Why Is This Search Marketer Telling You To Stay Away From SEO and PPC?

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The glamor of number one rankings in Google literally pays my bills. I built my career in search marketing selling SEO and scaling PPC for clients and have the pitch down pat.

I have a rule about marketing that states, “Business Owners and Marketing Directors are not in business to make money. They are in business to feel good about themselves, money is just a means to an end. So when selling advertising or marketing services, sure, make them money, but make them LOOK GOOD MAKING MONEY, and they will literally throw all their money at you.”

This might seem counter-intuitive, after all whats the point of marketing if it doesn’t rake in the dough. My answer is simple. There is No Point… But Making Money is not enough.

The average business can market their products in 10-20 different media, but few market themselves in more than 3, the savvy ones use 5. How many different ways and places do you market your business?

How do businesses choose how and where to market themselves? Usually its where their competitors are marketing. They want to compete, They wan to Win. They attach so much value to their image, and let the numbers get away from them. Marketing should be detached from anything but the numbers, but it almost never is…

I first made this discovery when a client of mine, who advertised on a ton of billboards told me, “I own the Skies, How Can Anyone Compete With Me.” Was his billboard advertising profitable? Yes, but hardly the most profitable option for him, but it was the best way for him to thump his chest.

When it comes to search engine marketing, the appeal of being number one is super-powerful… but you know what’s even more powerful? The pain of seeing a business you compete with, and consider to be worse than you, outranking you in search engines. It’s not about being number one, it’s about being appreciated and recognized by Google to give you the rankings you believe you deserve.

As a marketer, whenever a prospect approaches me about web strategy, I always tell them PPC is the quickest avenue to getting the phone to ring. Give me 30 minutes and I can get customers calling your phone. More importantly, competing profitably in PPC, which is a real-time auction marketplace is very difficult to do profitably unless you have an edge over your competitors. One edge could be in better margins. Another edge could be in a better converting website. The edge that I sell is Quality Score expertise. Knowing how to get cheaper clicks than your competitors, finding keywords they never imagined, writing better ads that get higher click through rates in lower positions, and advising on landing page optimization plays right into the Ego driving people to advertise with PPC. Instant Gratification of a deep human emotional desire is such an easy sell.

Once you get them hooked on the Google Drug from PPC, the sales pitch for SEO is super-simple. It will take time, but why pay Google Hundreds of Thousands of dollars a month, when you can get the same traffic for $10k a month? Cheaper Ego Boosting Drugs, with sales call volume almost forcing you to scale your business, thus depending on Google to stay in business. Why wouldn’t everyone sell Search Marketing Services?!

The truth is, the only reason this pitch works so well is because Search Marketing works so well. You have a user intent engine, and the ability to find people when they are in the exact frame of mind of solving the problem you solve. A marketers dream. Everyone Wins.

Here’s the thing. The Google Drug is worse than Coffee. It is so difficult to ween yourself off the Drug, and more likely it will slowly eat up more and more of your advertising budget. It’s The Yellow Pages, with a real time auction, driving advertising costs right up to the point of being unprofitable if you don’t have some sort of edge. A win for consumers in fact. They find what they are looking for, find multiple options and competitors to choose from, and the fact that your competitors are just a click away forces you to compete harder, close better, and provide winning service. It forces you to put the customer first. After all, Competition Breeds Excellence.

The Problem My Friend is that, “Your Competitors Are Right Next To You and Only a Click Away.”

Wouldn’t you be better off chasing the other 10 possible ways to market your business that puts you in a league of your own. One that your competitors are nowhere to be found. One that allows you to differentiate yourself in a way that the consumer doesn’t even know how to compare you to others? But, you might ask, I don’t know how to find customers in these other ways. After all, if my target audience was there, wouldn’t my competitors be there? Trust Me, if your competitors knew everything, you wouldn’t be able to compete at all, anywhere… In fact, I bet they don’t even know that there are 10-20 other ways for them to advertise.

Here is one sure fire way to reach your audience in a way that leaves your competitors chasing their tail wondering how you are growing your business… It’s Called Lumpy Mail, or 3D Mail, or Direct Mail. Just Mail Something Unique to a list of prospects, and they have no choice but to pay attention. Write a killer sales letter, and suddenly, you are way ahead of your competitors.

I am not saying Lumpy Mail is easy… A good Sales Letter can cost you $5000-$25000 and possibly royalties. A direct mail piece that is Lumpy, might cost a few dollars per name on your list… How can you win with this? Call me if you want to know how… I can assure you that it is your best bet to get off the Google Drug. Of course if Google is your drug of choice, feel free to call me too 🙂

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About David Melamed

David Melamed is the Founder of Tenfold Traffic, a search and content marketing agency with over $50,000,000 of paid search experience and battle tested results in content development, premium content promotion and distribution, Link Profile Analysis, Multinational/Multilingual PPC and SEO, and Direct Response Copywriting.


  1. […] Melamed is the author of Why Is This Search Marketer Telling You To Stay Away From SEO and PPC?, an avid blogger at DavidMelamed.com about leveraging emerging technology to find customers and […]

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