#607 WP-Tonic Show With Special Guest Rand Fishkin

Last week I had the pressure of interviewing again Rand Fishkin the formal CEO of Moz & and joint-founder and CEO of SparkToro.

We Discuss the realities of SEO in 2021 how big tech is trying to reduce the effectiveness of natural search. We also discuss diversity and what has happened recently at Basecamp that clearly shown what not to do if you really want a real culture of true diversity. Rand is very critical of the leadership that both Jason Fried & David Heinemeier Hansson have shown connected to the treatment of their key staff.

Rand runs most of the show at SparkToro. He was formerly co-founder and CEO of Moz, co-founder of Inbound.org, and author of Lost and Founder: A Painfully Honest Field Guide to the Startup World. He doesn’t take himself too seriously, but he does have a bit of a chip on his shoulder, and is deeply passionate about making SparkToro a great company (at least, by his own peculiar standards).

This Week Show’s Sponsors

Castos: https://castos.com/

Convesio: https://convesio.com/

LaunchFlows: https://launchflows.com/

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The Interview’s Show Notes

Jonathan Denwood:
Welcome back folks to the WP-tonic show. This is episode 607. I do say this quite often, but I really, really do mean it this time. We’ve got a returning guest. I think he’s one of the more interesting people on the internet. We’ve got rain rescuing joining us again. Rand Fishkin Rand is the former CEO of Moz was, the joint founder as well, but he has moved on he’s now the joint founder and CEO of Sparktoro. So we’re going to be interviewing Rand about his views about SEO diversity and anything else that comes up during the interview. I’ve also got my co-host, Steven. Steven, would you like to quickly introduce yourself? 

Steven Sauder: Yeah, my name’s Steven Sauder from zip fish.io. We make WordPress fast by optimizing the code that runs WordPress and the code that lives on the server. 

Jonathan Denwood: And Rand, would you like to quickly introduce yourself, but I’m not sure if we need to, because if they don’t know who you are now involved in the internet good luck to them.

Rand Fishkin: So, Jonathan, that was a very kind intro and I’m, thrilled to be back. and Steven, it’s great to connect to meet with you as well. And yeah, I’m kind of curious, you said, what was the name of your company? Zip,

Steven Sauder: Zip fish.io is the URL,

Rand Fishkin: Zipfish. io Sparktoro runs WordPress on our site.  

Jonathan Denwood: He does a great job I got, a rather large website. He helped us make it quicker. So-

Rand Fishkin: I might send this over to Casey, my co-founder who runs the technical side of things, and just see, if he might be a match for us, helping each other already.

Jonathan Denwood: There we go. That’s what [inaudible 02:09], but that’s fine. So, before we go into the main part of the show, I just want to talk about one of our great sponsors. They’re much appreciated. They enable us to get great people like Rand to come back on the show and they are Castos. They help you get into podcasting. I’ve been doing podcasting now for six years. Yes, I’m that old and they are a great platform you store the audio files with them. They produce the RS feed. They’ve got a fantastic, simple-to-use interface, very clear to use, which is not that easy to achieve. Simplicity’s hard to achieve. but it’s really easy to use. I’d over 600 episodes that had to be moved from my previous podcasting provider they helped with that. They were fantastic. They got Matt Mateus as their marketing director, you know, Matt from the Matt Report. great guys. So, when I heard that Matt was moving to them, I thought let’s investigate, had some discussions with them. My previous major sponsor Kinsta after three years decided to move on. It was an Al Como breakup. 

But Castos decided they would join us. I suggest that if you’re looking to get into podcasts in yourself, awfully your clients go over and they have a look at what they’ve got to offer. And by the way, it’s just fantastic value as well. So, let’s get into the main part of the discussion Rand. you know, like I said before we got life, you know I watched some of your recent, interviews, and one of the main things that came to me as you were saying that in 2021 to have effective SEO, you really got me engaged in building a brand. Is that still one of the key factors you think somebody is going to understand when they’re engaged in SEO now and has your faults moved on in any shape over the past few months?

Rand Fishkin: Yeah, so I mean, Jonathan, first off, I want to correctly and accurately represent my experience, which is obviously I was in the SEO field for, you know, 17 years with Moz, but I left that company three and a half years ago. And, and I have not been an SEO since. So, whenever folks say, hey, what do you think about this SEO thing? I would say, I am no longer a professional SEO moves incredibly fast. And so, look, if you are trying to, you know, get best practices and-

Jonathan Denwood: Well, it’s strange, I’m sorry to interrupt Rand I’m not being rude, but it’s a strange thing, isn’t it? Because I totally understand what you’ve just said, but you are the kind- whatever happens in your life, you’re always going to be linked to SEO and Moz, aren’t you?

Rand Fishkin: We’ll see. We’ll see I am, I am hopeful, that whatever that my past career is not, the end, nor is it the biggest thing that I’ll do in my life. that’s my hope. I could be wrong. but I was going to say with regards to this particular question around like my views on how to do, you know, SEO well today, I think almost every SEO professional that I’m still connected to would say that elements that are correlated and connected to building a brand online and offline are often very correlated to earning rankings and traffic from Google. And, and that has not changed. you know, over the past five years, it has only increased. It has become more and more true. And I think that we can reasonably assume that it will continue to be more true because Google’s goal is to represent what users want in their search results and what users want and resonate with what they click on, what they search for, what they prefer over other results. what they buy from us based on their brand knowledge, right? 

A brand that I am familiar with that I know likes, and trusts is far more likely to earn my business than one that I don’t. And I think very frequently, Google sees that when they serve up search results with a bunch of URLs and websites that people don’t know, don’t recognize, haven’t heard of those searchers, don’t click, they click the back button, they choose a different search. They try to find something else. And so, Google realizes that you know, it’s a machine learning system that has been for years, it’s going to start preferring results that users prefer, and it will find signals to show more and more results that users prefer. That’s how machine learning works. That’s how it works in social media too. Right. Facebook wants to show you more things you’re likely to click on and engage with and stay on Facebook. Twitter wants to keep you on Twitter. Reddit wants to keep you on Reddit. YouTube wants to keep you on YouTube. This is the way of the tech giant. 

Jonathan Denwood: Yeah, thanks for that I wasn’t being [Inaudible 07:34] about you doing great things either, because what you’ve done at Moz let’s be Frank about it, you know what you’ve done in your career so far, you’ve done more than 95% of the population on the planet anyway. So, depends on how you, are looking at things really? Doesn’t it? 

Rand Fishkin: Yeah, that’s very kind, Jonathan. I don’t know that that’s true, but certainly, I had a lot of good luck and good timing and a wonderful team and a whole bunch of people like yourself, who, who supported me for just years and years. And I will always be very grateful for that.

Jonathan Denwood: that’s totally true but it does need talent and hard work Doesn’t it? 

Rand Fishkin: Yeah. I mean this, you know, this is one of those weird things, right. I don’t know how you guys feel about it, but I am very anti sort of hustle culture and anti-meritocracy. 

Jonathan Denwood: It’s a bit like dating, isn’t it really, it’s a bit like, you know, we’re always attracted to other people, but there’s a way of doing it. And there’s a way that comes over is really icky or creepy Isn’t there. So I see in the kind of mixed metaphor of dating there’s a decent, honest way of doing it and there’s a real Icky way of doing it, isn’t it? 

Rand Fishkin: Yeah. I think I think that’s true. you know, what I think is weird about sort of the era, the modern era that we’re in is that there’s this belief across a lot of tech and entrepreneurship, and even in digital marketing that you sort of have to always be hustling and working very long hours. And that this is a badge of honor. And also, that people who work fewer hours or less hard deserve less. And I don’t find that to be true at all. Right. I think all human beings deserve a base level of dignity, no matter how hard you work or whether you can. 

Jonathan Denwood: It’s kind of, it’s very American in a way. Because obviously-

Rand Fishkin: toxic American.

Jonathan Denwood: No, America’s got some great strengths, but I do agree with you. Obviously, I’m from the UK and I lived in-

Rand Fishkin: No, You, Jonathan?

Jonathan Denwood: No, you would never guess I’m going to throw this over to my better half, what would you like to ask Steven?

STEVEN SAUDER: Just diving into what you were saying there a little bit ago. I think what’s interesting is that so often in marketing efforts, people are trying to play the game for the big company that they’re trying to market to. So, like YouTube, let’s say I’m playing the YouTube game and trying to gain those algorithms, or I’m playing the SEO game and I’m trying to play to Google or I’m playing the LinkedIn game or whatever. Right. There are all these platforms and there’s so much time and effort trying to like figure out how to, I don’t know, manipulate the data, change what you’re doing to just try to edge out the competition a little bit more. But in reality, like you were saying, it comes down to what are the humans doing?

Like Google rewards, humans for attention and a better brand is going to hold that person’s attention. And so, I’ve always wondered, like what would happen if somebody would take all the time and energy that they’re putting into optimizing their SEO stuff and writing all those kinds of, I just said like, hey, actually let’s build engaging content and just let it do what it does. Like, like, do you believe that ultimately wins out in the end or do you have to be there playing that game to make it work?  

Rand Fishkin: This is one of my favorite questions like Steven, I could, I want to give a whole presentation on this.

Steven Sauder: I want to hear it this is what I think about when I’m like going to bed at night.

Rand Fishkin: I find this so fascinating. Right. Because I think that simultaneously both things are true when I look at people who’ve had incredible success building brands online or offline. It is almost never the case. Almost never the case that they started with SEO and content as their primary, sort of marketing tactics. It is almost always the case that they started with product and brand marketing. Do you know? I like to talk about there’s a whole bunch of case studies that, do you guys follow Ross Simmons from the hustle and flow? He runs an agency and I’m really, really-

Steven Sauder: I’m familiar with him Not closely though. 

Rand Fishkin:
Yeah. Yeah. Really smart guy. The agency does a ton of phenomenal work and they do a lot of case studies and the case studies are really excellent. Right? So, they look at like Stripe and, Airbnb and Canva and [Inaudible] and a whole bunch of other, you know, really big companies. And when they do the breakdowns, right, they’re like here’s how Airbnb won at SEO and content. And the one, you know, the one critique that I have with that is Airbnb did almost no SEO, literally virtually zero SEO until about five years ago when they were already a massive dominant brand, when Airbnb was more searched for, you know, in whatever 2016, then all vacation rental keywords, generic vacation rental keywords combined.

If you, if you added up every vacation, rental, home rental, all that kind of stuff, short-term home rental on Google trends and you compared it to the Airbnb search, Airbnb just dwarfs right dominance. So when Airbnb finally built an SEO and content team and started, you know, ranking for homes for rent in Rome, vacation rentals, in Tuscany, all that kind of stuff. They are so far ahead of the game; they are so much more likely to already win because they know searchers prefer them. They know that Google has seen, you know, hundreds of millions of links pouring into their site. every ranking factor you can imagine Airbnb has nailed it. 

Steven Sauder: There’s like expanding, like they’re expanding in the SEO They already have that weight that, that brand capital.

Rand Fishkin: exactly they have built up the brand capital and now they are spending it to win at SEO and content to get sort of the last, I don’t know if it’s 15% or 30% of the opportunity that’s in front of them by doing that. another great example that, that folks, you know, I think don’t talk about enough is Amazon. Amazon, I remember there was this great story, that, that, you know, made its way around the circles here in Seattle. Cause Amazon’s obviously out of Seattle company. And so Jeff Bezos was at, picnic or a July 4th, barbecue, something like that. And he was asking his mother-in-law in 2007 or eight, something like that, how, she used, you know, Amazon, how she found products on Amazon. And she went to her laptop. It was, it was like still laptop times for her not phone times went to her laptop and searched Google for the product that she wanted on Amazon and then scroll down and couldn’t find it and went to page two and couldn’t find it. And apparently, Bezos comes back to his executive team meeting the next Monday and is like, that’s it. I want to rank for everything. And so Amazon builds out an SEO team and by 2011 or so, Amazon is dominating search results. Right. But they just, they were so awful for a decade-plus at SEO

But what did that really harm their business? I mean, made maybe they lost out on some opportunity. Maybe some other people got some wins, but you know, I look at those and I say to myself, gosh if you want to truly win on the web, I don’t think SEO and content is the starting point. I think you can absolutely execute on it well, better than Amazon or Airbnb did during their growth stages. But if you count on that, you are only serving existing demand versus creating new demand and building a brand online, man that the value of that is so much more extraordinary. And frankly, I think it’s kind of easier too because SEO is just so darn competitive today. 

Jonathan Denwood: I think we have already got to the [Inaudible 16:20] long-winded intro I think we got through the halfway stage. we got Rand for an hour anyway so we are going to be having some bonus content [Inaudible] 45 minutes or whatever until he tires of me. So we’re going to go for our break back in a minute. 

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Jonathan Denwood: We are coming back; we got the granddaddy of SEO and intellectual full-on online [Inaudible 18:33] we’ve got Rand Fishkin back on the show. so Rand I post the link to how you finished the first half. I think you feel small to come and unless you got a real monopoly idea, like pizza fry, the former founder of PayPal talks about you got a kind of monopoly idea like Facebook, I thinking if you’re going to compete in the small company, you got to find a niche. You’re going to find you, you know, with my company, WP tonic, we build, membership and learning management systems for entrepreneurs, education, establishment, and corporate clients. But that niche Education building a platform for clients around education. Steven’s around making WordPress quicker. You know you got to find your niche. Would you agree with that? 

Rand Fishkin:
Oh my God. Absolutely. I think one of the worst things that you can do as a business owner, as a marketer, as a product creator or an entrepreneur is to say, oh, we’re going to serve everybody. That’s the worst positioning that there is, right? And, and your marketing, you will have such an incredibly hard time trying to win at that versus building, a brand that solves a particular problem for a particular audience. And then over time, you can expand either the problems that you’re solving or the audience that you’re solving them for. But if you try and start from everything for everyone, you’re going to have a terrible time. Even the monopoly brands, right? Even folks like whatever it is, you know, Amazon and Airbnb and Canva and, Google. 

I mean, Google is probably the one that was closest to, we’re going to solve a problem for everyone, but what did they start out with? We are going to build a better search engine for supercomputer sophisticated nerds in 1998. And then we’re going to grow our web index and we’re going to do all these other things, but that was the target market at the time. And that was the problem that they were solving. So, Jonathan, Steven, I think both of you are very wise to say for this audience, we solve this problem better than anyone else.

Steven Sauder: I think it helps a lot when you are so niche and then expand from there. Right. I mean, kind of like what, what we were talking about with brand moving into SEO like it’s one thing to have a core competency, Amazon with books, right? We just do books and then they moved into other things and you built your platform. You’ve built your user base. You build the people that love you, and it gave you the intro point. and once you’ve dominated a sector, that’s when someone should look to expand. It’s not like, oh, I need more business. Where should I go? Like, let’s not lean into my niche more, let’s go start a whole new niche. Like I think that’s where people really start making poor decisions and start focusing and things in the wrong direction a little bit. 

Rand Fishkin: I mean, yeah. I mean, so Steven, I think Jonathan, maybe you read lost and founder, so you’ll know, but you know, one of the biggest regrets that I have at Moz was in my later years as CEO there, I got overconfident. I was sure we were doing so well, right. The company was growing so fast. And, we were attracting all this investment and attention and, you know, market leadership position, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah. I was certain that we could go after tons, more different audiences and solve a whole bunch of other problems. And it turns out we hadn’t yet become the dominant player in SEO. We haven’t yet solved that problem as well as we needed to.

And with such a robust kind of lock on that market. And so when we tried to expand into, oh, let’s solve PR and social media marketing and email marketing and content marketing and serve all these other audiences, it was just a, you know, it was a boondoggle and a nightmare, and we were not able to either execute well on that. And that was the time when SEO was growing the fastest it’s ever been. And Moz sort of turned away from SEO toward all these other things. It really killed the company’s, trajectory and took a long time even to just convince our executive team and board to turn back to SEO and focus again.

 I think there’s a case study for why that focus is so critical and why it makes sense to keep it long-term. And in a lot of these cases, there’s so much opportunity in is solving a single problem for a single audience that unless you’re, I don’t know, you know, need to return billions of dollars on hundreds of millions of dollars, which is how venture works it’s not wise.

Jonathan Denwood: Now that’s one other problem of t taking venture money isn’t it Their idea of a large business is a little bit different than what you consider a large business. [Inaudible 23:59]

Steven Sauder:
I would say I think the ability not to pivot or the ability not to focus on more things, takes so much self-discipline. It’s so easy to see a million problems and ways that you can solve that problem. And there’s like this internal, I don’t know, like hero complex inside of us somewhere that wants to be the solution to all of these problems. Then once we feel like we solve something good enough, like the easiest thing to do is turn it and solve something else Good enough Instead of keep focusing on that one problem, you’re like, no, I can do it better. I can do it better. 

Jonathan Denwood: Well, I think that’s the key actually because I don’t like, [Inaudible 24:37] really, I call him Dr. Evil really. Right. But the one thing he does have, which is the focus is, you know, somebody, you know, like the founders of Facebook focus, they’re really, yeah.

Rand Fishkin:  For the first 20 years of his career, right. With, oh, well, the first 20 years after starting Amazon, I think, Bezos had relentless focus. Now you could argue that’s disappearing. Right. And he’s basically hired in a whole team and he has a CEO and yeah. Yeah.  
Jonathan Denwood:
Quick question that you’ll begin is because am, I correct you did find, Moz with your mother didn’t you that’s right. But I think you were talking about you actually pivoted because you were a web design company, but you got into financial difficulties. You weren’t that successful as a web design agency. I think you pivoted because you would literally, you had some quite large personal debts and, you know, have you looked back and wondered, what was the key reason why you had a bit of a failure if you would classify this totally disagree with what I’ve just said, but I’m thinking, but it’s based on fact on public statements you’ve made. have you looked back and wonder, came to any conclusion why you failed as a web design, but when you pivoted into SEO it kind of turned for you, didn’t it? 

Steven Sauder: I mean, I think there’s a whole, a vast variety of reasons. Right. But the big ones are, I was not a very talented web designer. I didn’t find any ways to stand out from the rest of the field of web design. the web design for a long time, I think has been viewed as a commodity. Right. So there’s just, you know, it is more difficult to stand out in that field. It’s more difficult to build a brand and a name for yourself. my timing with SEO was impeccable, right? I basically, I pivoted SEO and started this SEO blog at a time when there were very few other publications talking openly and transparently about how to do SEO. I happened to be good at actually that’s not true. I was terrible at blogging. I was terrible at, being a, you know, sort of transparent educator, but because I practiced so much, you know, for years, right. I was publishing five nights a week on the Moz blog. And it was probably two years before it got any sort of traction, right. So I had that patience to be willing, to invest in a skill. And, you know, I was obsessed with the sort of, you know, being, part of that industry and wanting to get attention and get covered.

And it eventually worked right eventually paid off and at a great time because when we built the audience of people who were interested in SEO and then eventually, switched from consulting to software, we had tens of thousands of people who are reading the Moz blog who wanted exactly the product that we provided. And it was a time when there were very few other products. So we didn’t even have to be that great at building products to really stand out in the field, right. To be the obvious solution. So tons of reasons why Moz in those, you know, those sort of seven years I was CEO did so well and the web design business, I never had any of those things. I mean, a big part of it too, is kid drops out of college and doesn’t know what the heck he’s doing. And, you know, it’s just bad at everything. Business-related had. I, what I really should have done and what I would urge anybody else to do is join a few other companies, see how other people do it. Even if they do it wrong,, you can at least learn from that experience. And I didn’t, everything I did at Moz was, well, we’ve never done this before and I’ve never seen anyone else do it. Let’s try it.

Jonathan Denwood: Over to you Steven.

Steven Sauder: There’s probably a sense of creativity there though like if you don’t see somebody else do it like you’re kind of like a blank slate and you get to kind of make things up. And I, there’s probably something like the kind of cooler genius that can come from that. Right.

Rand Fishkin: I do think, I do think that there is a lot of data out there showing that entrepreneurs who and creatives, right. Those who enter a field, that they have no experience in actually do innovate more than those who’ve been in the field for a long time. Which kind of makes sense. Right. If you’ve been in a field for a long time and you’ve seen lots of other people, do it, you, you sort of get accustomed to a set of rules and guidelines. Whereas if you approach something from an outsider’s perspective, you can perhaps see things that other people can. I don’t know whether that disruption is always the healthiest thing, but it certainly is a common trait among many innovators in new fields. 

Steven Sauder:
kind of like transition the conversation a little bit. so you were doing Moz SEO stuff, and now you’re doing Sparktoro. Why, why the shift, and why? I mean, I’m sure there was a bunch of, like, we’ve talked about all these problems that one can solve. Right. Why, why that problem, like, why did that resonate with you? Why did you choose, to get into that marketplace? Maybe, maybe talk a little bit about what spark actually is for people that don’t know. 

Rand Fishkin: Yeah. Fair, fair. Fair enough, I probably should’ve done that when Jonathan kindly offered to have me introduce myself. so Sparktoro is an audience research tool. You can essentially go to Sparktoro and say, I want to know more about, chemical engineers in the UK. I want to know more about architects in Los Angeles. I want to learn more about, people who use the hashtag men’s fashion online. I want to learn about, people who play Dungeons and dragons, and then Sparktoro can tell you, you know, extraordinary amounts of data based on crawling and indexing public profiles that match the audience that you’re looking for. Right. So Steven, in your case like, oh, okay. We found Steven Sauder and here’s his LinkedIn and that points to his website, which points to his Twitter and his, I don’t know, YouTube profile and his Facebook page, and his Instagram. And like, we connect all those up. And now we have this one profile, you know, and Steven talks a lot about, WordPress issues and about web page load speeds and about, accessibility problems and, you know, whatever it is, I don’t know, street art. I’m just making assumptions based on your background.

All of those things now are associated with this anonymized, right? Cause we anonymize and aggregate this data, even though it’s technically public, we choose not to show the personally identifiable information in Sparktoro. And then, what we can do is say, oh, okay, well, 6,940 people have tweeted about or posted about on Instagram or shared on Facebook or LinkedIn, a public update. That includes the word street art in the last three months. And here is what they follow. And here’s the podcast they listened to and here are the YouTube channels they subscribe to. And here are the words and phrases that they use in their bio and here’s their demographic data. And like all, all this really interesting stuff. 

And if you want it to get that before Sparktoro like surveys, right? Like big market research firms that cost hundreds of thousands of dollars to do this type of work. And, yeah, it’s just a Royal pain in the butt. So this, this kind of data is awesome. if you have the right problem that you need to solve like I need to know the demographics of my competitor’s audience compared to mine. I need to build a great persona for my, you know, market research project. I need to find hashtags that my audience is using so I can do better Instagram ad targeting. I need to find podcasts. I can pitch for my, you know, digital PR plan, all of those kinds of things, and hundreds more is what people use Sparktoro to do.

 The reason we did it. so there are two big ones first off. when I left Moz it was a really emotional experience. Like it was a really, just intense, tough. 
Jonathan Denwood:
It always makes me laugh Rand when people say, you know, it’s business, the emotion is not linked.

Rand Fishkin: come on. What, what human being can disassociate only sociopaths can disassociate their emotions from their professional life. Right? The thing that takes up like the overwhelming majority of their time and energy. So when I left Moz, right, it was, it was super emotional. I was the founder. I had been the CEO for a long time. I had sort of disagreed with company direction and with leadership and with my board for, you know, years after I stepped down. and, and I sort of, you know, I wrote in the blog post when I left Moz that on the scale of zero to 10, where zero is security escorts, you out of the building and 10 is, you know, everyone’s hugging and laughing and it’s the happiest day. And you’re sort of graduating. My departure was a four. So like not, you know, not zero there wasn’t security escorting me out. I carried my own box out. But it was a non-ideal 

Jonathan Denwood: I personally thought you handled it with great grace actually.  
Steven Sauder:
 Yeah, you should. You should ask Moz’s leadership what they thought. 
Jonathan Denwood:
I’m talking about publicly. 

Rand Fishkin: Oh, no, that’s what I’m talking about too. I can tell you, there was a, you know, there was a whole like fight between lawyers, their lawyers, and my lawyers. I had to hire lawyers for like nine months about lost and founder about the book. Right. And whether it could be published and whether they got to review it first and, oh.

Jonathan Denwood: There we go. Got to keep the lawyers, fit, don’t you?

Rand Fishkin: This really emotional experience, led me to sort of internally just feel that I could not, feel satisfied with my career if I went to work for another company. And even if I did a great job and, you know, got paid a lot of money or whatever, I just couldn’t. So I talked to Geraldine, who’s always been incredibly supportive of my entrepreneurial ventures that’s my wife and she said, I shop at the Goodwill and the TJ Maxx Like I don’t, I don’t need you do what’s right for you., and so I wanted to start another company. I wanted to prove to myself and frankly, probably to my old board of directors that I could do it again. Right. I wanted to prove that they didn’t back the right horse, by, I don’t know, rejecting my insight. I know that’s egotistical to say, I know it’s,

Jonathan Denwood: No it isn’t So just give you a quick bit of background. I was quite successful in the UK, in retail. No level of success compared to you. And I came to America with my American wife and I had a fair bit in the bank. And, I won’t go into the detail but I went into a business and basically, I got screwed and I lost my summer money. So, I started WP Tony and another company and I’ve been at it for the past five, six years, just to- I’m determined to get a positive ending. I’m a bit older than you, Rand. II wish I was your age. 
Rand Fishkin:
You don’t look a day older.

Jonathan Denwood: But I’m determined to turn it around and I slowly am. but you know, you, well, what do they, they say, what doesn’t kill you makes you stronger. That’s the saying, isn’t it?  
Rand Fishkin:
I mean, let’s keep our fingers crossed I definitely feel there’s a, you know, there’s an aspect of, of pride that I don’t love. I wish that I didn’t feel these feelings of, I don’t know, almost, almost wanting to prove somebody else wrong, but it is a great motivator. It gets you up, doesn’t it? we’re going to wrap up the podcast, part of the show, hopefully, Rand is going to agree to stay with us a little bit longer. We’re going to be talking about diversity. It’s a talk about a hot subject, but it should be an interesting discussion. You’ll be able to see this part of the interview, plus the bonus part on the WP tonic YouTube channel. Also, if you can do as a favor and give us a review on iTunes, God knows how iTunes works. Talk about a black box we need more reviews. Rand, what’s the best way for people to find out more about you and what you’re up to?Rand Fishkin: Sure, so anyone can go to Sparktoro.com and make a free account, run some free searches, you know, see what it’s all about. and I am most active sort of publicly on Twitter, where I’m at Rand Fishkin. 

Jonathan Denwood:
 That’s great. And Stephen, how can people find out more about you? And what you’re up to?

Steven Sauder: head over to zip fish.io, run a speed test, see how much faster we can make your website. 

Jonathan Denwood: Well see you next week with another great interview and like I say you want to see the rest of this discussion go over to our YouTube channel and watch the bonus content. We’ll see you next time.

 Thanks for listening to the WP tonic podcast, the podcast that gives you a dose of WordPress medicine twice a week.

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