Bobby MacDonald Interview

by David Jenyns on October 22, 2013

Industry: Internet Marketing

Bobby Macdonald

Bobby Macdonald

Website: www.linkemperor.com

Bobby MacDonald’s Bio: Bobby MacDonald is a laser-focused online entrepreneur. He has started a number of businesses and launched products that have brought him much success. He is the guy behind Link Emperor, an SEO service that helps businesses  get better online rankings, and with that better exposure.

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Interview Transcript:

Hey guys, David Jenyns here from Melbourne SEO Services and Podcast Interviews. I’ve just got a really great interview lined up for you at the moment with a gentleman called Bobby MacDonald. He’s the guy behind Link Emperor. You can do a little bit of research if you want to find out a little bit more about him. For those of you who have listened to a few interviews you know usually I like to dig in a little bit prior to doing an interview with someone to make sure I get their full back story so I can give you a really great introduction.

But Bobby was a little bit more undercover and I had to do a little bit more digging to find out what he’s been up to. I think I just started to scratch the surface, just entry level. I know he’s involved in a lot of ecommerce sites. He’s got his own sites and had built up a significant team over in the Philippines. His partner said, we could automate a lot of this. That’s really where Link Emperor came about.

He’s not a one trick pony. He’s a little bit more of a business guy and he’s got his finger in many pies. I think that’s what I liked most about what Bobby does. He looks at things more as a business and not just one particular method.

We’re seeing a lot of changes obviously in the industry. In the SEO space over the past twelve to eighteen months there have been some significant changes. Link Emperor and the way that it was building links was very much in the centre of a lot of those links that were up in the air as to their effectiveness and things like that. So I really wanted to get him on the line so he could tell us a little bit about what he’s seen change in the industry and how he approaches SEO.

More than that, just see where it goes as we start to see where does SEO fit into the overall bigger picture and what it takes to build up successful businesses.

First of all Bobby, I’d just like to welcome you to the call and thanks for your time.

Bobby: Thanks Dave.

David: Maybe as a good way to start, I don’t know if you could tell us a little bit about what first attracted you to the idea of SEO and how you started to set up Link Emperor and the process to get to that point.

Bobby: Sure. The honest reason I liked SEO in the first place was because I started out in college. I was trying to make money online and I just didn’t have that much money. So the idea of getting free traffic really appealed to me back then. It was this crazy idea. I could sit in my room and work on the computer like I always do and make money rather than trying to be a bartender or something like a normal college job.

That was the initial reason. I always figured, this is like another system. I was always really good in school, I got good grades and everything. I was a finance major so I was really interested in business. I figured, if this is just like a system where I just have to learn the rules and everything, that shouldn’t be too much of a problem. I got really interested in it and I wanted to make sure I could crack the code and that sort of thing. At first I built affiliate sites. Then I moved up to larger investments once I was a little more confident in my skills. I built ecommerce stores out.

I did that for a number of years. It was probably three years before where I was working online by myself doing work. Then I eventually ended up meeting my current business partner Kevin. He’s a Harvard educated computer programmer. I was teaching him. He had his own software product. I was always selling other people’s products. I knew the marketing side of things and he knew more of the coding product creation side of things. He didn’t have any marketing.

Eventually we started teaming up and working on SEO ourselves in combination. Like you said we figured out that we could automate a lot of the work I had guys in the Philippines doing. That eventually after a while evolved into Link Emperor which we decided we would sell. We used it for probably at least about a year ourselves just on our own websites before we’d open it up to see if people were interested in it. It’s an interesting evolution of things.

David: That’s the biggest thing. It’s funny or interesting to watch the industry change. Some industries move a lot quicker than others. I think we’ve seen the rate of change at which these updates and the rules are getting changed and things like that is increasing. In the SEO space in particular being online and digital the change at which it’s happening is so quick.

As your thought processes have evolved with SEO, what is the process you go through when starting to work on the SEO for a site? I think I know I’ve heard you talk about obviously starting with keywords and then doing your on page optimization and your link building. Is that still the process that you go through?

Bobby: Yes, for sure. I always think the majority of your SEO has to be fundamentally about creating a good site that fulfills what Google thinks the needs of the searcher has. If you’re going into a certain niche, you need to go and look at what they’re ranking other sites for, what they think those keywords are in terms of how they’re related and how they build out the categories of your own site so that it all best fulfill the needs of the searcher.

Then also you need to just generally take a look at what are other websites in the niche doing and what are they missing that the customer is going to latch onto. You have to do so much in terms of content and so on to make Google happy but in the end you always have to make the customer happy, that’s the real goal. That’s obviously a big part of things too.

David: Now when you’re doing SEO, are you finding that it is still effective, the actual methods? I think the big thing about Link Emperor and what you do is you’re collecting a variety of different links from a variety of different sources with a variety of different anchor text and pointing them to a variety of different places on your website as well. It’s just adhering to the fundamentals when it comes to SEO. Have you seen that change over recent times, effectiveness?

Bobby: The good thing that we’ve always done with Link Emperor, from the beginning, we were always focused on diversity. We always wanted to make sure that we were not a one trick pony. We didn’t want to have only one type of link. We always wanted to have every possible type of link that we could find and from as many different providers as we could find. Different guys have different lists of sites and things so the more people you can mix in, the better your diversity is going to be and the fewer things that Google is going to latch onto and try to penalize or whatever.

For the long haul, it was very good that we started out with that mentality and we always kept that. Then in addition to that over the years, we just added in more and more things. We want it to be a one stop tool for whatever the individual SEO needs to use it for.

Everybody in SEO has their own cookbook and their own method for what they like to do. We talk extensively with our customers about what they’re looking for and everybody needs something different. So our whole thing has always been just to build out platforms where people can customize as much as they want.

Even before Penguin came out, before people got hit in the face with the fact that they needed to change up their anchor text, we had an anchor text randomization built in because our customers requested that. We always thought at some point Google was obviously going to pick up on the fact that people were building links all to the same keyword. We have always tried to have a little bit of a forward thinking mentality on how to keep things as diverse and different as possible.

Probably the biggest thing that we’ve added in in the last two years is the ability to build to buffer sites rather than building directly to your own sites. Now in the last year or so I guess we added this feature where we automatically create buffer sites to keep the other back links one step removed from your own website. That’s helped us a ton in the last year or so I think with some of the changes Google has rolled out.

In general it’s just about trying to stay one step ahead of the game. We have a lot of customers who have been with us for over two years now. So that’s good.

David: It’s interesting, we were talking just before the call as well, talking in terms of where SEO fits into the overall picture. That was a big thing we saw with some of these updates. There were people who had just built businesses that lived and died based on how much traffic organic traffic they were getting.

It was interesting to chat with you, you’re an SEO guy and you’ve got an SEO product. But I’m interested to get your thoughts on where you see SEO fitting into the model of building up a business and driving traffic.

Bobby: Sure. First off, I come from a finance background. I went to school for finance and then I actually became an accountant. I used to work in a big accounting firm. I always look at things in terms of the bigger picture, your investments, I try and have a well rounded portfolio and things like that. So I have no problem with somebody who has a fully SEO based business. It’s just that you need to realize that’s a big risk factor. If you’re ok with taking that risk, there is nothing wrong with it.

I think a lot of people have this one-sided way of looking at things. They’ll say, your business is weak because it’s only based on SEO. Well, maybe. Or maybe if I have five businesses and one of them is only based on SEO, that’s fine. I’m diversified now. It depends. But for most people who just have one business, you absolutely have to diversify out of that and get into other things. Get into paid traffic, try to run facebook ads, try to run banners and things like that.

The main thing that I didn’t get for a while that probably caused me to have a problem in my business development was realizing the value of a visitor and trying to figure out the numbers. What is the lifetime value of somebody who hits my site and turns into a customer? Then how can I back that out so I can figure out how to can I just buy customers rather than doing SEO?

I love SEO because you can figure out your numbers on that side of things too based on how many visits you’re getting, what you’re investing in terms of your link building and so on. It’s just a little bit tougher to back you numbers out than something like an AdWords ad where you see your click through rate, you can see your conversion rate right in front of you and see how much you’re paying.

It’s just different but I always try to look at everything, SEO included, in terms of what exactly am I investing and what is my expected rate of return on that?

David: It felt like for a long time there that the ROI that you got on SEO was probably one of the highest ROIs you’d get for your marketing dollar. That’s why everybody piled in. Now those numbers are starting to change. Before there was so much margin for error that you almost didn’t have to do the numbers because it just worked. Now we’re reverting to these business fundamentals as that window of opportunity has shrunk.

Bobby: Like any industry as it matures a little bit, things get a little bit more competitive. For one thing there are just tons more sites out there than there were five years ago. As it gets easier and easier to set up a WordPress site or build your own ecommerce store, big commerce makes it so easy these days to set up an ecommerce store, there are just that many more people who are figuring out the internet, jumping into business and trying to get into the space.

That’s a big part of it too that a lot of people don’t talk about in general. The internet evolves really fast. Whether or not Google made changes in the last five years, there are at least three times as many competitors in every major niche as there were before, probably way more. SEO gets tougher in part just because there are a lot more sites out there now.

David: I know you get involved in a few different businesses. What is your thought process, with your accounting background and business background, what is your thought process when you go through when you say, yes, this is a business I want to get into? How do you decide if it fits in to what you’re doing and what is that stepping stone that you would go through to get to that first sale?

Bobby: That is a tough question because there are so many factors in that. I actually think about that all the time. I talk about that with my business partner Kevin all the time too. What are our best opportunities? It’s like a matrix thing you have to look at. What’s the potential return, what is the size of this business and is it really worth my time? It’s got to be big enough. Especially at this point we really try and take a longer term view of things and only try and get involved in things we think could potentially be a real home run.

Also sometimes we’ll launch things that we just see as a really easy opportunity if we think we can do a quick hit. For instance, we just launched this new thing Index Emperor. It’s not going to be a $100,000,000 business for sure. Obviously we want to keep growing and we want to get bigger over the years. We had the technology mostly built out and we thought it wouldn’t be too hard to make it into a solid product and launch it within a couple of months so we just went ahead.

Sometimes we’ll do smaller things we think is just easier, just because it is within our skill set. We just think we can do it better than other people. Other times we want to have a longer term view of things and build something that is really big. I think a lot of people online just don’t look to the bigger picture enough and don’t set their sights high enough in terms of building a large business.

David: I quite like the idea you were talking about it’s almost like you’re analyzing what assets you already have and how much work is something going to take to get through to launch point. That new product you’re bringing out is obviously a perfect match for the same target market who you’ve already got a conversation going with and who are already your clients. So it makes sense.

A lot of entrepreneurs especially when they first get started start all of these little projects that often don’t involve that bigger picture. They’re almost all siloed. That can have its benefits because you’re not cross pollinating. But it also means you have to everything from the ground up. So I think doing that and then figuring in hey, how does this fit into a bigger picture is definitely the way to go.

Bobby: Yes, certainly there is a big difference between starting your first business and trying to start your third business. Once you’ve got a list of people you know are interested in something, we’ve got a pretty big SEO list at this point of people who have decent amounts of money, that is always a factor to consider: what can we sell to our existing customers?

Then again over the last few years we’ve taken a look at things and seen that SEO in general is just not that big of a niche compared with say, the health market, the diet market, things like that. So you have to take a look at that in terms of the long term. What am I really getting myself involved in? In a best case scenario or a worst case scenario what are my expectations for what I’m going to do with this.

For instance I would love to get involved in a more broad market offer at some point that is bigger than SEO. It’s interesting, I don’t know if you ever look at the Inc. 500 List or anything like that. SEOmoz, I forget exactly how much they made last year, but they’re probably the biggest player in the SEO space for the most part. They only made $14,000,000 in profit last year or something.

If you look at some of those metrics it’s interesting to see. You always have to look at everything and try to figure out what are my goals five years from now and where do I want to be? I love SEO and I don’t think we’re going to be exiting the SEO space any time soon. But I would like to start another business that is in more of a general area and see if you can build it to that point where it’s making $100,000,000 or more a year. It’s something that really excites me.

David: You’ll be able to bring some different strategies that you’ve learned in this field over to these other fields. Obviously if you’re competing in the SEO space you’re going to be going up against a lot of people who know the SEO business quite well. I know that’s only one piece of it and you’re more of a digital strategist and you drive traffic from a lot of different sources. But having that knowledge and then applying it in another industry, that ends up being part of your competitive advantage.

Bobby: Right. The other thing that I have really got more interested in the last couple of years is just making sure you’re a business owner and not working in your business. I love SEO. It interests me and I think we have a great advantage in the market right now. It’s not like I want to exit SEO in any way. But what I want to do is make sure that I’m building a business that runs itself so that I can just go in and check in on it every so often to make sure we’re doing really well.

I would love to have the best SEO business out there and go and work in something else. It’s just about reading a lot of these business books and trying to figure out how to be a better manager, how to be a better investor, making the leap from just being a business owner where you start out in the beginning.

I love business just because you’re always learning things and you’re always trying to get to the next level. I see the ultimate leap as just being the investor. But you can’t start there unless you have a ton of money, so you’re always learning new skill sets on how to get to the next platform.

David: Part of the reason for going through those levels and developing your skills is so you can identify inefficiencies that you invest in and spot opportunities. You almost need to get those runs on the board so when you do start investing, you can say, hey, I can see we can really add value here or what we’ve got here is something unique. I think you almost need to go through those levels and to try and skip those levels and if you just jump straight in it at the investing level, there’s a chance you’d end up burning a lot of dough a lot more quickly.

Bobby: Absolutely. That’s one of the things I’ve thought from the beginning was when I first started out I always wanted to know that I could do the job that I was hiring for decently well. I don’t have to be the best at whatever I’m hiring for, obviously, because you’re never going to be able to do that. But at least in the beginning, especially when your team is smaller and you need to make sure you’re managing people yourself, I always wanted to know that I could at least fulfill the job or fully understand every part of what that person is working on. From there you can extrapolate that out.

I see a lot of these business owners say, oh, my business needs marketing and they just try and hire a marketer. I feel that is a really tough thing to do because different marketers come with such a variety of different skill sets and quality overall. Just trying to hire that out is really tough. You’re better off trying to at least learn a decent chunk of it so that you understand what type of person you’re going to hire for.

David: It’s funny you say that because I think the two main skill sets that the business owner needs and probably are the ones that they let go of last or should let go of last are the hiring and getting the hiring right, picking the right talent and also the marketing. They are the two biggest functions that play such an important role that I think the business owner can add a lot of value to.

A lot of the other things, it’s very easy to build a team. I imagine once you start to step out even further then you need someone to step into those roles. But they’re such key roles in the early days of a business.

Bobby: Yes, absolutely. Hiring is actually something that I resisted for the first couple of years because I was more of a control freak in the beginning where I wanted everything to be perfect. Then I eventually settled in to the fact that if I’m going to be really successful I’m going to have to have a decent sized company at least that has a lot of people in it. So I might as well learn those skill sets early rather than pushing them off forever.

So in the last couple of years, I think hiring is one of the toughest things of any skill set. We’re in a lot of different Masterminds and business groups and so on and we’re always trying to talk about hiring people at these things. Everybody just has their own opinions. There really is no set guide to hiring the perfect person for your business or building a perfect team.

You have to invest a lot of money into it either way because you make a lot of mistakes. It’s worth getting started early I think and thinking a lot about what your strategy is for that kind of thing. Managing people is just not that easy. That’s why we sell software products because the software doesn’t have nearly as many issues.

David: How do you go through the process then of hiring? Once you recognize it’s important, how do you find talent?

Bobby: Well, I wouldn’t call myself an expert at this point. This is still something that’s we’re constantly working on. What we do, I try to find people who seem like they’re genuinely hard working. I think there is a big difference between work ethic among people.

You can notice it within a few weeks of having them around. Whether they show up at the same time excited to go to work every day or whether they disappear when you need something from them. That’s one of the toughest things to figure out in an interview is how are these people going to pan out once you’re working with them on a day to day basis. Everybody sounds excited when you first talk to them. The best thing you can do is look at their work experience.

We’re constantly trying to hire programmers. That’s really tough because you can look at the quality of their code but it’s just difficult sometimes. Programmers have crazy personalities a lot of times. A lot of them are very introverted and they’re not that expressive in an interview maybe. So it can be tough to find the ones who you really like.

A lot of the things that we’re trying to do now is just get as many applicants into the funnel as possible in the beginning. Then set up some type of test like automated sequences so we can funnel through people and figure out which ones meet the criteria that we need without having to read through hundreds of applications ourselves. That is something that we’re toying around with, automated short question and answer things that people can fill out and scoring them ahead of time so that we can figure out which people we want to interview in person and who we can let go to the wayside.

Everybody has got their own system to try and hire people. Some people like to hire people who they just get along with. Other people have different mentalities.

David: There is a really good book, you probably had it come up in the Mastermind by Brad Smart. Top Grading is definitely worth having a look at. I love that idea you were talking about, almost having a funnel. You tip in as many in up the top as you can and you have levels down almost like hoops you have to jump through.

The A player, the real quality team member is going to take the steps to go through that hiring process whereas usually the people who can’t be bothered or won’t go all the way through, chances are when you hire them, they can’t be bothered and won’t do a good job.

Bobby: That’s definitely true. I have definitely found that the people who really want the job in the beginning can often tend to work a little bit harder. The people who follow up with you, if you don’t get back to them in three or four days and they send a follow-up email or something like that, that often turns out to be somebody who will be a better employee. So I always look for that kind of thing.

David: Were there any other things that you have started to recognize? I think a few key things that have come out, obviously the hiring is really important, making sure that you’re not single source dependent, you’ve got multiple ways that you’re driving traffic to your site. Were there any other things as you’ve been getting involved in business and online business and goring, the aha moments? You look back and say, oh, I wish I had started doing that earlier because that had such a big impact.

Bobby: I think the biggest thing for everyone is just reading a ton. The more you can read, the more books you can get through, I definitely think it’s worth trying to go through speed reading courses and things like that. Go to Amazon and comb through the books that have the most ratings in terms of business books and so on and try to figure out which ones you think will help you out.

A big thing for me also was actually learning copywriting. I think copywriting is the single biggest skill that a lot of business owners could use more education in. Copywriting really teaches you how to connect with a customer and how to figure out what is going on in their mind ahead of time before you just go out and launch a product. It just teaches you all the elements of business I think within one skill set. So I recommend everybody read at least a couple of copywriting books. That’s a big one for me. I think everybody should learn copywriting for sure. Just reading in general.

Another thing that I like to do that I think a lot of people don’t is a lot of people read the newest best sellers that are out in the last year. But I really like reading older books, books that have been time tested and have been around for five, ten years or more. If it’s still popular after that amount of time, then you know it’s probably a really good book. That’s something I like to do to is try to find older books that are still popular. Those usually tend to be the best ones.

David: Then applying what it is that you learn, the actual real world application. You take some of those old ideas and then apply them. We were having a chat just before and we were talking about the application of copywriting in title tags and descriptions. I’m interested to get your thoughts on how and what your methodology is for writing that to try and increase click throughs and why you look at doing that.

Bobby: My favourite copywriting book that I’ve probably gone through, I’ve probably read at least ten in the past year, my favourite is Tested Advertising Methods by John Caples. I think everybody should read that. I have it sitting on my desk right now. What I do is I just go through that. He’s got four chapters where he talks about headlines. There is this one chapter where just he gives you probably at least three hundred sample headlines that you can go through. It shows you the system that he has for developing one.

What I’ll do is I’ll just go through those sample headlines, pick one out that I think matches the offer, matches what the customer is looking for and I’ll just throw something in there. Maybe I’ll customize it a little bit to whatever I think the person is going to do. All you have to do is make sure you’re offering a benefit, that’s the main thing.

A lot of people just write some kind of a headline and they figure if they’re ranked number one for it, that’s good enough. But if you look at certain SERPs too, especially Google results, the most sticky pages that you can never seem to get rid of, especially if you’re doing reputation management for your name or something, there are always these ones that are, oh, is this person a scam or it’s got some kind of a sticky, negative connotation to it or something, those things never seem to disappear for whatever reason. I think it’s because the click through rate on them is just that much higher.

Google says, if the click through rate is huge, then I don’t care how many links are getting built right now because that is a major factor for us is making the searcher happy. So if you apply that to the rest of your headlines and site, think about how can I make headlines that really interest people and get people’s attention.

All the time when you’re trying to rank a page, I think Google gives people a lot of auditions. It will put your page up there on the first page for the results for a couple of days. It will get enough clicks and it will see whether people click on or not. Just how they do with AdWords, they take a look at what your click through rate is and then they change your quality score and all that sort of thing.

They obviously do the same thing for a page. So if you’re not optimizing your headlines, then you’re killing yourself. A lot of people will come to us at Link Emperor, especially and they’ll say, well I can’t get my site to rank. It’s not moving as fast as I want to. Then the next day another person will come to us and say, this is incredible. All my ranks are moving up faster than I’ve ever seen before.

Half the time you’ll take a look at the two people’s sites and one of them is an incredible site and the other one is completely rubbish or one of them is just not really applicable to the keyword that they’re trying to rank for or something like that. So there are a lot of those factors that people miss I think when they’re working in SEO.

Sometimes you just have to take a step back and look at the holistic over view of your business a little more rather than the particular gimmick that you’re trying to make work at the moment. I could talk forever about SEO and business.

David: There are some good little insights there that I think people can take away. I think seeing SEO for what it is is important. Really at the core of it what Google is trying to achieve, they’re looking to serve up the best and most relevant results when the person us searching. They know what they’re searching for, because that is the keyword phrase. So if you are putting something up there that is rubbish, Google’s whole objective is to come up with ways to filter and quantify and qualify what rubbish is and then get it taken out.

So the long term play and the longer vision really is how do we put up the quality content material. That’s really what Google wants to reward anyway. Just by starting at that level, having a good product and service that you believe in and then promoting it in a good way with good quality content, you’re putting yourself head and shoulders above the rest.

Sometimes if you’ve got all the good things in play as well, it enables you to get away with bad links coming to your website or those sorts of things because Google takes an overall picture of what is going on on your website. It’s almost like percentage based. If all you’ve got is all of these rubbish links and the quality of the site is rubbish, Google is going to say, hey, this is rubbish. Whereas if that only makes up a small percentage or you’ve got a few things not quite right, they’ll overlook it because on the balance of the scale, you’ve got a good site.

Bobby: Yes, exactly. That’s absolutely true. Google is all about an algorithm. You can’t say it’s just back links. Sometimes you can have one really powerful back link that will change the game entirely. But that is just one percentage that happens to be really strong in that case.

David: Where do you see things going let’s say in the future with online marketing, with SEO? Are we going to continue to see these sorts of changes? You already talked about marketplaces getting more competitive and you really just have to get smarter because more and more spaces are getting competitive. Where do you see things heading?

Bobby: In general, things are going to continue to get more competitive. You’re going to have more people coming into the space and getting smarter. But I’m also not too concerned about that. If you’re a really serious business owner, it’s the same thing as it always has been. Everybody is competing for the same customers. If you read a lot of books and you do your research, then you’re going to have a better business that appeals to more customers than the next guy, whether or not the technology gets simpler or any of those other things.

I think we’re going to see a lot more individual business owners who are coming online and selling individual niche specific things. I also think in the larger sense there are still only going to be so many people who have the bigger vision to build a larger, more successful company. It’s the people who do their homework the most and work the hardest are going to win out in the end.
Everybody is just moving into a different platform. Things change a little bit. Google is going to continue updating their algorithm, who knows what they’re going to do five years from now. I don’t see them changing off a link based algorithm any time too soon. They’ve been using that for ten years now or more and I think they would have changed by now if they’d wanted to.

You have to realize that Google is a public company. The main thing is they’re just trying to get clicks so that they can make money. If they change anything that is too crazy from the winning recipe that they have, then they’re taking a big risk in terms of losing money that they’re already making.

I think that Google likes to shake things up but I don’t think that Google likes to completely try and reinvent the search game as much as people might think. They’re sitting on a cash cow right now. So long as they can just keep SEOs on their toes a little bit, I don’t think we’re going to see anything too ridiculous changing, unless a competitor comes in with some revolutionary new technology where they have to catch up in some way or another. That will happen at some point, who knows?

David: What are your thoughts then about the things that people are talking about that might be able to shake things up a little bit? Where does social play into the mix and how does that affect things? Also the potential of something like Siri or some sort of voice activated search through mobile. If people can’t be bothered typing out on these little keyboards or something like that and they shift that way? Do you see anything like that disrupting things?

I know Google is embracing that technology anyway and they test it. So as that moves they’ve already got a foot in that camp.

Bobby: Yes, they’re definitely testing that kind of thing. I’m trying to think what your first question was.

David: Where do you think social fits into the mix?

Bobby: Social definitely plays into certain things. But you also have to think that Google doesn’t look at every search the same way. Certain searches are going to be very social affected and others aren’t. If I’m looking for a fact online, social is not going to be important whatsoever. Because what I want is something written in a book somewhere and I don’t care whether my friends have voted up or down. I care what is a reliable source for that fact.

But if I’m searching for something that’s opinion based like the best restaurant in the area or something, then social is going to have a major role in that. So you always have to think about what is the type of search that you’re looking at here. That goes for a lot of other things too.

For instance Google likes to mix up the searches. Certain things are very visual. If you’re looking for a music video type thing, you’re going to see a lot of video results. If you’re looking for, like we said, another fact based question and answer type thing, you might not see any video results because people would rather read it, or maybe you see one because Google wants to show a variety of different modalities to somebody. So there are a lot of different things that are based on the keyword itself you always have to think about. I think that is going to continue to evolve. Certain searches are definitely going to get smarter and others are going to stay somewhat similar.

If you go on to the Siri work, the big thing about Siri is that Apple is trying to find the one right answer for your search. Google always has provided ten results on a page and it is up to you to figure out which one you’re looking for. Again it depends on different searches. If I’m searching for what time is the Yankee’s game tonight or something, then that’s going to have a very easy answer they can provide through Siri.

If I’m searching for best restaurant in Las Vegas, I’m going to want to see ten different people’s opinions on that. So Siri type things come into play for certain searches and that is going to continue to get better. But we’re always going to see a place I think for the ten pack or whatever of a variety of different people’s opinions.

You’ve just got to look at your business. A lot of people don’t think about what is the best result that Google can show for my particular keyword? From there you can usually figure out where the future is eventually going to be headed.

David: Yes and not getting stuck on any one particular method or mode or in one particular type of thinking. I think that’s the biggest thing we all learn with business is just how dynamic it is and how things change. If you don’t change you will get evolved out.

Bobby: Yes, for sure. It’s very zen when you think about it like that. You have to be just open to nothing stays the same. The more years I’ve been involved in business, in the beginning I used to get very frustrated when things would change. I would say, gosh, this used to be automated income that now I have to go back and rework. Eventually you just get used to the fact that nothing stays the same. You’ve always got to be flexible and have a back up strategy for everything. The longer you’re in business, the more comfortable you get with it.

David: Maybe in the tail end, Bobby, if people want to keep an eye on what you’re up to, and find out a little bit more, obviously, check out linkemperor.com. Is there anywhere else they should go to keep an eye on you?

Bobby: I’ve gone back and forth with the idea of starting a blog or something but I haven’t really done anything like that. We actually have a site gangsterprofit.com where a couple of years ago we made a bunch of podcasts. So if you want to listen to the podcasts that Kevin and I made a few years ago, that might be entertaining. Besides that I’m not sure.

David: Alright, there are a couple of different options. It was gangsterprofit.com.

Bobby: Those are pretty fun.

David: Cool. Maybe we’ll wrap it up there. I really appreciate your time Bobby. It’s always good to chat with someone else who’s got a good business mind and bounce some things around. I’m sure the people listening in would have taken something from it. So thank you very much.

Bobby: Awesome. Thanks a lot Dave.


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