Why I no longer run a search marketing agency

If it were exclusively up to me, I would still be the President of Evolve Digital Labs, a premier search marketing agency. The one I started and helped build. From one person to fourteen amazing people.

But we do not always get to choose what happens personally or professionally. So true to our name, change is expected and inevitable.

Today, I lead an organization focused on online growth and digital innovation.

If the accepted science is correct, and we do completely shed ourselves inside and out every seven years, then the change is appropriate. I am no longer interested in decoding an algorithm. I know that success is not found in search engine rankings alone. Keywords have never been as simple as a data point. It is not enough to focus on lead generation. Instead, I want to lead this generation of change. As blue collars dissipate and the starkness of white collars unforthcoming, a new assembly line and asset management is needed. I have been challenged and changed by those with whom I share an illustrious responsibility and connection.

Now, the focus is on the consumers of the world and their needs. Empowering the customer through data and search is the beginning.

Yes, search. Search is a consumer centric channel. The consumer vehicle four out of five online sessions include. Search is more than Google and Google is more than search. Google is an innovation platform. They redefined how we hear the voice of the customer. The outcome is their focus. The value comes to the consumer and the business through behavior, not descriptions. We do not only understand it, we embrace and promote it.

We will continue to help companies be found. We will continue to connect our clients with the right customer and the customer with the power to get the job done. We do not relinquish our rights nor refute the need to improve a brand’s digital assets. Yes we mine keywords, we use the data of the consumer online provide by search & social giants. The change is how we evaluate the market and select the customer and the confidence in what is necessary to invest.

  • There is a need to deliver a marketplace assessment a online. 
  • There is a need to build a strategic framework for profitable and scalable growth. 
  • There is a need to improve and innovate the results of a consumers experience online. 

Evolve Digital Labs is proving the value of a new model for growth online. I stand proudly on the backs of the brilliant and dedicated people who built a new meaning to our name. It is through our superior people and process that we have leveraged technology to provide services that far exceed those of a search marketing company.

I am one of the lucky ones. I wake up feeling privileged and I fall asleep from mental exhaustion, because every day I am challenged by the people around me and the problems we are paid to solve. The work, to me, is necessary. It fills my heart and keeps it beating while my children attend school and my wife improves the world one trialed family and adolescent at a time. The connection I feel to my professional responsibilities, my staff, clients and partners amazes me.

To all involved, thank you and welcome.

Ben Cook Joins Team Evolve

We are pleased to tell you about the newest addition to our growing team. Ben Cook is our new Director of Organic Channels, and his role here will involve working heavily in the Strategy and Growth stages for clients.

Tell us a little about your background.

I started in Internet Marketing almost a decade ago (wow that makes me feel old). I quickly realized that this career path offered me a lot more opportunities than the history degree I was pursuing and ended up dropping out. I started out in-house with smaller companies, moved over to Network Solutions where I was the SEO manager and then formed my own boutique agency Direct Match Media. After 3 years of running that, Derek talked me into joining the team.

What’s your favorite web site?

Twitter is pretty great but that seems like a cop-out answer. My favorite single site would probably have to be ThingsMyGirlfriendAndIHaveArguedAbout.com although itas no longer updated and is now simply mil-millington.com. XKCD.com is pretty great too.

On a given weekend, you’ll probably be:

Watching the Cardinals or Blues, BBQing, and generally spending time with my wife.

What draws you to this industry?

Marketing as a whole is kind of like mind-control which seems cool. Internet marketing, specifically SEO, is an ever changing puzzle which really appeals to me. I also like that the web gives anyone and everyone a platform.

Mac or PC?

Definitely Mac.

What’s the last book you read?

For fun: The Man Who Smiled by Henning Mankell
For work: Brainfluence by Roger Dooley

If you could have a beverage with anyone in the world, who would it be?

Past: My Grandpa Cook
Present: The President

Let’s say we assign you Office DJ duty (and that day will come). What 3 artists would you be sure to play?

- The Postal Service
– Really been a big fan of Imagine Dragons lately
– And then I’d probably go with something a bit older like Jethro Tull
– Oh, totally forgot They Might Be Giants! Iad probably play them too (that’s 4 but rules are made to be broken).

Is there anything you want us to know about you?

Nothing that I can think of off the top of my head. I’m a pretty wide open book and tell it like it is (or at least how I see it).

With the addition of Ben to the team, we are excited to continue refining the way we strategize and deliver success for our clients. Ben’s extraordinary knowledge and experience in organic growth will positively impact our clients and personal brand. Find Ben on LinkedIn and Twitter.

He will be speaking about Content Distribution next week at PubCon New Orleans, so make sure to tune into the #PubCon hashtag on Tuesday afternoon to follow the presentation.