from aspiring screenwriter to SEO expert – WAU
The WAU Blog University Corporate Blogs course is taught by SEO specialist André Mousinho. Know your history and journey to becoming a professor at the University!
On July 14 (7) 2014 (the numerology pyre), one day after the World Cup final in London, I received a call that would change the course of my entire career, and consequently, of my life.
I had already suffered a “7 to 1” in my first two internship interviews at Websites Are Us. I had no work experience in my Advertising course and I confess that my main goal was not to graduate without an internship.
Even without an HR team, I managed not to pass. At least, at the time the layoff was motivating: “Are you interested in being our freelance writer?”
It was perfect! Working during the Cup at home and watching all the games.
And, one day after the final, the call came and the solution to my mission of not graduating without any internship in the curriculum.
“Can you start tomorrow?”
Luckily my series were on hiatus, so I didn’t even hesitate to accept the proposal. And that’s how my journey at Websites Are Us started.
My first role at WAU was very simple and mechanical. Me and Breno, my faithful companion from college and internship, joked that they could dismiss us and put trained monkeys in place.
Our role was to deliver Google Docs links with content to customers – at the time we didn’t have a platform yet – that is, control C and control V.
When necessary, we put an image for the cover of the texts as well. Which, in fact, is a very essential task. Just visit some blogs out there and be shocked by the quality of the images.
But as Customer Success interns, and following the strategies of many clients at WAU, we learned too much at that time.
I didn’t have many prospects at that time. I thought Websites Are Us was my gateway to the market and I really wanted to be a screenwriter. I have always loved writing, telling and creating stories.
In fact, I already had my enrollment for a postgraduate course in script.
The plot twist
After I graduated, in January 2015, I was hired at WAU and started working in the Quality team.
The function was to review and optimize content produced by our editors and, occasionally, produce some content as well.
My intention was to improve my writing and learn more and more having contact with various types of content and different editors. This while waiting for the start of my post.
That beginning, however, never came.
The class did not close. I was a little frustrated, but I kept going, waiting for the next class. Meanwhile, he took advantage of the growth of WAU blogs to produce content. My signature was to relate films and series from the POP culture, to marketing and web writing.
First I produced several contents for the Community (Write for Web at the time):
Web Writing: Lessons We Learned From The Hobbit
Writing Lessons We Learned From Guardians of the Galaxy
Editor Profile: Which X Men Are You?
Walter White and the formula for the perfect post
Find out how to enter your readers’ Amusement
That way, I improved my writing while having fun and helped the blog Write for Web gain more visits. It was not what I dreamed, but it was what I had at that moment.
After spending a few months on the Quality team, I went to the newly created Planning team. Where we were responsible for defining themes and keywords, in addition to creating content guidelines for customers.
It was a nice job, but I was not happy doing that. And then I started looking for other job opportunities.
I even applied for a job at a large startup and Edmar Ferreira (one of the founders and CEO at the time) helped me. For my happiness (and Ed’s too) it went wrong.
I prefer not to mention what the other startup was so they don’t regret it deeply (laughs).
Anyway, it was a phase that I was not very happy with. Perhaps the tendency was for me to work more or less like this:
But that’s not what happened. In fact, I was motivated and dedicated to doing the best for WAU as long as I stayed at the company. After all, I always loved the culture and the people, I just wasn’t so happy with my job.
At that time, I decided to stop writing for Write for the Web and started producing content for the blog that would give me more visibility, Content Marketing.
So I decided to bring my signature to the WAU blog and started producing content like:
Learn how to get along in the Digital Marketing Ultron Era
Star Wars, the Force and Content Marketing
Deadpool Explains: why your content is a m… (the pinnacle, no doubt)
Quiz – Who are you in the Justice League of Digital Marketing
BatMarketing V SuperVendas: the origin of Vendarketing
The contents are very cool, you can check. As they followed the releases of the films, they usually performed very well and generated several shares on Social Networks.
In addition, we beat about 3 daily traffic records with some of the content I produced. This started to attract the attention of Diego Gomes (at the time, CMO da WAU).
In that same period, I started to come up with a Storytelling project for content that I wanted to present to Diego and see if it was interesting for Marketing. Then came a new plot twist.
I made an appointment with him and when I went to present my idea I was interrupted by one:
“I want you to take on Content Marketing”.
There was something I had never imagined. Take over the WAU blog.
As I already loved to produce content for the blog, and I was very fond of studying SEO, I couldn’t refuse. It was a golden opportunity for my career. For the first time, I started to consider building my career with Content Marketing and SEO.
How to grow a giant blog?
When I took over the WAU blog, we already received about 280 thousand hits per month. You must imagine my panic, right? How to grow it? Nor does it have 280 thousand people in London (LAUGHTERS).
On May 2 (the craziest day of the year) 2016, I took on Content Marketing with the difficult mission of surpassing 500 thousand accesses by December of that same year.
You can check out the history of the WAU blog, from its creation, until the beginning of 2019 in this other content!
There I give more details of each moment and each strategy that we made on the blog.
In 2016 we doubled the blog size. We didn’t reach 500 thousand accesses (280 was in May, before you correct me), but we achieved incredible numbers.
That’s how I started to consolidate my name in SEO and discover a passion for my career.
I continued to produce various content for the blog, but above all, I was responsible for creating the strategies, taking care of the quality of what was posted and being responsible for the growth of the blog.
The important thing is not to compete
Undoubtedly one of the things that motivated me the most and to remain firm in SEO and that motivates me until today is competitiveness.
This is a question I ask everyone who joins the WAU blog team: “Are you competitive?”.
When the answer is “no” I promptly say “but you will be”.
There’s no way, SEO is competition. It is a battlefield. And you will do everything (in moderation) to get to the top of Google. And when you arrive, it goes something like this:
If you give a week of inattention, it may be enough to lose those sweaty positions that you have won.
And, without a doubt, it was the competitors that most made me develop as a professional. We have already disputed positions with many great people:
- Digital Results
- Live Blog
- E-commerce London
- Hotmart …
And more recently:
- Neil Patel
- Ideal Marketing
Huge, international competitors and even so we managed to win a large part (I would say most) of these matches.
Until today we are at the top for some of the main keywords in our market such as: Content Marketing, Digital Marketing, SEO, Inbound Marketing, Marketing Automation, Email Marketing, Sales, among others.
And it was thanks to this competitiveness that I lived the biggest case of my career.
Who is Neil Patel
In September 2016, our beloved Digital Marketing Guru, Neil Patel, came to London and visited some companies in our market.
Among them, WAU.
When Neil Patel entered our humble residence, he threatened Vitor Peçanha. He stated that he would steal our first position for the keyword Digital Marketing.
And he said he could do it by a simple fact: “I have a lot of money”.
Imagine you, with less than a year as editor of the Websites Are Us blog, being threatened by the guy who read the texts to learn how to make your strategy.
And worst of all. He managed to win that first position.
It lasted a week. This gif represents how Patel went through Google’s first position in Digital Marketing:
Best of all, the biggest name in Digital Marketing in the world threatened to rank first for our main keyword.
How we respond:
Ranking first for his name! That’s right, we got the first place for the name of the greatest Digital Marketing guru in the world.
To check out this story in detail check out the successful case Thank you Neil Patel, where I recount how the Guru (accidentally) invested in our blog.
After experiencing these incredible cases, being able to take the blog to half a million monthly hits and gaining this position under the name of Neil Patel, it was time to face the best of all challenges:
Pass on knowledge.
Nothing makes me happier than teaching people. Without a doubt, of the main values of Websites Are Us, teaching is what I most identify with.
When Diego invited me to be a professor at the University, I almost didn’t believe it. I was very happy and accepted on the spot.
And that’s how the Corporate Blogs course came about. The course in which I share the strategies I used and still use today to keep the Websites Are Us blog with a very high traffic and in the first position for the main keywords.
And nothing better than seeing the course impacting helping people:
This is priceless!
In addition to this course, I am currently recording the updated version 2.0 of our SEO course.
The course will be the most complete on the market. It will be more than 9 hours from the fundamentals of SEO to the most advanced practices that we use here.
So, keep an eye on WAU University’s upcoming releases.
Rather than being able to put a blog on top, create an efficient content and SEO strategy, it is to be able to pass this knowledge on and know that I am helping several people and companies to achieve similar results.
After more than 2 years being responsible for the Websites Are Us blog, I was promoted to SEO Specialist and identified my next step.
It was time to stop taking care of only the WAU blog and start taking care of more macro strategies. So, I took over the strategic planning of all the main Websites Are Us blogs and I stopped being the Editor of (at the time) Content Marketing.
Today, I am responsible for SEO and Content strategies for the WAU blog, the Websites Are Us Community and our Latam blog.
Undoubtedly, embracing new blogs was an incredible experience and one that generated even more learning.
Today we have a total traffic of more than 3 million hits, adding to our blogs.
Another role I wanted to take as a specialist was the production of advanced content and with more practical strategies on SEO and content.
The idea was to really position myself as an authority and bring a type of content that I only consumed on foreign blogs to London.
This forced me to always learn new strategies and try to get ahead of the market to create advanced content to help our persona. Some examples of content:
Advanced Content Hacks
How to rank first on Google for any keyword
Retrieving positions on Google
Featured Snippets: the guide to Google’s Zero position
How to make good SEO reports
In addition, I started WAU Labs, my own video series with practical and more advanced SEO tips.
The series is currently paused.
And now I’m focused on remaking and improving our already excellent SEO course at WAU University.
The best part
When I said that I became a professor at WAU University, I commented how teaching is my favorite task.
Without a doubt, the best part of being an expert is being able to help and train a team that one day will be much better than you.
Today I am privileged to train new team members and the editors of each of our blogs. Seeing their growth is triggered what motivates me the most to continue.
Better than ranking first in the name of Neil Patel is to see Dimitri Vieira in less than two years taking over the Community with 200 thousand accesses and today we have 900 thousand monthly accesses.
Or see Larissa Lacerda winning 10 Featured Snippets for important keywords in TWO days. One in FOUR minutes!
I take this text to say a big thank you to the people who worked with me and I see that they have grown too much and are flying higher each day:
You made it all worthwhile and forced me to learn a lot more than any competitor or reference I have.
This is my biggest motivation to keep doing what I do. Teach and see professionals growing, either with our Websites Are Us team, or with each student who attends WAU University courses.
The best part of the knowledge is to be passed on.