The keys to the success of Claudio Cabrera, the Dominican Deputy Director of SEO at The New York Times

Born in New York and with Dominican parents from the heart of the city, Claudio Eduardo Cabrera, 37, it is a living example of persistence, ambition and hard work to achieve what it defines as “success”.

He is currently deputy director of SEO (Search Engine Optimization) for the American newspaper The New York Times, where he has worked with his team to increase the traffic of the medium by more than 40%, lleading you to reach records in searches and audience.

With almost 10 years of experience in the areaHis innovative ideas and strategies have led him to be the audience development leader in the United States for the CBS Local news network, a role he assumed in 2014.

Claudio confessed excitedly that is waiting to be promoted to hearing director for a larger team at the New York newspaper, where he has worked for four years.

Today his dream is to be the leader of a brand and recognizes that to achieve this you need to rely on the support of people who trust in your work, identify your points for improvement and constantly grow personally and professionally.

“My ultimate goal is that, directing in a newspaper, being one of the tallest people”Claudio expressed with joy.

However, although he is currently sure of what he is after and his plans to achieve it, during his adolescence the situation was not so clear.

As a child, his dream was to be a basketball player, but when he entered high school, his dreams were turned off by suffering an injury and he underwent surgery on both legs.

“… I couldn’t play basketball anymore, so right there I had to make the decision (…) and I had to take the most serious studies”, commented.

Years later, Claudio finished high school and entered the City University of New York-Brooklyn College, where he discovered journalism thanks to a teacher who noticed his good performance writing reports for the subject “English History”, which motivated him to register in the school newspaper.

Found out what he wanted to do

And here began his adventure: Claudio began his career as a journalist in 2004 when got an internship at the renowned African-American newspaper New York Amsterdam News.

Two years later, the Independent Press Association rewarded him for a report in which he recounted the experiences of American families who paid exorbitant sums to telephone companies to communicate with prisoners in New York.

He graduated in 2008 with a degree in journalism, and subsequently went to work at companies such as Yoonew, InteractiveOne and BlackEnterprise where he began to develop his digital skills and took on positions as editor and manager of audience development.

At that moment Claudio realized that Being a reporter was not his “purpose”, however, giving up journalism was not an option.

“I worked in the smaller brands but I didn’t want to be a reporter because I didn’t like it and I had my time and I didn’t want to be an editor, but I knew I wanted to do something in journalism,” he said.

The answer came in his first job, where he learned SEO through a colleague, who left the company a month later, leaving the way for Claudio to manage three brands within the company.

And there I found what I wanted to do in journalism, stay in journalism without reporting, without being an editor. I still have those jobs in what I’m doing but it’s not my main job, ”he said.

Years later, he came to CBS where he stood out, leading searches and social networks nationwide for the chain, increasing the number of visitors it had before by 100%.

Made it to the Times

For Claudio, the fact that the New York Times contacted him through the social network LinkedIn was “a complete surprise” since “He never thought he could get to the middle.”

“Sometimes when you don’t work there you look at it as a place that you don’t have access to,” he said.

In 2016, Justin Bank, the newspaper’s internet editor-in-chief and audience, wrote to him to chat about the work he was doing at CBS to what Claudio wasn’t expecting to be a job interview.

Weeks later he went through multiple interviews, eight in total, and then they gave him the news: he was going to work for the world’s leading newspaper.

“When it happened I was very happy because the New York Times are like the Yankees and the teams that win more (…) it was a very successful moment for me and my family, my father, mother and sister,” he recalled.

When he got to his new position, he admitted to having suffered from the “impostor syndrome”, as he felt that he did not deserve to be in the most influential newspaper in the world despite being hired. However, two years later, he gained more confidence in himself.

“I think I have a lot of time in the Times, that I have left to grow much more”he expressed with a smile.

What is the secret good SEO?

For Claudio, the secret to being successful as an SEO lies in studying the hot topics of the day, observing the competition and coverage lines, maintaining a good relationship with the newsroom, and “Think like a user”.

In this last aspect, he stressed that “you not only have to think about (digital) tools, but you have to think like a user”, and thus have ideas to recommend them to the publishers of the medium. “To think, well, in this event I want to find more information, what questions I have as a user about this event,” he said.


Your most important lesson

The phrase “Embrace your losses in the same way that you embrace your victories” strikes a chord with Claudio, as it represents his struggle to improve as a person and the journey he has gone through to get to where he is today.

Asked what these words mean to him, He recognized that “nobody is perfect” and that to learn one must go through a process where “bad times” are faced.

“I have a diary where I write every day what is happening in my life and that helps me see how I feel at that moment, accept how I feel, not run from that feeling,” he said.

In addition to doing this emotional recount, Claudio receives therapy every two weeks and considers it necessary for people to talk to someone about what is happening in their life, be it “good” or “bad” moments.

“There are many Latino communities that think that therapy is not something that we embrace or that it is necessary”, he stressed.

For Claudio, being successful means “feeling good emotionally and physically”, staying in constant communication with himself and acknowledging his “failures”.

Fervently believe that each person “has something for which they have been put in the world”, since he lived by himself the experience of having “lost” and finding his way in the professional and personal world.

“Always keep working, always keep improving and understanding at the same time that you are going to fail at something, but you have to understand what is going to happen and you have to learn from that moment and know that there will be better ones,” he says between smiles and with a cap of the Yankees, the winningest team in Major League Baseball.


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