Nate Fishman is an independent SEO consultant based in Boston, Massachusetts, and founder of Urbnparks, a website that helps people find city parks and greenspaces. As an SEO consultant, he works with companies locally and across the U.S. With over five years in the SEO & digital marketing industry, Nate helps business owners, marketers, and entrepreneurs create awesome online marketing strategies to improve their business’ online presence. He has experience providing SEO and digital marketing solutions for a variety of clients (both B2B and B2C) spanning across many industries and sizes, from small businesses to large corporations. In July 2018, he proudly launched Nate Fishman Digital Consulting as a way to enable businesses to leverage online marketing at an affordable price. Through his online consulting business, Nate offers SEO services in many different capacities, including ongoing consultation, audits and through an email subscription. His ultimate goal is to make SEO easily understood and accessible to everyone who owns a website. In addition to search engine optimization services, he also offers pay-per-click marketing, social media marketing advertising and more. When he isn’t online optimizin’, you can find him doing all types of outdoorsy activities, including but not limited to hiking, skiing, or playing on his men’s amateur baseball team.
Where did the idea for your company come from?
The idea to start my own SEO consulting business had always been in the back of my mind, knowing 2-3 years ago that I wasn’t ready, but one day soon when I have more experience, the time would be right to start. A few months ago, I realized that now was the time for me. I had been in the industry for nearly five years, and I felt like I was ready to take the leap.
More importantly, I felt like there was a significant opportunity to work with small businesses, startups, and in-house marketers to offer guidance and strategy for SEO. The advancement in technology in recent years has opened up so many new opportunities for everyone. Technology is often under-utilized when it comes to marketing strategies for small businesses; it has also opened up avenues for new business ideas. From my point of view, both startups and small businesses are generally under-leveraging search engine optimization and digital marketing, and it seems like there was a significant opportunity to work with these types of companies that otherwise might not be able to afford agencies or in-house help.
What does your typical day look like and how do you make it productive?
As a recent new business owner, a typical day for me is a balance between networking, selling and executing on client accounts. I’m still in “sell-mode,” so finding clients, selling my services and writing proposals takes up a majority of my time. I try to schedule out tasks throughout the week – whether it’s client-related, or something like blogging, or even attending an event. One way or another, everything I’m doing now is to continue to grow my business and set an excellent reputation for myself and company.
How do you bring ideas to life?
I start out with a detailed vision for an idea in my head; how I think this idea would work and what it would take to bring it to life. Next, I will try to validate my ideas through research or by getting input from team members, or through surveys or interviews. I think it’s also important to keep in mind that an idea will look different from what you initially had in mind. The idea should constantly be tweaked, so it evolves into something that is well-received upon launch. Even after it comes to life, you should still continue that process of changing and enhancing it.
What’s one trend that excites you?
The idea of voice search in SEO excites me, although it’s certainly still in its infant stage and has yet to be perfected. But with the rise of smart home products, we keep seeing voice search usage grow and so it’s definitely on the horizon. I’m curious as to how much voice search will change the landscape of search queries – naturally, voice search queries will be longer and more conversational, so it will be interesting to see the changes in optimization strategy as a result.
What is one habit of yours that makes you more productive as an entrepreneur?
Taking the time to get organized has benefited me. It’s hard to allow the time to get organized when you’re super busy, but during slow times it’s the perfect chance to catch up on organizing files. The more organized I am, the more productively I work, so it’s helped me as an entrepreneur.
What advice would you give your younger self?
In most cases, you don’t have to be a perfectionist. Often-times, I would try to perfect deliverables, to the point where you could almost consider it a form of procrastination. For the sake of time, a completed task can be “good enough” to still have a positive effect on a project. When you are your own boss, it means everything to be efficient, while turning out high-quality work.
Tell us something that’s true that almost nobody agrees with you on.
The best entrepreneurs do not necessarily come up with the best ideas; rather they solve the needs of their target audience. In business, an idea only works if your audience finds value in it.
As an entrepreneur, what is the one thing you do over and over and recommend everyone else do?
Stand out to your audience in any way you can. I made this answer general for a reason because I think there are many ways a brand can continually stand out. Creating a brand that stands out and appeals to your audience will go a long way.
What is one strategy that has helped you grow your business? Please explain how.
Networking – I’ve made an effort to do it, and become better at it. In addition to going to local events, I’m also using apps and websites to meet people and ultimately, find clients. I’ve been making an effort to talk to as many people as I can. I think everyone could offer me something in one way or another; it’s just a matter of prioritizing what it is, how much it would help me. You don’t always strike up an on-going professional relationship, but it’s better than not hearing what people can offer you.
What is one failure you had as an entrepreneur, and how did you overcome it?
Well, as someone who is relatively new to the entrepreneur world, I can’t say that I’ve had many significant failures yet. I am certainly expecting to have some moving forward because there is a learning curve of being an entrepreneur.
What is one business idea that you’re willing to give away to our readers?
I toy with a lot of different ideas for businesses. I think it’s fun to do, and who knows, maybe it’s a legitimate market for it. This one has nothing to do with SEO. I always thought humor could be utilized more, and a group of people that could use more work are comedians. It might sound silly, but I had an idea for an app to connect with comedians to different types of work, almost like a freelance app, but for comedians. It could be incorporating humor for something personal, like a wedding speech, or for professional purposes, a presentation at a work conference. Again, sounds silly, but I figured everyone enjoys good humor, right?
What is the best $100 you recently spent? What and why?
The best $100 I spent recently was a pro subscription to SEMrush. I love using this tool, and it’s worth the $100/month you pay if you have SEO clients because it does so many things. From keyword tracking to backlink analysis, to uncovering technical issues, it provides you with what is needed to improve a website’s organic search visibility.
What is one piece of software or a web service that helps you be productive? How do you use it?
I like using Trello. It’s a great project management tool that is free to anyone. I use it to collaborate with clients so they can see if tasks are in progress, completed, etc. It also helps me manage my tasks for clients and own marketing efforts.
What is the one book that you recommend our community should read and why?
Dale Carnegie’s, “How to Win Friends and Influence People.” It changed how I approach things in a professionally and personally. It offers timeless advice and takeaways on how to deal with people and how to be a leader. These are things you probably know that you may know but sometimes forget just how essential they are to practice them in your everyday life. In my opinion, you can’t underestimate how important it is – you’ll need to be able to work with people effectively to have any success.
What is your favorite quote?
“Change is the only constant.” Walking into my first business class in College, that quote displayed on the projector. It stuck with me ever since. I think it perfectly sums up the SEO industry.
- The best entrepreneurs do not necessarily come up with the best ideas; rather they solve the needs of their target audience.
- Whether it’s a new business or a marketing campaign, be ready to change and adapt your ideas based on data and feedback.
- Networking is important. Talk to as many people as you can. You never know what their networks are, or who has a business opportunity for you.
- Change is the only constant – especially in the SEO industry, where changes can either come out of left-field or be slow, gradual changes. Either way, you’ll want to be aware of these changes and try to get ahead ASAP.
Mario Schulzke is the Founder of ideamensch, which he started a decade ago to learn from entrepreneurs and give them a platform for their ideas.