Reality SEO: Mitchell Beattie: Don’t let your marketing drive you mad

Reality SEO: Mitchell Beattie: Don’t let your marketing drive you mad
Reading Time: 15 minutes

 

Taking measured steps into digital advertising

 

In my Reality SEO series, I interview real-life humans who’ve changed their digital marketing and SEO strategy for good and used simple techniques to transform their business and brand.

These episodes include practical, doable advice and tips from people just like you.

Find out why mad-cat marketer, Mitchell Beattie, decided to pivot from the world of wine to help other businesses perfect their marketing strategy, what got him on the path of SEO, what his biggest learnings have been, and his top tips for small businesses.

 

 

About Mitchell Beattie

 

Mitch Beattie is the founder and face of Mad Cat Marketing. He spent almost a decade in the wine industry, before deciding to establish his own marketing agency.

That was way back in 2014, and these days he’s supported by a merry band of over 15 exceptional professionals, who work together to turn your ambitions into reality.

Mitch once ate snail porridge.

 

 

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If you like what you’re hearing on The Recipe for SEO Success Show, support the show by taking a few seconds to leave a rating and/or comment on iTunes, SoundCloud, Spotify, or Stitcher. Thanks!

And big thanks to Henrik SEO Specialist from Norway for their lovely review.

“My favourite SEO podcast

 

My favourite SEO podcast because you make SEO so fun, easy and engaging 😊🙋🏼‍♀‍

 

Kind regards from an SEO specialist in Norway”.

 

 

Connect with Mitchell Beattie

 

Useful Resources

 

 

 

Transcript

 

Kate Toon:
In my reality SEO series, I interview real life humans who’ve changed their digital marketing and SEO strategy for good and use simple techniques to transform their businesses and their brands. These episodes include practical, doable advice and tips from people just like you. Today, we’re going to find out why Mad Cat marketer, Mitchell Beattie, decided to pivot, yes, the pivot word from the world of wine to helping other businesses perfect their marketing strategy. What got him on the path of SEO and his biggest learnings. What have they been? His top tips for small businesses just like yours.

Kate Toon:
Hello. My name is Kate Toon and I am the head chef at The Recipe for SEO Success, an online teaching hub for all things related to search engine optimization and digital marketing. Today, I’m talking with Mitchell Beattie. Hello, Mitch.

Mitchell Beattie:
Hi, Kate.

Kate Toon:
It’s good to have you here. So, Mitch, you did the SEO course many moons ago and also a member of Digital Masterchefs, which is my VIP mentoring group for smart digital humans, or for people who want to become smart digital humans, but let me first read out your bio, so everyone knows who you are, what you do, and can go away and Google you. Mitch Beattie is the founder and face of Mad Cat Marketing. He spent almost a decade in the wine industry before deciding to establish his own marketing agency. That was way back in 2014 and these days, he is supported by a merry band of over 15 exceptional professionals, who work together to turn your ambitions into reality and fun fact is I forced Mitchell to write this. He once at snail porridge. So, there’s a lot to pick up on there, but we’ll start with the snails. What the actual…what?

Mitchell Beattie:
So, yeah, I’m a bit of a foodie. I like going and trying new things, trying new restaurants and a few years ago, Heston Blumenthal brought his restaurant over to Australia and I was one of the lucky few that got to go along and yes, one of his crazy dishes was snail porridge.

Kate Toon:
I’m not sure if that’s lucky or unlucky. As someone who thinks gourmet food is like brie on toast rather than cheese on toast, I’m not his ideal client, I think.

Mitchell Beattie:
Yeah.

Kate Toon:
So, yeah, look, before we get into talking about your SEO journey and digital marketing journey, you can’t see, but you can look at the picture in the show notes that behind Mitch is the most beautiful background and we were talking before the podcast that you’re based in the Hunter valley. So, your team, are they all remote? Are they all over the world or are they in your living room behind you?

Mitchell Beattie:
No, we are all remote, yeah, located all around the place, so.

Kate Toon:
It’s great, isn’t it, because that’s how I run my business. I’ve only got 12, not 15.

Mitchell Beattie:
Yeah.

Kate Toon:
They’re in Australia, New Zealand all over the world, UK, and it works really, really well to not have to deal with humans except via Slack, and Asana, and a bit of Zooming. I love it.

Mitchell Beattie:
Yeah.

Kate Toon:
Suits my personality very well or lack of personality. So, bit of a journey, this time in wine, why did you decide to set up your own business? What was the foundations for that?

Mitchell Beattie:
So, I had been with the one company for nearly 10 years, came straight out of uni, got a marketing job there, grew, experienced a lot of different things with them, and it was just coming to the time that I needed a change, whether that was to go and find another job or, some close friends spoke about maybe I should set up my own business and I gave it a go, took the plunge, and here I am.

Kate Toon:
Here you are. So, 10, how many years later? 2014. So, we are year 8.

Mitchell Beattie:
Yes.

Kate Toon:
If it was going to stop happening, it would’ve stopped happening by now. You stuck with it. Mad Cat Marketing, obviously, marketing encompasses a lot. What other core areas of expertise that your agency focuses on?

Mitchell Beattie:
So, we do focus mainly on digital. So, we do Facebook ads, Google ads, SEO, of course, and we also build websites and a bit of email marketing here and there.

Kate Toon:
Okay, cool. So, kind of the whole kit and caboodle. Well, let’s talk about SEO. We’re on an SEO podcast. Let’s talk about the start of your SEO journey. I can’t remember when you did the course, but I do think it was a while ago. Where was your head at before you started digging into SEO? Did you have any experience from the wine business or were you just completely blank?

Mitchell Beattie:
No, I was completely blank. We didn’t really touch on SEO back in wine industry. We were focused mainly on direct marketing and social was a new thing coming through. So, that’s where I had my experience when I set up my agency, and it wasn’t really until I came across you and your course that I started to delve into SEO.

Kate Toon:
To dig in. You were a keen bee, I remember, and, obviously, learning it not just for your own business, but to pass on to clients. I guess, in those early days, what surprise…you’d be working in direct mail, very traditional for wine, isn’t it? What surprised you about SEO when you first started learning about it? Was it the potential or was it like how easy it was or what was it?

Mitchell Beattie:
Yeah, it was a bit of both. The ease of it is surprising. How easy it can be and just that everyday business owners are more than capable to take care of their own SEO and then you have the potential to grow and build your business off that is fantastic.

Kate Toon:
I mean, now, I think that’s a great thing to say that every small business owner can get to a certain level with SEO. Obviously, if you’ve got a highly competitive niche, you’re going after really hardcore keywords, then you do get to the pointy ends of SEO where it does obviously get a bit harder, but most people never get there because they haven’t even done the basics, right? When you are working with new clients, do you find that when you’re looking at their sites and their general marketing that they haven’t really even thought about what keywords they’re going after. They’ve done nothing for SEO and they’re like, “Oh, SEO doesn’t work” and it is like, “Well, cos you’ve done nothing”. So, what’s your experience with your clients?

Mitchell Beattie:
Yeah, definitely that, people expect that you build a website and then that’s the end of it. Everything’s going to take care of itself, but as we know that’s not the case, so there’s a lot that they haven’t thought of or looked into yet.

Kate Toon:
What are some of the starting points you think about when you’re starting with a new client and right from ground zero, how do you approach their SEO strategy?

Mitchell Beattie:
Definitely thinking about what keywords best suit them and their goals. So, doing some research around that and then we do a complete audit of the website to see how it’s structured and whether there are some things that may improve in there and then-

Kate Toon:
Go from there. Those two, I mean, those are the foundational things. I think so many people they’re marching on thinking about keyword strategy, blogging strategy, content strategy, backlink strategy, and the audit is everything, right? Like the audit to find out where you currently are, not even looking at your metrics. So, you have no baseline to improve on and also not messing up stuff that’s actually working. Sometimes if you come through with too much of a broom sweep, you can actually sweep away stuff that also is working and you’re not entirely sure why because although we like to think of SEO as a black and white science, sometimes things happen and it’s not exactly sure why. You’re ranking for this page and you can’t quite understand why you are. So, it’s kind of like leave that alone. There’s still a little bit of magic and mystery in there I think. So, you talked about doing keyword research, you talked about doing audits. What are some of the tools that you like to use in your sort of SEO toolkit?

Mitchell Beattie:
Well, definitely, SEMrush is the one. We look at Google Analytics, hopefully, they have that set up and then… So a bit of keyword research. It’s, what is it? Ask the public. I always forget that. I find it handy one as well.

Kate Toon:
Yeah. I love a bit of Answer The Public, great for content marketing ideas, but I guess if you get a tool, I guess SEMrush or Ahrefs they’re so all in one that you don’t need multiple tools. They didn’t use to be, but now they kind of have everything in them and, yes, they’re expensive, but when I’m on the big course, I teach using all the freebies, all the free tools, because people have just spent a lot of money on a course. They don’t want to spend on tools, but then you end up with 17 tabs open, one tab is Testing the robots.Txt, another tab is this. So, yeah, I think once you’ve got a bit of confidence, it’s great to move on to one of those holistic tools, but you kind of got to put in some effort, haven’t you? Like SEMrush, Ahrefs. They’re great and the interface is good, but it can be overwhelming, can’t it, for the uninitiated?

Mitchell Beattie:
Yeah.

Kate Toon:
Yeah. Got to do a few tutorials. Okay, so when we’re talking about SEO, what are some big changes you have made in your own business since learning about SEO and the way that you market your business?

Mitchell Beattie:
Well, offering it as a service is one big change. Of course, it’s not something that I was doing it early on. So, once I became comfortable with that, it was a something that we started offering, but then to actually audit our own website, go through, see what was working, see what keywords were out there that would help us grow and get some new target audiences, yeah, that’s our first point.

Kate Toon:
And for somebody who’s thinking of offering SEO as a service, I think, it can be a little bit daunting because even if you do a course, SEO is a vast topic and often people specialise in certain areas. We have Ben Fisher on the podcast, who specialises in local SEO, Tim Capper as well. Some people specialise in eCommerce. We have got Briony, who’s also a member of Digital Masterchefs coming on to talk about eCommerce keyword research. I mean one of the reasons I started Digital Masterchefs was so that people like us… people who are in the SEO world have somewhere kind of private where they can ask questions about SEO.

Mitchell Beattie:
Yes.

Kate Toon:
And in our little community, we’ve got lots of SEOs now and, do you find that kind of level of supports helpful because one of the things I found when I first started in SEO is in a lot of big Google groups, mostly blokes, you were great those blokes, some of you weren’t so great, and it was like, if I asked a question, I was showing that I didn’t know what I was talking about, but I didn’t. You can’t know everything and thinking that you do know everything is terrible. So, I think it’s really important to have a community. Do you agree? I mean, I would just say yes.

Mitchell Beattie:
Yeah. A hundred percent. No, it’s great to have that safe place to come and ask and not be made to feel like an idiot. If you don’t 100% understand something or…marketing is changing so much and so quickly and to stay on top of everything is impossible, so.

Kate Toon:
Yeah, especially as a kind of almost through the line agency, which you are offering, mostly digital, but trying to be an expert at LinkedIn and Instagram and Twitter and TikTok and SEO and Google ads and Facebook. I mean Facebook ads in itself is just a monstrosity, horrendous. They’ve changed the business manager again into the Meta whatever, and I went in there the other day and I couldn’t even find my billing information, let alone… So, yeah, I think having a peer group as a marketer is so important and we don’t have to go it alone and I love the posts in our group because often it’s like, “This has happened, what would you do?” And everyone’s like, “I would do exactly what you did.”

Mitchell Beattie:
Yeah.

Kate Toon:
And that affirmation can be everything, just to know, because, I think, we all sit here and if we’re good business owners thinking that we don’t 100% know what we’re talking about. As soon as you think you know everything, then you’ve probably lost it and just going in somewhere and someone going, “yeah, yeah, I do that too” is just really important, I think-

Mitchell Beattie:
Yeah. That’s it.

Kate Toon:
-gets rid of that imposter syndrome and it enables you to provide better service for your clients. So, look, you can talk to all aspects of marketing, but I’m going to not ask you for one tip. I’m going to ask you for three tips, Mitch. So, I’m going to give you a little time to about it. So, majority of our listeners are small business owners, eCommerce stores, and marketers. What are three tips you would pass on to anybody listening about improving their digital marketing?

Mitchell Beattie:I…

 

Kate Toon:
Putting you in a spot here.

Mitchell Beattie:
Something that I always tell my clients is just give it a go. So often they need to have everything lined up and everything perfect before they will just take the leap, but I always say just, if you’ve got an idea, give it a go and test it out, see what the results are from that would be my first tip.

Kate Toon:
Yeah. I love that. I mean, I’m a huge iterative marketer. So, I try, I have an idea, I put it out there in a small way. I see what the uptake is and then I get bigger and bigger. As we record this, I’m on my 22nd launch of the Recipe for SEO Success course. What it is now compared to what it was when it started in terms of content, price, support, is a completely different beast that I would’ve never got here unless I put something out there. Okay. So, give it a go. You can’t achieve anything unless you do something. Okay. Tip #2. What would your tip #2 be?

Mitchell Beattie:
Yeah. Testing, I think, is a big one. A lot of people just try something, put no test or measure around it and say, “Well, that didn’t work.” They put $50 in the Facebook ads and “Oh, I didn’t get any sales from that. That didn’t work.” What testing have you done to measure the results from it? Yeah.

Kate Toon:
Yeah. I think so and that’s plays into so many different things, doesn’t it? Testing out two different subject lines with your email, sending out to a small group, and even if the difference between the open rate is like 2%, when you scale that to your big list, it’s going to be substantial. I so agree with the Google ads. The number of people who’ve taken up that little offer that Google gives and that’s it and like it didn’t work, I’m stopping. I’ve been a bit like that. Facebook ads as well. It takes a lot. It takes a while to learn what works for your business. You can listen to all the podcasts and get broad sweep ideas, but your business is your business and what resonates with your audience might not resonate with mine.

Kate Toon:
A classic example of this is that I did no advertising for my business for the first 12 years and, only this year, I’ve started doing Facebook ads and they are working. I’m doing airquotes, these people, but not as well as my content because my content, yes, obviously it feels like it takes longer to produce, you’re always going to pay. So, either I’m paying in time or I’m paying in money, but my content seems to generate more genuine leads than Facebook ads, which makes sense, right? Does that mean I shouldn’t do Facebook ads? No, it means I should do Facebook ads in a different way to get them into my funnel, to warm people up so that they then see my content because… but anyway, I’m waffling. So, we’ve got just do it, test, test, test. What’s tip #3?

Mitchell Beattie:
Another thing that I find with clients is they want to try everything. They want to do their email marketing. They want to be on Instagram, TikTok, Facebook, Google ads, SEO. Everything could work, just stick to one thing for a while, get it happening, and then after you’ve tested, measured, then try something else.

Kate Toon:
Yeah. It’s the plate spinning. Isn’t it? Get like one plate spinning before you add another plate?

Mitchell Beattie:
Yeah.

Kate Toon:
And, I think there’s a lot of pressure to be everywhere, to be on all the platforms and, yes, you can set up your profile on all the platforms, but you’ve got to be there and engaging. One platform I’m not great at is LinkedIn, and I’m like, “Oh, LinkedIn doesn’t work for me,” and it’s because I don’t turn up.

Mitchell Beattie:
That’s it.

Kate Toon:
It’s great having a platform and occasionally scheduling a random post there, but if that’s not going to do anything, you have to invest time in these platforms and there’s only, only so many hours in a day. I guess that’s something to finish on. As a small business owner, who can’t afford an agency like yours, what percentage of their time do you think they should be focusing on marketing? Like, in a given week, you got five days, you’ve got maybe 40 hours or if you’re a real small business owner, maybe 80 hours we’re working, I’m not sure. 

Mitchell Beattie:
Yeah.

Kate Toon:
How much time would you give to marketing if you were to recommend to a small business owner?

Mitchell Beattie:
Ideally, I would be trying to put in at least one day. If that’s spread across the week, you just break that up into an hour or so here and there. Yeah. Ideally, at least a day all up to try and be working up.

Kate Toon:
Yeah. I agree. I mean, at least an hour a day, doing something meaningful and ensuring you are not being a busy fool. I think the thing I noticed most when people come on the SEO course is people are like, “Oh my God, I’m going to have to spend so much more time on my SEO.” And it’s like, no, you’re going to spend exactly the same time that you were before, but you’re actually going to do something that makes a difference rather than commenting on some randoms Instagram post, hoping that they will take notice of you and become an influencer for you. So, you’re actually doing things that are meaningful, speeding up your sites, fixing blog posts, actually having some focus for your content, building backlinks. So, I love that. Okay. So, we had just do it, test, test, test. I can’t remember what the third one was now, it’s gone straight out of my head. Gosh, I need more coffee. I think it was not be everywhere. Do one thing at a time.

Mitchell Beattie:
Yes.

Kate Toon:
And then an hour a day at least on your marketing or if you’ve got it a day a week. Well, look, Mitch, it’s been fantastic talking to you. I’ve included links to all your various bits and bobs on the website. We’ve got link to your Facebook, your Instagram, and your website. So, if you want to check out Mitch and the range of services that he offers, I highly recommend that you do. So thanks very much, Mitch.

Mitchell Beattie:
Thanks for having me, Kate. It’s great. 

Kate Toon:
Oh, such a lovely chap and great tips there. It’s not always about the perfect tool or the perfect percentage just generally kind of taking your time, getting something done, testing it, and just doing one thing at a time rather than doing 17 things badly, I think, is a great strategy. So, that’s the end of this week’s show. If you have questions about digital marketing or SEO, you can head to the I LOVE SEO group on Facebook. We have over 10,000 members now and we’d love to see you there. Mitch is also a member. So, if you want to ask Mitch about anything we spoke about today, you can.

Kate Toon:
I like to end the show with the shout outs to one of my lovely listeners and, today, it’s Henrik, an SEO specialist from Norway. How cool is it? I love Norway. I went to Oslo and it just, magical, magical city. I hope one day I can get back there. Henrik says this is my favourite SEO podcast because you make SEO so fun, easy, and engaging. Henrik, you are lovely. I wish I knew how to say that in Norwegian, maybe you can tweet me and let me know. So, thanks to Mitchell and thanks to you for listening and thanks to Henrik.

Kate Toon:
If you like the show, don’t forget to leave a five star rating and review on iTunes, Stitcher, Spotify, or wherever you heard the podcast. Your review will help others find the show and make me happy and, at the end of the day, that’s what it’s all about. And if you want to read the show notes for this episode, which include a full transcript for those of you who keep complaining that I talk too quickly, I know I’m trying, you can head to www.therecipeforseosuccess.com. Learn more about Mitchell, check out the useful links and leave a comment for the show. So, until next time, Happy SEOing. I’ll see you on the next episode or hear you, you know what I mean.