Hey, I am an Entrepreneur at Heart. | RankWatch Blog

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Hey, I am an Entrepreneur at Heart.

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How do you think digital marketing, more specifically SEO has changed over the last 10 years?

Although digital marketing has been around for more than 10 years, very few businesses understood the power of it. I started using Email campaigns about 15 years ago and it was wonderful because no one was getting overloaded in their mailboxes so my open rate was fantastic! It was only about 3 years ago that businesses would even consider digital marketing in the form of Social Media or Email Campaigns. Even 3 years ago, businesses had no idea how they “ranked” on searches and, more telling, they didn’t think it was important. In the last couple years, businesses finally understand the importance of being on that first page in searches whenever possible. They also now come to us to develop a strong Social presence for them because they can see the benefits, such as name recognition, being seen as an expert in their field, etc., greatly outweigh the costs.

The state of regular Google and Facebook updates are uncertain and challenging right now — how are you and your team managing through it?

It is a constant challenge keeping up with the changes on both platforms. I am very lucky in that Facebook has reached out to me as a Facebook Business Account Manager so I have a contact to call with questions. This can be priceless when an ad is being “denied” because I can quickly find out why and make corrections to get it up and running. I also take “update” classes with my Facebook rep very often which allows Strategic & Creative Marketing to get our clients’ posts approved quicker and run more effectively for a lower cost.

Everybody knows what you have achieved, I would like to talk about your failure stories and how they impacted your professional life. (as we know Rome wasn’t built in a day)

I am an entrepreneur at heart and have opened (& closed) multiple businesses in my career. Although it’s tough to see a business, which of course I thought was going to be the billion-dollar hit, come to an end, but in every instance it made me a better business person. I’ve been involved in many industries (retail, gifts, telecommunications, fashion, & more) so now I have all of that wonderful background to use more successfully today. My failures have taught me to empathize with our customers and understand their struggles to achieve success. It also taught me to admit when I’m not an expert in an area and that it’s perfectly fine to hire someone who is the expert, instead of trying to do everything myself. Surrounding yourself with knowledgeable people is a great path to success.

What do you think makes your business so unique from your competitors?

I think my wonderfully varied background in many different industries is a huge benefit for our clients. It lets me analyze their business to help determine the best target audience and the most successful message to reach them. Our company owner, Susan MacNicol, has amazing experience with large companies such as Experian, Sears, OfficeMax, & more, so she brings large-company strategy to all size businesses. Determining an overall strategy for our clients greatly increases the success of a Marketing Campaign by assuring the same look, feel, and message are being broadcast across all marketing channels. Also, unlike many Marketing Firms, we rely on data to determine what is and isn’t working in the Social world so we can change accordingly. It’s often tough to “prove” to the client that Marketing is effective since most people don’t call a company and say “hey, I just saw your message on Facebook & I want to hire your services.” Tracking data, however, does allow us a much better picture of what is working so we can continue to raise Brand Awareness and, in turn, increase Sales.

Tell us about the time when you were seven or eight. Who/what did you want to be? Is it different from what you are doing now?

I have always been an Entrepreneur, even when I was 7 years old! My sister and I were always coming up with ways to make a buck so we put on shows in my grandma’s garage, constructed carnivals & sold tickets to play the games, & of course, held regular lemonade stands. This continued my whole life, thru babysitting and odd jobs and then beginning “real” work at age 15 (I played guitar so I worked in a music store selling guitars and strings). Most of the time, I have had at least 2 jobs because I love working with people. When it came time for a family, I convinced my boss to let me work from home so I learned to be very productive during baby nap-time. Because I started “working” so young, I’ve learned to have fun at what you do for a living and, if you aren’t, don’t be afraid to make career changes and keep learning.

Looking towards 2018, how do you think things are shaping up?

I think 2018 is going to be very challenging for businesses on Social Media. Right now, Social companies are scrambling to make new “rules” to keep a tighter lid on what is and isn’t being advertised on their platforms. Because of this, it is becoming very difficult to advertise effectively by reaching the right potential customers and keep costs reasonable. I think 2018 is going to be fraught with new, stricter rules but then I think the Social platforms will see they are driving away their revenue source (advertisers) and make things easier again. The best thing for businesses to do in 2018 is to partner with a Marketing Firm that has been successful for many years in Social, PR, Print, etc. There are MANY people out there who say “I can post for you on Social” but that is all they do, post random information. In order for a business to prosper on Social, they need someone who increases their Brand Awareness and drives Sales.

Sahil Kakkar
Sahil is the CEO and Founder of RankWatch - a platform that helps companies and brands stay ahead with their SEO efforts in the ever growing internet landscape.Sahil likes making creative products that help in the automation of mundane tasks and he can spend endless nights implementing new technologies and ideas. You can connect with him and the Rankwatch team on Facebook or Twitter.
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