Agencies are the perfect place to learn the ropes of digital marketing. They have the ability to expose you to a diverse range of work with a diverse range of clients in a short period of time.

A couple of aspects of working for agencies can cause frustrations, however – such as your recommendations being ignored and organic successes rarely being attributed to your efforts.

Objections to working in an SEO agency

Clients like my ideas but won’t do anything with them

No-one likes the limitations put on their work by clients, but you’re going to have to work within limitations within most SEO roles. Working client-side you’ll still have limits from legal and from other departments (devs and UX, for example). You need to learn to work with it. Make the most of what you have, rather than complaining about what you don’t.

As far as clients not taking your recommendations, again, that’s how the world works. They’re paying your company to do something they either don’t want to or can’t do themselves. Just because you produce or recommend something doesn’t mean they’re under any obligation to use it. That’s their prerogative. You can only continue to show why your advice should be trusted and continue to provide high-quality work that gets positive results. With time they’ll be more likely to listen to your recommendations.

I never get credit when a campaign I help to plan and implement takes off

You need to realise that not being credited with success 100% of the time and colleagues deciding not to implement your recommendations is all part of being in the working world. Entry-level folks don’t advise the CEO or C-Suite at any company. Put in your time, work your way up and then you can get to a position where you’ll be more trusted and have access to give advice to those folks. You need to prove yourself before you’ll be trusted with that connection. They’re not going to trust anyone to make or break their relationship (and contract) with big enterprise level clients.

At an agency, the SEO execs are usually the first to be cut when sales take a downward turn

In terms of job security – yes, this can be a risk, but it’s not at exclusive to agencies. When it comes to cuts, the low-level are usually first to go. That’s why you put in your work and work your way up. You make yourself valuable to the organization so if cuts do happen, they have good reason to hold on to you. If you aren’t valuable to them, of course, they’re going to cut you loose first. You’d do the exact same in that position.

Advice for SEO Executives starting their careers

If you’re very early in your career you have a lot go growing to do. Everyone starts at the bottom when they get into the workforce. You have to put in your time. You have to show you can produce high-quality work and make yourself valuable. Be positive about things.

Look at the opportunities presented to you at the agency. Look for areas you can grow and learn (that may be at work or outside of work through various blogs and other educational resources). Attitude comes across in your work. People with negative attitudes rarely get promoted and usually end up hating work.

Categories: Employability


Dylan owns and runs SEOYates.


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