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SEO like Olympic Curling?

The 2010 Winter Olympics are underway and my own home television glows each night with these fantastic displays of human strength and achievement. Tonight, I find my mind unable to avoid a cross over of thoughts between the day to day (specifically, my job as a relationship manager for an internet marketing company) and the Olympian marvels that I am viewing. This particular evening I find myself comparing the sport of curling to SEO. I mean, think about it. It shouldn’t be that far of a stretch to equate SEO to a sport.

Let’s look at this in the most simplistic way. Let’s say you are the head of marketing (maybe a CMO or a director). That makes you the thrower in the game of curling. As the head of marketing, you have the obvious goal of achieving more conversions. In the sport of curling, this would be like getting the most points. In general, with SEO, the idea is that you can increase your conversions by being higher on the search results; being on the first page and being higher in the list. With curling, you receive more points by first getting stones in the ‘house’ (the target) and then these points can be higher if you are closer to the ‘button’ (the center of the target) than your opponent. Now what really struck me as being much like an SEO effort is the well thought out strategy and active play of the stone on route to the target. The thrower is a part of a team and the team consists of two other people who are actively engaged with the stone, listening to the thrower and responding accordingly. They adjust the ice as needed and thus the path of the stone as it works it’s way toward its resting spot. This struck me as being much like our SEO engagements. Each day, we are actively maneuvering a client’s site toward the desired position within the search results. We listen to our client for feedback as we roll out a strategy. We determine the best approaches to navigate obstacles or knock the components out of the way. Basically, we are continuously engaged with our customers and their sites and we are continuously correcting as necessary to achieve optimal results; to get more conversions – to win! So if SEO is like Olympic Curling, I can’t wait for our gold medals!

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