Ian Lurie

Ian Lurie

Ian Lurie is CEO and founder of Portent Inc. He's recorded training for, writes regularly for the Portent Blog and has been published on AllThingsD, and TechCrunch. Ian speaks at conferences around the world, including SearchLove, MozCon, SIC and ad:Tech. Follow him on Twitter at portentint. He also just published a book about strategy for services businesses: One Trick Ponies Get Shot, available on Kindle.

Articles by Ian Lurie


Ian Lurie //  3 Apr, 2015

The Coming Mobile SEO End Times

Whoops. We had one crucial piece of data wrong: is just fine. As part of this test, we checked home and internal pages. Except for one site: Wikipedia. Go figure. We’ve updated the infographic and are putting the word out. Google’s big mobile algorithm update is coming in a few weeks. Nerds that we… Read More

Evil is easier!

Ian Lurie //  18 Mar, 2015

Internet Marketing For Asshats

There are internet marketers. Then there are 100% pure internet marketing asshats. They stomp their moral compass to bits in the interest of earning more dollars (or pounds, or drachmas, or whatever). These are a few examples of their tactics: Commit libel Asshats write headlines that imply horrific things/inappropriate or reputation-destroying behavior, like ‘Is This… Read More


Ian Lurie //  2 Mar, 2015

Penguin, SEO & the Apocalypse

SEMPDX invited me to talk penalties at Searchfest 2015 (You should attend 2016, by the way). Here’s my presentation, with some extra explanatory slides: Bear in mind that the data in here was generated by me, a History major w/ a law degree. So treat them with a healthy grain of salt. You can rely… Read More

Ian Lurie //  27 Feb, 2015

Google, Mobile and Apps: I’m tired

It used to be that, when Google announced yet another tweak to their algorithm, I rubbed my hands with anticipation. Now, it just makes me tired. Yesterday, Google announced that mobile-readiness is now a worldwide ranking signal, and that indexable apps will influence personal search rankings. I should be excited. I’m just tired. Not because… Read More

Now this is a good day

Ian Lurie //  23 Feb, 2015

10 things I’d like to hear more often

I’m trying to become a more positive guy. So instead of a post like ‘10 things that make me weep for the species,’ or ‘10 reasons I want to swallow an HDMI adapter,’ I’m going with things I’d like to hear. Woo hoo! It’s Positive Monday! Note: These are my bad habits, too. I write… Read More

Ian Lurie //  19 Feb, 2015

Marketing Strategy for Search

I just did a presentation at Friends of Search (an amazing conference, by the way). I focused on strategic thinking for SEOs, PPCs and the like. Here are the slides: Check ’em out.


Ian Lurie //  29 Dec, 2014

SEO Using Force-Directed Diagrams

Note: You can now buy Force Directed Diagrams in our store. Sometimes, the only way to understand a site is to look deep into the technology stack and gaze upon its dark, dark soul. But we at Portent try to avoid contact with evil beings. Instead, we use force-directed diagrams. I got my nerd on… Read More


Ian Lurie //  20 Nov, 2014

Allies, not rockstars: Influencer research for us mortals

Most marketers equate ‘influencer research’ with ‘finding a celebrity who will endorse for free.’ I call that the Rockstar Method. It’s a miserable approach. Ready-and-waiting rockstar social amplifiers are slightly less common than mint-condition K cars. The Rockstar Method has its place with major brands, pure luck and the well-connected. Mere mortals like you and… Read More


Ian Lurie //  5 Nov, 2014

How to: Do a Twitter Audit in 1 Hour Or Less

I have a somewhat-random, step-by-step routine for auditing my own Twitter account (world, really, but I start with my account). I wrapped it up in a presentation. This is not a scientific method kind of thing. It’s more of a take-a-look-at-how-things-went-and-avoid-putting-both-feet-in-my-mouth kind of thing: Confirm, Observe, Adjust: How to audit your Twitter world an 1… Read More


Ian Lurie //  28 Oct, 2014

43 tools for modern marketers

Modern marketers are mutts: We have to write, edit, produce, plan, measure, learn, listen, speak and otherwise pull miracles out of our rear ends on a daily basis. We need tools. This is my list. By the way, no one’s paid me, bribed me, threatened me or otherwise steered me towards their products. This is… Read More


Ian Lurie //  23 Oct, 2014

How to: Hand off a task

Ah, the handoff. Passing a task along to a co-worker seems simple: Send a quick e-mail, or say, “OK, all yours” and you’re done. Wrong. That’s the kind of handoff that sends everything swirling down the potty. There’s a right way to do handoffs. I did a SlideShare about how I approach handoffs. Have a… Read More


Ian Lurie //  10 Oct, 2014

Search Awards 2014 – Best SEO Campaign

^ Note: That’s Ken Colborn up there. Keep reading. It’ll all make sense. ^ We won! Best SEO Campaign of 2014. Allow me to wax philosophical for a second: My team constantly teaches me new stuff. Their skills and approach are a constant inspiration, and I can’t say it enough times: It’s such an honor… Read More


Ian Lurie //  8 Oct, 2014

Google Custom Affinities Is Here: What You Should Do

Yesterday, Google rolled out ‘custom affinities’ — their way to cross-target different audience segments. You can read about it on The Verge: Google rolls out custom affinity audiences ad tool for targeting very specific groups of people We’ve been researching this for a few years now. We started showing our results when I babbled about… Read More


Ian Lurie //  29 Sep, 2014

A Geek’s Guide To Gaming The Algorithms

I talk about all that’s wrong in marketing, tactics vs. strategy, etc. etc. We’re ignoring strategy and sound marketing. We work too hard to game the algorithm at the expense of long-term business development. FYI: For me, gaming the algorithm means finding the fine edge between legitimate and spam, and skating that edge. For me,… Read More


Ian Lurie //  22 Sep, 2014

One-Trick Ponies: The ebook

You’ve heard me rant about strategy vs. tactics, and why tactics-only business relationships are getting marketing agencies fired. I’ve realized it’s a much bigger problem than that. If you look at the last 15 years, the drive to ‘productize’ services has ripped the guts out of any business that is paid for an individual’s craft… Read More