It all started 12 months ago, with two peaceful weeks off work, and one memorable daydream.
In that moment, Zen Optimise was born.
It was great timing too. For a while I felt SEO Training Ltd (our previous name) lacked an identity and personality, and I wanted to create a brand which was both memorable and stood for something. That something became Zen Optimise which embodies simpler, easier and clearer marketing.
Today, and a year later, I'm excited to say Zen Optimise is our new name and home. And I can't wait for the adventure ahead!
If you’re thinking about a rebrand, or if you’re just curious about why we went ahead, read on for the six reasons why we changed – and the three why we nearly didn’t:
Reason #1: We provide more than just SEO
SEO Training Ltd was a great functional name but we didn't want to get pigeonholed. It’s not that we've outgrown SEO - far from it. In fact, SEO itself has grown and become much more integrated into content strategy, blogging, social media and marketing in general. And that’s why we've adapted our offering and we're excited to unveil the following new courses:
All of these complement regular SEO. And that’s just for starters: we'll be offering Google Analytics, branding and more marketing courses in the future.
Reason #2: SEO is still evolving
Google's top tip:
SEO is reforming and evolving. Shortcuts no longer work. And you need great content to support the great products you wish to sell.
Google has been talking about the importance of great content for years. And after the Google Penguin and Panda algorithm updates, they really do seem to mean it now. In fact, Google says creating high-quality content is the number one thing you can do.
But it’s not enough to create great content. You need an audience, and they need compelling reasons to share and promote your awesomeness. That's why we created our content marketing course, and we'll be sharing lots of content promotion tips here on the blog too.
Reason #3: We want a memorable brand
The name SEO Training Ltd served its purpose, but it lacked memorability, personality and intrigue. So our old website had big splashes of orange all over it, with the intention to make it stand out and easier to remember. And that worked to a point.
Being memorable is more than just looks – and more even than a catchy name. It's that lingering feeling and understanding of what someone or something stands for. It's about why you do what you do and what you stand for.
Reason #4: Our vision and values change
be generous and expert, trustworthy and clear, open-minded and adaptable, persistent and present
We've always been into helping people and businesses as much as we can. That will never change – but the way we go about it has evolved. We now put simplicity and clarity first.
Our vision is pretty simple: to cut through the digital marketing clutter. No fluff, no hype – just to provide clear marketing advice to help businesses grow while making the Internet a more useful space.
We're fond of Bruce Kasanoff's how to simplify your future:
“be generous and expert, trustworthy and clear, open-minded and adaptable, persistent and present”.
Beautifully put and something we fully believe in.
Reason #5: Helping others means being social
Helping others is more rewarding than just helping yourself. And in our social media influenced world this means reaching out into new places and making new connections.
Have you noticed that the influential people on Facebook and Twitter are often the ones that help others the most? They are usually authorities or experts – because they deeply care about what they do, the industry they’re in and helping others. That's how the cool kids stay cool!
Reason #6: Being social means being agile
The Lean Startup
by Eric Ries
Predicting your online marketplace one year from now is tricky. Some things that are working brilliantly today won’t work so well in the future.
We plan to be agile, keep learning and adapt our offering to best service our vision, customers and followers.
And here's three reasons why nearly didn't change...
Hesitation #1: We had an SEO keyword-rich domain
Having your main industry keyword in your domain helps for SEO. Maybe not so much as in the past, but it still helps. We’re #1 in Google.co.uk for the term ‘SEO training’ and there's a risk when we move we won’t be.
In the short term, we could be worse off and drop rankings. But if there's one thing I've learned in the 8 years of being an SEO, it's to play the long game and not the short one. And the long one in this case is to develop a brand that embraces our values and vision, and better solves our customers problems.
Hesitation #2: We may be seen less as an SEO specialist
The name SEO Training Ltd certainly points to where our strengths lie. And this helps when potential customers review us as their next SEO training partner. So again, in the short term we may miss out on sales, but being true to SEO, we're evolving with it and I hope that potential customers will see that and be glad to work with us.
Hesitation #3: It’s scary moving!
If you’ve ever moved house, you’ll know just how stressful it can be. Well, over the last few years www.seotraining.org.uk grew to become our home. The uncertainty of moving is a still a little scary but the feeling is now one of excitement and anticipation of what Zen Optimise could be.. and I can't wait for the adventure ahead!
To find out more about us and our new vision, take a look at our About page. All our training courses are listed on our Training page – so if you’d like to take your Digital Marketing further with our simpler, easier and clearer marketing advice, why not book a course today?