My Q&A With Paul Richlovsky Of Fathom SEO

I recently spoke with a good college friend who now works at Fathom SEO, out of Cleveland, Ohio. We discussed objections to participating in social media, the perils of cutting online marketing budgets, ways to gauge website health beyond rankings, and the state of the SEM industry.

You can read the full interview on Fathom's blog. I encourage you to check it out and leave comments, especially if you have stories that illustrate or refute any of my points.

For instance, I have recently been giving a lot of thought to the effects of the economic downturn on marketing budgets and allocation of funds. Tangentially, I've also been considering the role of risk in our profession. This question is one example where those two topics came together:

Give me the best reasons why companies that need to trim advertising budgets in these tough economic times should not cut their Internet marketing funds.

The best reason not to cut your internet marketing funds is because it has been repeatedly proven that the companies who cut marketing during recessions lose market share to companies who don’t.

This is from a recent MediaPost article that puts it pretty succinctly:

“It's well-documented how companies leverage downturns in the economy to effectively market themselves. In the 1970s, marketers like Revlon and Philip Morris increased their advertising to gain market share. Today, companies like Procter & Gamble, General Motors, Verizon, News Corp and PepsiCo all increased their first-quarter ad spending.

The typical response to cut back on ad spending when the economy slows down is understandable. However, advertisers with strong brands, stable monetary resources and compelling value propositions can take share from their weaker competitors by effectively targeting their advertising.”

That doesn’t mean you need a huge pile of cash, either. These days it’s cheaper than ever to retain or expand your marketing during tough times.

How much do you think Bill Marriott’s blog is doing to attract customers? How much do you think Frank at Comcast has insulated the company from (more) online disasters? We’re talking, what – minutes a day for Bill and one salary for Frank? And their worth to the company and brand is through the roof.

Creative companies will not need to risk their market share during this or any recession. They will need to be brave and creative, sure, but the online channel wasn’t meant for the timid anyway.

Go to Fathom's blog to read my full interview with Paul. And please let me know if this Q&A was helpful or not. Thanks for reading.

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