for references
Once you have a few candidates, do some searches on Twitter to see what people are saying about them. You’d be surprised how many people tweet out both good and bad experiences. Twitter is a great place for getting a real idea of what someone is like, rather than just the case studies they choose to show you.
Key Take Away:
Twitter is a bit like fishing. Sometimes you dip your pole in and the fish are biting and sometimes they are quiet, but if you set up the right searches, and have an idea of what you’re looking for, it’s probably one of the best ways to find an SEO expert (or any expert!) in short of a personal recommendation.