I recently read an article on Forbs.com about Brian Dean, the CEO of Backlinko. The article was based on his past faliures & how he became one of the most successful SEO entrepreneurs of our time.  It was an interesting read, so I decided to list the main lessons I learnt from it.

Beginnings are only the start of what you will become! 

Brian was a PHD student who studied nutrition. He became a diatritian and after reading a book by Timothy Ferris – the 4-hour workweek,  it encouraged him start out on his own.

He started writing an e-book about back pain and hired freelance writers to help him. Unfortunately, he wasn’t impressed with their writing and thought he could do a better job writing it all by himself.

If not for his experience with the freelance writers he wouldn’t have uncovered his passion for writing. Coming to the realisation that he could do a better job  with writing the e-book himself he started taking steps to make it happen.

Brain decided to quit his full time job and started his freelance writing career. He wrote 12 articles per day for Livestrong.  From there he started creating his own ‘niche -exact match domain sites’.

Anyone can learn SEO! 

Brian became interested in SEO to help his websites flourish.  I can imagine that during this time he started reading blogs about SEO, watching tutorials and implementing all he learnt on his niche websites.  As a result,  his websites became a success and he started generating a lot of traffic.  He started making some passive income from them.

Always learn from your mistakes! 

At the time,  these types of websites were really popular.  A lot of webmasters used to create niche- one page sites to generate traffic and earn money from Google AdSense. But in 2010, along came one of the most  pivotal havock wreaking SEO updates,  Google Panda!

The Google Panda update targeted sites that used black hat SEO techniques in order to rank highly on Google.  Sites that had poor content and practiced keyword stuffing techniques were penalised and lost a lot of traffic as a result.  Unfortunatly, one page websites that used exact match domains bore the brunt of this!

Brain’s websites were among those that were affected by the Google Panda update. He recalls how it all happened: “My traffic was completely wiped out overnight. After I got wiped out after Google Panda, I never evaluated why I failed. I just thought, OK now you need to create websites that won’t get hit by Google Panda. But, the real reason I failed was because I created crappy websites. It took me almost two more years to realize that fact.”

Google’s panda update got Brain thinking.  As a result, he started his own SEO agency and now gives advice on how to go about SEO the right way!

Read more about Brian’s experience here.