Aaron Wall, SEO Ninja, Reveals All

Dharmesh Shah
Dharmesh Shah



Ok, so maybe Aaron doesn’t quite reveal all in this Proust Questionnaire, but it’s rare that I get to make a title rhyme so easily so I couldn’t resist.  And, he does have some surprising revelations.

First off, a quick introduction to Aaron Wall.  Aaron’s an SEO (Search Engine Optimization) black-belt.  He’s the guy behind the very popular SEO blog, http://www.seobook.com .  When I first got into the SEO game years ago, I quickly came across Aaron and his blog.  At the time, he was offering a great book on the topic of SEO (hence the website name, SEOBook.com).  I read it front-to-back in two days.  I was riveted.  Most of my early education in SEO came from Aaron’s book.  He’s one of those guys that really  gets it.  He’s on my short list of people that I trust to have a thoughtful opinion on the most nuanced and subtle aspects of SEO.  If you’re not reading his blog yet, you should be.  Aaron also offers premium training for SEO .

Device You Would Never Give Up?

Super Nintendo, Nintendo Wii, and iPod.

Your Favorite Software Application

Many of our SEO tools were tools I had created because I wanted to use them. Beyond those I am a big fan of Microsoft Ad Intelligence  and Google's keyword tools

Blog you read most frequently?

I like Seth Godin's blog because he reminds me that marketing need not be sleazy. I like Barry Ritholtz's The Big Picture because he pulls no punches about business and investment strategies. Paul Kedrosky's blog  is great too.
Within the SEO space there are a ton of great blogs: Search Engine Land , Stuntdubl , Wolf Howl SEOmoz , Jonh Andrews  and SEO Black Hat .
Social media tool you actually use?
Some of my sites get good traffic from StumbleUpon, but the only social tool I actively use much is Del.icio.us . And Del.icio.us is the only one I usually promote on my websites.
Favorite business books?
The Cluetrain Manifesto, The Purple Cow, Here Comes Everybody, Don't Make Me Think.
Favorite Newspapers?
The Wall Street Journal and the Financial Times.
Person that inspires you?
My wife.
Who was your best manager?  Why?
Probably one of my mentors when I was new to the web. It is easy to be small minded when you first get on the web, but he always had the ability to shift my thinking to bigger and broader things.
Before that, when I was in the military a man by the name of Troy Meyers was top. He believed in hard work, and if there was a crappy job to be done he would be the type of guy to stand beside you and help out with the project. Conversely, if you screwed up he would let you know about it.
Your first “real” job?
Not sure when real starts. In junior high I had a paper route and shoveled snow. In high school I washed dishes, detasseled corn, and sold baseball cards.
Where do you do your best reading?
Usually when reading a book and trying to relate it amongst the context of my current environment and knowledge.
What Do You Most Value In Employees/Colleagues?
Being driven and true to their word.
What Would You Like To Be The World's Best At?
Probably nothing to do with what I am known for now. Probably something outside the field of marketing...I think in the next few years I will explore creative outlets outside of marketing and blogging.
Which business visionary would you most like interviewed next?

Topics: SEO

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