An Open Letter To My Former Self

“If I knew then what I know now…” is something we’ve probably all at some point said.

As I made the transition from recruitment extraordinaire to successful digital marketer it is 100% a phrase I have used several times a day!

Yes I’m successful – my clients win daily – but I’m a huge advocate of #alwaysbelearning. I think that’s where a load of people typically go wrong. They get comfortable, complacent even.

“Recruitment? Invented it mate!”….but you didn’t. And you certainly are not RE-inventing it!

What you CAN do is think more outside of that old skool, KPI heavy box. That mind set does sweet FA to differentiate between you and most every other firm out there.

I’m talking utilising that wonderful thing called the internet.

As traditional print advertising (who?!) continues to slump off to the recess, recruitment digital marketing HAS to be a fundamental part of your sustainability or (preferably) growth plans.

Yes it’s fair to say that back when I started out recruiting the whole digital marketing thing was like a dark art black magic kinda thing, social media wasn’t about, and we had to do things the old way (the only way at that time!). So I guess it’s less a “if I’d have known then…” situation, more of a if I was starting out now situation.

I’m going to go ahead and stick my neck on the line and say recruiters these days have never had it so easy! There, I said it.

Newbies will never know the hardship of the good days when phone was king and social networking was taking clients out to strip clubs!

Where they absolutely do have the upper hand is online marketing. These younger recruiters have often time grown up with an iPod or iPad (other handheld devices are available) in their hands and using it and social media are second nature, they don’t even have to think about it.

Of course it’s not all about those just entering the profession.

Established firms and solos also have the same toolkit available to them and it’s great to see so many agencies getting involved and being present cross platform.

With all of the tech out there and the growing use of AI (artificial intelligence – a post on this coming soon) there has never been a better, easier an more effective time to be a recruiter.

If your agency is just starting to click in – kudos – but you need to ramp it up.

If you work for a firm who won’t or isn’t able to adapt – GET OUT. Controversial? Perhaps. But you’re in recruitment to make paper right? See the pound or dollar signs? I’m here to tell you that isn’t going to happen if the people you work for refuse to adapt. Their agency will die and you’ll end up having to go elsewhere anyway!

Gen Z are here and studies support the fact that they are the most tech reliant, relationship-centric group of people on the planet.

This generation IS the future of the Labour market. If you don’t operate in a way that is wholly congruent with their workings, they’ll just partner with a firm does.

The implications of a non-digital, non-social strategy are wide reaching. I bet you don’t use a roller-deck anymore – so why aren’t you utilising digital?

So, back to the context of the title of this post…

If I was starting out now, I would 1000% have a well thought out, well researched, expertly executed digital marketing strategy from the get go.

It would be my main consideration. I would create a personable approach and market myself as the brand, not the firm I worked for.

I would be savvy, and keep up with not just the most recent recruitment trends, but also social media marketing trends, the latest SEO tips, how to dominate PPC and how to do basic web development.

Then I’d realise there literally not enough hours in the day – so I’d definitely partner with someone like my current self, someone who knows recruiting and digital marketing. If he could dance he’d be a triple threat!

If you know someone who needs to see this hit share.

Happy to answer any questions, drop me a line at

Thanks for reading!


5 Tips To Optimise Your Position in Search Engines

I wanted to share these 5 simple tips here with you because very few recruiters understand what SEO is, what the basic optimisation techniques are and why it is critical to use them.

What is SEO?

So, what us this SEO thing?? Search Engine Optimisation is nothing more than a set of techniques that can optimise the natural or “organic” position of a website on search engines. The objective here is to position or index the site in the search engines according to certain keywords corresponding to the main themes of the site in question.

 For example, for the REC it would have a good positioning for keywords such as “recruitment”, “recruitment qualifications” and long tail keywords such as “how to start a recruitment agency”.

 By natural or organic ranking, I mean the search results that are displayed naturally by the search engine not the sponsored links which is located most of the time at the top or on the right of the screen (PPC etc).

 Once you understand the concept of SEO, it’s important to know how these optimisation techniques can help your business perform better according to your specific goals. My clients’ goals are always one four aims, most often a mix of goals; increased revenues; reduced overall marketing spend; saving time; and/or improving their brand awareness. So that in mind, what are the benefits of investing in SEO services for your business?

 How to use SEO techniques to help your business perform better!

 What are the benefits of investing in SEO for your business? (SEO is hands-down an investment NOT a ball ache expense!).

 Knowing that 90% ish of Internet users use a search engine to find products and services they need, you can easily understand why effective SEO is important to generating leads and extra deals.

 According to a marketers in the know, 91% of Internet users would only consult the first page of search results. This drops to around 5% for the 2nd page of results, to around 2% for the first 3 pages and only combined 3% for 3 pages and more.

 You can see the how important it is for your site to be in a page 1 position for your chosen keywords. Choosing keywords is vital, but that’s a different conversation for a different day – the secret is in the competitor analysis!!

 So, what steps can YOU take to start rubbing Google’s belly to start recognising you and your site as a player in your chosen field?

 ­­­­5 SEO Tips To Optimise Your Search Engine Positioning

So let’s check out the 5 SEO tips that will help you better index your site in the search engines.

 DISCLAIMER – SEO is a fairly complex and evolving discipline so this is far from being a comprehensive guide!

 These 5 techniques can help you make a few small changes to your site so that it is better positioned in the engines. SEO takes time to show traction, this we (should) already know, and these 5 techniques are a tiny part of technical SEO. So don’t expect page 1 results (unless you’re already there), but it’s a start!

No alt text provided for this image

 1. Structure your URLs correctly

 My first tip is to make sure the URLs of your site are structured so that the search engine robots index them more quickly and easily.

 I see this ALL the time – This is incorrect structurally.

 2. Rewrite your URLs

 The above URL doesn’t help the indexing of your pages in the search engines. It’s better to write your URLs by using your page’s title or very specific and relevant keywords to the very content of your page such as:

 So, Google will understand that this is a page about retained search services and search engines will index your pages more easily. You can use a Mod rewrite module to optimize the writing of your URLs easily or if you use a CMS (WordPress, Joomla, Drupal etc.), you can just look in settings/permalink to change the URL of the pages from numbers/dates to page names/categories etc.

 3. Add content and update your site frequently

 You’ve heard this loads no doubt: “Content is King”, I’m guilty as charged for throwing that phrase around like a rag doll! But it is an easy win when improving the indexing of your site.

 The more often your site is updated, the more search engines will tend to index it to a higher level. In fact, search engines value new content more than content that has not been changed in a long time, so you’ll benefit from updating your site frequently.

 Don’t get it twisted, I’m not just talking about blogging. A major mistake literally 90% of recruiters I talk to are making – not updating/removing jobs on their jobs page. If it’s filled – bin it. If it’s been live for a long time, refresh it. Trust me. Also – don’t forget to add blog posts at the very LEAST every 2 weeks. If you’re stuck for time/inspiration – click me!

 4. Avoid duplication of content

 Avoid duplicating your content. Search engines penalise sites that have duplicated content. It’s important to make sure that you don’t have two identical pages for example, on your old domain and your new domain name or two duplicate blog posts or job postings – even if the URL for both is different.

 5. Make sure you have quality links pointing to your site.

 I’ve said this before and will continue to do so “not all links are created equal!”

 The old belief system was that the more links you have linking to your domain from another domain then the better off you will be in the SERPS (search engine results pages) is defunct. Like most things, quality presides over quantity.

 Look for certain metrics on a site you want a link from; age of the domain name; the credibility of the site in the search engines; its page rank; trust score; and citation score.

No alt text provided for this image

 Remember this: SEO is a VITAL part of your marketing strategy. You might think that you don’t need to invest it in now as all your works come from existing clients etc, referrals…so on. Great, all it takes is for one or two of those clients to fall out with you or find someone better and BOOM, you’re on your way to being on your arse.

Bearing in mind SEO takes typical 3-6 months to begin to be effective, the best time to future protect yourself is now.

As always, happy to answer any questions so drop me an EMAIL or give me a call on 07486 571 264.

Don’t Make These Rookie SEO Mistakes.

SEO… you may have attempted it already, or at least considered it, and if that’s the case there’s no doubt you’ve read a few things around the subject. I see this all the time as an SEO for the recruitment sector; clients who have a vision to increase their website rankings in Google, but have read dodgy materials on “what is the best SEO strategy” or something similar!

The problem (as always – there’s a problem!) is that a lot of this information my clients read is misleading, some is even bad SEO practice. So invariably, they’ve picked up one or two bad habits!

This post concerns a flip on “how to do SEO”, we’re going to look at what SEO is not!

SEO isn’t about finding yourself!

Why would you WANT to rank for your own business name? You know what it is. I know what it is, everyone that knows you – knows your business name, and that’s all well and good, it’s called the “known market” and I bang on about it all the time in my video audits to clients.

In order to grow, you need more business. More new business. More business is brought by more clients and candidates and THOSE clients and candidates likely don’t know of your agency so won’t search for it by name.

Trying to optimise your site to be picked up for your business name is a waste of time and sweat equity – you could use that time and effort to optimise for a more effective keyword or keyword phrase.

SEO for recruitment isn’t about stroking your ego. “Look at me I’m top of Google!”, well done! Are you going to pay yourself a 5-figure fee? Erm….

SEO isn’t a one-off event!

“I want to be top of Google!” is something I hear all…the…time.

I can’t really blame clients for making this statement, after all, it’s the ultimate aim of the SEO game, but it’s a big ask. You might say that I’m shooting myself here, but let’s be realistic. I can’t, and won’t make promises like that. I guarantee my work, and guarantee to improve metrics, which if done correctly can and will have a positive impact on SERP results.

But be wary, of dodgy “marketers” promising you map pack positions or 1st place rankings.

Organic, white hat recruitment SEO isn’t a one off thing. Search engines are too dynamic and you might get to position 1, but it won’t last and you’ll probably get penalised.

Honesty is the best policy and transparency is my mantra, so I’ll tell you for real, I can do all I can to potentially get you to where you want to be. But it’s not a one off, it is continuous, consistent effort, required I’m going monitoring and working.

It doesn’t replace the good old phone.

Recruitment is a hugely personal business which requires human interaction. As I’ve said in previous posts, and you know yourself, people buy from people, so once you’ve attracted clients or candidates through using recruitment focused SEO, connect your prospects.

You can automate all but a few if your processes using technology, but it’s difficult to sell a role or sell a candidate without a human touch. SEO is not, and should never be a substitute for reaching out to people – it should act in conjunction with your day to day activity. If you think otherwise you’re wrong.

Improving your metrics and rankings unfortunately doesn’t come with any short cuts.

Successful recruitment SEO is a commitment from you and from me, to the process of doing SEO properly and the objectives we’re trying to achieve.

We’re on the same team you and I, unlike Recruiters and HR!! (Haha)

If you know someone who needs to see this hit share and tell your friends.

If you want to book a 15 min call to thrash out some ideas, hit this link!