An interview with Tara Cassidy

Tara Cassidy

We chatted with Tara Cassidy, Search Executive at Crafted.

“I was a big reader when I was younger, so growing up, I always wanted to be a writer. I still aspire to write a novel, even if just for myself. I like to be challenged so writing a novel will challenge me and still allow me to fulfill that dream even though my life has taken me to my current career choice.

I studied digital media at Letterkenny Institute of Technology in Ireland, so I knew I wanted to do something in the sector. I immediately attempted to build a design portfolio when I finished my degree but realised I needed some experience behind me. I found work as a digital marketing assistant in Colchester managing a website and began to teach myself about SEO – it captivated me instantly and I knew this was something I was passionate about learning. 

I got my first job in the industry shortly after where I continued to train myself and was taught SEO. My drive to learn and gain experience in SEO helped me get my current position at Crafted.

SEO is a career that keeps me on my toes. Things are always changing in the industry and it helps feed my passion for learning. It’s great to get out to conferences and hearing from others who also have a passion for SEO, there’s some incredibly inspiring work going on!

Before Crafted, the biggest challenge in my career was getting my voice heard as a newcomer in an industry that was rife with experienced SEO consultants who were teaching me their way of doing SEO. Luckily I was surrounded by colleagues that reminded me I was incredibly knowledgeable in my sector and supported my decision to keep learning and make a greater impact elsewhere, bringing me to Crafted.

The feeling of community within Crafted and the ethos that no idea is a bad idea really helps, I have a great team who are willing to listen to my thoughts on strategy and trusted me when I started to help bring new ideas to the table.”

The Everchanging SEO Industry

“I believe the amount of women role models and mentors in the SEO community is growing with the help of inspirational women such as Areej AbuAli who set up the Women in Tech SEO community, and the industry is certainly taking steps to try and tackle the issue with awards for women in the sector such as DevelopHER, a regional awards for the East of England.

We can continue improving this by encouraging a healthy female to male ratio at conferences allowing their voices and experiences to be heard.

In the past, I have absolutely felt that I’ve had to prove myself more than my male colleagues and as a newcomer to the industry that feeling heightened significantly causing me to doubt myself. I’m lucky enough to no longer feel like my opinions aren’t worthy and I have grown in confidence over my years in the industry.

My advice for women looking to break into this industry or progress within it is to ask questions, research and surround yourself with supportive, like-minded people. Most of all I would say believe in yourself if you come into the industry as a newcomer. SEO has been around a long time but that doesn’t mean that everything that used to be done is how it should be done now.

I think that SEO is an ever-evolving industry albeit a very new industry, things fluctuate all the time. I believe the way SEO is seen will be refined, previously it was about links and keywords. Now, it’s about content quality and search intent, I believe it will continue to be about the quality of content for users and how you, the SEO help the user find the information they need with ease. I am looking forward to helping the industry move forward with new ideas and strategies as the world of search evolves.

I believe that E-A-T (Expertise – Authority – Trust) will continue to be a huge talking point in 2020, alongside zero-click search impact and search intent. These are my industry predictions, so I’ll enjoy looking back on this to see how accurate I was! 

Personally, however, I will be looking at outreach as a focus in 2020: It’s something that’s always interested me and is a skill I want to become better at as an SEO.”

You can find Tara on LinkedIn:

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