I recently had the chance to catch up with Lisa Barone, the Co-Founder and Chief Branding Officer of Outspoken Media, an Internet marketing company that specializes in link building services, online reputation management and social media marketing services.
I wanted to interview her and get her advice on how women can be more outspoken in the world of SEO.
1) What unique perspective do you bring to the SEO Industry that your male counterparts may not bring?
I bring a unique perspective to the SEO industry because I came in with a journalism background.
I bring a unique perspective as someone who helps brands find their voice, even though as a person who stutters I havenâ€™t always had one myself.
Iâ€™m unique because I encourage brands to be marketable and weird, not just marketable.
But none of that is due to my gender. I donâ€™t think women bring anything unique to the
SEO world simply because theyâ€™re female, just like men donâ€™t bring anything unique
because theyâ€™re male. Itâ€™s your experiences and your point of view that make you
2) How could women be more encouraged to participate in speaking engagements or at events?
I think conference organizers could do a better job scouting, in terms of recruiting both
men and women who are qualified and not vocal enough. We liveblog a lot of Internet marketing conferences so I can tell you that itâ€™s often the same speakers â€“ and that tends to make me sad. Iâ€™d love to see more women being reached out to and brought into the conversation. I also think we could encourage each other more to share our knowledge and to put ourselves out there.
If you know a woman you want to see speaking, tell her.
Tell the conference organizers.
Tell the people in charge of these shows and make that change happen.
We all benefit from new voices.
3) How do you think women could step up and be more vocal in the SEO Industry?
We could pitch for ourselves more. Iâ€™m constantly hearing from conference organizers
that not enough women pitch. Thatâ€™s our fault. If you want to be up there, make your
voice be heard. Get good at pitching. Know what the conferences are looking for in a
session and market yourself. Weâ€™re all marketers deep down, right? Even if weâ€™re calling
And be more vocal in other areas, as well. Blog more. Lead discussions more. Start
groups and events. Go after media coverage more aggressively. Itâ€™s not just conferences
where we need to increase our presence. There may be more men in SEO and marketing
than women, but itâ€™s not to the degree that attending a conference would make you think.
Weâ€™re here and in large numbers. Itâ€™s time to show that.
4) Could you describe a key experience you have had in the SEO Industry that has
gotten you to the point you are today?
Gosh, there are so many of them.
The experience that will always stand out is that day that my partner Rhea Drysdale and I
started our SEO consulting company Outspoken Media. At the time, we had both just moved across country to take positions with an established SEO company. But four months after being there it simply didnâ€™t fit. We knew that we wanted more for our clients. We wanted to provide more and to do things with a level of quality we didnâ€™t think was out there yet. So we resigned from our positions and started Outspoken Media. It hasnâ€™t always been the easiest move or decision, but itâ€™s one thatâ€™s changed both our lives. Had I not made that jump, Iâ€™m not sure where Iâ€™d be today.
5) As a role model for women starting in the SEO Industry, what is your advice?
Work your butt off to become the best SEO that you can. Not the best woman SEO, but the best SEO. Period.
You can also find Lisa on Twitter at @LisaBarone.
Anna Belle Leiserson
Thanks, Anna, for a very helpful post. I was (more-or-less) the only woman speaker at the recent WordCamp. I’d meant to blog about that, but forgot until I saw your post.
Anna Belle, thanks for speaking at Wordcamp 2012, maybe
next year there will be more female speakers.
I am excited to read your blogpost about this, so please
send me a link when it’s done.