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Suds and Search 32 | Jason Brown, GMB Spam Fighter and Google Gold Product Expert

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My guest on this episode of Suds & Search is Jason Brown, an expert Local SEO, and Google My Business Gold Level Product Expert. Jason has a wide breadth of SEO knowledge but what he really loves to do is fight spam.

Spam has been a major issue in SEO from the very beginning. Over the course of my thirteen-year career, Google has cleaned up many of the most common tactics but local businesses still grapple with an astonishing level of spam especially in the map pack.

Spam fighters like Jason Brown act as consumer vigilantes fighting spam on behalf of legitimate local businesses. I start our conversation by asking Jason about the different ways that spammers are attempting to take advantage of vulnerabilities in Google’s local algorithm.

In many cases, this activity isn’t merely a matter of bad customer experience; it’s actually fraudulent. We talk about why Google hasn’t been able to do more to fight spam and how other third-parties like the better business bureau are involved.

Jason presents at numerous industry conferences including LocalU, Local Search Summit, and Pubcon. He is a columnist for SEMrush and regularly appears in BrightLocal webinars. He is a sought after subject matter expert for national and local news pieces on local spam. If you like this interview, I highly recommend that you follow Jason on Twitter.

Grab a beer and join me for a conversation with one of the top Local spam fighters in the world. We’ll talk about why local Spam is so prevalent, how small businesses can fight back, and the time he found a lawyer who had a listing in the middle of the ocean.


Suds & Search 31 | Casie Gillette, Senior Director of Digital Marketing at KoMarketing

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My guest today is Casie Gillette, Senior Director of Digital Marketing at KoMarketing. Casie has been a sought after speaker, writer, and contributor in SEO for many years.

She’s presented at the top conferences in the industry including Mozcon, Pubcon, SMX, and SearchLove London.

I really love her writing. She is a VIP contributor at Search Engine Journal and regularly writes for KoMarketing’s company blog.

One of my favorite things Casie talks about is a challenge asking digital marketers to grow up a little bit. As Google has gotten more sophisticated, the tactics that used to work when Casie and I started in SEO aren’t effective. We start our conversation talking about some of the most cringe-worthy epic fails she has seen in content marketing.

We also talk about some brands that are doing things right – make sure to listen to how Wegman’s, a supermarket chain in New York, earns customer loyalty and lines around the block by making memorable content.

Casie is also a really enjoyable person to have a beer with. She was kind enough to let us interrupt her move to drink German beers and talk about what the top content marketers in the world are doing differently, the ways Google rewards great customer experience, and why you absolutely have to take a duck boat tour the next time you’re in Boston.


Suds & Search 30 | Upasna Gautam, Ecommerce Product Manager at CNN

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My guest today is Upasna Gautam, Product Manager at CNN. Upasna is a leading expert on publisher SEO. Publisher SEO is a really interesting niche that focuses on publisher sites, which produce a mind-boggling amount of content. Imagine being responsible for ranking hundreds of thousands if not millions of existing pages in Google while creating workflows so that a breaking news network like CNN could add thousands of pages every day that are also optimized for Search Engines. That is the very challenging work publisher SEOs do every day.


Suds & Search 29 | Cyrus Shepard, SEO Consultant with Moz

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Often adorned in his signature fedora, Cyrus Shepard is one of the most recognizable faces in the SEO industry.

Cyrus joined me for some day drinking on Suds & Search earlier this summer to talk about a bunch of topics in SEO.

He is an SEO consultant at Moz and the owner of Zyppy, an SEO agency he founded in 2018. Cyrus formerly served as lead SEO at Moz and remains extremely active at Moz to this day. He frequently appears on Whiteboard Fridays and continues to publish blogs on the Moz site.


What is Local SEO and how do you know if you need it?

In this week’s episode, I answer the question “What is Local SEO?” for all of you out there who are still new to the local marketing game. I realized I’ve been talking about it, but not really explaining what it is at a basic level – so check out this week’s video to find out! I also share a quick test that’s simple to run yourself that will show you if you need Local SEO.


Suds & Search 28 | Heather Physioc, Group Connections Director at VMLY&R

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My guest today is Heather Physioc, the remarkably interesting Group Connections Director at VMLY&R. Heather is the leader of an award-winning 40-person Discoverability Group. If you don’t know what a discoverability group is, you’re not alone. I’m going to ask her about it early on in our discussion.

Heather is an in-demand speaker who’s presented at virtually every major conference in our industry. A shortlist of the places you might have heard her present includes MozCon, Brighton, SearchLove, and PubCon.