Beware The NEW Acronym Isn't Same As The Old (SEO)
There was a summer night sitting on the beach watching fireflies when we knew something had to change. Directors of Ecommerce like I used to be learned how to balance a website between the technical aspects of SEO (Search Engine Optimization) and the functional and practical aspects of what is now being called OAO (Online Audience Optimization).
Sometimes the new boss is the same as the old, but this isn't one of those. This new acronym seems strained and way to general to ever attain the universal meaning of SEO. Problem is SEO really became the one term everyone knew but didn’t really understand.
Even if you sort of maybe worked on a website a little years ago you knew SEO, but no your really didn't. SEO was a complex set of rules for using Google's algorithm math against it. They set up the game so using it against them seemed fair.
Problem is fair to whom. Obsession with Google required ignoring customers and finding the balance beam between them (Google and customers) became larger the longer someone managed a website. Google is like Kool-Aid the longer you drink it the more it took over.
Now with Google's new emphasis on heuristics, the data showing how many HEARTS and MINDS you influence, Kool-Aid is replaced by whatever is working now. "Working" in this context is winning the signals that confirm growing LOVE and ADVOCACY.
Fewer rules and more variables mean those who know themselves best, listen better and pivot faster win. If you can do that best by using a new three-letter acronym OAO should work. Just don't fall in love with the wrong thing (again), don't drink this Kool-Aid.