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Get to know Chloe Cipra, Head of SEO & Social, Alpha Digital


Chloe is the Head of SEO and Social at Alpha Digital. French by birth and Australianised since 2012, she loves all things digital with a particular interest for content marketing and data analysis. After completing her Master’s degree in Law in France, she fell in love with Australia and decided to go back to university to study a Master’s of Business/Marketing at the University of Queensland. In her spare time, she practices yoga (every damn day) and blogs at The Slow Life.

Please introduce yourself and where you work.

My name is Chloe, I am the Head of SEO and Social at Alpha Digital – we are a digital marketing agency with two French bulldogs. We have offices in Brisbane and Sydney, Australia. We work with a huge range of clients, but especially love working with national omni-channel retailers and long-lead time lead generation businesses. The agency has only been around for 6 years, but in that time, we’ve built a reputation around being transparent, enthusiastic and most of all, great at digital marketing.

How do you think SEO has changed over the last 10 years?

I haven’t been working in SEO for a decade (yet), but changes have definitely occurred over the past few years which have impacted the way we service our clients and measure the quality of our work.
I think the move from a very keyword focused approach (‘I want to rank #1 for this keyword’) to a more holistic view of organic visibility, based on topics rather than individual queries (‘I want to be seen as an expert in this field by Google’) has been one of the main changes. This comes down to the search for quality – whether quality content or quality links, and explains the blending between SEO, content marketing and digital PR.
Additionally, there is an increased focus on user experience: how users engage with a website or an app, across multiple devices, and especially mobile, is now very much a part the SEO game. Technical factors like page load speed, website security, structured data, URL structure, are also gaining in importance and should not be overlooked.

How did you get introduced to digital marketing, more specifically SEO?

I first got exposed to SEO when I was working for a fashion retailer in their ecommerce office, although I learnt the specifics of how to implement it properly when I started as an SEO Executive at Alpha Digital. The first thing I read was Moz Beginner’s Guide to SEO, along with a whole heap of Whiteboard Fridays.
I am lucky to be in an agency where training has always been a big focus and we are encouraged to keep learning and innovating in how we could improve our service. SEO is the sort of industry where things are constantly evolving, so staying on top of the latest updates is very important – there is never a dull moment. I also really enjoy the fact that it is so versatile and requires a wide range of skills: data analysis, creative mindset, technical abilities to name a few.

What are the services you provide to your clients?

Our two core services are SEO and Paid Search, which both include an array of specialties, from Programmatic to Display advertising and Social ads, to conversion rate optimisation and website migration projects. We also do Social media marketing, which is a very natural complementary offering to our existing services, and allows us to be a one stop shop for some of our clients when it comes to their digital presence.

What strategy according to you will prevail in 2017 for SEO?

I don’t think SEO is about finding new tricks, although we must stay current and update our strategies constantly. SEO is about making sure your focus is on sending quality signals to search engines through a holistic strategy, so that they can serve the best results to a user’s query (hopefully yours).
Apart from that, Google’s Mobile First index is the next big thing, and is set to happen in 2018. SEOs have all been predicting mobile taking over the world (or thereabouts) for years, but this will most likely be a whole other level of Mobilegeddon . Focusing on mobile friendliness and user experience should really be part of a digital strategy, not only SEO.

What would your advice be to people who are looking to take up digital marketing as a career choice?

Digital is the way forward with marketing, and a great career path if you ask me. There are (almost) endless opportunities to grow in your own professional development and in the service offering as it keeps changing every day.
My advice to someone looking to enter the industry would be: don’t think for a second that your learning stops when you step out of the classroom. Universities haven’t really caught up with digital yet, so students really need to go above and beyond to make sure they have the right skills to enter the job market. For instance, SEO requires a mix of marketing, technical and data analysis skills.
Take every single opportunity you get to learn, and even better, seek those opportunities. Look for free online courses and certifications (start with Google’s courses), keep up to date with the industry changes every week through reading articles. And last but not least: take on as much work experience as humanly possible, even if (and especially if) it is not required by your university course. Internships are the best way to learn if you can find a good program, so put yourself out there and give it a go!

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