Happy Monday! Today I thought I would share a good way to find some of the most important Google Places (Google and Your Business) Forum Posts.

I always tell folks in my Advanced Places Training that if you are going to do this full time for clients you really need to at least TRY to scan the forum daily. BUT I know it’s hard to find the time AND I know the forum has lots of noise and complaints and rants that just aren’t very helpful.

So here is another tact you can try. Check recent posts by Googlers and Top Contributors who are most active and “in the know”. This list does not include ALL Top Contributors, only the most recently active and knowledgeable.

Also see special VIP bonus tip below this section. 😉

TOP 7 TO FOLLOW ON THE GOOGLE & YOUR BUSINESS FORUM


NOTE:
Each link takes you directly to their most recent forum posts.

Jade Wang – Google and Your Business Community Manager – Google Employee – It’s important to follow Jade’s replies as they sometimes give important clues about rules or bugs.

Joel_H – Joel Headley – Google Employee – Joel also works with the Maps team. He does not post in the Places forum much these days BUT when he does it’s usually pretty important.

Mike Blumenthal – Top Contributor – Everyone knows Mike and everyone knows the “Professor” usually has deeper insight and better answers than well maybe all of us combined. He doesn’t post often these days but when he does, I think it’s important to read any advice he shares.

Flash AKA Gregg – Map Maker Regional Expert Reviewer Although he isn’t a Places TC he is one of the strongest posters at the Places forum right now and offers TONS of great advice. ESPECIALLY IMPORTANT to read his advice on address formatting and moving locations as he knows more about MapMaker than anyone I know. MM and Places speak different languages and don’t totally jive and his insights on stuff like that are invaluable. He often also will jump in and help folks with a MM fix that bypasses the need for support to go to MM and do it. He’s just a wizard!

Jim Jaggers – Top Contributor – Jim probably posts the most out of all the TCs. The great thing about Jim is he’s really good at finding solutions and spreading the word. So if he hears someone mention a new fix, he remembers it and spreads the word to anyone that needs to know. I often find out about new stuff just following Jim’s posts because he’s such a good info hound.

treebles – Top Contributor – He been pretty active lately and offers some good advice.

Linda Buquet – Top Contributor – Yours truly. 😉 I think I win the award for the longest most thorough advice and sometimes write a book trying to explain solutions to folks on the forum. I usually only take the time to explain something if I think it’s pretty important or a problem that lots of people reading would benefit from. So may want to just scan my posts for topics that interest you or problems you face with your clients.

There are lots of other great Top Contributors I didn’t link to because they don’t post in the Places forum very often or mainly post in other Google forums. So if I missed you, I apologize and that’s why. Here is a link to all the Places Top Contributors who generously volunteer their time to help folks on the forum.

Special VIP bonus tip – Google and your Business FORUM RSS FEED! One of the things that makes it hard for the average person so follow the forum and keep up with the latest hot topics is that Google for some odd reason does not offer an RSS feed. BUT HAVE NO FEAR – THERE IS ONE. I’ve been using it since the forum launched and could not keep up with things without it. But I just realized probably no one else knows about it and decided to share. Feed compliments of Barry Hunter. Thanks Barry, you are a life saver!

SPECIAL PRE-LAUNCH INVITATION FOR ANYONE READING TODAY

Last week I did a private invitation-only pre-launch of the new, long awaited LOCAL SEARCH FORUM. Scheduled official public launch is tomorrow. Come join the fun today, then watch for the official announcement tomorrow.

This forum was developed due to popular demand by Catalyst blog readers and all of the clients for my Advanced Google Places Training and LOCAL SEO Training programs. They all want a positive and productive place to learn, discuss local search and Google Places issues and support each other.

That’s what this forum is all about! Positive solutions and respect for other members is the key to getting along in the Local Search Forum. Hope you all contribute and enjoy the ambiance!

LOCAL SEARCH PROS PRIVATE FORUM – Is available to clients that have taken our Advanced Places Training. The private forum is where the higher level discussions happen. It’s where we discuss important Google changes, attempt to reverse engineer the algo, discuss local search business issues like billing and prospecting, share client problems and ask for help – behind closed doors, where competitors, spammers, clients and Google can’t see us. 😉

Check out the NEW LOCAL SEARCH FORUM and join us today!