hannamyluv - 2:35 pm on Oct 6, 2012 (gmt 0)
You know every time I hear/read the phrase "SEO is dead" all I can think is "No, it just got lazy."
There were some great points mentioned above. Many very true. I think that how it can all be summed up is that online tactics and brick and mortar tactics are now starting to line up.
You want to have a successful online business? Look to successful businesses offline.
I happen to be spending this week in the magical land of Disney World. Disney World has held a fascination for me from a marketing standpoint ever since I worked for a rival amusement park when I was a teenager. Did you know that Disney has become the number one amusement park in the world because not only do they "sell the dream", they make the dream happen? And it takes an incredible amount of work to do that. Their employees (referred to as cast members) are given training on everything from how to give directions in the park to how to make a lost child and their parents feel like even that terrifying experience is a positive. They control everything in the park, from what you see to what you SMELL in the park. Under no circumstances are cast members allowed to break the fantasy that you are in the most magical place on earth - even if they are in a very hot costume in 100+ weather and they vomit in the costume. Nothing looks shabby, everything is bright and magical.
Why? Because you just paid $80+ per person for a park (take each park individually) that if you look at it on paper is not nearly as impressive in size or rides as say Cedar Point (who charges around $50). And yet people flock to Disney parks every year, year after year. And Cedar Point is more of a roller coaster bucket list checkmark (been there, done that, on to the next).
For Disney, all of this takes an incredible amount of work on someone's part. The constant analysis, review, improvement. They see the user as a end-all-be-all and they build the marketing based on that. They even take into account the different needs of all segments of the visitors they get (Disney is awesome for everyone from families with little kids to newlyweds to retirees). They stand out because THEY DO IT BETTER AND THEY WORK HARDER.
I don't do much consulting anymore. But I do help out some friends. And to a person, they have said "That is too much work" or "How can I find a shortcut". Well, in the new SEO, if it is too much work - if you want a shortcut, you are in the wrong game.