R. Kelley is Trapped in Shoe’s Closet and Forced to Answer Questions

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Hey everyone. For my first guest-post, Shoe called upon me to answer some of the questions you asked me last week. Thanks for all of the queries! I’m not as interesting as Dillsmack, but I did my best so hopefully you’ll enjoy getting to know me a bit more.

paymebig asks:

also a big fan of the tv… Hey, being a budding web money maker, how do you make money converting PPC to your own website.

Rebecca: I’ve been tasked with making that happen on SEOmoz, so I’m in the same camp as you, learning as I go. It involves a lot of attention and tweaking in order to find that sweet spot, so I can’t really give you an easy answer.

Click Input asks:

Also, many people say to try and not get too many links up front for a new site/domain. Exactly how do you know what is too much?

Rebecca: There’s no exact answer, so it’s not like I can tell you “23,687 is too much at first.” Basically a giant influx of links to a new domain without any sort of link bait to justify that stream of links will probably raise a red flag to the search engines. If you’re going to buy links I’d advise against buying them right off the bat–wait until you’ve naturally built some so the incoming stream won’t look suspicious.

pongalong asks:

What is your favorite non-SEO blog?

Rebecca: I like Entertainment Weekly and Pajiba (which are movie review/news blogs), The Onion, Joe Mathlete, and some tech blogs (TechCrunch, Techmeme, Lifehacker).

SeanIM asks:

Does anyone have relatively accurate data on the general demographics of the various search engine visitors?

Rebecca: Your analytics program should give you an idea of who’s sending how much traffic. You could also see if Hitwise, iProspect, ClickZ, and other search research sites have any data on that.

Brent asks:

Seductress of SEO, did you get freaked out at Stonehenge?…always wanted to go there. Do you do any internet marketing on your completely on your own? How’d you get the job at the moz?

Rebecca: Stonehenge was pretty cool, albeit windy as hell. I don’t have any clients of my own or really do any Internet marketing on the side–it’s all for SEOmoz. As for how I got the job at the ‘moz, well, I was in college and saw an ad on Craigslist for a writing position at SEOmoz. I was interested and applied but they didn’t hire me because they didn’t think I was geeky enough for the position (heh). Undeterred (and because I’m stubborn as hell), I emailed Rand and persuaded him to give me an internship. My last quarter at the University of Washington I interned at SEOmoz for college credit, where I grew on Rand like a fungus and secured a job there when I graduated.

randfish asks:

Yeah, Boowrecka. What’s up with that? :)

Rebecca: Get back to work, Rand! (I run a tight ship at the SEOmoz office.)

Rick asks:

Social sites seem to be the latest off-site mechanism to boost traffic.
If you had to pick one method of doing this, what would it be?

Rebecca: Leverage StumbleUpon. They send us and every SEO I know a great, steady stream of traffic.

Matt asks:

What are your computer specs and what operating system do you run?

Rebecca: I have a piece of crap built desktop from high school that I desperately need to replace, and work bought me a Dell Inspiron E1505 laptop, which runs XP.

Micky Ward asks:

Joeychgo asks:

Ok, I feel dumb.. Who is rebecca kelly?

Rebecca: Hell if I know. My last name’s Kelley. :)

CatherineL asks:

How far do you think it’s acceptable to fib when linkbaiting on a scale from 1 to 10, with 1 being a slight exaggeration and 10 being the biggest, most outrageous lie you’ve ever told?

Rebecca: Not sure what you mean here. Do you mean fudging the success of a linkbait campaign to clients? Tweaking the numbers for a presentation? I think that if you really want to fib, go with “slight exaggeration” so it won’t bite you in the ass later on.

MyGoodFinds asks:

Hi Rebecca, What can you advice someone like me who is still a newbie in SEO? I was able to reduce my Alexa rank from 8M+ to 3M+ in more or less two weeks. After I break the million mark, what comes next?

Rebecca: Alexa rank is pretty useless. I’d read a bunch of SEO blogs and poke around in the forums and drop comments to ask questions and establish yourself. SEOs tend to be pretty helpful people, so they’re willing to answer the questions you have in order to ensure you’re on the right track and know what you’re doing. We want to minimize misinformation about this industry as much as we can.

Contest Beat asks:

Which is a better source of free back links – link exchanges or linkbait (given that the later is harder)?

Rebecca: With a successful linkbait campaign, you’ll get a much larger influx of links in a shorter amount of time. The work upfront is more, but it’s shorter in the longrun. Plus, I think brainstorming, building, and executing linkbait is more fun than making link exchange requests.

Jani asks:

Who is the sexiest man in SEO world?

Rebecca: Oh geez…Shoemoney and Dillsmack? ;P

King Jacob asks:

how much does having a communications degree and spanish minor help in the SEO world?

Rebecca: Not a whole lot, but anyone can do SEO with any degree, or without one for that matter. At SEOmoz we have three employees who don’t have a college degree, an English degree, a Geography degree, two Communications degrees, and a master’s in cinema studies. You can grasp and learn SEO on your own, without any formal education, as long as you’re not a dumbass and have a willingness to learn new things.

Clark Skint asks:

Do you do all of your movie watching honkered down on the sofa in traditional couch potatoe positon, or do you like to view on the move on a portable player or mobile phone; and do use any movie themses as ringtones?

Rebecca: I mostly go to the movie theater and see new releases, and I’ll watch a ton of DVDs in the “traditional couch potato” position. I don’t have a movie ringtone, but two of my coworkers use the Rocky theme and Indiana Jones as theirs.

JohnM asks:

Do you believe that DMOZ editors deny moderator applications to “protect their turf”? If so, how do you feel about DMOZ have a PR 10?

Rebecca: I think DMOZ is vastly overrated, and that they really don’t deserve a PR 10 because they’re inconsistent and not timely.

Nathan asks:

I was interested in knowing how you got into your profession and why you choose it? And how did you meet Shoemoney?

Rebecca: I chose SEO because the job description sounded interesting, and I like it because I’m constantly learning and don’t get bored with what I do. I met Shoe at SES Chicago last December. We sat in the hotel bar and chatted a bit.

Word Hugger asks:

What blogs do you read on a daily basis?

Rebecca: The blogs I mentioned earlier and a crapload of SEO blogs.

art asks:

Oggy asks:

strawberries, chocolate or raspberries? ;)

Rebecca: Fresas, mi amigo!

Aditya Kumar Singh asks:

What you think is essential for a SEO professional to know ? What skills are must have ? Writing , XHTML and what else ?

Rebecca: A analytical mind is good. I wish I were more analytical. I also want to know more coding, but you can get by if you have a great one on staff.

Word Hugger asks:

What is the first website you worked for, created yourself, or helped run? What was it about?

Rebecca: In high school I created a crappy Geocities page and just had random stuff on it (rants and whatnot…blog 1.0?). Later on, in college, I was admin for a book review database website before landing my job at SEOmoz.

lyricsreg asks:

What is your best SEO project ?

Rebecca: The “Worst College Mascots” linkbait for Drivl was a lot of fun because I researched and wrote it on my own. I like projects where I take the helm and work on it and see a great result and know that it was due to my efforts. Even boring link building can be rewarding when you see the rankings change and know that it was because of you.

Credit Card Offers asks:

Is it more satisfying to rank a clients homepage high in the serps or rank your own ? Do you ever question yourself why you do something for a client when you could do the same for yourself and earn a lot more ? How do you deal with it ?

Rebecca: If the client is interesting, I’ll like the work more and will be happy when they rank. Obviously it’s great to see your own site rank because you’re more attached to your site. We’re moving away from a client-based model to focus more on our site and Premium content at SEOmoz, so I guess that answers your question.

Tracy asks:

JeffPosaka asks:

Who can do more push ups, Rand or Shoemoney?

Rebecca: Well, Rand will probably have Mystery Guest hugging him while he’s doing them so I’d say Shoe. :P

Joe asks:

Who is your favorite movie director?

Rebecca: I really like Wes Anderson, Alfonso Cuaron, Michele Gondry, Spike Jonze, Judd Apatow. Quentin Tarantino and Clint Eastwood are good as well.

Nick Sullivan asks:

How important do you think search engine traffic is in relation to niche content and how would you recommend going absolutely maximizing traffic potential on social networking sites.

Rebecca: Definitely important. If you can establish yourself as an authority in that niche, you can definitely be rewarded with a great stream of traffic. I mentioned StumbleUpon earlier in terms of maximizing consistent traffic potential.

corey asks:

If you still live above and below bowling alleys, how often do you find yourself saying “Fuck it dude, let’s go bowling” a la the Big Lebowski?

Rebecca: Not too often, but I do enjoy a Caucasian Russian every now and then. :)

Click Input asks:

Do you think Vince spends more than he earns in Entourage?

Rebecca: Um, yes.

Dorian asks:

Why do you work for SEOmoz when you could be working on your own sites/projects? Why earn money for Rand when you could be earning way more money working for yourself?Even if you were not working on your own sites and decided to go the Consulting route… think of how much more you could make.

I guess I don’t understand why any skilled SEO would ever work for someone else.

Rebecca: I’ve only been doing SEO for under two years. I guess I feel that I still have a lot to learn, and Rand is a great mentor. For now I love working with my team of coworkers. Maybe down the road I’ll want to go solo, but I like the team dynamic and where I’m at right now.

Theo asks:

Is it hard for a woman to have a career in SEO ?

Rebecca: I don’t think so. If you’ve got the skills, the SEO industry will accept you. Some women can get pretty catty, but I guess you get that in any industry.

Gary R. Hess asks:

Are you a supporter of trading links or natural link building? And if it is the latter, how does one start a website/blog with only having enough money to pay for hosting and a domain… and not having important webmaster friends?

Rebecca: I have more experience with natural link building, but I don’t have a problem with trading links so long as it’s under the radar and relevant to your site. If you don’t have any webmaster connections, hit some blogs and forums and study up a bit to get yourself going. You’re capable of learning all of this. That’s what bugs me about making money online/having a website. A lot of people just want to know the quickest way to go about doing it that involves the least amount of work or effort necessary. If you really want to make something happen, you’ll learn how to do it. You’ll bust your ass to figure it out.

sozluk asks:

what is the name of your best movie ?

Rebecca: I’m assuming you mean my “favorite” movie. My favorite guilty pleasure movie is Showgirls. The commentary track by David Schmader is hysterical. I also really like The Hudsucker Proxy, Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind, The Royal Tenenbaums, Rushmore, Adaptation, Lost in Translation, Goodfellas, Reservoir Dogs, I could go on and on…what can I say, I love movies.

tt asks:

Talk about small world. I graduated with you at Romeo in ’01. I’m just curious how you got into this field? Take care!

Rebecca: Hey, what’s your name? Drop me a line and we can chat. Small world indeed!

jim asks:

What’s the funniest thing that’s happened at seomoz? how about the second and third funniest… please provide video. :)

Rebecca: We have a pretty inappropriate office environment, so often someone will say something that will get us laughing hysterically. That’s why I love my coworkers–they’re hard to offend. :)

Kiltak asks:

Hi Rebecca! :)Simple question: Do you think geeks are sexy? :)

Rebecca: Of course! I’d rather be with someone with similar interests and a passion for what he does than some vapid, boring hottie, and geeks are typically passionate, driven people. Oh, and they’re funny too, and I like funny guys. :)

Seo Next asks:

Do u have any spanish sites ? or you are just busy with Moz?

Rebecca: No Spanish sites. I’m actually getting rusty because I haven’t spoken much since I graduated. I love languages though, so I’m thinking of learning French next.

Lee asks:

What do you think is going to happen in LOST season 4?

Rebecca: That season finale was crazy! I heard that Michael was coming back, too. Whatever happens in season 4, I hope Kate dies. She annoys the hell out of me. (Okay, I know she won’t die because she’s the “hot” one, but doesn’t it drive you crazy how she ALWAYS has to tag along with people whenever they go off to do something?)

SeanIM asks:

What do you consider to be the best source of information on which search engines are most popular in various countries? (Does Google own the world yet?)PS: Who are you drawn to more, Vincent or Ari?

Rebecca: I’m not sure about the best source of information, but I’m sure you could find the demographic info fairly easily. And I’m drawn to Ari. He’s a much more fun character to watch.

NO APR Credit Cards asks:

You mentioned in your bio, “I have the greatest job in the world”What makes it so special? Is it because of SEOmoz or SEO in general?

Thanks,
Mike

Rebecca: Both. Like any company, SEOmoz has its downsides and frustrations, but it’s a laid-back, flexible, encouraging work environment, and I couldn’t ask for anything better than that. The SEO industry is a lot like that, too. I learn a lot and meet a ton of great, interesting people, which is why I love my job.

Gecko Tales asks:

I worked in SEO for several years for agencies and private firms. Now I manage the Web sites for a large company. We are playing around with the idea of social media and how it can help us. (our target is mostly over 30 yrs of age) The problem with social media is it is difficult to show the return – like SEO was at one time. What ideas do you have for showing financial/revenue gains from using social media?

Rebecca: Monitor your traffic stream, amount of links, signups, conversions, etc, before and after a social media campaign. If you’re doing linkbait this should be easier to show, but if you’re building social media profiles it’s more focused on brand awareness, which is also a very important aspect of social media.

Nathan H asks:

I was interested in how you got started in your profession and why you choose it? And how did you initially meet Shoemoney?

Rebecca: Answers are above.

Barrera asks:

Which aspect of Internet marketing do you consider yourself most skilled at and why?

Rebecca: I think I’m strongest at linkbait and content creation because I’ve always enjoyed writing and thinking creatively.

Travel Notebook asks:

wow, “seductress of SEO” did you come up with that?

Rebecca: Nope. I guess I’ll add that to my growing list of nicknames…

fable asks:

How did you get the opportunity of working for seomoz.org? Were you part of the founders or were you recruited because of your very impressive SEO background. ;)Steve

Rebecca: I didn’t help found SEOmoz–I am the fourth SEOmoz employee. As for how I got started, see my response earlier in this thread.

craysee asks:

Why don’t you have your own non-moz blog yet?

Rebecca: I know, I should get off my ass and put one together. I wanted to get rkelley.com or r-kelley.com, but they’re both stupid R. Kelly spam sites. I just don’t know if I’m interesting enough to warrant having a personal blog that people will actually read. ;)

32 thoughts on “R. Kelley is Trapped in Shoe’s Closet and Forced to Answer Questions

  1. Tracy Robinson

    Darn, you skipped my question…

    For search engine purposes, how much easier is it to dominate local organic traffic if you put the city and/or state names before your keywords, or is doing all that a waste of time?

  2. randfish

    Dude – I think you’ve inspired me to put up a blog post like this of my own…

    Also – 4th SEOmoz employee? Maybe 4th successful, long-running employee :) We had a lot of strikeouts before we got to she who wrecks our boos.

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  8. Simlock verwijderen

    I learned a lot from this interview. But I have one question: I am at the moment raising links for my new website (almost 5 months old), but is there an problem if you getting 5000 links from one domain?

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