We had a chat with the newest member of the ClickThrough team, Josh Smithyman, to find out what he did before he joined us, what he loves about SEO, and his thoughts on Keith Richards.

Who are you? – Josh Smithyman, SEO Linkbuilder at ClickThrough Marketing.

When did you start at ClickThrough? – Monday, April 23.

What will you be doing at ClickThrough? – My role is going to be very varied, but above all else I’ll be helping to build and improve inbound link networks for our clients. I’ll also be working with ClickThrough’s head of SEO to conduct SEO audits, set up strategies for new clients, and generally streamline our service so we can achieve even better results!

What were you doing before you arrived at ClickThrough? What is your background? – I can trace my interest in SEO back to my student days – whilst I was at university, I started creating websites on a freelance basis in order to make a bit more money. Of course, anyone who sets up a website will quickly find themselves ushered into the complicated world of online marketing. I quickly realised that I found this much more interesting (and profitable!) than the university course I was taking, so I left to pursue a career in SEO. And I haven’t looked back since!

So I started out at ASAP Ventures, working on its SEO and PPC campaigns, and generally coming up with ideas (some good, some bad, and some downright stupid – I was new to the game!). I then moved on to Net Logistics, another Staffordshire-based company, where I was responsible for managing all of the SEO, PPC and conversion optimisation services.

What are you most proud of in your career to date? – When I was with Net Logistics, I helped to improve processes across the board. I had a big role in boosting ROI on their PPC services by a significant amount, I helped to push their fulfilment service to the extent that they could take on four new warehouse staff, and I generally assisted in improving sales across all of their services.

What’s your impression of ClickThrough so far? – I’m learning a lot from the head of SEO, and my overriding impression is that it’s very organised and efficient here! I’m impressed.

What do you love about SEO? One word – freedom! It’s still a fresh industry, and everything’s still so open to change. There’s no tried-and-tested rulebook. Everybody who works in SEO brings something different to the table, and it’s all valid – it feels very democratic. That said, it’s important to learn from the mistakes and innovations of the past, as well as looking into the future.

What’s your favourite book? – I don’t seem to have a lot of time to read nowadays, but I recently read Keith Richards’ autobiography, Life, and really enjoyed it. I just really like the bloke – I can relate to him, despite him having lived this crazy life; he’s still down to earth. I also love The Catcher in the Rye – it’s weird in a way that creeps up on you.

What’s your favourite film? – The Descendants, with George Clooney, is a good one I’ve seen recently. Or Jerry Maguire, to name a classic. Basically, I find anything with a broken man in it really funny.

Name your top three songs – 1. Someday – The Strokes. It makes me smile and it’s a great breakup song. 2. Girl – The Beatles. I just love Rubber Soul, it might be my favourite album, and Girl is my favourite song on the album, so… 3. A Change Is Gonna Come – Sam Cooke. Just, wow.

What do you like doing in your spare time? My favourite hobby is people watching. When I’m not staring at strangers, I like to play guitar – my band recently split up, but we managed to bag some sessions with the BBC before we called it quits.

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ClickThrough is a digital marketing agency, providing search engine optimisation, pay per click management, conversion optimisation, web development and content marketing services.