Danny Sullivan, The Father Of The Search Industry, To Step Away From Search

Jun 27, 2017 - 8:21 am 15 by
Filed Under Search News

Danny Sullivan

By now, most of you heard the news that Danny Sullivan is stepping away from covering the search industry after 21 years of devoted service to our industry. He told me the news several months ago and I'll be honest, I was sad but not totally surprised. It is a tough industry to cover and he did so with the utmost class, attention and detail over those 20 plus years. Most only last a couple years in this industry and move on.

He is referred to as the father of the search industry, for sure the search marketing industry. There are countless people in this industry and beyond that are only in this industry because of Danny. It is hard to explain how instrumental he has been to so many people. He was the first real journalist in the search space, he wrote the first detailed guide on how search engines work, he started the first real search engine news site, conference, industry events and more. He is a pioneer for the space and no one has come close to what Danny has done here.

Heck, he had Google's co-founders present at his conference when Google was a nobody.

Danny and I started working together about 12 years ago. I have not respected anyone as much as I respected him throughout the past 12 years in this industry. His clarity in technical topics and the way he conveys them in his writing is unmatched. I'm jealous of his writing skills and his connection to how search works. I honestly cannot imagine the search industry without him. Which makes me sad but excited to see what is next.

Here is a photo from one of the SES events back in 2006 after we started working together:

Danny Barry 2006

He mentored me for the past 12 years in so many ways. We spent countless hours back and forth on instant messenger discussing Google and search engines changes. How and what we should cover. Why it is important. How to help the search industry through the changes. That conversation moved to Slack over the past couple years. And now it moves to a pure high level advisory role.

When we moved from SEW to SEL in 2006, he asked if I want to join. It was a no brainer and I was honored to have been asked. Since then we (mostly Danny) took Search Engine Land and made it into the single authority on the search marketing space, after Danny did so with Search Engine Watch prior. SEW was his baby, but he made SEL his baby and now he is leaving his baby in his team's hands.

Danny explained:

After 21 years running sites about digital and search marketing & covering the space, it's time for a change. I'm taking a break. What's next - no, I don't know! Maybe some general consumer tech writing in the future. Maybe some writing about TV and film science fiction, which I love. Definitely some time off in the short term.

I will be staying on as an advisor to Third Door Media, the company I cofounded and which publishes Search Engine Land, Marketing Land, MarTech Today and produces our Search Marketing Expo SMX & MarTech Conference conferences. TDM has been more than a company, it's been like a second family - and I know they’re all set to keep succeeding going forward.

Here are some tweets from the industry about this news:

There are so so many more on Facebook, forums and other social media.

Danny - thank you for everything you've done for the industry - huge respect.

Forum discussion WebmasterWorld.


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