Busy Six Months

It’s been six months since my last post in this blog, which is probably a real sin for the guy who works in search marketing field. Well, as I predicted, my life has changed a lot since then. At that time I could haven’t know how much it was about to change.

First of all I left my position at Tourism BC (which doesn’t exist anymore as it was finally merged with BC’s Ministry of Tourism, Culture and The Art on April 1st) at the end of the March and a couple weeks later I started new job as a SEM Manager at Wave Maker Marketing, brand new SEM agency in town with great potential for growth. With almost 25 people on board Wave Maker provides full scale marketing support (including online, email, video and print advertisement) for several private colleges and Canada West University owned by Eminata Group, a large player on Canada’s private education market. Immediately I was busy with learning new things, preparing reports and managing small team of PPC and SEO specialists and making sure that we provide enough of quality leads to sales team to fill out classes with students.

In May I flew to Phoenix for the first face-to-face meeting of SEMPO’s Board of Directors. Before that I took my family for quick trip to Grand Canyon, since we could not make any plans for longer vacation because of my new job. It was a great experience to see with your own eyes this one of most magnificent wonders of the world. On way back to Phoenix we spent few hours in Sedona and really enjoyed beautiful landscapes and views of red colored rocks in this small city.

SEMPO Board of Directors meeting, May 2010, Scottsdale, AZ

SEMPO Board of Directors meeting. May 2010, Scottsdale, AZ

After getting back to Phoenix I had three busy days attending SEMPO’s BoD meetings which were full of very active discussions about SEMPO’s role, membership growth, SEMPO Institute, financial reports. I was excited to meet some people who were standing at the beginning of search marketing industry like Bruce Clay, Mike Graham and Kevin Lee to name few, and members who were presenting different countries like Kristjan Mar Hauksson from Iceland, Massimo Burgio from Italy, Michael Xu from China. Face-to-face meetings are much better than monthly calls we had before that, we were able to accomplish much more than when we have all discussions over the phone.

In June I was busy working on our PPC campaigns and was really happy when we finally hired an experienced PPC specialist, Adrian, to help us with this time-consuming task.

I also was able to attend SES Toronto (June 10-12) for the first time and worked with Alex Brabant and Ken Jurina, co-chairs of SEMPO Canada working group, on the SEMPO booth trying to promote this organization and sign new members. It was quite surprising for me to learn that people involved into search marketing in Toronto don’t really have opportunity to get together, exchange some ideas, just simply have a good time except during events like SES. Here in Vancouver, we meet at the SEM meetups almost every month, we have presentation covering different SEO, PPC or social media related topics which we usually discuss and learn something new from each other. It’s also a great networking opportunity for everybody involved in the industry, when we can see each other and exchange news, have a little bit of good time after busy day in the office.

I also signed to the SEMPO’s Education Committee and was doing review for PPC training course for SEMPO Institute to make sure it’s up to the date. One of the problems with that was the merging of Yahoo and Bing advertising platforms. With this change scheduled to be completed some time this fall it didn’t make sense to make a lot of changes into information about these two search engines and their PPC programs. I hope we will be updating this course quickly after this transition is finished.
The rest of the summer I was busy at work making sure that we meet our targeted numbers. We also were exploring new opportunities by setting up new PPC campaigns for mobile devices, remarketing, testing some foreign markets. We also started to use Facebook advertisement a lot and it worked out very well for us.

Now at the beginning of new school year we see some really good results of our efforts. It gives me some hope to commit to keeping posting to this blog more regularly.

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