THE JOY OF BEING AHEAD OF THE CURVE
Like many tech-savvy twentysomethings, Nick Yorchak carries an iPhone, writes a blog and has online accounts on Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn. While he watches some videos on YouTube, he actually prefers Vimeo because it’s in high-def. Oh, and don’t forget his favorite site, Digg.com.
“It’s the best of the Internet,” says Yorchak. “The coolest stuff comes up each day. People vote, and when so many people are able to find something, it brings it to eye-level for the rest of us. I’m a big fan of that.”
All of which makes perfect sense: Within days of picking up his degree in history in 2007, Yorchak moved back to his native Denver and began a career path that in January 2009 made him the focus of an article in The New York Times spotlighting emerging job trends.
Finding ways to draw Internet users to a Web site by the thousands is certainly one way to measure success, especially in the lightning-quick technology age. Being adept in luring online visitors is a sought-after skill set in the marketplace; it’s called search engine optimization (SEO), and for the past three years, that highly specialized field has been Yorchak’s primary focus.
“I feel very fortunate,” he says, speaking from his office inside an 1890s Victorian-style house. “It’s cool, what I’m doing now.”
LeeReedy Creative — a public relations and advertising agency — hired Yorchak as interactive director in October 2008. While he was initially brought on board specifically to optimize searches, since then his role has expanded considerably.
“It’s a lot of multi-tasking,” he says. A typical day (as he describes it on his LinkedIn page) involves “working on Web site strategy, SEO, pay-per-click, social media, online public relations, link building, Web analytics, blogging and intelligent, search-engine friendly Web design and development.”
While Yorchak has aspirations of branching out into his own SEO business one day, for now he’s happy to be ahead of the curve and working in a field that he hopes can also become a popular career choice for the next wave of tech-savvy graduates.
“The cool thing is that it’s a growing industry, and there aren’t enough people to do it,” Yorchak says. “When I finished school, I had a job four days later. I’ve got friends who have graduated and they’re still looking.” — Ryan T. Blystone