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Expert Tips on Building Client Relationships and Navigating AI in Digital Marketing

In Conversation with Armen Andonian

In this episode of E-coffee with Experts, Ranmay Rath interviewed Armen Andonian, CEO of ACERO, located in London, England, United Kingdom. Join the insightful conversation as Armen shares the journey of ACERO, from his transition as a freelancer to establishing a thriving digital marketing agency. The discussion explores the challenges and milestones in building a marketing agency, focusing on client communication strategies. Armen provides valuable insights into legal marketing, emphasizing reputation management and advanced SEO techniques. Watch the episode now for more insights!

AI is integrated for content ideation, maintaining a balance with rigorous quality control.

Armen Andonian

Hey, hi, everyone. Welcome to your show, E Coffee with Experts. This is Ranmay here, your host for today’s episode. Today we have Armen, who is the CEO of ACERO with us. Welcome, Armen.

Hi, Ranmay. Nice to be here. Nice to be talking with you.

Great. Armen, before we take it any further, why don’t you talk us through your journey thus far? And more about ACERO, how are you guys doing? Are you guys structured? What do you guys offer? We’ll take it forward from then on.

Okay, we’ll do. ACERO is a marketing agency primarily concentrating on SEO and link-building services. We are based in London, but our team is across the world. We are now fully remote. We’ve been in action for the last four years, and we serve clients across the SaaS, cyber security, tech, and legal industries in the UK and outside.

Lovely. Starting your digital marketing agency itself is a significant challenge. We all know that, right? What have been some of the key milestones and challenges that you faced in your early stages of building a setter?

I transitioned into running a digital marketing agency from actually being a freelancer. I used to work in politics in the European Parliament in Brussels up until the UK left the European Union after the referendum vote took place in 2016, after which I chose to leave my political job and move to Barcelona and become a freelancer, content writer, and SEO enthusiast. It all began when I started a website that sold leggings and yoga pants. This website grew through a number of different activities. It was a drop shipping operation. I spent about six months to a year of my life learning and working with freelancers watching hundreds of hours of videos on YouTube doing Udemy courses and all sorts of stuff, and growing this website through social media and SEO, and then eventually having the confidence to approach clients. I worked with some blockchain clients and then I eventually became an SEO consultant for a law firm and then another law firm. All of a sudden it became a legal industry operation. Then after this, I got to know more and more people within the industry through working with them as freelancers. Then we began to assemble an agency, and had some more traction from some other clients in other sectors such as SaaS and FinTech and cyber security, as I mentioned earlier.

We branded ACERO. We are now putting everything under one roof. We are ACERO, and yet we’re looking to fine-tune our services under this brand and then grow in years to come.

Wonderful. You have been a master at building long-lasting business relationships. Can you share your insights on nurturing client relationships, especially in the digital marketing space? When you’re dealing with law firms who certainly have specific needs and expectations, how difficult or what different is it to help advocates or law firms understand digital marketing?

That’s a really good question, and it’s tricky to get certain law firms. The ones we work with, they’re quite old school, they’re traditional. They don’t know this world of digital marketing, yet they do understand that they do need it. But it’s very difficult to communicate what it takes to rank a law firm with regards to SEO to a law firm. It’s all about breaking it down in a way that they do understand that, and client communication and keeping people updated on what you’re doing and what processes it takes is key. Also interacting with the law firm as much as possible with regards to what changes have occurred in UK law, getting them to communicate that information to you so that you can get content made from your content writers on new legal areas, new legal avenues that you can rank. It’s all about acting fast when a new visa route occurs, for example, in the field of UK immigration. When a new visa route comes out, that’s an immediate opportunity to rank high for a keyword that doesn’t have any keyword difficulty right now because it’s just come out of the blue. The UK government has just agreed to start a new immigration route.

So, if you act fast, if the law firm tells you, oh, this has happened. Okay, then we get very good in-depth content written on this, a landing page created. We get that landing page published. We create some supporting articles and create a little cluster around them. The chance of that page doing well is quite high because it’s a brand-new thing and you capitalize on that traffic fast. I feel like running these kinds of exercises with law firms is important, making sure that they keep you updated with regards to what changes in the law and you keep them updated with regards to how you’re running the SEO on your side. It’s all about communication at the end of the day.

Wonderful. An open and transparent channel for communication is so important to building those relationships, right?


Coming to SEO, Armen, what are some of the advanced SEO techniques you have used to help companies achieve higher rankings and better visibility?

I think a lot of it comes down to how we begin our journey with a client with regard to some basic target persona research where we understand who the client wants to attract to their website. Our research and development team is very strong at ACERO. We’ve had very good feedback about the competitor analysis and the information that we find from our site audits from our clients, and then the changes that we implement with regards to this research which pushes clients forward. It’s all about finding out who the client wants to attract and then creating a content plan that revolves around talking to this target audience, which is made up of approaching a number of very easy win keywords at the beginning, but then building this out through content clusters and gaining that EEAT and topical authority, using some more advanced techniques like reverse silos, which can leverage the power of a website, will leverage the authority of a website to boost a specific target page. It’s a mixture of this stuff, but the main thing we try and prioritize is talking to the target audience. We are a SEO and we also write content within this agency.

We have very talented SEOs and we have very talented content writers. We bring these two things together in a way where we’re not just creating content for the sake of ranking higher on Google with regards to SEO impact, but this content that’s ranking higher is talking to a target persona that’s of interest to a company that we’re working with.

Wonderful. Talking about legal marketing, which happens to be one of your core expertise or your domains, legal marketing is always not just about acquiring clients, but also about reputation management. How do you help your client and law firms enhance their online reputation in a digital world? Their reviews on social media are so important these days.

Yeah, reputation management is a big part of how to market your client in a way that people see it as a company worth engaging with. That is true for a law firm as well. A lot of it is built on the back of reviews, and trust. Google My Business is a very important tool for law firms who want to gain local opportunities and clients. We do help our law firms with regards to building out this local authority by advising them on how to improve Google My Business Profiles, how to reach out to clients whom they have served but have not necessarily left a review, what’s the best way to reach out to these people after that opportunity has passed, and also how to generally rank a Google My Business profile in a way where it’s much more visible on Google Maps, I feel like visibility in itself, and as long as there is a decent star rating, which is let’s say above 4.5 at the minimum, as long as these two things are in place, I feel like there is a trust aspect there.

It’s all about being consistent with the outreach to previous clients and making sure that a law firm, for example, as we’re talking about now, understands the importance of making sure that they can retarget a client after the client has walked out the door and haven’t left them a review, that they can retarget this client and try and get that review. On our side, we would provide the expertise on what changes and what content needs to be added is taken away from a Google Maps business profile to make it more visible on Google Maps.

Absolutely. Great. I’m in the last one before we let you go. We are in this world of AI. I cannot leave you without asking or understanding your take on AI. How do you use AI in your company, in your agency? Where do you think we are headed? Exciting times are ahead for sure, and AI is there to stay. But what is your take on it and how are you going to use it or are using it for that matter?

We use AI as a way to create ideas around our content. We don’t use AI in its full force to generate any content that would go onto someone’s website or this thing. However, we use AI to enhance our ideas and get a better understanding of certain content structures and all this stuff. I think it’s hard to avoid this technology. I think it’s here to stay, as you said. I think the most important thing is to make sure that as an agency, you stay above board. You use robust AI detection tools, even if you have human-edited the content to avoid any penalization and to obviously plagiarism everything. But I think in terms of the AI side of things, you’ve got to be careful. You’ve got to have quality control systems in place to make sure that you are above board and you are not breaking any rules. I think AI should be used at an arm’s length. I don’t think you should base your whole strategy on using AI at all.

Wonderful. Brilliant. Yeah, it has been a lovely conversation but before we let you go, I would like to play a quick rapid-fire with you. I hope you’re game for it.

Yeah, okay, sure.

Great. What was your last Google search, Armen?

My last Google search had something to do with worker visa applications.

Oh, okay. Where are you traveling next?

Where am I traveling next? I’m going to Italy.

Wonderful. Let’s say if we were to make a movie on you, Armen, what genre would it be?

What genre it would be? It’d be like a thriller about a person who has flipped his lifestyle 180 degrees from being in politics to being a digital nomad/traveler. It doesn’t sound like a thriller, but it felt pretty thrilling as it happened over the last five years.

All right. Politics versus SEO?


That’s the question. Politics versus SEO.

What do I prefer? I prefer SEO. I much prefer SEO. You have much more. I think politics is a bit of an ugly game after working in it for a while. SEO for me is much more fulfilling. I love seeing the results of the work that we put into our clients, and I think that it’s just more my world. I’m very happy I found it after soul-searching for it for a few years.

Lovely. Okay, the last one will not grill you any further. Where do we find Armen on Friday evenings?

On Friday evenings? It depends on what country.

I’m in.

If you’re in London, you’ll find me probably by the river in a pub having a beer. That’s probably where you’ll find me.

Wonderful. I wanted to hear that. Next time I’m in there, we’re going to grab a couple for ourselves.

That would be great.

Lovely, Armen. It was a brilliant conversation, and I’m sure our audience would have benefited a lot from what they heard in terms of the insights you shared. Thank you so much for taking your time and doing this with us here. Appreciate it.

Thanks for having me.




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