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Every business began with a single entrepreneur’s vision to succeed. As hard as it is to believe, even the bigwig brands started at the bottom but with tremendous dedication, perseverance, luck and killer marketing – they stand as they are today.

As we welcome a new year, we also welcome the opportunity to help those hoping to up their SEO and marketing game in 2016 by leveraging the knowledge shared by the best blogs on the web. 

For those just starting out, developing your business and marketing strategy can be overwhelming. Especially in a saturated market like Calgary, how to gain that competitive edge can seem like a mystery. But the challenge is worth the effort.  

If you’re just beginning to learn about SEO and want to implement SEO strategies yourself - you may be spending a lot of time scanning the net for tips, tricks and tutorials. To streamline the process for you, we’ve consolidated a list of what we feel are the best SEO and marketing blogs out there for you to read in 2016. All of them present pragmatic ways you can apply SEO and marketing strategies yourself:    

Moz

For SEO newbies, Moz has a wonderful Beginner’s Guide to SEO that offers comprehensive information about what SEO is, how it works, and strategies you can use to optimize your site for search engines. They have guides to link building, social media strategies, Google analytics and a whole slew of beginner’s guide PDFs that teach the fundamentals. In addition, their blog covers more advanced and timely SEO news and offers tips on how you can apply these findings and their research into your own SEO and online marketing endeavors.

Copyblogger

This site is all about words and how you can hone your own skills and craft copy that coverts and turns into real sales. What your website has to say, matters to those who come to visit your site and if you aren’t addressing from the get go that your business is the solution to their problem then they’ll probably just leave your site. The folks at Copyblogger focus on how you can create copy that will convince and convert your visitors into paying customers. In exchange for your email address, you’ll get access to a wealth of resources written by their team, from how to write a compelling call to action, how to write email newsletters, and how to simply tell a good story. If words are not your thing, these guys will teach you how to use them properly.

MarketingProfs

MarketingProfs provides real-world education through training, best practices, research and other content to help you market your products and services. Their resource rich site offers everything from podcasts and online seminars to guides and tutorials. They publish on a consistent basis and the user friendly site makes it easy to find topics ranging from brand management and customer relationships to customer behavior and advertising. For those who don’t know where to start when it comes to marketing their business, this is a great site to explore and learn how to leverage advertising and other means to get your brand out there.

HubSpot

The folks at HubSpot are all about inbound marketing, i.e. “marketing activities that bring visitors in, rather than marketers having to go out to get prospects’ attention. Inbound marketing earns the attention of customers, makes the company easy to be found and draws customers to the website by producing interesting content.” The blog features articles on marketing and sales information, publishing new and relevant material daily and gives you a leg up in the small business game.

Search Engine Journal

Search Engine Journal is a go-to site for those that want to stay up to speed on the most relevant SEO strategies. It balances nicely SEO news and also tools and tips for how to implement current SEO best practices. Providing tips on how to maximize your reach on social media, local SEO and also a section devoted to entrepreneurs - it’s a great source of material relevant to small business owners.

Search Engine Land

Now this site can get much more technical then the sites previously mentioned, however it’s the SEO site that often first gets wind of algorithm updates being implemented by the major search engines. It contains sections devoted to both Google and Bing, staying on top of any news either search engine is putting out there. It also provides fundamental information about SEO, SEM, local and mobile search. For small business owners who want to take their SEO endeavors to the next level and don’t mind getting technical, this blog is a must read.

Jeff Bullas

This guy is a pro when it comes to digital, content and social media marketing. He publishes on a consistent basis and provides real-world help on how to market yourself and your business via social media channels and blogging. Whether you are working on your personal brand and/or your company brand, this blog teaches you how to do it, how to be efficient doing so and then how to excel at it.

While there are plenty of sites on the web that provide the same information, this is a shortlist of some of the best blogs out there regarding SEO and marketing. We love watching businesses succeed and that’s the point, so follow us too to learn how you can continue to grow your business this year.

And of course, Happy 2016!

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Located in Calgary, Alberta, Blue Ocean Interactive Marketing creates online marketing strategies that enable your business to grow.

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