Emma Still: SEO MavenEmma Still, age 23, is anything but still. Since graduating from college two years ago, she has lived on both coasts, obtained two full-time jobs using social media and had a blog go viral among SEO (search engine optimization) professionals. She admits to being an eager learner and hard worker, but Emma will tell you that she isn’t smarter than average, nor is she an Ivy League graduate or the daughter of someone famous. So, how did she manage these job-search successes in a down economy? And, perhaps more important, how can you benefit from her experience?

For starters, Emma picked a hot field— SEO. There aren’t too many people with significant experience working in SEO, so the handful of companies paving the way often hire curious and motivated people—like Emma—and train them on the job. (In fact, if you are looking for an SEO job, her current employer, SEER Interactive, is hiring in Philadelphia and San Diego and Emma says it is a great place to work.)

Before SEER Interactive noticed her blog on Twitter and recruited Emma, she was working in SEO, for a firm in California. Two years ago, she was searching for opportunities to be with her boyfriend in California after college. Emma found a job she liked among the listings on LinkedIn, applied and landed the position.

A year and a break up later, she started a blog to fill the void and lo and behold, “If I were an SEO Dude” went viral, getting her noticed on Twitter.

If I were an SEO Dude

Emma says that Twitter is the preferred medium for the SEO industry and she was active on the platform, connecting, sharing and building friendships. It only took one tweet and tagging a few people to get her (brilliant!) blog noticed, and her personal brand was born. Several interviews later, she was packing her bags and heading to Philadelphia for her new full-time, permanent job as an SEO consultant.

Thrilled to be back on the East coast where she was raised and went to school, Emma says that today’s grads “need to accept less and learn constantly. Dedication and drive are what set you apart… and being realistic.” She goes on to say, “SEO is the perfect fit for young people who have intellectual curiosity, are creative and love marketing,” says the very settled Emma.

To learn more about the basics, check out SEO practitioner Drew Griffith’s advice for small business owners. Also, watch and learn how one unusual company in western Massachusetts cornered the market on antique stoves with a bit of SEO research & analysis!