Lukasz Zelezny, top 10 UK social media influencer, UK search awards judge and former director of organic performance at ZPG. Previously leading his team he is responsible for the uSwitch.com, Zoopla.co.uk and PrimeLocation organic visibility, conversion rate, traffic and engagement. Lukasz is a hands-on person; he spends lots of his time keeping up to date with the changes in the technology of online marketing. Lukasz started his career in 2005 and has since been responsible for the organic performance of a number of companies including HomeAway, Thomson Reuters, The Digital Property Group and Fleetway Travel.
He is a graduate from the Silesian University of Technology with a BA in Marketing.
He travels up to 75,000 km a year speaking at many SEO and social media conferences including ClickZ Shanghai China, ClickZ Jakarta Indonesia, SiMGA Malta, SES London in the United Kingdom as well as conferences held in Europe; Marketing Festival in Brno, Brighton SEO in Brighton, UnGagged in London. Every year he is actively participating in 10 to 20 events as an SEO/Social Media keynote speaker. Additionally, he organizes workshops and meetups where he is sharing tips around SEO, Social Media and Analytics.
Please introduce yourself, and tell us why UnGagged?
My name is Lukasz Zelezny, I’m working for uSwitch, which is a price comparison site in London. We’re comparing prices of broadband, mobiles, credit cards, and many products. For three years I was head of organic acquisition, and aside from my 9 to 5 work, I’m trying to attend as many conferences as I can as a speaker. It’s a pleasure to be here, it’s a little different from what I’m used to, first of all it’s during the weekend which isn’t very popular, and second of all there is a special, very nice and friendly atmosphere between the attendees, speakers and organisers, also the venue is fantastic, so I’m very proud, happy and honoured to be a part of this event.
What are your top tips and priority actions for overcoming issues associated with any big Google algorithm roll outs?
First of all, the Google algorithm updates, and any updates for other search engines, right now there seems to be much more transparent than they were before. The communication between us, webmasters, responsible for traffic, and the search engines is much better. You can see by what happened with mobilegeddon recently, everybody is talking about this. Google gave two months of their advanced time, to give us time to prepare. Second thing, is the ability to dig. You need to be a little between a scientist and an artist. I’ve always wanted to be a scientist Stephen Hawking, but it never worked. I decided to become an SEO so I could be a little like a scientist, and a little like an artist. A lot of my friends who are working in SEO, have artistic backgrounds, they are musicians, dancers and painters; which gives you the ability to look at this from many different angles. You need to dive into this, digging and digging; putting a couple of elements together to then be able to see the full picture. We have been pretty successful in this, and sometimes there are some issues you would never expect would affect your website, it could be pagespeed or that you have blocked some resources or CSS file, and you see in the browser that everything is working correctly, but it doesn’t look the same for a Google bot. Make your decision based on the data. I would say it’s constant learning, we need to learn as much as we can everyday. Read as much as you can, observe what other people doing because it makes us strong and makes us who we are; we need to be constantly hungry for knowledge and learning.
How can businesses with smaller budgets and resource best respond to big updates?
I was recently was asked this question, and surprisingly you can observe that small businesses are quicker at responding to challenges and changes. This is because teams are proactive and are smaller, there is less of the business steps of confirming and signing, and so on. Big businesses often need a longer time to adapt to something. There are huge companies, everywhere in any market that aren’t responsive yet, which are using old technology, and when you join them it’s kind of a clash, and you ask why are you using this, it’s old technology from the 90s, and they’ll reply that it’s always been like that and so on. So, that’s one thing, and the second thing is obviously that startups, and small companies, are more likely to choose a niche they’re going to operate at. Back in the day someone told me that if you want to become a big insurance operator, and you want to start from SEO, maybe this isn’t the greatest idea, but you can see how many actions are successful and how well the websites and companies are doing. One product I saw recently, is ‘Lily’ the world’s first throw and shoot camera, which is absolutely fantastic. I was really surprised, and it’s a great example of how they found their niche, and I’m sure all the sports people will buy this when it’s available.
Are you aware of any gamechanger developments on the horizon that in-house or consultant SEOs should be aware of?
I think, again, there is less intent to make an earthquake, it’s more that we decided to change and there will soon be a checkout button in the surps, which would be a big revolution, and revolutionise the whole industry. But, again, it’s not an earthquake, I don’t expect many earthquakes anymore, as I mentioned before, the communcaitonbetwen webmasters and search engines is much better. Now it will be more about this communication to move us forwards. There is an important aspect to mention, that very often we are playing on the same team. Search engines and our users are the same people, search engines want to serve extremely good user experience and high quality products, and we as a business also want to serve as good, or even better of an experience. There is no conflict between what we or they want to achieve. So, answering your question is very simple, as I don’t expect any earthquakes, but it will be evolving and therefore we need to read more and learn more.
In your niche or sector, what’s the most annoying SEO misconception? Please feel free to set things straight!
I’m very lucky to be in London, as both I think London and Berlin are the two places that are considered to be the two very strong places in terms of online marketing. But, again there are many places in the world where they are still trying to use this mid nineties or early 2000’s concept like, let’s write a thousand words for specific keyword, lets by some backlinks, let’s contact some bloggers and so on. I think everything is evolving into user experience and we can clear see the link between lots of different elements; PR, social media, SEO, web design, everything is trying to be closer and closer. We had a great presentation about the page the page speed, and so on, so everything is becoming closer and closer. It’s less thinking about how to gain, it’s less like a spring, it’s like a miraphone. You know miraphone is a big thing, you have to train, you need to prepare and sometimes live like a monk. So again, for us it’s more about thinking in the scale of ten years, twenty years, rather than half a year because something will happen.
Videos featuring the speaker
Why UnGagged loves Lukasz
Lukasz Zelezny’s area of expertise is social media. Just ask his 62.7k followers on Twitter and 60k followers on Facebook. He’s even been named the 7th most influential marketer and advertiser in the UK by Klout. He travels all over the world sharing his tips on SEO, social media and analytics at conferences. Lukasz is also a drum-and-bass producer when he is not blowing our minds away with his social media advice.