A summer interview with… Barry Adams

A summer interview with… Barry Adams

22nd June 2010

There are many great search-experts out there. We decided we wanted to give some extra attention to some of them. Therefore we will be interviewing some of these experts. During the entire summer you will be served with short interviews with influential people in the industry. You will be seeing interviews with the likes of Joost de Valk, Marcus Tandler, Chris Sherman, Mike Grehan and Danny Sullivan, and off course our bloggers! Be aware that some interviews will be published in the newsletter!

Today: our very own blogger, Barry Adams.

1- Can you introduce yourself in one paragraph?

I’m Barry Adams, a Dutchman living in Northern Ireland. I’m a quasi in-house SEO guy at the Belfast Telegraph – I say ‘quasi’ because I work full-time for a small company called Visual Script and they’ve leased me out to the Belfast Telegraph. I get to work on a wide variety of sites within the Belfast Telegraph stable, such as nicarfinder.co.uk, nijobfinder.co.uk, mad4ads.co.uk, and Photosales. Of course working on the main news site is the most fun by far.

2- What are you doing this summer?

Mainly working. Back in the Netherlands I used to be a volunteer at an annual summer camp for mentally handicapped children, but since I moved to Northern Ireland I haven’t had a chance yet to look in to doing something similar over here. So aside from a short break in August you’ll find me stuck in the office most days.

3- What is the most hottest subject in search at the moment, what should every SEO be looking into?

I’m loathe to facilitate hypes and ‘hot trends’. Many SEOs get carried away by the latest hypes and tend to forget that the core essence of SEO hasn’t changed much since the dawn of search engines: keywords and links. The precise implementation of each has certainly changed, and SEOs need to keep an eye on where things are going, but I genuinely believe our time is best spent on the nitty-gritty core of SEO: on-site optimisation and building links.

4- What do you think is the “state of search” at the moment, is the industry doing good?

I think there’s a growing awareness among the HiPPOs that SEO is a great marketing channel in terms of ROI. Organic search is a key traffic driver for nearly all websites, and the money you put in to SEO earns itself back much more easily than for any other online marketing channel. SEO is taking its rightful place in the online marketing mix, though I am still frustrated at having to prove my value to some website owners.

5- What is your favourite website, apart from your own?

I’m a total news junkie (which makes it all the more fun to work for a news organisation) so I’d have to say I spend most of my time on Google News. Not only can I indulge in my news addiction there, I also get to pass it off as work – I am after all investigating the properties of Google News to gain a better understanding of it and thus be able to send more traffic to the Belfast Telegraph site. 🙂

6- Can “social marketing / media” and search survive apart from each other?

Definitely. To be entirely honest I don’t share the point of view of many of my peers that search and social are fully merging. I think there is a very different mindset that users have when they use a search engine compared to when they use a social media website. I don’t see those two mindsets completely merging any time soon. I do think there will be a stronger social element to search, and a stronger search element to social media, but they will continue to be separate online disciplines for the foreseeable future.

7- What’s your search tip for the summer?

Stop reading so many SEO blogs, stop getting carried away by hypes and hyperbole, and get back to doing proper SEO. 🙂

Tomorrow: Joost de Valk


Written By
Bas van den Beld is an award winning Digital Marketing consultant, trainer and speaker. He is the founder of State of Digital and helps companies develop solid marketing strategies.
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