Just five years ago, Harry Sanders, the 22 year old founder of SEO agency StudioHawk, was homeless. After of high school to start StudioHawk, it quickly failed — and his parents couldn’t support him, either. Rather than letting his first failure be the end of his road with entrepreneurship, he kept going, couch surfing at friend’s houses and offering his SEO services as a freelancer.
Those freelancing relationships continued to build and become more fruitful as he delivered incredible results to his clients. Sanders realized something: perhaps the reason his skill was so widely needed was because there are very few educational resources available for navigating SEO. He had learned it on his own from trial and error at the age of 13, when he was trying to help his dad’s small business attract clients again. There was no blueprint or guidebook for it. Rather, it was just something he had to try and fail in, time and time again.
Now, Sanders is at the helm of StudioHawk still, but it looks different than it did in the early days. It’s now Australia’s largest dedicated SEO agency, with a team of 22 and $3.5 million in revenue, just five years later. And despite that enormous success, Sanders is just getting started. Beyond helping his big-name clients like New Balance take full advantage of SEO, he’s changing the marketing industry by offering educational SEO resources in his newest offering: Hawk Academy.
Changing the Industry through Education
“I realized that, as many services as I could offer as the StudioHawk agency grew, we still couldn’t change the marketing industry’s landscape through helping clients alone,” reflected Sanders. “I believe the only way to change a landscape is to offer education to that landscape, and help more people understand the skill set of SEO.”
Hawk Academy is a learning platform that includes practical guides, quizzes, and tips for anyone hoping to learn more about SEO. By learning everything that Sanders now knows, students can implement the academy’s tangible skills to boost their business’ online exposure and credibility.
Being self-taught, Sanders knows that a major part of education is simply having access. “It was important to me to make sure that anyone – regardless of their current income status, age, or background – could access these tools,” shared Sanders. “So, in addition to making the modules as affordable as possible, we also offer scholarships to those who need it.”
Emphasis on Educational Access
In the wake of COVID-19 when businesses need a leg-up in online exposure more than ever, Sanders has lowered the cost barrier to education by offering the following educational resources.
At no cost, hopeful SEO learners can gain access to Fundamentals 101, Myths and Misconceptions, Digital PR, and a sample of the DIRTy SEO roadmap which is a methodology of SEO that Sanders developed and does regular talks on.
Then, for $40, hopeful SEO learners can learn about Content Creation, Trend Analysis, Technical SEO, Google Analytics, Search Console, Trend Analysis, Press Callout, and Guest Posting/Relationships.
The entire course with all of its modules is priced at $300, but Sanders encourages anyone who truly can’t cover that cost at this time to reach out for a scholarship at hawkacademy.co. They conduct thorough screenings to ensure that those seeking scholarships are doing so truthfully, while keeping their greatest value of universal access at the front and center.
It’s Sander’s hope that anyone who wants to understand SEO can educate themselves easily through Hawk Academy. This education is the best way to transform the historically nebulous industry, and SEO is a skillset that can fundamentally change a business’s funnel of clients and their bottom line.