Interviews with Successful Online Marketers & Entrepreneurs

Interview with White-Hat SEO Expert Dan Ray

  1. What got you interested in SEO, how did you get started?

My origin story is pretty boring, I wasn’t a poor guy living on the street or trying to feed my family or anything. I was just a college student writing to make some money, SEO articles paid better by about 100% so i told people I could do that.

The way my brain works saw the opportunity here, so the process looked something like:

  1. If they can pay me £50 for a single article then how much are they making from it?
  2. I should write SEO articles for myself and then I’d make that much

Then I googled what SEO was, found a guy called Eric Ward and the rest is history.

  1. What do you believe is currently working today when it comes to white hat SEO?

The same things that have always worked, SEO is the easiest thing in the world, people try to overcomplicate it so they can sell it for more money. But good, wholesome SEO is the same as it always has been. And the secret that nobody seems to grasp is that it’s just as, in most cases more effective than any of the black hat stuff that people share.

I have a simple 4 step system:

  1. Create something cool/interesting/useful
  2. Find websites whose audience will find it cool/interesting/useful
  3. Show it to them and ask if they’d like to share it with their audience
  4. Follow up with non responders

Anything more complicated than these 4 core steps is a waste of time in my eyes. Other black hat stuff does work, but it’s always a case of things working until they become saturated, which is a huge problem in the black hat world, you always have to know what the next tactic is, whereas I’ve done SEO this way for 8 years now, and never suffered a single penalty.

  1. How do you maintain staying truly ‘white hat’ as an SEO service provider? What allows you to stand out here.

The money makes it easy, if you offer a service that is safe and reliable, you will always sell to businesses who share those values. All of my clients know what link building is, are aware of the black hat methods and choose to go against them for a long sustainable future.

Slow, sustainable and steady growth over months and years isn’t exciting and fun for most guys in the SEO world, but to investors and board members of large companies, it’s the best thing in the world.

  1. What has worked best for you when it comes to finding new clients to work with?

I have multiple ways of generating link building clients, I have been around for a while and have a bit of a reputation in my city, so it’s kinda like if people ask around and want the best, they come to me. Referrals are always the best because they’re already sold on the service and just trying to give you money.

But I also do some extremely cool things with sales funnels and I always have systems and processes running and being tweaked to see what I can do. I actually have an extremely effective email outreach process running at the moment that is generating a waiting list for a £5,000 service.

  1. What are your future plans for 2016 and beyond?

I’m focusing the next year on my blog, I’m currently turning my home office into a video studio (literally as we speak waiting for whiteboard paint to dry). So I’m gonna be doing a lot of video and webinar type content on my blog and on Facebook.

I’m awful in front of camera at the moment, so that’s something I’m working on a lot.

From a business perspective, the plan has and will always be the same, 5 clients on £10,000 per month each who run on my automated processes. I currently have about 9-11 clients and make more than this, but this is my dream, it’s just very difficult to get people to £10k per month and keep them there.

About John-Shea

Internet Marketing Entrepreneur