About a year ago I wrote a blog post entitled “How to Break into the SEO Clique.” The post centered on one of my few personal frustrations with the SEO industry; the cold shoulder and cliquey attitude SEO professionals tend to have towards one another. The post focused on my relationship with a top SEO site that had asked me to stop commenting on their blog posts, even though I was submitting quality, well-thought out comments. I’d spend a half hour writing a three paragraph response only to have it rejected by the site administrator. Understandably, I was a little bit miffed.
So as to not ruffle any feathers, I stopped commenting on the blog for a while, just as I was asked. I didn’t want to make waves and have potential clients view me as someone who is difficult to work with and likes to make trouble. I’d submit one comment every few months, just to keep my profile on the site active.
A few months ago, I decided to ramp up my blog commenting on this particular site. I paid for a membership, which meant that my comments should have gone through immediately, free from administrator editing. That was one of the perks of the paid subscription. I had only been at it a week when I realized that, once again, none of my comments were going through! I thought there might have been a glitch in the system, so I let it rest for a few days. Then I submitted a three paragraph comment that did eventually post, so I assumed the issue had been fixed. I checked back on that comment to see if anyone had followed up, only to discover that it had been removed!
Why would this or any other site have comments enabled if they are only going to let members of their clique join in the conversation? I can understand a site owner trying to control the amount of spam comments being left, by why not let someone who is actively trying to contribute to the conversation post their comments?
I wasn’t trying to clutter the site’s feed (which is one of the reason’s I was asked to stop commenting in the first place). I’m just trying to be the best SEO practitioner I can be to help my clients and build my company. Part of doing that is being involved in the SEO community by reading and commenting on relevant industry blogs. It a big part of how I stay aware of trends and news in the industry.
Maybe it’s because we see our fellow SEO professionals as competition as opposed to comrades in the industry. I think having you competition commenting on your blog is a great thing! It means you are doing something right. As long as we stay civil about it, where is the problem?
Has any other SEO professional felt like they just weren’t part of the “cool kids” crowd? I’m ok with not playing in their sandbox, but I think, as an industry, we need to stay respectful of each other. SEO has a hard enough time fighting a bad reputation brought on by black hat practitioners. We don’t need to turn on each other as well.