Today, the Internet makes it possible for every business to become more visible to potential customers either in a local geographic sense, nationally, or around the world - literally. Search engines and well-designed websites can drive purchasing decisions, however not everything on line is as straightforward - sometimes traffic may be driven by those "oops" moments that someone never expected to be exposed to the entire world. In fact, some Kansas City attorneys recently had an experience that while at first quite a shock, turned out to be an outrageous hit online - and perhaps led to even more positive exposure for the firm.
A quick recap of what happened: The law firm, McCollum & Griggs LLC, consulted with Kansas City web designers in the design and launch of their state-of-the-art website. However, in the interim a Seattle based internet marketing and SEO firm contacted the law firm in an attempt to sell them a domain name. After discussing the situation, they advised David McCollum not to purchase the domain name, which was related to Kansas City personal injury law. The law firm called back to decline the purchase, not realizing that the next day they would receive a voicemail from the SEO company's supervisor which lasted only a minute, but has gone viral online due to his apparent "state of impairment" - not to mention the vile (but at the same time hilarious) things he said.
In a nutshell the voicemail, which was addressed to Annette Griggs, an attorney with the firm, depicted an apparently inebriated owner of an SEO firm calling "Wadette" an idiot, and telling her that she would waste $10,000 with a Kansas City SEO firm that would never get the law firm ranked in the search engines. The guy, claiming to be from Microsoft, told "Wadette" that the domain name the company was trying to sell the law firm would put their business number one on Google forever. Overall, the voicemail was quite entertaining, although the Seattle SEO firm's supervisor is probably not thinking so right about now, considering it has been played (and no doubt enjoyed) by more than 120,000 people on sites such as YouTube, Twitter, and on numerous news websites and legal blogs.
Click here to to listen to the 60-second voicemail: Crazy SEO Voicemail
So, what does all of this prove?
That online, anything and everything you say can and will be used against you, although sometimes it turns out good for the intended victim.
While it's true that search engines and great web design coupled with effective search engine optimization will drive an enormous amount of targeted traffic, this isn't the only way companies attract notice. In this case, the voicemail left by the apparently inebriated SEO "expert" has done nothing but attract hordes of attention to these Kansas City personal injury lawyers, which only goes to prove the old adage when life gives you lemons, make lemonade.
On the flip side of the coin, making mistakes like the Seattle SEO firm did can be devastating for a company's brand and image, not to mention consumer trust.
Ultimately . . .
Every single company online whether you are Kansas City movers, a law firm, real estate company, mom and pop business, blogger, affiliate marketer, SEO firm, roofer or landscaping contractor or anyone else MUST always keep in mind that in an internet world, nothing is private. When you draft an email, post on social media sites or engage in a phone conversation, proceed with caution, as if anything you write or say will be broadcast on television around the world. Online, people have access to everything you do 24/7 on a global level. Keep this story in mind and don't let your business be the victim in your own carelessness! The internet can be used to your advantage to build a strong, successful online presence, or it can be a weapon that will quickly tear your business apart.