Seattle-based SEOmoz needs no introduction in the world of SEO, so it was with great excitement that the Cape Town MediaVision team set off to meet the Dalai Lama of our industry, Rand Fishkin, in the flesh. This instalment of the #Mozcation was lucky enough to be hosted in our own backyard and the promises made to SEOmoz about Cape Town were spot on: the Mother City delivered. The SEOmoz team reciprocated and no one was left unimpressed by the highest level of organisation apparent from the outset. On our arrival we were met with expertly produced nametags, friendly smiles, a funky t-shirt (which I will be wearing proudly) and an amazing array of refreshments – the wheels of networking were well oiled as we rubbed shoulders with the who’s who of the South African SEO community.
The White Hatters Tea Party
The seminar began with a few pressing questions addressed by the White Hatters organisation, a South African driven initiative for SEO done right. The panel consisted of Christine Da Silva, Allen Jaffe, Rafiq Phillips, Christopher Mills and Shaune Jordaan, all of whom are respected experts that provided insight into the SEO industry moving forward as well as managing an informative Q&A session. The number one priority the session highlighted was the need for education; both for potential clients to understand the value of SEO and for young potentials who would benefit from exposure to SEO as a career. What I got from the panel personally was the promise that our own local community of SEO is being driven and developed by some very inspiring figures for whom the needs of the industry are number one.
Top Secret Weapon Revealed
The next presentation by mozzers, Erica McGillivray and Matthew Peters, was top secret but then again also broadcast live around the world; therefore I’m sure it won’t hurt to give my impression on the ‘Fresh Web Explorer.’ Without going into specifics, it can be said with great confidence that ‘Fresh Web Explorer’ is going to become an invaluable tool for targeted content and introduced a cousin to page and domain authority – feed authority. Expertly tag-teaming through the features, the presenters certainly compelled the crowd as we were taken through a relative candyland of features that should help take blogging to another level. We’ll keep an eye out on the development of this tool and break it down for you as it gets closer to completion and release.
The Nudge Hypothesis
Last but definitely not least, Rand Fishkin took to the stage and, from the get go, spellbound us with his presentation titled ‘The Nudge is Mightier Than the Sword.’ Aside from the fact that Rand’s stage presence made at least one of our team blush, his engaging presentation was impressive in its holistic approach to conversion; this was not a presentation of statistics, graphs or pseudo-intellectual quotes but of real and practical customer psychology. The full 16-point presentation is available here and is well worth giving your full attention to. Some insightful highlights included social conformity psychology and providing your potential customers with a relevant form of affirmation for increased repeat business. Personally this was the most insightful presentation on CRO that I have ever had the pleasure of witnessing and Rand’s reputation is clearly well earned.
What our team took away from the #Mozcation seminar was that South Africa is clearly a growing and promising environment for SEO despite an invalid claim that SEO is dead; after all 400+ attendees would beg to differ. An expertly and wonderfully organised SEOmoz seminar has left us all inspired and hoping that before long the team will return to give us another taste of world-class, mastered SEO; for this we thank the organisers and everyone that made it possible.