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My guest on this episode of Suds & Search is Joy Hawkins. Joy is the Owner and Founder of Sterling Sky. She is one of, if not the, most recognizable Local SEO personalities in the world. It’s hard for me to think of anything in Local SEO that Joy isn’t at least somewhat involved in.

She has spoken at every major Local SEO conference… most of them multiple times. A shortlist of places you might’ve heard Joy present includes Mozcon Local, SMX, Pubcon, and Whitespark’s Local Search Summit.

She is the owner of LocalU, the most important conference series for Local SEOs in the world. LocalU is more than just a conference series though. The Local U website a go-to destination for Local SEOs looking to level up their Local SEO knowledge by reading blogs, listening to podcasts, and following their newsletter.

Joy is also one of the most important bloggers in Local SEO. You can read her column at Search Engine Land. She frequently publishes content over at Local U and on the Sterling Sky company blog. I’m going to ask her a few questions about a Whiteboard Friday she did for Moz back in October about what Local SEO tactics improve rankings and which do not.

In addition to her responsibilities at Sterling Sky, Joy is involved with two important forums. She is a Platinum Google Product Expert at the Google My Business forum and she is the owner of the Local Search Forum. I’ll start our conversation by asking her about her involvement in both of those important forums.

Joy has assembled an all-star team of digital marketers over at Sterling Sky. In 2020, BrightLocal nicknamed her staff the “Sterling Sky dream team.” Carrie Hill, Mary Bowling, Colan Nielsen, and Brian Barwig are just a few of Joy’s impressive teammates. I’m going to ask her what it’s like leading this talented team of professionals.

Grab something cold to drink and join me for a conversation with Joy Hawkins. We’ll talk about why it’s harder than you might think for Google to clean up GMB spam, what factors on GMB actually improve rankings, and we’ll spend a little time talking about the board game Dominion.