Cutting Through The Clutter: Precise & Concise Communication

Written communication has always been something that I’ve struggled with and have been trying to improve upon. Heck, it’s one of the reasons I started this blog in the first place.  I used to dread simply sending emails. In hindsight, this could have been because I was a college student who didn’t have much practice with formal written communication.

The further you advance in your career and the more experience you have under your belt, the more practice you get. Since I started at Seer, boy, have I gotten a lot of practice. While I value a quick face-to-face conversation or phone call as much as the next person, emails are nearly impossible to avoid at work. I receive close to 3,000 emails a month and send close to 700 emails every month, so I needed to get more comfortable communicating via the written word – stat.


Effective communication, both written and verbal, is one of the most important ways to ensure that projects keep moving along, that your voice is heard, and that you’re connecting with your coworkers. So I’ve been nerding out about it pretty hard.

In an effort to keep improving, not only did I observe people whose communication styles I admired, but I also did a lot of reading on the communication styles and words we use at work that have a dramatic effect on the way our messages are heard.

Below are a few of the articles that I’ve read that are engrained in my mind every time I’m drafting up any sort of message and actively attempting to improve my communication. These reminders have been so helpful in my journey to improvement that now coworkers even come to me for advice on the subject and it’s flowed into my personal life and personal written communication. I’m still far from perfect (and I still dread writing almost as much as I used to) but wanted to share some of the things that have made it easier.

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A New Manager’s Guide to Winning Over the Team

Originally published on Business2Community

Can you remember a manager that you looked up to or admired? What was it about them that earned your respect? Part of what makes a good manager is having a solid skill set, sound judgment, and good decision making skills, but have you ever looked up to a manager just for the person that they were? Part of being a good manager is simply being good to those around you.

As a manager, there are many duties that fall into the large, seemingly ambiguous category of “being good to people” like doing great work, getting results, mentorship, coaching, providing opportunities for continued learning – the list goes on.

When I began managing my own team, I thought about what it really means to “be good” to your team, and the tangible steps I could take to fulfill that requirement.

If you’re managing people in any capacity, whether that be clients, team members, or other managers, the following are some of the little things that can help you establish a layer of trust with the people you work with to make them feel heard, appreciated, and cared for.

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Posted in Leadership | 1 Comment

Baby Steps to Positivity


Last year I began a challenge to write down at least one positive thought every single day. This was partly inspired from Pinterest, partly inspired from my mom. The idea is to take a small piece of paper, write down a highlight from your day, something you learned, a fun trip, an accomplished goal, etc. and put it in a jar. At the end of the year, read through all of your “happy moments”. They serve as a reminder of how lucky we all are, the things we worked hard to achieve, and help us appreciate all that we have.

At the end of last year, my mom read through her happy moments with me, and although there weren’t nearly 365 of them, it made me happy to hear about the positive things in her life, and I was inspired to do the same.

So in 2013 I tried to write down my happy moments. There were months where I was writing several per day, and months where I wrote nothing at all. The important part is not to be disappointed in yourself if you aren’t writing often; that defeats the purpose of the exercise. Make it a goal to write often, but don’t beat yourself up about it if you don’t.

New Year’s Day came around in 2014, and I read through all of the notes I wrote. If you know me, you know I have a terrible memory. Reading through all of the great things from 2013 allowed me to re-remember them, and make less room in my brain space for any negative memories that may have been floating around.

Some of my happy moments from 2013
Some of my happy moments from 2013

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Posted in Personal | 2 Comments

I Help Great Ideas Get Found

great ideas deserve to be found

My brother was in town visiting a few friends this past week in Philadelphia. I decided to meet up with all of them for some drinks after work, since my brother and I rarely have the opportunity to hang out. He lives in Queens with his girlfriend, works crazy hours in a nursing home kitchen and does street art in his free time. That makes getting together for holidays, or even the occasional lunch somewhat difficult.

My brother and I have never been super close, but he has always been supportive of me, impressed with my accomplishments at such a young age, and takes every chance he can to brag about me to his friends, coworkers, acquaintances– you name it.

My brother never went to college. He got himself into some trouble in his teenage years, and at 27, is still working on bettering himself. He has a job that he enjoys, but maybe doesn’t earn as much money as he’d like, and has somewhat of a “starving artist” mentality. For this reason, I think that he admires how hard I work and the things I’m working to accomplish in my career. I wouldn’t ever call it jealousy; I genuinely believe he is proud of his little sister. Continue reading

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If I Was at #MozCon

Mozcon 2013 logo



The holy grail of SEO conferences.

It comes but once a year, but when it does, brace your Tweetdeck – shit’s about to BLOW UP.

Seattle, Washington is overthrown by a mob of geeks, all clambering to catch just the slightest whiff of Rand Fishkin’s Moz-brand cologne through the cool bay breeze.

Amidst the horrendous smackdowns throughout the year from Google, MozCon is the one beacon of hope that SEO nerds have to actually look forward to every year.

It’s the one time of year people who have only interacted with each other online get together, drink lots of beer to overcome the crippling awkwardness, learn about geeky things…and then tweet EVERY SINGLE MORSEL of it for the world to see, with “#mozcon” of course.

Sounds like an SEO’s dream, right?


…Except for those who are stuck back at their dank offices plugging away at keyword research, sending hopeless link outreach, and poring over the custom columns they set up in Tweetdeck for HASHTAG MOZCON.

For the 1,200 or so attendees, there are thousands more who are back at the office going about their daily work routines, including myself.

But, if I were at Mozcon…
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Posted in SEO, Social Media | 7 Comments

Stealing Your Competitor’s Fans: A Lesson in Listening

This post is inspired by a Facebook status that SEER Interactive posted recently. We asked what type of content our fans would like to see next on our blog.

Luckily SEER was able to address our fans’ requests. If I was a search marketing company, and happened to catch this post, you bet your ass I’d be sending this out ASAP to my team. I’d see if we could drum up some kickass content, that addresses what our competitor’s audience was asking for, and publish it before our competitor could say boo. Then I’d send a respectful nudge to Sally so and so to let her know that we were listening to her needs, and had our team try to help her out. This is even easier if you already have the content your competition’s audience is requesting.
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Posted in SEO, Social Media | 5 Comments

SEOs Tell The Story of Their First Link

There’s no better feeling than seeing a pretty blue hyperlink to your website on someone else’s. It’s magical knowing that you were able to do something so wonderful, that someone else deemed it worthy of sharing with others. It’s even more magical when you’re able to convince a person to add that pretty blue hyperlink to their website.

Do you remember the first time that happened? I bet you got quite a rush, and I bet you’ll never forget. These SEOs haven’t forgotten the story of losing their link virginity. The stories range from a little gray/black hat, to directory submissions, to impossibly easy wins.

So sit back, and let these SEOs tell you a little story about the first link they built. Enjoy.

Click on one of these beautiful faces to read their story!

Alessio Madeyski  Annalisa Hilliard  Bill Sebald  Chris Gilchrist  David Cohen  Donny Rhoades

Ethan Lyon  Gaz Copeland  Hillary MacBain  Joel Klettke  John-Henry Scherck  Jon Cooper

Joshua Titsworth  Kane Jamison  Michael Kovis  Nick Eubanks  Paddy Moogan  Peter Attia

Rob Toledo  Ross Hudgens  Ryan McLaughlin  Saurav Rimal  Sean Revell  Sean Smith
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Posted in Link Building, SEO | 32 Comments

Vehicle Registration Fees By State

I’ve moved across the country twice within the last year, and have lived in 3 states throughout that time. Safe to say, it’s a lot of stress, paperwork, and annoying errands. The biggest pain for me was dealing with my car. I spent far too much time procrastinating figuring out how to go about switching my drivers license, license plates, registration, insurance, etc.

Of the 3 months I’ve spent in Pennsylvania so far, the last thing I’ve wanted to do was go through the ‘switch all your shit over’ process. But, while begrudgingly doing some research, I realized a lot of this information wasn’t easily digestable. So I decided to play around with a simple fusion table that displays the cost to register your vehicle in each state. Knowing vehicle registration fees for each state could be handy for those who tend to move around from state to state.

The data presented here only represents the costs to register a motor vehicle, not a motorcycle or truck or rocket ship. Be aware, also, that in some states, things like the weight of the vehicle, its age, and/or depreciated value can have an effect on the fees associated with registering your car. Each state differs with the way in which it bases its fees. For more info than you could ever care to read about this stuff, you can find it all here.

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