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December 23, 2015

What We Learned in 2015: Your Favorite Experts Share

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If you could share a New Year’s toast with anyone in digital marketing, who would you wax poetic with? Year’s end is a romantic time for remembering the people who touched your heart and mind, the lessons you learned, sometimes the hard way, and the promises you want to make to yourself as you internalize those lessons. Wow, that was super sappy. A romantic time of year, right?

Collectively, BCI celebrated many exciting milestones, including the release of a free crowdsourced disavow files management tool, the acquisition of two shiny new VPs, and nine straight years as an INC 5000 company. Building on these achievements, we expect great things from 2016.

On an individual level, there are those among us who still sense room for growth and, to that end, invite the wisdom of those we admire. And so we asked those whom we respect to share their lessons and resolutions with the search and social marketing community. We asked some of our favorite experts in digital marketing to answer one or both of these questions:

  1. What’s one thing you learned in 2015?
  2. What’s your resolution for 2016?

Read what Neil Patel, Lisa Barone, Larry Kim, Joanna Lord, Tim Ash, Michelle Robbins, Eric Enge, Mike King, Lisa Buyer, David Amerland, Cindy Krum, Dr. Pete and many more digital marketing industry darlings had to share.

Larry Kim

Founder and CTO, WordStream
@LarryKim

This year my kid (#ppckid) turned 1 so I’ve been learning a lot about sacrifice and love and getting a different perspective on work and life. Next year in terms of work, I’m going to focus more time and energy on learning mobile apps, online video, and Facebook/Instagram ads.

Larry Kim 2015 lessons

In 2015, Larry Kim was named the Search Personality of the Year at both the Landy Awards and U.S. Search Awards.

Casie Gillette

Director of Online Marketing, KoMarketing
@casieg

What’s one thing you learned in 2015?

Honestly, I think the biggest thing I’ve learned this year is how much faster changes are happening in search. It’s always felt as if we’d hear about changes and a year or two later we’d start to see them in results. Now it feels like we hear about changes and they’ve already happened. It’s pretty crazy! But as always, it certainly makes our jobs more interesting.

What’s your resolution for 2016?

I’d love to tell you I have some amazing resolution but sadly I’m not that cool. One thing I am focusing on in 2016 that combines both personal and professional life, is to become a better speaker/presenter. I watch people like Wil Reynolds control the stage so damn well and it makes me want to work harder on every one I give.

Casie Gillette 2015 lessons

Ian Lurie

Founder and CEO, Portent Inc.
@portentint

What’s one thing you learned in 2015?

At work: The CEO must NOT think out loud. People may interpret sarcasm as truth. Mayhem results.

At home: My family is awesome. I hope this doesn’t sound corny. This year had some of my lowest and highest moments as a CEO and a human being. They kept me going by maintaining mood and routine through it all.

What’s your resolution for 2016?

At work: Spend more time with my team while they do their thing, as opposed to meetings in my office. No micromanagement! Just be available to answer questions, in person.

At home: Take less stress home. More puppy breaks.

Andy Crestodina

Strategic Director, Orbit Media Studios
@crestodina

What’s one thing you learned in 2015?

I’ve always known that building your network is important. But this year taught me the value of networking for marketers. The quality of your content is all important, but the quality of your network is a close second.

I’m not talking about the size of your following. Long before 2015, I knew that large followings aren’t as useful as they look. I’m talking about high-value relationships. People who can really help and are excited to do so. Why? Because they’re my friends. Because I want to help them just as badly.

Collaboration is the key to both content creation and content promotion!

I’ve gotten more done, more efficiently and had more fun doing it, by collaborating with other marketers. It was a year filled with lunches, phone calls, events, mastermind groups, slack boards and office hours.

I’ve made people the priority. I meet with and talk to other marketers every single day, and it’s done wonders for our business, my career and my personal life.

What’s your resolution for 2016?

I’m going to do outbound. It sounds crazy for someone who has focused on content marketing for the last eight years, but it’s time.

There’s a ceiling to search. You’ll never get more visitors than the total volume of search for your targeted phrases. What about all the wonderful companies I’d like to work with who aren’t searching and aren’t on our list? How can I connect with them?

I’m going to pick up the phone, smile and dial.

Of course, content and teaching will still be a big part of the plan. I’m not going to become a telemarketer, cold calling with a sales pitch. I’m going to call people and invite them to come to one of our events. I’ll offer to help them with search marketing and content strategy. I’ll offer to help set up their Analytics and make better decisions through data. The call will just be the beginning of a long process of networking and building relevance. Our events and newsletter will be critical parts of that process.

I’m ready to do outbound. You can only catch so many fish with a net! I’m going to hunt with a spear …

Andy Crestodina 2016 resolutions

Robert Ramirez

SEO Manager at Bruce Clay, Inc.
@Ramirez_Robert

2015 reinforced a shift in search engine optimization that has been in the works for several years now; that SEO recommendations that don’t improve the quality and usability of a site rarely lead to long-term wins. If you are making recommendations to chase keyword rankings without considering the overall quality of your site and fulfilling the intent of your visitor you are in for a lot of heartache.

My resolution for 2016 is to be more present in the moments of my life. While I know that my nature as a worrier will likely not change anytime soon, I tend to let my preoccupation with what could be get in the way of my focus & enjoyment of what is. It’s a distraction that I hope to remove from my professional and personal life in 2016.

Joanna Lord

Vice President of Marketing, Porch
JoannaLord.com

Every year brings a lesson and 2015’s top lesson for me was “it’s all about the people.” I spent a lot of time this year both professionally and personally reflecting on the people in my life and how thankful I am for them. This industry, our teams, our friends and family — they really are everything. Anything else is just a side note … It’s all about the people.

Joanna Lord 2015 lessons

Eric Enge

Founder and CEO, Stone Temple Consulting
@stonetemple

What’s one thing you learned in 2015?

On a digital marketing level, one of the great things I learned about is that Google’s featured snippets represent a new type of SEO opportunity. Basically, optimize your page in the right way, and you might be able to get a featured snippet result, and that can get you a big lift in SEO traffic for that page.

You can read more about this in an article I published recently on Jay Baer’s site called How Rich Answers Provide a New Approach to SEO.

On another note, we saw tremendous growth at Stone Temple Consulting in 2015, and it really provided a strong reminder just how important the people you have in the company are. We have an amazing team here, and I’m proud of each and every one of them.

What’s your resolution for 2016?

I’m going to go back to my roots for a bit. I’m actively digging into machine learning, and that’s causing me to start making use of advanced math again, which is something that I’ve not done in a long while. It’s a great deal of fun!

The reason I’m doing it is that machine learning is become quite real. Google is using is in their RankBrain algorithm, Facebook is using it to develop computer vision, and many others are making real advances with it as well.

Machine learning is here to stay!

Mindy Weinstein

Director of Training, Bruce Clay, Inc.
@MindyDWeinstein

What I learned personally in 2015 is that there is no reason to delay achieving your major life goals. I took the plunge this year and decided to continue my education—it’s hard work (and admittedly I sleep less), but it feels amazing knowing I am accomplishing something that I have always wanted to do. The same life lesson applies in business too. I plan to keep this thought in mind as we head to 2016. Cheers to the New Year!

Mark Traphagen

Senior Director of Online Marketing, Stone Temple Consulting
@marktraphagen

What’s one thing you learned in 2015?

One thing I learned in 2015 was really more of a confirmation of something I already believed: content marketing is not for the lazy or faint of heart. It really is more than ever a matter of “be all in or get out of the game.” Half-hearted, churned out content-for-content’s sake not only doesn’t cut it any more, it can actually be detrimental to your brand, as consumers become more accustomed to getting ultra high quality, extremely useful content from others.

If you’re going to be in the content game, you should be prepared to invest significant assets into it. That might be a bitter pill for many businesses, but the good news is that those willing to make the investment are reaping huge rewards, especially as search engines and social media outlets are getting a lot choosier about the content they push.

What’s your resolution for 2016?

My resolution for 2016 is to be more data informed. While I don’t believe that data and metrics ever show the whole picture, I’m sure that without them I’m missing many opportunities. In my position directing the marketing efforts of Stone Temple Consulting, I have to have good information about what is working for us and what isn’t. So in the coming year I’m dedicating myself to increasing my knowledge of how to use analytics and other data tools so I can do a better job of setting intelligent direction for my team.

Kelsey Jones

Executive Editor, Search Engine Journal
@wonderwall7

For the last few years, I’ve been both preaching and reading about quality over quantity when it comes to content. However, this year, I’ve been blown away by the content I’ve found and read online. Some articles on Medium or This. are the best pieces of writing I’ve read for years, yet I seem to discover them every day. As a writer (and editor), this makes me so happy. Amazing content has finally found a home on the web (instead of poor writers pitching newspapers and magazines for years, waiting for editors to recognize their gifts).

This is a valuable opportunity as writers, editors, and marketers, and we shouldn’t waste it. This has inspired me to expect more from our contributors at Search Engine Journal and more from myself. Why write a simple post about Facebook, when you can do a 1,900 word post with 12 case studies of real companies that did something extraordinary, giving readers actionable steps from these real examples?

So, for 2016, I will continue to be a passionate advocate for amazing content that gives you goosebumps, and I hope you all do the same!

Kelsey Jones 2016 resolutions

Mike King

Founder, iPullRank
@iPullRank

This year really reinforced the value of client relationships, building redundancy within client teams and making sure to truly spend the time it takes to make the bond strong between our teams. You can do the best work in the world, but it doesn’t matter if you don’t have the right people talking to the right people on a regular basis.

I don’t really believe in resolutions. I find it irrational to think that a new year means we have a magical opportunity to be different. You can decide to be different right now, so why not do it … right now? So my goal right now comes out of a conversation that I had with Casey Henry at HubSpot. We were talking about how agency people are generally not good at execution. I think we’ve got the Strategy thing locked up, and we do execution pretty well, especially given our size, but I want us to become the best there is at executing.

Mike King 2015 lessons

Bill Slawski

Founder, SEO by the Sea
@bill_slawski

One thing I learned in 2015 was how much Google seems to like structured data. Link-based query results seem to be giving way to knowledge panels and question-answers and snippets that are filled with facts. How a website or entity is represented in search results is undergoing a transformation from the days of 10 blue links. Learning about ontologies that express the nature of and properties of entities and how different entities are related is a new way to think about what websites or webpages might be about; and an important change. Being able to perform entity audits for a site is something new that may become as important as keyword research.

My resolution for 2016 is to transform how I think about entities on the Web to improve how a Google or a Bing or Yahoo might connect information about those and index them, and represent them within search results.

Lisa Buyer

Founder, The Buyer Group
@lisabuyer

What’s one thing you learned in 2015?

When used in excess, social media (for business and personal) can cause temporary insanity, burnout and unnecessary stress.

What’s your resolution for 2016?

Be the change I want to see in the social media world by advocating positivity, productivity, mindfulness and balanced best practices in business.

Lisa Buyer 2015 lessons

Jim Yu

Founder and CEO, BrightEdge
@jimyu

What’s one thing you learned in 2015?

2015 was the year that content marketing hit a production versus performance tipping point.

One in six enterprise organizations now spend over $10 million annually on content marketing (source CMI). However, the massive volume of digital content being produced — such as blog posts, whitepapers, images and videos — has actually fragmented consumer attention.

Organic search has been proven to be the largest driver of website traffic to businesses and engagement the key to unlocking content performance success. In fact, according to BrightEdge proprietary research, for B2C industries, only 1 in 5 pieces of content from brands is engaged with. For B2B industries target audiences engage with only half of branded content.

What’s your resolution for 2016?

My goal for 2016 is to continue to help marketers, business leaders and the community build successful business through increasing revenue from their search, content and digital marketing programs.

In 2016 businesses, across multiple industries and of all sizes, will demand to see return from their content marketing investments. I will be spending lots of time with business leaders and marketers helping them rise above the clutter of the web. In 2016 it is imperative that marketers effectively target demand, optimize content and measure the results. Determining what really drives intelligent content performance in 2016 will allow brands to run their digital content marketing programs by the numbers.

You can read more on content performance marketing research and best practice, complementary to download:
https://www.brightedge.com/resources/white-papers/a-new-era-of-content

Jim Yu 2016 resolutions

David Amerland

Author, Speaker, Analyst, DavidAmerland.com
@davidamerland

What did I learn in 2015? Fear can be paralyzing. I advise companies that make multi-million dollar decisions. Some of these have tens of thousands of staff spread across continents. The speed at which social media changes their target audience and the depth of internal change they need to undertake makes it difficult for them to move forward and a lot choose to actively move back, hoping that they will experience a rise in fortunes by simply redoubling the same, marketing efforts they used so effectively in the past. As a result we now have a halfway world where some companies are seizing the moment and are moving ahead experimenting with ways that will help humanize them and still maintain efficiencies of scale in their marketing, while others are returning to the top-down marketing practices they knew with a vengeance hoping that the minor cosmetic changes they are making will be sufficient to revive the value of their brand.

My resolution for 2016 is to be more patient — I have always wanted things to move faster. Change to happen sooner. Business people to be braver. It ain’t happening. So I am rolling with the rollbacks and the slowdowns and simply making the most of it, trying to find both fun and value in what I do every step of the way.

Keri Morgret

Content Manager, Inbound.org
@kerimorgret

One thing I learned in 2015: Find or make your own tribe! As a new parent with no extended family nearby, and as a remote contractor, making a conscious effort to connect with my peers has become vital.

My 2016 resolution is to stay on top of both my personal and professional email inboxes.

Neil Patel

NeilPatel.com

The one thing that really hit me in 2015 is that links aren’t everything. In the previous years when I built links to sites they would rank much more quickly than they did in 2014. It’s more important than ever that you diversify how you are growing your search traffic. From leveraging content marketing to creating free tools, you have to go above and beyond to rank well these days.

My resolution for 2016 is to focus on creating more free tools. Doing this should help me take away website visitors from my competitors.

Duane Forrester

VP, Organic Search Operations, Bruce Clay, Inc.
@duaneforrester

Learned:

It turns out that I am my own worst enemy. It’s easy to let our minds block us from moving forward, so choosing to do something you think might not be possible, only to realize you CAN accomplish it, is a solid way to reset your own expectations about yourself. For me this realization came after 3,000 miles in a motorcycle helmet touring the Pacific States this past summer. I knew it would be tough and I set bail-out spots along my entire route. I didn’t bail once. I went further, rode longer, saw more and experienced a wealth of richness as a result. It opened my eyes and reminded me to take risks, be daring, never say die and to get the heck over my fears.

Resolution for 2016:

#Nailit! Finish my third book, use my knowledge to help others and live a fuller life. It’ll be tough, but I can do it. My biggest focus is to talk myself around my own mental roadblocks. I can do it. I will do it.

Pamela Lund

Pay-Per-Click Advertising Consultant, ThatPamChick.com

What’s one thing you learned in 2015?

In 2015 I learned, after happily working as a lone consultant for the last 8 years, that it’s nice to have someone on your team that you can teach what you know and learn what they know. I was lucky to have Akvile Harlow working with me this year and she has pushed me to be better while showing me that I have valuable knowledge to share with others. It’s easy as an independent consultant to get comfortable working completely on your own but having the right people on your team can help you grow more than you expect.

Pamela Lund 1

Ronell Smith

Digital Strategist, Moz
@RonellSmith

I learned that the content creation albatross exists primarily as a result of our desire to measure areas that won’t impact business in the short-term. My focus in ’16 will be on helping brands define the right goal line so they can produce content that crosses it with frequency.

Akvile Harlow

Digital marketing specialist, AkvileHarlow.com

What’s one thing you learned in 2015?

2015 has been a year of many firsts. It was my first full year since taking the leap to work for myself, and that in itself was an exciting journey plentiful in challenges, lessons, experiences, and accomplishments. While I learned a significant amount, the most valuable thing was expanding my horizons to learn more about business as a whole. While my expertise lies in marketing and advertising, it was interesting, useful, and important to educate myself about other areas such as business development and accounting.

What’s your resolution for 2016?

For quite some time, I’ve been looking to improve my story telling and public speaking abilities. In order to finally do so, I am kicking off the new year by starting this resolution one month early. As a brand new member of Toastmasters International, I’ve already found it to be incredibly worthwhile and look forward to making continual progress over the next few months. If public speaking is something that you too, are looking to improve upon, I highly recommend attending a meeting in your area. Not only will you learn how to subside your public speaking nerves, give better constructive criticism, and grow your vocabulary, your overall communication skills will advance.

Marty Weintraub

Founder, aimClear
@martyweintraub

What’s one thing you learned in 2015?

Social amplification, top of funnel paid psychographic visitors expressly for awareness and socialization, is obsolete. Future social paid organic social psychographic content amplification programs are NOW about near term attributable response and THEN retargeting nurture. Content marketing is for marketers that can’t sell on one touch + a retargeting hop.

What’s your resolution for 2016?

Personal growth, happiness, authenticity, love, peace, consistent exercise, greater empathy, patience, learning more about photography and joy. Happy New Year, ya’ll. <3

Susan Esparza

Freelance Writer

I have a vague hatred of resolutions. (“If you hate resolutions, why didn’t you pick the other question?” Because I’m contrary, that’s why.) Four years down the line from stepping away from SEO, I still firmly believe that “Your priorities are the things you do, not the things you say you’ll do.” (http://outspokenmedia.com/seo/when-good-enough-isnt-why-im-leaving-seo/) Resolutions are pie crust promises unless they’re borne out in action. So my resolution, if a resolution I must have, is a continuation of what I’ve been doing since 2011, adjusting my life to my priorities, not to my fears.

Susan Esparza resolutions

Tim Ash

CEO, SiteTuners
@tim_ash

What’s one thing you learned in 2015?

The shift to millennials in the workforce will be a tidal wave, with 75% of the workforce coming from that group within ten years. Time to break out the plaid shirts, beards, and craft beer brewing kits … :) Joking aside, understanding their different values and online fluency was very helpful to designing many of our conversion rate optimization initiatives.

Lisa Barone

Director of Strategy, Overit
@lisabarone

My resolution for 2016 is to solve the problem instead of chasing the tactic. There are always new ideas as to what is the end-all, be-all to marketing. But becoming obsessed with the tactic — content, email, automation, SEO — will distract you, not drive you. Instead, be driven by solving the problem your customers/clients face, and doing whatever is best to help them find success, even if it’s not as sexy as what’s shiny right now. More solving, less chasing.

Also, to write. I always want to write more than I did the year before.

Jamie Smith

Co-founder, Engine Ready
@jamiesmithnow

In 2015 I learned to breathe and meditate which was a life changer.

In terms of search marketing, I learned that display and re-marketing are a must when done right and you no longer can survive with just SEARCH ads.

My resolution for 2016 is to spend less personal time on my phone or computer. My 2016 marketing resolution is to improve my skills around user experience, conversion optimization with an emphasis on mobile advertising.

Jamie Smith lessons

Cindy Krum

CEO, MobileMoxie
@Suzzicks

Learned: Don’t blindly trust experts. In my case, it was doctors. I had a major health episode, made worse by doctors at urgent care and an ER that sent me home and told me it was just the flu. Fast-forward to near death experience = it was not just the flu!

Resolution: Be a better boss and CEO. My company has been growing, and now I can’t just be good at SEO stuff. I have to cultivate new skills that are not as intuitive for me.

Cindy Krum 2016 resolutions

Jason Darrell

Chief Copywriter and Semantic Entity Alignment Consultant, SEOWorkers.com
@JasonD1888

Recap for 2015:
One of the biggest shifts in thinking this year is that we’re no longer just building web pages or posting to social. Rather, every time we publish, we are adding a semantic layer to our web presence.

As of now, we’re depositing those layers into Google’s Knowledge Base, helping to determine what we’re “known for.” The unknown quantity is how much Google is drawing on that base as a ranking factor today. Moreover, how important that data will be in and to the semantic web in the future.

Forecast for 2016:
2016 will be a time to take stock. Most of us acknowledge that structured data is the railroad upon which the semantic web runs. The reality is that not all clients can afford to buy the first class schema ticket.

I hope people come to realize that they (may) have all of the data they need in order for Google to rank them for relevant queries already. Yes, Rank Brain will help cut through the ambiguity. But we’re a way off realizing true AI yet.

Weaving answers to relevant questions in that content — in clear disambiguated copy — will become far more important than “keyword match.”

Again: Answer questions your customers are asking. Don’t try to keyword-match questions in your content. Google wants answers. Are we clear? Awesome.

SEOs should begin to look at existing content that business owners/webmasters have already published as their on-page starting point. Rewrite that first, rather than try to create new content in the same rambling, “conversational” keyword-match style, and they’ll see more relevant results sooner rather than later.

Alan Bleiweiss

Forensic SEO Consultant, AlanBleiweis.com

I learned in 2015 that app indexing and deep linking are going to become critical for many businesses in the coming year, and that sadly, very few people and agencies in our industry are doing much about it. That tool providers are, due to fiduciary reality, waiting “until it becomes more of a trend.” Which means site owners are going to struggle to “figure it all out,” and be left guessing whether what they are doing, if anything at all, is even working well.

Navah Berg

Digital Marketer, The Buyer Group
@Navahk

The most important thing I learned was recently (literally this week!), when Google shared its Search Quality Rating Guidelines for the first time, Duane Forrester said something very profound: “Be Useful” – Usefulness vs. Relevancy.

My resolution for 2016 is definitely going to focus on “usefulness.” Being more useful and serviceable will create an impact, not only at work but also in personal situations, giving more balance and optimizing effectiveness in this ever-evolving Social PR world.

Navah Berg 2016 resolutions

Ammon Johns

Digital Marketing Specialist and SEO Pioneer, AmmonJohns.com
+Ammon Johns

A thing I learned in 2015 is that there are still too many companies worrying about Content, instead of Context. Every day I see post after post about how to create content, why to create content, or what types of content work best. All these posts have one thing in common — no matter how well they answer the question they set themselves, they are all completely useless, because it’s the wrong question.

Many companies including Google have already moved on to the fact that the right format of content is entirely dependent on context. Google’s knowledge boxes, voice search and contextual search show that they have been grappling with this change for a while.

There are times when all we want is a short answer, times when we want a deep treatise, and times when we want some of both. If a stranger at a bus stop asks me “Hey, what’s time?” he is probably just wanting me to tell him the current time. But if Stephen Hawking asks me “What’s time?” he’s probably setting up for a lecture, and wanting me to think about time itself rather than look at my watch. :)

The Internet contains quite a lot of people. They live in a wide variety of places, have a wide variety of interests, and so, obviously, the possible contexts for them making any particular search, or visiting any particular site, are almost limitless. The right amount, type, and even style of content is going to depend on the context.

For 2016: Websites need to be more user-oriented, more flexible, and allow users to more easily do what they want to do, rather than what we want them to do. This goes far beyond mere responsive design and should be high on the agenda for every company of every size.

Michelle Robbins

Vice President of Technology, Third Door Media, Inc.
@MichelleRobbins

One thing I’ve learned in 2015 — well not learned as much had confirmed — was that the search/digital marketing industry comprises some of the smartest, most talented and giving women and men I’ve known. The value of the relationships I’ve developed over the years — personal and professional — cannot be overstated, and came into focus for me in a significant way this year.

For 2016, I’ve resolved to spend more time bringing the knowledge and experience I’ve gained, to the young women in my community — to continue to mentor and support them on their path through high school and into college. I do believe folks “can’t be what they can’t see” so I intend to be a more visible role model for local young women in STEM.

Purna Virji

Senior Bing Ads Client Development and Training Manager, Microsoft
@PurnaVirji

Personally last year I tried to embrace the joys of going with the flow a bit more — not easy for a control — freak like me. Ultimately it was a freeing and rewarding experience and one that is paralleled in PPC as well.  We try so hard to control all the settings, from keywords to where and when the ad is shown. However, in doing this could we be missing out on subtle shifts in audience behavior?

With attention spans ever-dwindling and second-screening becoming the norm, it’s that much harder for us marketers to get through to our audience. Where’s our audience going and how can we go with the flow of how their behaviors are changing?

That’s where paying attention to voice search and how it could impact PPC keywords, bids and targeting will come into play. Already we’re seeing a heavy adoption of digital personal assistants  across all ages and demographics, as well as seeing that voice search queries tend to:

  • be longer
  • contain more question-based queries

Best of all, we can detect intent more clearly based on the type of question asked, which will impact how we bid on these different terms. I think 2016 will be the year when this becomes something advertisers and search platforms will increasingly research.

Pete Meyers

Marketing Scientist, Moz
@dr_pete

In 2015, I learned that trying to write 50,000 words in one month when you’ve never done it before is probably insane, but that I love the writing community (which I’ve suspected for a while). I learned that you can eat kangaroos but you can’t eat wombats (sorry, everyone at SMX Sydney), and that double pink-eye is not a good way to kick off a presentation (sorry, everyone within 50′ of me at SMX West). Much to my surprise, I learned that Gary Illyes and the Search Quality team aren’t actually evil (mostly), at least after a couple of drinks. I survived my second child’s transition into being three, and learned that what doesn’t kill you only mostly kills you.

Next year, I’m hoping to finish this novel I started. It’s a post-apocalyptic comedy, because there just aren’t enough of those. Family-wise, I’m just hoping to survive the cyclone :) I’ll be helping my wife Nancy continue her 50 marathons in 50 states quest, with a trip to Seattle and Alaska for back-to-back races, and probably a couple more. After another year-long fitness goal in 2015 (5,000 pull-ups), which I’m just two days from completing, I’ll probably embark on yet another stupid idea that makes my chiropractor shake her head. Work-wise, I’ll be digging more into product development and am very interested in niche, data-drive marketing outside of the SEO bubble. I love our community, but we can get stuck repeating the same messages to the same people, and it’s time for me to find a broader voice.

Jennifer Lopez

Senior Director of Community, Moz
@jennita

In 2015 I found my strength as a leader and began to plan for the future. (Something I’ve had a hard time doing since beating cancer).

For 2016, I look forward to continuing my growth and seeing my plans come to life.

Barry Schwartz

CEO, RustyBrick
@rustybrick

Learned: I learned quite a lot about app indexing with Google as well as Apple.

Resolution: To study app indexing deeper, and to share my data and knowledge about it with the SEO community. :)

Barry Schwartz 2015 lessons

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5 responses to “What We Learned in 2015: Your Favorite Experts Share”

  1. Monica Johns writes:

    Great expert collections!! I love Neil Patel tips and always follow their tips and guidelines..

  2. Mike Chrest writes:

    I learned in 2015 that SEO is getting alot harder , Content marketing is a quick fix and things are changing fast. Should be an interesting year

  3. Senko Duras writes:

    Great recap, I’m really happy to see opinions from Larry Kim and Neil Patel here. Personally I agree with Neil, most valuable thing I realized in 2015 is the fact that there is so much more to build for successful online presence beside links – from reputation to brand awareness. Here is similar interview/research we performed, it’s a nice addition to your awesome post! :) http://www.creativemeerkat.com/2015/12/18/experts-discuss-content-marketing-in-2015-and-2016/

  4. keiko kitagawa writes:

    BOOM! Another awesome post! Great work

  5. Ankit writes:

    Thanks Bruce for this awesome post and nice collection. :)

    @Monica Johns- i also love the Neil works. I have using his service since past 6 month he is really business minded and have awesome SEO strategy.

    The articles on quicksprout are also very helpful.



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