Whiskey, SEO, and More: A Spirited Conversation with Michael Rayburn

In part 1 of this episode of Local SEO Tactics, Jesse is joined by Michael Rayburn of SEO DC, for lively discussion about various topics, including whiskey tastings, the importance of automated link building, Google profile links and user signals, and press releases. Get ready to clink glasses with some seasoned SEOs as they share the latest and greatest in the industry news! Tune in and join the fun.

What You’ll Learn

  • Why using automated link building techniques like GSA can enhance impact, ultimately maximizing SEO results
  • How sharing profiles and generating user-generated signals can contribute to improved search engine visibility and overall online presence
  • What cost-effective strategies can help SEO professionals and business owners succeed in an ever-evolving digital landscape
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Jesse: Welcome back to Local SEO Tactics, where we bring you tips and tricks to get found online. I’m your host. Jesse Dolan Got a really cool episode for you here today. We have Michael Rayburn back. Michael was on on episode 201 a little while back talking about user-generated signals, google in general, your website, gdp-related signals and trickery, and we’ve got Michael on again here today.

This is a fun episode. We’re going to start off I’ll be deterred, stick with a little bit. We’re going to talk some bourbon and some whiskey for a little bit, reminisce on a few things, and then we dive into a little bit more SEO-related topics and we’re actually going to break this one into two episodes. Michael and I talked for almost two hours, so we’re going to cut this down to part one and a part two. Stick with it. Michael drops a ton of nuggets. There’s some stuff that’s very obvious. There’s some things that we’ll be back to and dive a little bit deeper in, but just some great information, great conversation. I think you’re going to have a lot of fun, learn a lot of things. Check it out with Michael Rayburn. So I did All right, let’s show you what I got here. So this is the focus Same thing, but the bourbon one. You can see it’s a household favorite. I got about half left here, yeah.

Michael: So I know you said that I had to save some, but I have a belief that if somebody gives you a gift, and whether you’re going to like meet online or you’re going to meet in person, that you don’t open it until you’re with that person, right?

Jesse: Right on.

Michael: And because I’m a whiskey guy, I probably have 20 different bottles of whiskey in the house anyway, so it’s not like it was putting me out, but yeah. So I’m super excited to try this. So, like I said, like I was showing you, I brought my whistle pig Taster sampler glass so that way I could drink it neat.

Jesse: It’s official.

Michael: Yeah, and then take a smell and taste and everything, because obviously I prefer old fashions, but you miss some of the notes when you mix in other things.

Jesse: I just wanted to give it the little Michael for everybody tuning in. Maybe if they’re expecting some SEO juice right off the bat here, then you can be a little disappointed in this episode. But so obviously we’ve chatted before Okay, Michael Rabern on local SEO tactics. So here we go, right, we jumped right in. We’re talking whiskey. You’ve been on before, Michael, we’ve hung out. I know you like whiskey, we’ve talked about it, so I sent you a bottle right in advance.

Michael: And I can’t thank you. I’m very kind of you.

Jesse: Don’t mention it at all. Happy to do so. So you have wild turkey rare breed rye, Right. What is the proof on that? What does it say I forget on the bottle, I don’t know it’s a proofy.

Michael: Yeah, it’s 112.2%, so it’s not terrible.

Jesse: Yeah.

Michael: Right, because some overproofs are 60%, like one. One time it was 64. And that will make your eyes water.

Jesse: But it’s getting up there, though, for you Right Good way to start off your middle of the day Friday here.

So you’ve got the rye, because I know you’re a rye guy, so I hope you’re going to like this. I’ve got for everybody else here on my end because I’m not going to let you drink alone. I’m not that kind of a friend, Michael, let me join you. Wild turkey, rare breed, also barrel proof. What is mine? Yeah, 116.9%. But this is the bourbon Right. I’m the bourbon guy, a bourbon guy. I do like the rise as well, but I know you like those specifically, so I wanted to get that at you. I’m going to pour some myself here too, but I’d love to hear what you have you ever had this before? This is your first time trying a wild turkey.

Michael: So let me tell you why, right, and so I am anxious to try it because you said it’s good, so I’m going to. I want to try, yep. So, as you know, I was a soldier. For those that don’t know, that’s was my first like real adult job and I spent time in special operations, and so you get these guys.

That’ll be like oh yeah, you know, I like wild turkey and I like wild turkey this, and you know how wild turkey’s got different things and and it was always for the straight purpose of I’m just going to go get drunk type of stuff. And so after hearing that about wild turkey so many times, I just never gravitated towards it, because to me it was like you know, I’m going to go drink the cardy 101. You know what I mean. It’s a simple fact of. So when you, you were like it’s one of my favorites and so I sent you the rights I know you like rye I was like, oh okay, so I never really thought about like the other ones.

It’s kind of like when people tell me they like Jack Daniels, like I never stick my nose up at it because I realized that everybody has what they like right, like whether they like Jim Beam or Jack Daniels or bullet or whatever. It’s great. Like I have a friend that makes a lot of money. He likes actually likes Janus and a whole lot and quite frankly, janus in actually makes it really decent. Old fashioned it’s not what I want to drink straight, but you know, in an old fashioned it’s actually really good. But yeah, so I’m super excited, so I’m going to shut my mouth for a minute so that way I can go ahead and take a taste of this and see how it goes and I got a little story I’m going to share with people as you’re enjoying that.

Jesse: I think the wild turkey brand is interesting. I don’t know if I’m a hundred percent factual here. I’m not the biggest whiskey buff in the world, but if I understand it correctly, like if you go in the store and you get the wild turkey 101, that’s kind of like the original wild turkey but in the 80s, like everybody started liking vodka and stuff and you know your grandpa’s whiskey kind of fell out of favor so they toned it down. They’re like 80 proof and under and that’s the current wild turkey. So if you drink the wild turkey 101, that’s like the legit classic wild turkey bourbon. To your point. It’s got that stigma of you know cheap, you know old crow, you know old granddad, just these cheap, cheap whiskies. What’s your? Yeah, wild turkey 101 is cheap, but the juice you got there and the stuff that I got here is definitely a step up. It’s kind of the best of what the wild turkey brand has to offer and I’m adding too bad, no, it’s what do you think?

Michael: I like it. It goes down super smooth and then you feel it like become warm, coming right back up, which is kind of cool. Have you ever had Kentucky Owl?

Jesse: No, not yet. I haven’t Nope.

Michael: I would suggest you get it. If you start getting the Kentucky Owl that has a little bit of age to it, they usually started like so this is going to show that I can get snobby, so I apologize in advance. They usually started about $150 a bottle, right.

And then they go all the way up to four or five, six hundred dollars a bottle and it’s something that I like to buy and then I’ll put away.

And what I actually do is I stick it in the freezer, which everybody who loves whiskey freaks out about. But I like it cold and I don’t want to dilute this with ice. So if I stick it in the freezer I get the cold without the dilution and I know that it suppresses some of the flavors. But what happens is you shoot it and you’re like, oh man, what percent is that? And then you go oh man, I feel it in the throat, right, because it’s cold. It goes down like water, but with all the nice whiskey flavors, and then, like two, three seconds later, you feel the warmth of the alcohol come right back up and you get the hugs right off. Yeah, and it’s always funny, like when my son brings his girlfriend over or something. She likes most of the whiskey that I like as well, and so watching her reaction always makes me laugh, because you know, everybody feels it, but she’s very dramatic when it comes to her expressions that way.

So it adds a good chuckle to the day.

Jesse: I like that tip too. I mean, I’m one of those people that’s like. You drink it however. You want to drink it, right? You want it on the rocks, you like it cold, it don’t matter. Put some coke in there, man, you do whatever you want to do. Now, if you got some high end stuff 500 bucks a bottle, 18 years old, whatever, whatever I might challenge you to maybe try it a little bit neat first before you throw the coke in it. But if you bought that and it’s yours, yeah, enjoy it, however you want.

Michael: I look at it like this how much is Papi’s a bottle? Yeah, thousands. Yeah, right, like at least $12 or $1300 a bottle, right, you know, the guy who made that drank it with ginger ale, right. So when I hear people tell me, well, what you made is not an old fashioned because it’s a spin on an old fashioned, or they’ll tell me, oh, you made it with what that’s disgusting, right, that’s not an old fashioned because it’s not just simple syrup, bitters and a couple cherries and you stir it, right. Or, if you, technically it’s one sugar cube crushed into the. So even using simple syrup would technically change the recipe. But the reality is it’s just a play on the recipe, right, like we don’t eat tacos the same way every single time. We make variations to it.

So the other day I think you saw it I made a coffee old fashioned. Because my neighbor said, oh, I saw an espresso old fashioned and I was like, oh, let’s be really interesting, I like coffee, like espresso martinis, so let me try to make that. And I made it with Jamison. Actually makes. They do limited run every year, but they make a coffee Jamison. So I did two ounces of espresso, two and a half ounces of Jamison, a couple dashes of bitters, and because the Jamison has a little bit of sweetener in it already, so it’s, I think, only like 30% alcohol or something, so not even quite the 40%. I didn’t want to add anything sweeter to it, because then it would just be like trying to eat a chocolate cake or a coffee cake, almost yeah. And so I had that and it was great. I will say that I feel like by us doing this, you’re stealing an idea that I had where I want to create a podcast called Drunk SEO, right, and so I kind of feel like you’re stealing my idea, just for the record there.

Jesse: You know, this is just one glass of whiskey. Seo, Michael, like we’re not. We’re not going to be drunk by the end here. So you run with that show and you let me know when you’re taking interviews for that show as well, too, cause I’m going to jump on that thing with you.

Michael: Yeah, I think it’ll be fun because, like a, it’ll be funny where it kind of I want to do it on Fridays, you know, like a three or four o’clock on a Friday, that way it’s towards the end of the day and I want to do it in a video, podcast format, so where people can watch it on YouTube but then they can also download the. The podcast and really where it came from, was when you had said, well, you should come on again, but next time we’ll have some whiskey, I thought one of my favorite shows and here’s a funny story with it, and then we can start talking some SEO, so that way we don’t drive everybody crazy. But one of my favorite things to do is, like, I like to watch drunk history. But the rule in the house is you have to have at least two drinks before you can turn it on, right, so you don’t have to be like crocked or anything like that, but you got to let you kind of loosen up, right, because if you watch drunk, if you watch drunk history and you’ve had a bad week and you want to watch it because you’re, you want to laugh, right, because people say stupid things when they’re drunk You’re just gonna look at it and go. That’s stupid, right, because you’re in a crappy mood.

But if you have a couple drinks and I mean it doesn’t have to be like, you know, like whiskey, glass bowl of over-proof whiskey, two of those that’d be just like ridiculous but just a couple drinks. It could be mixed drinks, it could be a glass of wine, if that’s what your thing is right Then you watch it, the behaviors and some of the things that people say, because they’ll snort in the middle of it or whatever. You start to laugh and you really enjoy yourself and it just it releases those endorphins and it just makes the rest of the. You can go into your weekend and feel better, right, and so like, I even watched some of these episodes with my mother when she came out to visit one time. Like we had, we were drinking and I was like wait a minute, you know what we have to do.

We have to turn on drunk history, right, you know, and it sounds stupid, but we had the best time and I was in Oregon visiting her a month ago and when I was spending some time with her, I was like, didn’t we have the best time when you came out last time and then we had some drinks and we watched drunk history and she was like it was the best.

And I think that everybody should do something like that with their parents at some point and just to have, like those bonding moments, right, because whether it’s SEO or whether it’s you’re running a business, it gets pretty stressful, but you gotta have some. You know, it’s like why we talked about like, yes, I have season tickets to the Wizards and that’s why I go to those games, even though there’s a lot of them, and it’s a serious commitment Because there’s 42 games plus we have two pre-season games, but it’s because it lets me blow off steam and it lets me be like that little kid all over again, and I think it’s important for healthcare, like self-care, to be able to do that stuff.

Jesse: Yes, you know, it’s the experiences doing the different things with your mind. Like you said, end of the week towards the end of the day on a Friday I mean this is why they call it happy hour, right, like, do something else, change of pace a little bit, you know, loosen up. I think too, that’s what keeps you, you know, young overall, right, and like, interesting, like, if you do the same thing over and over and over, you don’t give yourself a chance to take a mental break or do something enjoyable. I mean, then you’re just all of a sudden like I’m into the next week already, right. So, yeah, I think you’re on to a good idea. Like I said, you reserve a spot on that panel for me.

Michael: I’ll bring my own bourbon too, so you don’t have to worry about that one, Since you sent me some, you know I’m definitely gonna send you some, so that’s just and I could just for the record, I can’t wait to meet up with you at spring training this year coming up, are you gonna be there a little bit early?

Jesse: I don’t know yet. That’s I am bad at operating out into the future that far. So exact timelines still kind of fuzzy. But yeah, it’ll be fun to connect and hang out and, of course, learn stuff and plug for everybody too. Right, coming up next spring recording this, you know, late summer 2023, early fall In the springtime down in Phoenix, seo spring training put on by Terry Samuels and his wife, elizabeth Awesome event. Yeah, check it out. Stay tuned for everybody else if you’re wanting to check something out.

Hey, everyone, thanks for checking out this episode. Wanted to share a review with you here. Sorry for the quick interruption. Did wanna mention if you haven’t left us a review yet. We’d love to hear from you. This is how we know the show is doing good for you, providing good value, and we’re providing good content. Give us a shout out and go at thelocalseotachicscom. Click the button for reviews there. We’re gonna provide all the links to Facebook, apple, google, anywhere that you can leave a review. We should have it listed and we would really appreciate it.

Here. I’m gonna read a review today from Awaken. The Self Review says great for local business owners. Thank you so much for doing this podcast. I’ve just started listening in the past couple of weeks and I’ve already learned so much. I look forward to adding this podcast into my repertoire so that I can become more of an SEO expert to build my business. I love that the level of difficulty is easy enough for a beginner to understand and also advanced enough for an SEO veteran to still find new things to learn. Keep up the great work. Thank you very much for that review. Love hearing that that really resonates with what we’re trying to do for the show and I hope that resonates with everybody else listening for the spirit of what we’re trying to provide. We’d love to hear from you localseotachicscom. Click the button for reviews.

Michael: Thanks and I don’t wanna step on anybody else’s toes that puts on events, but truthfully, in my opinion, like you, I’ve been doing SEO for a long time, I’ve gone to a lot of masterminds, I’ve gone to a few large events and I can honestly tell you that the SEO Spring Training is like the cream of the crop when it comes to the amount of people that come together and the variation from low through like beyond amazing SEOs that are out there. I know that this is a local one, but when you have people like Clint Butler there, like realistically in the United States for national campaigns, he definitely is in the top three, not 3% top three of SEO, right, and those top three, you can turn around and flip a coin every day for who’s better today? But those guys blow the doors off of almost everybody because they work in some of the most complicated niches there are, and so when you have the ability to just walk up to him, introduce yourself and say, hey, do you have a minute or can I buy you a drink because I really have a problem with something and I’d like just to get an opinion. I’m not asking you to do it for me, I’m not asking you that I just have. I need an opinion on this. And the people that are there minus one, minus one or two right are so humble that 99% of the time they say, yeah, maybe I can’t right now, maybe, but I can in an hour, or meet me here in an hour or two right, or I can’t today but let’s do it tomorrow. But the 99% of people will meet with you.

It just maybe not be that second right and like you can’t get around it, you start walking into some of these other groups and then you have people with like chips on their shoulders and like, pardon my language, but they’re like my shit doesn’t stink. So to be able to be in a group where you have people like that, where you have people like yourself or myself, that we work in some complicated local SEO and we’re always focused on solving those problems, right, so that way when we run into them again, we can solve them quickly and it doesn’t really like it might take a little while, because the medicine for it takes awhile to kick in and show the results, but we know what to do. And, like you, just don’t run into that every day. And not to mention the networking that happens and like we met at events, you know, and because of that, look, we’re hanging out now.

Jesse: We’re gonna put you on a Friday afternoon. Record it for the masses. No, I think that’s the part I do like about the spring training is there’s the traditional conference part where you’re getting speakers, you’re getting education in a scheduled and programmed way, but then be at the happy hours, the after hours, all these other things are just walking up to somebody in the hallway or the courtyard that you saw how approachable everybody is in that networking. And then the Samuels too, like the curated people there, the VIP, the speakers and everything else, choosing the right crowd to have it. Be that way too.

Michael: Yeah, this is not a big commercial for them, even though it sounds like it here but solid events fun events and yeah, I mean, I was invited to go speak at an event in Florida and not too long and.

I don’t wanna name names because I had to politely decline, but I would have liked to. It was just I had too much on my plate. It would be I would go to an event, come home for two days, go do that event, stay two days longer and then I’m going to see Tony Robbins in Texas. It’d be like three days after that. So it was just too much right, and I would have liked to have gone to it, but it just didn’t work out and I’ve not been to any of those particular events. So it would have been interesting to see how they run things and not that I want to hold in a large event because I have no desire to do that, but it’s always interesting, like you said, to go to those different events and see who’s there.

And is it somebody that’s an unknown, but they’re on point for their SEO right, because we have people. This is what’s really interesting In our field. We have people that are these unknown entities that are absolutely wicked Like. They just look at SEO and everything just clicks and makes sense to them, but they’re not the people you know. They’re not Craig Campbell that’s on YouTube every single day. So most people don’t even know.

Jesse: And you’re not going to pick their brain by assuming their content because they’re not putting that out there, because they’re not sure you got to get there in person and talk to people, yep, so no, you’re right. That’s how you find the geniuses Not everybody’s dumb enough to put their face and voice out there for the masses like this, right? Yeah, it’s a little bit risky, you know. You got to want to commit to it and that’s, you know, the mastermind versus the conference, if you will, right, I think, when people use that mastermind tag on there, you have to have these elements that we’re talking. And, yeah, you need some great people like yourself. Have some great discussions, learn a lot of stuff. It’s always good to invest in yourself, especially our industry, seo always changing. If you’re not learning, you’re falling behind. I mean, that’s just a fact.

Michael: So you got to see on top of it, right, it is right, like Terry had, any event, and you know, looking back, I should have done it, so you know if he does it again basically he did all the on page stuff and and Terry’s on page is pretty spectacular.

So you know like realistically. So you talk about investing yourself. So this is a great example. You know most people. What holds them back is they look at a dollar amount and they think about how much does something cost and not what they’re going to get out of it, and having that fear holds you back in business, no matter what you do. It doesn’t matter if you’re a roofer, it doesn’t matter if you’re an SEO. So for me there’s something going on where it was more of a time conflict. But I definitely hope he does it again. And yeah, I know it was something like $5,000, but to just make sure to kind of go over your processes again with somebody that is at that level, really like, even if you don’t use every single step, right, yeah, In the business world, what’s really five grand in the scheme of things? Like, truthfully, what is $5,000?

Jesse: If it’s going to give you some ROI too right, let alone if it was just a straight expense. You know especially.

Michael: Right, you know, I mean realistically, by the time my wife and I go out to spring training, we pay for two tickets, you know, we buy food, we do whatever. We’ll probably be pretty close to that by the time it’s all said and done, because I’m sure we’ll go out and stay a couple days later and she’s already talking about wanting to spend some time in Sedona. So I’m sure that we’ll spend that right and granted, I’ll get something out of it. But if I’m willing to spend it for that, then it makes sense that I’d be willing to spend it if Terry does that event again. And yeah, yeah. So to for people to balk at price when it comes to things like that, to me, what it tells me is that they’re just mentally not ready yet for that growth.

Jesse: Sure, yeah, because you have to be. You have to be looking at what you’re going to do with that right. And, to your point, if that’s a, that’s a nothing, or you’re mentally just not there, yeah, that’s how it’s going to come off.

Michael: Yeah, and it works for SEO too. Right, because if you don’t go to these events because they cost money, because I think SEO spring training is I don’t know, like 1500 bucks or something, I think maybe that’s the entry level, I don’t remember, but like plus or minus with that, and then, yeah, you got to pay for your hotel and your plane ticket if you’re not from the area and food and everything else. But again, it’s, it’s what you get out of it. And as silly as it sounds like in the bar having some drinks with people, all of a sudden things start to open up and drinks have a way of having people kind of not be so guarded with information. And if you’re paying attention, you can get so much out of it. You could go to two events and learn more from that than if you were to go find who’s one of the best local SEO people that’s teaching a course and spend that same money with them.

Jesse: There’s a lot of truth to that. Everybody always jokes, you know. You learn at the conference, you know. But then you learn at the bar afterwards, right? Or the happy hour afterwards, and not that it has to involve alcohol, but just that. Let your guard down and just really start talking as people and sort of you know putting on the costume, you know of the presentation, you feel things like that. Yeah, All right. So people are listening. They didn’t just see that, Michael, I just want to pause right there. So you switched. You’re now drinking an old fashioned. You’re done with your straight ride, you know, out of the old fashioned, just to keep everybody up to date with what’s happening here.

Michael: So I did.

Jesse: What did you mix in there? I know you are in a fishing auto or the old fashioned side to make that one.

Michael: Okay, so this was what I refer to as a summer fashion. Okay, so it’s got a Contro in it which is like an orange flavor and bitters and the wild turkey river Nice. A little bit of ice.

Jesse: Out as a taste.

Michael: Yeah, fantastic. I’m not a super sweet drink person, so that’s why I don’t add the extra sugar stuff to it, because if I had the Contro, it’s a liqueur, it’s already sweet, adding more makes it just over the top. So I learned and I introduced you to what I refer to as a new fashion right Like I like to put spins on things, and that’s when we take a little bit of Amaretto. They had whistle pig 10 year, if I remember right at the place we were at.

So we were drinking whistle pig and they put a splash of Amaretto in it and then made it like a normal old fashion, which gave it a slightly different flavor profile.

: No, it is good and, like I said, experiment with it, whether you want to put your Kentucky Owl in the freezer or you want to put a little Amaretto in your old fashion, right, right, as long as you’re not putting sweet and sour in your old fashioned, yeah, and then we’re gonna have a problem.

Michael: Oh, my God, remember that was so bad. They put sour mix in the old fashion. I think that she was just drunk, right, like I think she was.

Jesse: Yeah, she was. She was tasting the goods all night long. I think you’re right. But All right, Michael, I’ve got some SEO questions for you, do you mind? I would love that, is it okay? Let’s do it. Interrupt, interrupt this program. Okay. So I should tell everybody to let me pull it back up. Michael, you are on here not too long ago, episode 201. If anybody wants a primer, we talked about, um, gbp signals, things like that to Google, right For your, for your map pack ranking, overall SEO, but just user generated signals and that importance. Check that out if you want to hear some of what Michael had to say before episode 201. Um, I just got some random questions. Some things came in from some people that I’ve talked to or emailed with that caught that episode that had some follow up questions. I got some other ones that are kind of in the same ballpark. So let’s do it. None of these. I threw at you ahead of time. This is going to be a lad hoc, so I hope I don’t put you on the spot. I don’t.

Michael: You don’t need too much here. I like it better that way anyways, because then you get my honest thought, not what I think the audience wants to hear.

Jesse: A drink and a half in some rapid fire on the spot. Questions.

Michael: Let’s just. It’s like mad money rapid fire, let’s go.

Jesse: Nice, Um well, and everybody too. Seo DC is a DC. Seo or SEO DC. Michael, I didn’t write a down. Seo DC, but I also own domination simplified which is a white label right on, and that’s you can find the Facebook group too, right Domination simplified yeah.

Michael: So we have a free group and then we changed the name to the paid group, so it’s not so easily found on purpose. And then that’s for people who are going through. Some of my mentoring are part of the white labels, where we actually help them build their agency. Um, you know, take the step by step. What, like it sounds really silly, but just real quick. This works for everybody.

What I’ve discovered is you could teach a class and you know, if you bring 10 people in, only one two if you’re lucky we’ll do anything out of the 10. And for me it was really irritating because it wasn’t about the money for the other eight, it was about the fact that I wasn’t able to reach them. And what I discovered through talking with people. They would use terms like fluff right. And I was like well, how is that fluff? And they’re like well, because it’s not going to work. And I’m like well, did you try it? And they’re like I don’t have to try it, I know it’s fluff Right.

And so it took me time to kind of try to psychologically analyze what they were saying. And essentially, if I were to strip away their statements and then I go to the undertones of what’s happening is they have this. They have certain beliefs that are called limiting beliefs, and so in our program, what we do is we actually remove the limiting beliefs and remove the other obstacles that prevent people from moving forward before we even go into. How do you build an agency so and that works spectacular. Everybody is absolutely crushing it. We had one guy that was only grossing roughly $7,500 a month. By month three, he was pocketing more than $7,500 a month while he was white labeling all of his services, nice. So now he has time, plus he has money, and all he does is sell the best of both worlds right there. That’s what I’m saying, you know, and he did that in 90 days.

Jesse: Well, that’s what I think a lot within SEO and hopefully people will hear this and this is kind of resonates with the answers and the advice you’re going to give Is that exact thing you’re talking about. The whole it’s fluff. I didn’t try to just know it is the limiting beliefs, like you’re saying. I really love that, because there’s so many different recipes in SEO, like old fashions, everybody can do it their own way and you can have results with multiple methods and everything else. And so people are so quick to discount like, oh no, that tactic doesn’t work or doesn’t fit my SOP or whatever. Yeah, you still still try things right. There is no exact guidebook and process map here for it. That only is done this way. So I just, yeah, I hate when people just discount things like that.

Hey, everyone, just a quick message about our free SEO audit tool on local SEO tacticscom. We’ll get right back to the show. If you haven’t taken advantage of it yet, go on out to local SEO tacticscom, slash free SEO audit or look for the yellow button up in the top right corner. Click that and it’s going to take just a couple of seconds. You enter in the page that you want to optimize what you’re looking for the audit to score against entering that page, entering the keyword you’re looking to get optimized for and entering your email address. Click the button and it’s going to take a few seconds and then it’s going to send you off a PDF report via email. It’s a great report.

It’s going to kind of give you an overall score of some vital SEO areas for that page and for your website at large, even though it’s auditing this page. That’s going to tell you some of the good things that are happening, some of the bad things that are happening, to give you, basically, a checklist of some things that you need to shore up and what you can do to improve your SEO for that page, for that keyword that you’re auditing. Now you can use this as many times as you want. You can do multiple keywords, multiple pages, multiple keywords on the same page. You can even use this to check against your competitors, right, if you want to do a little reverse engineering, see how that is going for a certain keyword, what they may be doing good, that you’re not, and some things to improve there. So lots of different ways to use it, completely free. Again, go on at thelocosio-tacticscom slash free SEO audit or look for the yellow button in the top right corner of the website.

Michael: One of the things that we do that you’ll appreciate and I think that all SEOs should at least think about it this way Like, one of the beautiful things about law school is it’s not so much about teaching you what the laws are Like you learn that more through study and preparing for your bar but what it does is it teaches you to think a certain way.

Jesse: Okay right.

Michael: So if it’s SEOs, we were to turn around and let’s say like, let’s use GSA search engine ranker just as an example, right, everybody’s like, oh, that’s a black hat tool. And you’re like, well, it depends on how you use it. And they’re like, no, it’s a black hat tool, and you’re like, no, it really depends on how you use it. Just because you can’t point it at a site and pull the trigger and then it ranks it like it did back in 2014, doesn’t mean it’s not still a viable tool to them. People just discount it because they couldn’t use it in the way that they thought. Instead of saying, well, I’ve already said, because it’s only a one time fee for it, instead of saying I’ve already paid for it, how can I actually use it in a way that I could get benefits from it, whether it’s for your GVP or whether it’s for your website? Right, and like it actually solves a really good problem, because we run it like so for local SEO, since this is what it is.

One of the reasons why press releases don’t work for you is something called link equity, because people crank out so many press releases on that so frequently, it has no juice left to give, so you gotta go find the pump, meaning you got to take those two 300 press release links that you got. You run it through GSA. You give each one of those links two to 500 to 1000 links each and now, all of a sudden you watch your press release, actually start to do something. Right, but because we have to take the time to solve these problems as a SEO person instead of just look at it and go, well, that doesn’t work anymore. Because, right, well, maybe it does, maybe you’re just not looking at it to solve X problems, but that’s not what it does anymore.

Jesse: Maybe now it solves the Y problem, you know no, like you said, just looking at it from a different angle. Or yeah, this isn’t just a one trick pony. What else can it do, you know? Would you mind just 30 seconds quick, Michael, we’ve never really talked about GSA on here, not that everything on yours white hat or other, otherwise, but that’s just kind of gets into different nook and cranny. Would you mind just quick overview for everybody, whether they’re an SEO or like owner marketing manager, listening just what the heck you’re talking about there super quick.

Michael: So GSA search engine rancor is an automated back linking tool that does create a large volume of backlinks, and many of them are considered spammy. However, when it comes to sites that are actually new sites, it doesn’t matter what you throw at them, google’s only going to index probably one third of those links anyways. So if you were to throw, say, 600 backlinks at from this at a new site, that new site will be able to absorb it, the spam, with no problems and it allows for that link. And I don’t want to go too far in depth with this because I’ll lose some people, but whenever we add if we have a website and we add a blog to it, we create it’s a forward slash and then, with a new blog, and every time we add that, we kind of take away a little bit like that that portion starts new all over again, like it didn’t exist. So it starts with zero authority and if we think in the terms of authority and backlinks or votes, what this does is it gives it more authority, if you will, because it gives it more votes.

Whether you have an indexing problem with Google or not, the answer to that problem then is just more Right. So if Google’s only going to index a third. Well, maybe I need 1000 links per so I just need more, so I can get 300 in there. And so what GSA does is it makes it where you don’t have to use other things, other other networks, or you have to buy links from somebody to point at it, and it’s a very inexpensive way. It was originally designed back, I want to say, in like 2012, I think, where if you did a million backlinks to a website, it would shoot up a lot of links, and if you did a million backlinks to a website, it would shoot up to the top almost instantly and stay there until somebody else had more backlinks than you, and so Google got tired of people manipulating its algorithm and then at that point, it started coming up with like that these are bad links and these are good links.

So because of it, gsa fell out of favor. But people who and still today, who think about things like that and say how can we still utilize that tool where it’s effective? We get to move forward, while everybody else is looking for the next shiny object.

Jesse: Right. Yeah, it still does a thing, right. It just doesn’t do it. You can’t use the way you used to, but it still does a thing that can be valuable.

Michael: It’s effective. Actually it really does Like, because you have to remember, you know like this week we closed deals 21 Google profiles in total is what all the deals were that we closed this week. So you have to think that if we do an average of two press releases per you know that’s 42 press releases, 300 links per Like. The number of those links become like, once you start going agency of my size, like just a huge volume. You just can’t build links fast enough to that. If you don’t have a tool like this, and because people are counting on you for results, you have to squeeze out everything. You know, like the same problems that we have with press releases we have with citations to right, so your directories, so you would use the same tool to build links to that also. And if you’re building 200 to 300 citations on top of it, then when you compile all of those links you can’t keep up unless you have some type of automated tool.

Jesse: Right, economically speaking, for sure, at least as far as keeping up like you could, but it just wouldn’t be feasible. Yeah, and to go about a different way? Um, we circle back. This isn’t one of the questions I was kind of prepared to ask you, but you’re bringing it up and I’m trying to remember. I don’t think it’s something we’ve ever talked about here on the show. For people to press releases? Yeah, to your GBB? Okay, is there some? There’s some kind of strategy there, maybe. Maybe I heard you inferring wrong.

Michael: Yeah, so is that something you do or so you can. I’m not going to go into super advanced techniques with it, but I’ll go into the basic one. I would suggest that, like you, you so stereo to listen to. That was stereotypical press release, and then so for people who are just starting off with SEO, listening, and then we’ll talk about what they can also do to add on to it. So one of the things that was important with the press release and it’s always been important with the press releases your name, address, phone number and your website listed in that.

Ideally, you would want a map embed in there when you can, because that carries a little bit of weight and so you’re kind of trying to squeeze the most out of your press releases possible.

Now, a long time ago, we would link out to like the CID right standing for the commercial identification number, and now, because it’s a little bit more tricky to get to and Google isn’t rewarding that anymore, so much One of the things that we are doing is we are linking to the share code and, but we usually use that as a branded link, and you know there’s some other things that you can do with it, but that’s for probably another time because I don’t want to go too deep, but what’s really neat about it is you can manipulate it a little bit so you can take the share code, because it’ll be HTTP for slash, for slash goo dot, whatever right, and with that you can add in ww dot.

You can add in HTTP remove the s, and so you can manipulate it a little bit like that and I think with time, that’s actually something good to do, because remember that Google is an algorithm, so it’s whether you and I see information. That doesn’t matter. If it’s one plus one plus zero plus zero, it’s still equals to the same as one plus one equals two to an algorithm, even though it still equals two, it’s different. The nodes are different, right, the bits of information are different. So when we’re throwing different bits of information, you’re forcing the algorithm to almost recalibrate what it’s thinking and looking at. So that’s why we manipulate that. But yeah, you absolutely can, and I also think that there’s some benefits from using the share code like Google gives it to you. This seriously like here share your profile.

Jesse: You’re saying share code a few times. I was just going to ask you, Michael, to interrupt quick for everybody who doesn’t know what you mean. Go to your GBP, got a little but share and it gives you the code, basically like the link back to your GBP. That’s what you’re talking about.

Michael: So if you go to Google dot com four slash maps and you search your profile, you’ll have this little alligator looking thing. You click on that and because it says share underneath, and then at that point you click it and you click the little copy button and that’s exactly what I’m talking about. Perfect, yeah, perfect. And if Google is giving it to you to share, it only makes sense to me to share it.

Jesse: Right, right, follow their instructions, right. We listen to everything Google said, especially this right? Well, no, most of the tongue and cheek.

Michael: Yeah, so the funny thing with that was what you’re saying is this like if Mueller speaks, you can pretty much just go do the opposite and you’ll be on the right link, right. But when you stumble across something like this where Google’s like here, share your, your profile, it just it makes more sense, instead of trying to find some magic link or find the you know machine ID or the commercial ID or you know, to try to find all these different things, it just makes sense to to grab that and and run with it because you know Google saying if you want to give, you know you want to give it to Google. If you want to give, you know you want to share your profile to somebody else. Here’s the easiest short link for you like, using their, their partner.

Jesse: Right Should track back for them and however you use it, right.

Michael: I think it’s all about it. Yeah, and think about it Like if you were to run traffic through it, like not in large amounts, but like share running traffic through it. In other words, like sharing it with somebody and people click on it. It’s a real user, so it would have weight of like people are are actually going through the short part of the profile.

Jesse: Yeah, and it’s kind of like you talked on the last episode ground. Those are the actual user generated signals, but super valuable, hard to replicate. Yeah, just a one for Google, so Okay, so that was quick off the cuff Price for release to your GBP type question. Thanks to Michael, I got a few other ones here. Gbp specific for you.

We’ve done a few webinars recently, sue and I and I don’t know what it is out there if there’s a lot of people that are starting to get back into business or kind of relaunch something. But there’s just been, at least for us in the last month or two, a lot more questions about the types of addresses you can use for GBP PO boxes, virtual offices, shared workspaces I don’t know if we’re just if it’s one of these. Like you buy red cars and I see red cars everywhere. If somebody brought it up, we’re just in tune to this more. But her and I were just talking earlier this week that we’re getting a lot more of these questions.

So today’s landscape and things got kind of weird with Google through COVID. They didn’t allow or like these things. Then they kind of loosen up a little. Maybe they’re pulling back now. What’s your take on using, if somebody out there is trying to set up their first or maybe a second or third GBP using PO boxes, you know, ups store, mailboxes, virtual offices, shared workspaces which maybe there’s a little bit difference here in your answer, Michael but broadly and then maybe individually, what’s your thoughts on using those for GBP as it is allowed and even for the long term? Super long question for you that. What do you think?

Michael: So that’s a good question. Well, let’s start with like why all this is happening. So, whenever we go into a strong recession, what happens is people start to open up businesses and they do it more out of the fact that they’re losing their job or whatever, or they see the writing on the wall because the company is doing cutbacks. You know, facebook for a long time talked about that. Their average employee of their clients was something like $150,000 a year, and now they’re cutting jobs all over the place, right? Google’s cutting jobs, amazon’s cutting jobs all over the place. They’re even like they ran a thing where the vice presidents of different seats were getting multi-million dollar bonuses if they could have make so many people quit within the industry so they didn’t have to fire them, right? So people see the writing on the wall and when this happens, they go out and start businesses. So this type of stuff becomes a very common question. When that happens and if you look at the current landscape and you know if a listener likes Biden, I don’t mean it in a bad way, but he’s delusional when he’s talking about that the jobs are better than they’ve ever been when we have interest rates that rise at the rates that they have. It’s a clear indicator that the recession is on top of this. So it also means that the unemployment people that have been on unemployment for 12 months fall off, which makes the numbers skew in the favor of what politics wants you to see. So it’s not that I’m bashing anybody in particular, just stating sort of you know economical facts Right. So when that happens, people naturally gravitate to starting a business, which is a good thing. So that’s why you’re seeing an increase in these type of questions. So to answer those questions, if you can get a shared workspace that literally just opened up, absolutely you probably can get through there. But if it’s been there for four, five, six months, probably not. It’s probably just gonna. You’re not even ever gonna get the postcard.

Google’s really big into video verification right now and also for some businesses that are legit that are opening up second locations, even with the video verifications, google is having problems keeping up with the amount of people uploading stuff. So I had a person reach out to me recently and I tried to help them. Where I reached out to the company, I’m like look to Google, be in the company that this person’s uploaded the video three times. They’ve added me to the manager at this point, because it’ll go into the pending and then it’ll go. It won’t say suspended or anything, it’ll just go right back into the loop of video verification, right, which tells you it’s caught in the loop.

So I’m like here’s the video, here’s their tax documents to prove they’re real. Here’s their business documents from the city with their business license. Here’s their, you know, their, their EIN and paperwork. Here’s imagery of the front of the office. Here’s imagery of their trucks, right, like, call them if you don’t believe me. But here’s all of this. You can’t replicate it, right? I even went and copied the link from the state government showing that they were incorporated. They didn’t, they didn’t, they just were like thank you for contacting Google.

So, like you had mentioned because I did listen to the last one that I was on and you did mention that, you know, sometimes I’m a little angsty towards Google, and it is true, right, and I don’t have to have any whiskey to be that way, but it’s because of things like this and it’s because of the fact you know, when Google was really coming up on top or it was really becoming a noun, a verb, an adjective, like everything their platform was. It’s an equal playground for everybody. And now, if you’re not a major corporation with multiple locations where you can get those automated, you just goes live profiles. That’s not really an equal playground, right, you know, and that’s just not cool because some of these local businesses, like this particular company, they’re trying to open up two legitimate more locations. They already have three. If Google it will just allow them to get these profiles up and going, I guarantee next year they had opened up another two and in four years from now they probably would be spending over a million dollars a year on AdWords. So, like, they’re shooting themselves in the foot. You know what I mean. Like, because they’re so tart, they’re so worried about people popping up for, like, lead generation that this type of stuff is happening. So, to answer your, to bring it full circle, though, to answer your question, you know you can use your home. If you do a service area business, that’s totally okay, because a lot of small home services companies they don’t need an office space Because, like, let’s be honest, like a roofer, like how many people are actually going to show up at a roofer’s doorstep?

No, they call you and say I have a hole in my roof, I have a leak in my roof. I need a new roof. Come fix it. Yeah, come give me a, come give me a bit. I need a new roof, like whatever it was. They don’t say let me come to you, so that way you can come to me. That just doesn’t happen. So Google understands that and in those cases it’s really not that big of a deal, but they still want this video verification, so it can still be a little bit tricky. Um, so PO boxes? Don’t even try it, it’s a waste of your time. Uh, mailboxes et cetera runs into the same thing. You used to be able to call it sweet whatever, but Google knows what. Um, I think it’s UPS store now, but at uh, google knows where those locations are. Very well, yeah.

Jesse: You know that right there, Michael, the Google knowing.

We had an interesting scenario in the last month or two with a client with a GBP, and the client had been using this it was kind of a shared workspace for years, just fine, and then all of a sudden this GBP got suspended and we’re having a super hard time getting reinstated.

Uh, doing some research found out that the shared workspace it seems, at least just looking at what we’re seeing online Uh, like maybe got sold a different property manager and then this person is putting it out there publicly more as a shared workspace and, uh, as soon as that address gets flagged, if you will right, or Google realizes it’s shared workspace, um, yeah, yeah, they come down real quick, right, and then, of course, you’re not getting any answer as to why this was violating guidelines. Um, so that, I think, kind of also goes back to your original uh, first part of the answer to this is, if you’re working at a out of a shared workspace that just launched, right, and it’s not well known or established yet, you could have some success. But soon as they catch wind of it and or if they flag it right, forget about it. Yeah.

Michael: My suggestion is if you can go to a brand new one and you can launch it instantly, go in and change it to a service area business. Okay, it’s not going to turn around and like, make your profile bulletproof, but you’ll at least have a chance. Good point.

Jesse: And if you’re going to, we all we tell people to go rent a broom closet somewhere else for 300 bucks a month or whatever you got to do instead. But if you got to use these places, that’s a pretty good, it’s pretty good trick right there. Yeah, absolutely.

Michael: I mean, there’s a lot of places like even in larger cities you can go to just outside the city limits and a lot of times there’s areas that may not be the idea office space area for somebody. But if you’re a service business, where you’re not ever at the office anyways, sometimes you can even share an office space where it’s such and such and such and such location. So if you can get a 10 by 10 office space where you can put two desks in there and spend three 400 bucks a month, so you keep it for three months, who cares? Pay the other person a hundred dollars a month just to be able to, you know, get make sure they grab your mail and not send it back. Right Money will spend Right.

Jesse: And I mean if you’re going to throw money at a billboard or like a local news couple a couple hundred bucks, you know, even if it’s per month expense show up in the map packs. Start to get leads online. If you’re not right now, this is going to be some of the best money you’d ever spend. Yeah, absolutely, regardless of the area. Three points doesn’t matter if people aren’t coming to you, even if they just need that GBP. So yeah, even if it’s like an HVAC company, right, like let’s just use that.

Michael: I mean, like, well, maybe that’s an unfair advantage because, let’s be honest, the average ticket price for a HVAC company is a little bit more expensive. The ticket price for a HVAC company is almost $700. So maybe that’s an unfair advantage, you know, because if they run for a day per person, they’re making money. Let’s say, let’s say, gutter company, that’s an even better one. So that’s more of a hustle right Between gutter cleaning leaf you know, like like leaf caps that keep the leafs off to gutter repair to you got to replace the fascia and everything else behind it. Those cats get some serious phone calls. The other, you know like, well, this company actually needs a location. So that’s not a good one either. I was going to say windshield repair. Like you want to talk about, a company that gets like serious phone calls is windshield repair companies. I mean, you’ll be in a town of a hundred thousand and that thing will get 15 phone calls a day just for being in the map pack, and most of them are not very SEO savvy, sure.

Jesse: Well, again, I think all this just underscores. How should I rephrase this, Michael? Like, if you’re going to put the time and energy into, like, picking out a co-working space or a PO box, whatever you’re trying to do get set up in GVP. Everything else, protect your address. Make sure ideally you’re the only business of that sort, right right at that address you mentioned. Like, maybe you rent out a 10 by 10 from a buddy or something. If you’re a landscaper, he’s a landscaper maybe. Don’t do that, you know, but otherwise it’s such a cheap investment into your business it’s going to get you ROI. If to your points about to like what’s your average ticket? If you think making money by showing up in Google, I’m sorry. If you think showing up in Google is going to make your business money, get your GVP. Get a legit address somewhere that’s going to be built on a foundation of stone instead of sand, if you will. Right, and uh, yeah, we had you know it was really cool.

Michael: We had one type of one client. I’m not going to mention the niche, but they went to a friend who had a big warehouse that had stuff and he said, hey, can I use this address? I just want to put a sign up here just to get us started, and then I’ll pay you 200 bucks a month to have my sign up here. And the guy was like, sure, yeah, he, because he makes 2400 dollars a month and it’s not like his business becomes impede at all. He’s like, well, you know, to be honest, I might get a piece of mail here or there and he’s like, for 200 bucks, I’ll just hold it and sign a big deal.

Jesse: And if somebody shows up once in a while knocking on the door, like hey, is ABC company here? Like oh, no, he’s out right now. Yeah, Just call him.

Michael: He’s probably mobile.

Jesse: Yeah, that’s bourbon money right there, 200 bucks a month. We’ll take that. Yeah, that’s what.

Michael: I’m trying to say Like realistic, like think about it in today’s world, if you live in any type of city at all, you can’t even take your spouse out to dinner two times for that, right.

Jesse: Let alone if you have three kids, like we do, trying to get them all to give them going to fricking Apple.

Michael: These are something that’s like yeah, yeah.

Jesse: Think about this.

Michael: You got three kids. How much of the cost do you go McDonald’s?

Jesse: Dude, okay, we just had this discussion this last week. Right, it’s like 50, 60 bucks now and that’s like, if I’m not letting people get shakes, if you’re getting the pop that comes with your, with your combo, you’re still getting out of there. You’re lucky. It’s crazy.

Michael: Wait until they get a little bit older, my wife and I just go through Arby’s right, which is not necessarily my favorite place to eat, but if we’re in a bind we’ll opt to Arby’s over, like McDonald’s right. But if we just go through Arby’s, we’re going to get a little bit older Arby’s. Her and I end up spending probably almost $30.

Jesse: No, yeah, for sure.

Michael: Because, like, because for me it’s because so we’ll get like one meal right, and so it’ll be something like I’ll get like the smokehouse brisket or something, and by the time you get a meal and everything else that’s $10. You know, and then if you get like mozzarella sticks to share, you know that’s another five, and then she gets a six or $7 sandwich and then you’re at 30 bucks.

Jesse: Smokehouse brisket. You like bourbon, I. We’re learning a lot of good stuff about you, mike, and I think it’s all good. I think it’s all good. All right, everyone, we’re going to take a pause right there and we’re going to call that part one of Michael Rayburn’s second appearance here on Local S Yo Tactics. Good conversation, some fun discussions there, and we’re just starting to get warmed up on a lot of the SEO related nuggets.

Tune in to the next episode next week. We’re going to drop part two to this. There’s going to be some more just knowledge bombs. Michael’s going to drop I shouldn’t say knowledge bombs, that’s some cliche, it seems like everybody always says that but just some great insights, some great tips. Whether you’re building an agency, whether you’re a business owner, marketing manager. Michael’s going to touch on things that apply to everybody, that you can, that you can leverage and do for your business or for your clients businesses. So appreciate you sticking with us on this one a little bit longer. Part one we’ve got part two coming up next week. We’re going to enjoy that too. Thanks everyone, thank you.

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