micklearn - 6:40 am on Mar 19, 2010 (gmt 0)
Thank you for all of your replies. I really appreciate them and the perspective that they've given me going forward. I've latched onto wheel's #2 suggestion with this particular company (and a few other ones). I have browsed through many SEO company websites on my journey to lighten my workload.
How can one know for sure if any of them aren't operating a site/performing SEO on a site that competes with one that you own? It took several weeks to determine that the SEO company that was almost hired was in reality: a competitor.
I've also come to realize that the local offers that I've received are not viable/genuine: "We do SEO, too!". At the same time, I do understand the fact that larger SEO companies might not/won't/shouldn't want to reveal clients that they represent.
I'm starting to think that continuing on a DIY path might the best way going forward (even though that doesn't put me in the very best of moods).