Gustavo Pelogia is an SEO Lead at project management SaaS Teamwork. He’s a former journalist who found a new career in SEO after leaving Brazil in 2011, optimising websites for companies in Buenos Aires, Amsterdam and currently in Dublin. Prior to Teamwork, he spent 5 years on the agency side working for Core (Spark Foundry) and Wolfgang Digital.
His campaigns won Drum Search Awards and Irish Content Marketing Awards in 2020 for Dalata Hotels and Dublin Airport. After business hours, Gus is often watching reruns of Seinfeld and finding new hobbies – currently obsessed with making cocktails and jigsaw puzzles.
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Francesco Baldini: Hello everybody. This is the second episode of Bright Marketer for the next few episodes. I will focus on expat marketers. That’s like a me live abroad whatever abroad means for them. In this episode, we welcome Gustavo. And even if I already said your name, can you please tell our listeners how you pronounce your name and how people actually call you?
Gustavo Pelogia: So hi everybody. My name is Gustavo. The short version in Brazil would be Gu. But when I moved to Argentina, people started calling me a Gus and I just kept that translation for when I moved to Europe. So I just made the, you know, the English accent version of it. So it became Gus I thought it was, you know, this is short enough, less a space for confusion and you know, easy for everybody to pronounce, I guess.
Francesco Baldini: Can you tell our listeners a bit about you, we have a few questions, but just give you, give us an overview about who you are, what you do and everything.
Gustavo Pelogia: Yeah, sure. So I’ve been doing SEO for, I think almost 10 years now. And I worked at in house and actually, so for first of all, I’m from Brazil, but actually started doing SEO in Argentina. And so from there I moved to Holland kept doing the SEO there and a few years after I moved to Ireland and that’s where we are.
So yeah, working in-house for the first half of my career then did another around five years. And in the agency side in Ireland and now in a few days, probably by the time that you guys listen, this I’ll be back in-house the SEO lead at Teamwork.
Francesco Baldini: Thank you. Let’s go on. As I think these questions are quite connected, I’ll ask them together. What brought you to move from Brazil to Argentina then Holland and finally Ireland where you live at the moment.
Gustavo Pelogia: Sure. So I think for me, I was just, I just wanted to leave somewhere else for a little bit. My initial plan was let’s go to Argentina for for a few months. I had money to stay three months in Buenos Aires had budget my, my school and accommodation some costs. So it was for me it was, you know, if I only do three months I know it can learn Spanish in that period or enough to feel that I had a.
An experience abroad and then come back home with a new skill you know, knowing a new language. So that was my initial plan. Of course I wanted to stay longer, but I had as a goal, you know, if I have to come back after three months, I fulfilled that experience and you know, I’ll come back home and everything’s going to be fine.
But. Things worked quite well. It’s one of those things that you know, once you think back and you’re like, if I, if I hadn’t been in this place or that place, everything would have been different. So my story in Buenos Aires, I started studying Spanish made a lot of friends in the school, but everybody was leaving.
So every week. There was, you know, someone from Switzerland, someone from Brazil, someone from Italy that were just learning Spanish for a few weeks or a few months, and they would leave. So every week, every other week there was a goodbye dinner. And there was one that I was quite broke, so I kind of didn’t want to go.
But there were, I think only three people left in the group and I thought, you know, it would be, it would be very sad if I don’t show up as just only two people. And so in that dinner, I started talking with the with this girl and she was doing an internship in the school, in the Spanish school. So I asked her, ask them if, you know, you know, if they have any other jobs or anything going on there.
So at that time they had it and I got, I got a job at the Spanish school was studying for free working for free. And there was the first time I heard about SEO. My boss at the time was a Dutch guy and who was in Argentina doing his master. And we became friends. We kept talking about SEO.
And he had some friends visiting at some point from, from Amsterdam and. This friend of of him turned out to become my boss around maybe a year later. And to at some point he, he was just I literally remember looking at my luggage. I was going to, to Brazil on holidays and I see a message from them.
Joshua. And he just sent me a message saying, Hey he was looking for a Brazilian to work with him in Amsterdam, are you interested? And so he kind of just, you know, just stumbled upon that the opportunity and moved countries again. Wasn’t really a plan. Wasn’t really a goal. The opportunity to just, just appeared in front of me.
So that’s what he did. So, and I stayed there for around three and a half years. In Amsterdam working at Poki. But at some point I got bored of doing most of the link building and, you know, I wanted to try other things. I was reading a lot about SEO and I could see a lot of things from the business perspective, going really well in the company, but I also want it to be more hands-on on, you know, Technical SEO and crawling and, you know, understanding all of this worlds that I, I would just read about it and have the theory, but wouldn’t actually have a chance to do it myself on you know, on a, on a real environment.
And so that’s why I decided to leave that, you know, decided to leave Poki and moved to Dublin with no job. But I wanted to work for an agency after all of this years in house. And I was fortunate enough to, you know, get a few opportunities. I started working at Core Media and after a year and a half went to Wolfgang Digital and after five years in the agency world which I think everybody that works in an agency can relate to that can be.
Really really stressful. No, you have tons of clients and a big team to, to deal with all the time and people who wants completely different things every day. And I decided to move back to in-house which at least the interior in my head will be still very challenging and exciting, but there’ll be a little less stress in terms of, you know, a client leaving at any time or, you know, things like that.
Francesco Baldini: So basically very serendipity experience just random meeting that brought to other, people to your boss and another on-set sound. You have also a background in journalism and you, you started with a SEO that is very connected. But is more technical probably.
What how did happen that you liked more of the technical side? Let’s say, how did you move? Did you probably work in journalism and then SEO or it was a starting point of your career?
Gustavo Pelogia: No. So I actually worked a few years in big newsrooms in Brazil. I did my dream was to be a music journalist. So. That’s the direction I always try to go. My my thesis from university was a book I published , went on on MTV and a few other places to talk about it. Had a blog and MTV or MTV, Brazil and all the other, you know, big newsrooms that are worked and be big.
I mean, 3-400 journalists. I always, even though I was writing about different things, I always found an opportunity to do some unpaid freelance in the music area. So it would always go to the music editor and say, Hey, if you’re looking for anybody to help here, you know, I’m, I’m your man.
I can help you here. Or I would come with the ideas for stories or concerts that I wanted to write. You know a story about, or people that I wanted to interview. So I was always pitching my own stories basically and working for free. But, you know, I thought this was be the, would be the direction for me.
So I didn’t actually, I never actually was a, you know, a full-time music journalist but in at least fulfilled that need for me to be part of that scene and, you know, interview artists that are, that are really liked it and stuff like that. So have a taste of the, what that life would be the move to SEO.
It was a bit random. I think as most people that end up in SEO, it’s not really a planned move, but when I moved to Argentina the plan was just to stay for, for a few months or that’s what I had budgets for. And I always had that concern too. You know, I was just starting to make some important contacts in journalism.
I could reach out to people in different use rooms and get something going and in different places. So I was, you know, I’m, I’m getting to the scene here, so I didn’t want to stay far for, for too long because you know, there’ll be new people coming all the time. But the, you know, the, the owner of that Spanish school I studied or it was a very well connected in, in Argentina.
So he put me in touch with we went to play football with some directors at a, an OTA. That was the biggest one in South America at the time. And they were like, Oh yeah, sure. They, they got me an interview. So that interview got a job at a company called Despegar.com. And then I started doing my steps in SEO.
But then was the moment that I realized that the two things that I had studied in life were connected with SEO. So I did journalism in school. And in high school, I also, I did high school slash it. So I need a little bit of help to build a website or help to fix computers and things in that universe.
Reading the, you know, getting the first you know introduction to SEO or the beginner’s guides from Moz and looking at, Oh, I can read the HTML code. Oh, this is connected with the stuff that I’m writing. I, I need to get links. I’ve been on the other side, they know how to pitch a story to journalists.
I know all the bad press releases that I get all the time, or I would get calls from you know, from. Press people from how do you call from public relations people and stuff like that. So for me, it was, those are the two things that I study in life connected in one place I can still write.
I can still, you know, create stories, but I also understand what’s the value on the other side which was you know, mind blowing for me to realize that I could put those two things together.
Francesco Baldini: You have been in a SEO for a few years now. What is after your experience after different kind of experiences in now, again, journalism in different countries.
And so what’s your at the moment, what’s your favorite element or area of SEO that you prefe .
audio_only_16780290_Gustavo_Pelogia: Yeah. I think that every, I dunno, every six months that, that, that changes. I had a. For many, many years, I was the, you know, links for where my expertise. Once I started working in the agency, I started seeing other areas that I could also, you know, be, be in the front of it. So I think at some point technical became something very exciting and then local SEO became a huge thing for me as well.
I kind of would see. You know, the, the people that were working with me and things that clients were asking for, and I would look around, is there anybody here that is it’s a specialist on this. If there was none, I was like, this is my new favorite thing now, because there’s nobody else around me that can, you know, give me a very strong answer on this or that topic.
Francesco Baldini: A way to learn a new thing from scratch and to without a proper mentor or something like that, just to learn from scratch or on your own.
Gustavo Pelogia: Yeah. Yeah. Yeah. I think there was a, it was part of what was the challenge and part was the need. Because let’s say, you know, at Wolfgang we would have at least for every SEO client to have two people. And I realize in some accounts I would, I would be in the senior one. So I’ll be the responsible to find the answer for that thing.
So if a client, you know, couldn’t get an answer. If they weren’t happy about something. I’ll be the first person that, you know, my boss would come and ask what’s going on here. So I knew that I, I need to have those answers. And so there was the challenge, but it was also the need at the same time.
I think now what excites me the most is strategy. After many years, you know, how. I, I think often SEOs can just get too excited with the next shiny thing that we are doing, or, you know, Core Web Vitals is a thing now, or last year was a structured data or, Oh, crawl budgets. You know, we have all of those things that are important and very exciting.
But if I’m talking with you know a chain of hotels or dunno you know, a business owner I’m they don’t really care about that, that stuff. And you, you’re not going to keep them to show like, look, you know, this is loading faster, look at the scores you’re getting. It’s like, okay, that’s great.
How many bookings do I have? So I think for me changing to you not, not changing, but probably over the last Year or so I was a lot less hands-on and a lot more just looking at the strategy and trying to make sure that we are delivering what the client needs more than, you know, the things that excite us.
SEOs strategy is probably the thing that that excites me the most. These days talking with everybody, you know, on the other side, on the client side, to explain why we’re doing something, how long it takes and translate that into language that matters for them.
Francesco Baldini: Achieving their business goal s though SEO different strategies or tactics and, and so on.
Gustavo Pelogia: Exactly. Exactly. Sometimes you’re not even, you know, achieving something straight away. But your, the fact that you explaining how this is going to help them in that direction. That is, that is part of the process as well. So let’s say you know, we, you’re creating content that is under a niche. You know, what they care the most is about leads.
They’re not getting leads. Then look. You know, this helps people to understand what you do this is helping the, you know, creating ideas around your, your niche. And then you can maybe explain a bit of E-A-T or things like that, but you’re, you know, even if it’s a matter of to show, look, you started ranking for, for those terms in page one or you have a feature snippet as it, or, and you, you know, put around, this is how many searches have been a month on this.
And we are growing from this page you’re linking to your. You know, lead gen page or, or something that it translates into them you know, things that matter or that you’re at least approaching or getting closer to, or you need to be.
Francesco Baldini: You said that you, you’re focusing on this on the strategy side of the work, mostly during last year, without of course, without mentioning specific clients and so on did you have any well, bigger challenge that you expected , or what, how did you overcome them on something?
Sometimes clients could be very specific about their KPIs, their their language you need to to, to to adapt what they want to the website and deliver and provide them with realistic expectations rather than yeah, we can do whatever you want, because sometimes it’s not possible.
It’s not possible, now, you need to work on something else.
Gustavo Pelogia: Sure. So I think I have a few examples. Let me think. I, I worked I was working with a client. It’s an e-commerce. So it’s a, it’s a, how do I describe without giving their name? It’s an e-commerce on custom-made things. So sort of like a They, they do all kinds of printing materials, kind of, I think Vista Print is one of their competitors.
But you know, it doesn’t really matter. We were creating content for some of their uses pages. So they had examples, let’s say they sell stickers. So they, they would have a page on, you know, laptop seekers or you know, car stickers and stuff like that. And as we started creating the content.
We, you know, SEOs here, you know, there’s keyword search for this, you know, their content. We can explain, you can put the FAQ’s on the, you know, answering how, how long they last or the quality and stuff like that. So we, we made a few pages and the CEO jumped on, on the project management to conversation to say, this is SEO spam.
I don’t care about this. I don’t need to pay an agency, an agency to do that. We don’t think we were doing, you know, spend a spam at all. There was you know, a reason and we were explaining more things about the product, things that actually had search volume around that. At the moment they were answering on some blog pages.
So we thought there was a value, but getting you know, a message coming from, from the CEO that someone that you, we never spoke with going straight to I’m really unhappy with this. It was okay. This red flag. So if someone that really on the top of, of this doesn’t want what we do, we’re going to lose these guys.
How can you fix this? So initially we were just suggesting coming with, you know, let’s optimize those pages and they accepted, but they weren’t really happy with this. So we, we changed this in two ways. One was We put a, how do you call it an SEO potential per page sheet, where instead of looking at the rankings they had for certain keywords, we look at the rankings across all the markets and the potential per page, so they could see in one place, okay.
You know, for this keyword or this page, we are doing bad. And for markets. And more or less than one, so they could make their choice looking at, you know, five different countries at the same time. So instead of us suggesting the pages too, to optimize, we let them choose. And the second, and we put together a sheet where we would limit the, you know, the blocks of texts on, on the page to say, Currently you have, let’s say a hundred characters here.
We are not going to go over 110. So giving them the sheet before making the content and say, this is the process that we have. It’s not going to go over this. If it’s going over, you’ll see there’s a red button or, and a column on the reason why we are adding this you know, put them at ease that we weren’t.
Creating a spam content on their words. But we are keeping the format and the principles that they wanted to have. They wanted to have a lean pages where they highlight a few things about the products, not a lot of texts, not a, a page that are going to scroll for too much. And you know, that that’s the problem went away.
Since since then, there was no other conversation about you know, the quality of what we were doing or if you know that problem basically went away. I think we addressed that really well.
Francesco Baldini: Yeah you provide them with all the information that you needed to take a relevant decision
Gustavo Pelogia: Exactly. Yeah. So instead of, you know, I not even try to question the. If it was a spam or not, because that’s his view and he runs the company, he knows what they want to do. I’m not on the other side, I didn’t create the product that wasn’t there for years to develop that company. So instead of, you know, fighting on the definition of how we see things, you know, we need to go your way because ultimately this is, you know, this is your company.
We work for you.
Francesco Baldini: Yeah, exactly. And do you have a project that you’re really proud of or a compliment that for your work team that you had.
Gustavo Pelogia: Yeah, I think I have two in mind first I’m really proud because both of them got awards. So the first one was with Dublin airport. And, you know, in TLDR. It wasn’t migration. But you know, the long story was the project got delayed for several reasons before it got into our hands.
And it was a migration that only happened like during summertime which is the moment that the airport is the busiest time at the year for the airport. So they make a lot of money, through parking, and a lot of people, you know, look for information. About their flights and stuff like that. So there was, you know, a risk of having a lot of people really mad at and unhappy about what we were doing.
And I’m really happy that everything went quite well. Even some competitors they had in, in, I know it’s an airport, but you know, parking lots around the airport. They have many. So they even managed to increase a lot of, a lot of rankings in a lot of people just booking their parking spots with the airport as well.
So I think that worked really well. And the second one is one we did with the Maldron hotels. We also won first one Dublin airport. We won Drum search awards and Maldron won a drum search award and Irish content marketing awards as well. But the one with Maldron. There were a lot of elements, but the one that I really I don’t know if this was the reason why got an award or how much, you know, how important this was, but I really enjoy one thing that he did, which was after noticing that.
All sorts of keywords, like at hotels in Dublin and you know, those, those proud ones would always be nominated by OTA. So the likes of Booking and Expedia would always be, make the top 10 which it does make sense because, you know, if you’re looking for a range of hotels, Google is not going to keep it specific.
One’s going to give you a list of where you can find all of the hotels. So I started looking at secondary keywords around, so the. The lights up, hotels near places. And I could just have created, you know, pages for all of them, but we connected with the Google maps API to see how far each hotel was from each attraction we wanted to write about.
And then if there were several hotels that will be a match, we created one page simulating, like when OTA will do. And talking about the location and stuff like that. But I think using the API to match how far an attraction was for the distance between the hotel and the attraction, I think there was something that was a clever and very nice to do as well.
And that’s something you can replicate over for, you know, basically anywhere in the world.
Francesco Baldini: Yeah. And other clients, other also other kinds of clients .
Gustavo Pelogia: Yeah. Yeah. Most definitely like it’s it’s a tool that we built internally. So, you know, any other client or any other situation that you would need, something like this it’s you know, easy enough to update it.
Francesco Baldini: We met at Learn Inbound in Dublin. You were volunteering with Mark and you probably met quite a bit of people that helped you with your career in some ways, what was your experience there and what did you learn?
Gustavo Pelogia: Yeah, I think Learn Inbound was very important for my career. When I moved to Ireland first I, I came before I actually moved here. I came for Learn Inbound and met a few people in different places. Just to kind of. You know, see how, how big was the, the Mark team opportunities here. And, and I even the first Learn Inbound that I attended, I just came as a guest.
And I started talking with Mark before the event and he was like, Oh, why don’t you come along with us for dinner after the event. And I think from that day it was really important to me. Mark mentioned, you know, I know people in, in agencies in Dublin. So if you decide to move, I can give you a hand and introduce you to some people.
I met Barry Adams that day as well. And then I think soon after that, he invited me to write for a State of Digital. So there was, you know, the first few people that I met outside my you know, pretty much outside the group, the people that I worked with. So it, it was very interesting to, you know, starting meeting other people and realizing effort once like, Oh, those are, you know, putting names to faces and seeing the people that I only knew online.
Suddenly it was having dinner with them. And so there was, you know, very interesting to pick their brains in all sorts of different situations.
Francesco Baldini: Yeah, that’s cool. How do you describe what you just said your work working with different companies SEO the content backlinks and so on to your parents and how they would describe you, what you do to their friends.
Gustavo Pelogia: I think, yeah, it was, there was a very complicated question. I think I gave up explaining to my parents or they gave up asking a few years ago. But I would talk a lot about, you know, at the start, Oh, this is how Google works and there’s a paid version and we tried to convince Google. This page is the best.
I’m not sure if they would always get it. But the one moment that I, I think I managed to explain this to my mom and she saw an action was she was reviewing a place on Google maps and accidentally she put her phone number. As the phone number of the restaurant. So she kept getting calls for months until one day, she just mentioned to me, he’s like, Oh, you know, I keep getting calls from this.
People are trying to reach this Italian restaurant in the city, blah, blah, blah. And I was like, mom, I can fix this. Sadly. It wasn’t that straightforward as just go on Google maps and change the phone number. That was my first guest the, the obvious one but then doing a little bit, bit of more research.
They had one phone number on TripAdvisor. They had a different one on Facebook, so I had to go and change all of those and, you know, keep, keep requesting Google to change and find in other places. After I think a couple of months Google, finally. Accepted the change. But she kept getting calls for, for a little while.
I think, or the, the, the funny, the funny answer though, usually would get was actually from my friends because when I told them that I was moving to, Amsterdam and I was doing this SEO thing where you, you do all these things with links, they were just, yeah, yeah, yeah, sure. You were going there to laundry money.
So there were, this is too complex. We want to make fun of you instead. And so for, for many years, that’s what I heard from my friends.
Francesco Baldini: Okay, cool. That’s I don’t know how I would take that, but yeah.
Gustavo Pelogia: It was like I’m sure everything I’m doing is legal. It’s all good. But they, you know, I guess they just wanted to mock me.
Francesco Baldini: You have been speaking for several, several SEO events, like Pint Sized marketing with Learn Inbound BristolSEO, CardiffSEO, Digital PR summit and others. And you are also a contributor of magazines, like Buzzstream State of Digital , just a couple.
How do you land this how did you pitch; how do you land these events and the writing as well? Because your native language is not English and these events are in English and the publication in English. I relate to myself these things. I can feel that sometimes it’s it’s a lot of work.
It’s a lot of work to, to be there . To approach different kind of audience that you would expect, or to just from the accent to how you feel and if the, the, the kind of work that you have to put in place, because given that it’s not your native language, you need to reframe a few, a few sentences.
How did you land there and how do you eventually overcome potential fears, potential not good enough moments.
Gustavo Pelogia: Yeah, sure. So I think for me, the, the speaking parts it was mostly about seeing all the people that are really follow in the industry. And seeing that’s what they do. So I, for me was, I kind of want to, you know, I want to be like them. I want to be as important as those people are not, not as important.
I dunno, I think it was, it was just an inspiration to see, you know, the really good people in, in SEO. The people that I trust they’re often speakers. So if I want to be, you know, a trusted person, I should be on stage as well. The first one I had was the pint-sized marketing after annoying Mark, quite a lot.
He gave me his lot and, and I was very, very nervous. At first I, I can’t, I rehearse countless times. And, but I think you went well. And at the end of it, I got such a relief, but I also got a huge buzz out of it. You know, people come talk to you. They have all sorts of questions. And even if you don’t know how to answer, you can, you know, give them a direction or, you know, I, I felt very, very excited.
Maybe it’s even connected with my. Back in the days as being a music journalist that, you know, being part of being part of this, all this buzz for me was like, I’m finally on stage. I was never a musician, but this is the as closely as close as I can get. And it was very exciting. So I decided to just keep teaching for art events.
So I started looking at what are the other, you know, small events that are happening not too far from me. There were, you know, a couple of more in Dublin. Then BristolSEO, CardiffSEO. So I just started going through, you know, other places that have that I could Wolfgang helped me at some point as well.
You know, the agency has loads of contacts, so they started booking some, some bigger events. So the, the big ones that, that I spoke at a 3XE. And a Wolfgang essentials which I think was my, my biggest one. So, and then you start getting more excited. So you be like, I want to keep doing that.
And I think it helps a lot to put your ideas in, you know, put a thought process from start to end. Because sometimes, you know, something in your head, but at once you have to find the detail or prove that this is the right thing to do it requires a lot of research as well. So I think it’s even putting the decks together.
I learned a lot as well.
Francesco Baldini: Great. And what about the language part? How do you, how do you deal with that? Did you. Well, did you have any fear about that or just you let’s go on. Let’s see how it works.
Gustavo Pelogia: I think on the writing side I had to I had to improve quite a lot. I would hear from people in different places that you know, what it was writing was, was grammatically, grammatically incorrect. So I would just sit with people and it’s like, point me, where does this wrong? And I would learn a bit that way.
And I would also learn a bit just by, you know, after you start listening people saying things in a certain way, you’re like the way I say it’s, it’s not really this way. And then you start fine tuning things. So I think that’s, that was the main thing for me on the speaking part, wasn’t really too concerned about it because, you know, it’s so quick when you’re speaking, it’s not a.
I mean, we’re going to have a recording of this. So if someone wants to point my mistakes, they will easily find it. But if you’re on onstage, I think it goes a little bit quicker. So you know, it, I think he can. You can pass some mistakes and it’s still fine. But I think seeing people that were not native speakers, native, English speakers on stage that helped me quite a lot as well..
So I remember when I met Aleyda Solis, I think it was in Brighton SEO, and I just happened to be with a group of people that were going for dinner. And I just tag along with that group, it’s like, Oh, there is Aleyda in here. And once we were set for dinner, I remember telling her that she was a huge inspiration for being a, you know, a non-native English speaker, just killing on, on this world.
I think just seeing other people that have. Some sort of similar backgrounds as me, like she she’s from Latin America as well. And so all those things would, you know, give me some more hope or keep me, you know, feeling that, you know, they can do it. I think I can do as well.
So, you know, it’s just a try and mistake, really just keep doing it. You know, you, you’re going to, you’re going to commit mistakes. It’s fine. But if you don’t, don’t start doing you know, you’re never going to get there.
Francesco Baldini: Fair enough. What’s your favorite topic you have been talking about, or you wrote about
Gustavo Pelogia: I think something that I, I, I’m not the best at, but I really enjoy doing it. These days is digital PR. I think I have that background and I believe a lot in the stories that, that I put out there. Sometimes they work sometimes they don’t work. But I’m really excited about the, the topic that I, that I presented at the digital pr summit a few months ago.
And I was talking about how to create digital pr stories, using Screaming Frog. I thought it was, you know, to, it was the new way to use Screaming Frog. Or to use a crawler and this story’s worth well, they, they got links I, I think the story itself was very interesting. So there were two cases.
One was scraping fundraising platform to see what kind of sports people were doing to raise money for COVID related causes. And the other one was on, I also use the Dublin airport to see the things that people lose at the airport. They had a page with all the items, the people lost there, so I scraped.
Francesco Baldini: And sorry, this, this was a kind of a personal experience. If I don’t remember wrong.
Gustavo Pelogia: Yeah, that was a person experience. So I, I was coming back from, from Italy and I lost my Kindle. And so my reports and I went to, I was hoping that I could find it back. So I started looking at the, you know, all the airport websites to see if they had a list or at least how I could get in touch with them.
Nothing in Italy, nothing Holland, nothing in, in Ireland. So couldn’t find my Kindle, but at the, the airport website, I found this list where they would list all the items that the people had lost. So I basically scraped that and organized in a, in a format that it would be more comprehensive.
And you know, that, that’s how we got that story there. And I really like, you know, the, for me, it was, it was a different way to use a crawler to, to build something new. And it, you know, we got some, some nice coverage from all, all places around the Dublin or like Irish publications.
And it’s something very helpful. I suppose that’s a story that you can run, you know, every year. When we can travel again. But that’s something that, you know, it’s very, you can replicate this at any other airport that has a list or even if the airport is looking for some PR that’s something easy for them to do as well.
Francesco Baldini: Do you have any advice how to approach this to our listeners, but to me as well, because this is, again, this is one of the topics that I’m trying to go into more.
Because it’s it’s a key point of the SEO work and it’s the digital, especially the digital PR part is could be an interesting approach because you, you deal with people.
Gustavo Pelogia: Yeah, I think for me, and that’s something that I’ve, I’ve tried to you know, support the team that we had at Wolfgang a lot on this is. I like to start small on links. You know, you don’t need a lot of budget to, to do a campaign. And I I’ve seen countless cases of, you know, people doing with a small, a small amount of money or even no money.
I really liked the approach that Stacey MacNaught does it, I remember, I remember very vividly. It started that she presented at pint-sized at, at Learn Inbound once. When I think it was it was a clothing shop and they put a piece on find the ballerina in a sea of flamingos. And it was an image.
So a lot of, you know publications were just, can you find it this and this, this piece was built by, by this guys. And it was a simple thing. Probably these days you would think more about the, you know, what’s the content, how’s this related to the brand. It was related. It was a brand that said that I think that it was an e-commerce for ballerinas.
So there, there was a tie into the topic. But I think for me, it’s usually. You know, can you build something that is, that is useful or something that it’s, you know, fun and easy enough for journalists write about something that doesn’t have right or wrong. You know, if you want to say, what are the, you know, the most Instagrammed beaches in the world that that’s an easy, it’s a light read.
So even if you know, turns out the beach was in the third place was the second one. Doesn’t really matter that much. Unless, you know, if you’re looking for something that is more known in the medical world or something that is, you can affect people on a stronger way. Then, then of course you can do something that’s more simple.
But I usually try to, my, my general advice is just start small. There are things that it can do with no with small we’re no budgets, you know, surveys most Instagram something Things that people lose at the airport that was made with no, no budget other than my time. Anything that is on most popular on Instagram, it’s not nothing but time.
So I think that’s, that’s my, my advice you know, is there something real that your company is releasing? I worked with a self-storage company that they were opening a new location. Perfect. That’s the press release there. There was another one for the same guys that they noticed.
There was a trend of last year, a lot of people that were just flying back to their home countries for a few months, they didn’t want to pay rent in Dublin, which is very expensive. So they had an influx of expats. Just using their services. So here’s the story expats who are potentially leaving the country during summer because they don’t want to, you know, they want to go back to their home countries for a little bit.
They’re using self-storage, so. There was, there was a, you know, a small story that he could, that he could create there without spending any money. And as you see what what’s working, what, you know, the publications on in your area or in your niche are interested on. Then you can move towards, you know, Oh, I need to you know, a fancy creative or I need something, a game or something that’s it’s a lot more expensive.
Also, because if it doesn’t work as you hoped you’re not, you’re not going to have that odd conversation on you know, here’s this 10 grand, where did, where, where did it go?
Francesco Baldini: Yeah, basically you’re saying identify who’s your audience, and find a hook that can be helpful to them.
Gustavo Pelogia: Exactly. Exactly. So, but I think if you just do once in a while, you don’t really get that well that’s something that you need. You know, to continue to continuously keep doing it and get familiar with the publications as well. There were some places that some news places that I, after doing a few campaigns, I realize all, they actually tell a lot of things that I’m interested in.
So I just continue reading them. And as part of my, you know daily news sources and it, it helps me to get better into pitching them in the future as well.
Francesco Baldini: Do you have anyone specific that you want to thank for your speaking gigs or for your work in SEO people that you feel that helped you more than others in this field.
Gustavo Pelogia: Yeah. I think back in the days Rand Fishkin was my main source. My main you know, reference. I remember in the first two, three years of SEO, just finishing the week, very tired. And I would finish my week watching whiteboard Friday. And by, by that moment, I was already you know, re-energized I don’t follow him that much these days anymore.
I read his book and I read the stuff he does. But I. I think I get information from a lot of other people now as well, but for, for many years, you know, he would help me to be, to have that critical thinking and, you know, look, look for clues to even if I just want to prove a point, what are all the clues that are, you know, that I can find to, to piece this together.
So he was, he was definitely my, my hero for quite some time. I think these days I get information from quite a lot of different people. So I don’t have a. One a go-to person. That is my my being referenced. But you know, there, there are many people out there that I are really like really like Giselle Navarro for, you know link related stuff.
I’ve been following a lot of the things from Digitaloft and Rise at Seven as well. And so, yeah, I think those are there. There are many, many others, but those are some of the ones that come to my mind now.
Francesco Baldini: We are getting to the end. What’s your focus at the moment? I know that you’re starting a new position, so probably that’s the main focus.
Gustavo Pelogia: Yeah you’re right. I am very, very excited to start a Teamwork this, this week. So I think that’s where my mind is. That’s where my mind has been for the last few weeks I’ve been already putting together the list of tools that I’m going to need, or, you know, preparing my setup for, for the office and all the kinds of stuff trying to you know, think more on the, on this, this, universe.
I think the, the SaaS universe is going to be a new thing for me. I, I worked with clients on this universe before, but now I’m very excited with I, I think I’m coming from the agency mindset of, I have 10 clients now and like, I have just one client. Can you imagine having a 40 hours a week just for one client that all the things that it can do.
So I’m, I’m very excited about that. I’m excited as well to go back, you know, hands-on. Cause I think for the last you know, year and a half, two years being a client lead or that’s how we’d call it Wolfgang, but an account manager, you’re mostly looking to, you know, the strategy side of things, but you’re not actually hands-on on, on anything.
So I’ll, I’ll have to do both again. You know, get how can I make the our team there grow, how we can, you know, get more leads and more people using teamwork as well. So I think my mind is I’m shifting on towards the, that direction over, over the last few weeks.
Francesco Baldini: What do you do when you don’t work? Just, just be more relaxed on to enjoy your time.
Gustavo Pelogia: Pre pandemic probably I would be. dancing some techno house music somewhere almost every weekend. Those days are long gone. So I think these days I’ve been spending a lot of time doing puzzles. I bought a PlayStation4 thing, you know, I think the last video game I had before, this was a Nintendo Wii before I moved to Europe.
So it’d been, you know, playing a lot of games, like Tomb Rider, and also playing some FIFA as well. And trying to read a little bit more as well.
Francesco Baldini: Yeah. Cool. Okay. Who do you think The next guest of this episode should be .
Gustavo Pelogia: Cool. So I would like to suggest to people and you have them, if you find that there’s a fit both of them are also expats. So first one is Irina Nica she is a really good. It’s she, she runs a program called surround sound at HubSpot. That is very nice. I think the way understands that this is not a, it’s a, let’s not get one position at Google.
Let’s get all positions. But she can tell you the detail and how that works. And someone else that I really admire and in the SEO slash link building industry is Argentinian girl called Gisele Navarro. So I think both of them, you know, they’re both expats that are doing really well in the, in the digital marketing world.
And so I think that there would be a fit for this as well.
Francesco Baldini: Where can our listeners connect with you online?
Gustavo Pelogia: Sure. So I have my website that I’ve been working on over the last few weeks now that I had a whole week free which is pelogia.it. You can also find me on Twitter slash pelogia or on, on LinkedIn. I think Twitter is probably the place that that I hang out with the most and, you know, talking about digital marketing but all of these will be places that it can find me.
Francesco Baldini: Perfect. Gus. Thank you for your time and enjoy your new role that start tomorrow.
Yeah. Yeah, I can’t wait.
Okay. Goodbye. And to our listeners we’ll see you in the next few days, weeks I hope to be a bit quicker for the next episode. Okay. Goodbye. Bye bye.
Gustavo Pelogia: Sounds good.