"I never wanted to be a consultant. OR do SEO."
My name is Tim Hanson, and I'm an SEO consultant.
Bold statement from an SEO consultant. Right?
All of this started in 2013, I was working as a draughtsman for a structural engineer in London.
Taking my background of animation and model building I was working on a way to showcase the builds we were designing in a more visual way to clients.
An animated building model. In a web browser. It was like a Youtube video, but you could spin the model around to see all the side of the construction. No expensive third party software needed.
I'd build all the systems to slice up the models we were making and animate all the floors to show the construction order.
Floor by floor, column by column.
I loved it. I was running my own little company within this company. I was the "CEO", and the "Web Designer", and the "Coder". It was great.
At least I thought it was great until I was asking by one the directors why I was spending all this time, hours, weeks, months on a project that the business wasn't making any money from. We had no clients for it.
I had committed, what I would later find out, the biggest sin when it comes to starting a business.
I'd built something I thought was cool.
- No market testing
- No audience feedback
I didn't even know if anyone wanted to pay for it.
I was tasked with trying to sell it to someone.
Now, let's quickly talk about the constructing industry. It's stuck in its ways. I believe the statistic is it's around 100 years of innovation behind the automotive industry. In my words - It's run by dinosaurs. As such I wasn't allowed to leave my desk.
So I did what any millennial with an internet connection would do. I hopped online and went to Google. I learnt as much as I possibly could about getting in front of people without "leaving my desk". LinkedIn. Email marketing. Website optimisation.
It was during these searches I found SEO. I asked my employer if I could "do some SEO" on the site. Within a few weeks they were ranking for "structural engineer London". I was hooked.
I'd fallen in love with the process. And so, I started my own agency doing if for local client. I ran the agency in my own time. Evenings and weekends.
Here I was with a full time job and a digital marketing agency. Life was good.
Until it wasn't. Another dropkick to the face.
I was made redundant. The overheads for keeping me around as the "visualisation expert" were too high and no one was buying. Other companies were making the same thing but much better. I didn't even realise we had first movers advantage until much much later.
I got a job as a junior growth hacker and was thrown into the world of start-ups and SaaS businesses. Right in the heart of London. Over my years there I made my way up to Head of SEO.
It was often joked with colleagues that I was doing more SEO every week there than the 2 years I was learning and running my own agency. But it was true. The pace was faster, I was exposed to all the facets of digital marketing.
Where I was thinking of SEO in a box I could now see how it set the foundation of all other channels.
Explor was started in Feb of 2020. And we all know what happened in 2020...
Strangely though, I found more and more people wanted to talk about SEO. 2020 threw a gigantic spotlight on companies' websites and online presence (mostly lack of). The next 8 weeks consisted of nearly 100 start-ups, early stage SaaS and some big boys in the space all reaching out to have a conversation on what they could be doing better.
- CMO's who thought their site was bulletproof were nowhere to be found
- Content teams writing 15-20 pieces a month getting little to no organic traffic
Over the last year my clients have tripled traffic in 6 months, gained over £85,000 in sales in 2 months and launched websites into whole new industries, sometimes indexing in the #1 position.
I've been doing this for nearly 8 years. I love every second of it.
My name is Tim, I'm an SEO consultant and this is my company Explor.