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Chad Kimball’s Google Maps Gold Review – Google Maps Elite (Arbor Academy) is it legit or scam?

March 7, 2024

Chad Kimball is an online marketer who focuses on teaching students how to rank and rent Google Business Profiles. He's generated over $30 million in the last 6 years of ranking and renting digital properties. According to The Media Captain, 64% of consumers have used Google Business Profiles to find contact information of a business and the number is only growing.

Generating leads by creating digital properties in the form of Google Business profiles can offer the most lucrative income online because of how things are setup. After your Google map listings are in ranked at the top of the search engines, they will begin generating leads automatically every month. You can then send them to a local small business owner for a monthly rental fee. 

This review will uncover who Chad is, what you learn in his course, if it's legit, and if the business model can still provide you with passive streams of income in 2024

Chad Kimball Review: Pros and Cons


Chad has been making millions with Google maps since the early 2000s 

His courses are affordable

He holds live coaching calls every week within his coaching program

Chad Kimball has a great reputation in the lead generation community


Chad's course sales page doesn't seem like anyone is keeping it up to date. You wonder if there are any, or many, student success stories.

It's hard to find much information about who Chad is and how much his courses cost

Chad and his team are always changing the name of their platform (The Arbor Academy, Google Maps Elite, Local AutoPilot), which can confuse some people and make them wonder if they're up to anything good

Who is Chad Kimball?

Chad Kimball is an online entrepreneur from the Greater Chicago area. In 1999, he realized he hated his 9-5 job. His boss would yell at him and his co-workers. It was an environment that he did not want to have anything to do with anymore. Chad prayed this situation would end and kept a journal to document everything that was happening as the weeks and months passed. 

He made a breakthrough when he learned how to make money by generating leads for local business owners with Google map listings. 

His first client ended up earning him over $100,000. He made $2 million in his first two years with Google maps and over a decade later, Chad is passively making tens of thousands of dollars every month with his map listings. He took everything he learned and put it into the Local AutoPilot course. Even Chad Kimball's daughter, Bethany-Anne, is making thousands of dollars per month with this business model. According to the YouTube video he posted in 2020, she made 5-figures with what he taught her. On the Chad Kimball YouTube channel, where he uploads a video on average, once a month, you'll see testimonials of students who have had success with the help and guidance Chad's course provides. You'll also learn about other online business models.

What is Chad Kimball YouTube?

Chad Kimball on YouTube has a subscriber count of over 10,000. He posts content a few times every month where he promotes the business model.

What is Chad Kimball's Net Worth?

Chad Kimball's net worth is between $10 million and $14 million when you factor in the thousands of students who have taken his Google maps courses.

What are Chad Kimball's Courses?

What is Google Maps Gold?

Google Maps Gold is a training program put together by Chad Kimball, where he teaches you his entire Google Maps business model. There are 8 training videos you can easily finish in one day. Google Maps Gold is an introduction course to open your mind to how the rank and rent Google maps business model works. If you want to learn in-depth strategies from Chad, he will upsell you on the Google Maps Elite or LocalAutopilot program. There, you will learn each intricate step of the rank and rent process to help you generate leads for local business owners through the digital properties you rank and rent.

Price: Google Maps Gold costs $9.97.

Is the Google Maps Gold Business Model Different?

The Google Maps Gold Business model is not different to what Chad has been teaching for years. It is simply a mini course created to teach you the basics of the rank and rent business model.

Did Chad Change the Google Maps Elite Course Name?

It appears Chad has changed the Google Maps Elite course name when he is promoting it. It was first Google Maps Elite and recently, he was promoting the Arbor Academy and Local Autopilot.

What is Local AutoPilot? (Arbor Academy Review)

Local AutoPilot is the name of the company and platform where Chad Kimball offers his Google Maps course for $997. Local AutoPilot is based out of Chicago, Illinois and has been known as The Arbor Academy, Easy Local Cash and the Google Maps Elite program. It seems they are trying to figure out what the best branding for their program is. In the course, Chad shows you all of the intricate steps needed to get started with the rank and rent business. There are over 70 training videos and over 135 hours worth of pre-recorded training calls you're given access to. 

This course is regularly being updated as Google makes their core algorithm updates and Chad remains active within the private community where he holds live coaching calls to support his students.

What is the Reputation Management Hacks Course

The Reputation Management Hacks course by Chad Kimball teaches you how to help businesses remove negative Google reviews and charge $1,500 for it. 

Chad Kimball Reviews

Positive Chad Kimball Testimonials

For 24 years, Paul was the general manager of a large import store in his city, but wanted to do something different. Within 6 weeks of joining this program, 2 of his map listings were generating him $1000 per month. One of his clients even told him that his life had changed because Paul could get his phone to ring all the time with more leads. Paul said that Chad's program has a ton of content that is clearly laid out. Now, Paul is making thousands of dollars per month in his agency with the help of Chad's training. Paul also got plenty of help as a student of Dan Klein in the local lead generation training program

William Brice and his wife used to rent an online software for 14 years. He was also a code breaker in the military. After only 2 years of being in Chad's course, William made, on average, $15-$18K per month. Today, he makes over $35K per month and has over 25 map listings that generate leads for his clients. William said that the Google Maps Elite private group is very supportive.

Ben is from Green Bay, Wisconsin and works with over 150 sub contractors all across the United States. He joined the Google Maps Elite course in 2008 and now generates between $6 million and $10 million per year in sales. In his student testimonial interview, Ben told Chad, "In 10 years, there have been multiple algorithm changes (Google), and you always have a work around it."

Sarah Souza-Liebel Left Her 9-To-5 in Just 11 Months

Sarah's Background and Story

Sarah is a waitress in California for almost a decade. He looked for other ways to make an income while she's working her 9-to-5 and found Chad's program. Despite not having a tech or marketing background, Sarah was determined to make this business work for her. Her basic proficiency in tasks like emailing and managing PDF files laid the foundation for her new business venture. 

How Sarah’s Business is Doing Today

Within 11 months of starting Chad's coaching program and balancing her part-time job, Sarah was able to quit her waitress job.  She describes the business model as creating small assets: once a site and map listing are built and verified, they require minimal maintenance work. She spent her first few profits on herself. After that, she reinvested her earnings to grow the business. 

Lessons Sarah Learned on the Biggest Challenges She Faced

Time Management Challenge: Balancing her part-time job with the time and effort required to implement the business model effectively was a significant challenge for Sarah when she was just starting out. 

Dedication Importance: She emphasizes the critical role of dedication and investing time in the business, particularly during its early stages.

Building Sustainable Assets: Sarah learned the importance of creating sustainable assets in the business. Once they are established, you don't have to maintain them as much. 

What's not mentioned in the interview: Despite claims of being a beginner-friendly, this business model requires some advanced-level skills and beginners might struggle to understand and implement. 

It relies heavily on local search engine optimization (SEO) techniques. This involves optimizing the Google Business Profile for specific local keywords, ensuring the profile ranks high in Google search results, especially in the rank of local business listings. 

What is Chad Kimball Reddit?

Chad Kimball reviews on Reddit reveal a more negative sentiment towards Chad and his Google Maps Elite coaching program. This person had a horrible experience on their initial call with one of Chad's coaches. The coach was rude, aggressive, and disrespectful. They also mention the course is around $5000, once again adding to the confusion about pricing, but also proving there may be different pricing tiers.

In the following Reddit thread, one person confirms to another that Chad is teaching unethical methods of ranking Google map listings. Probably referring to black hat SEO (Search engine optimization) or even grey methods.

Chad Kimball Claims

Chad claims if he had to start all over again, he would have dove straight into Google Maps and scaled as quickly as possible when it was easy to verify thousands of map listings by phone. Now, verifying Google Business Profiles isn't as easy as it was in 1999 or even 2014 because Google is always making changes to their algorithm.

Does Chad Kimball Have a Point?

Chad Kimball has a point when he says that verifying Google map listings by phone was easier all those years ago. Google has made their improvements to the algorithm, which helps weed out those who aren't taking the business model seriously and those who are looking to spam the area providing no value to local small business owners.

Who is Seth Kimball?

Seth Kimball is Chad Kimball's brother and business partner. He's also one of the coaches within the Google Maps Elite program who takes the lead on most of the live coaching calls.

Back in 2008, while Seth did graphic and web design for a company called TrucknTow, he was looking for a way to branch out and work for himself. Chad had already made money with Google maps and invited Seth to work with him. In April 2008, Chad sold part of his business for $21K, intending to help Seth get started. Soon after, Seth quit his job so they could work together. The next year, they launched a new project and made $38,327 through 7 days. All the while, Seth was also doing some design work for other companies, such as Facebook and car dealerships across the US and Canada. 

Still, it didn't sit well with Seth that he was still trading time for money working for other companies and eventually went full time with Chad in 2018. 

By June 2020, they scaled their company and made an average of $80K+ per month. Today, they continue to teach students how to make money with Google map listings and provide plenty of support within their private community.

Is Chad Kimball a Scam or Not?

Chad Kimball is not a scam because the rank and rent business model is one that offers massive benefits to local small business owners in 2024. Google Maps has over 154 million users each month. If you look at Chad's testimonial page and YouTube channel, you'll see he interviews students who have found massive success with his training This is certainly one of the best ways to make money online with Google. 

For that reason, it's hard to believe that any of the negative reviews hold much weight. Did one of Chad's coaches actually get aggressive on the phone with someone? It's possible. Anyone can have a bad day. There was only one instance that this was mentioned. 

If there is any grey area to what Chad teaches, it may be in the way he teaches you how to rank your map listings. Overall, Chad Kimball is legit and very much respected within the lead generation space because of the success he's had for over 10 years.

Fun Fact: Dan Klein, the fearless leader of the lead generation training program, taught many of Chad's students before they joined GME. Also, Dan is the behind-the-scenes business partner for Chad's program, as Dan's team provides support and backend products/resources.

Is Renting Google Map Listings Profitable in 2024?

Renting out Google map listings is profitable because almost everyone goes to Google when they need to find a service-based business. According to Oberlo, in 2021, almost 5.4 million new applications were filed to start a new business. If those businesses want to be successful, they need to generate leads regularly. That's where these skills come into play.

The internet and local small businesses aren't going anywhere. Ranking digital properties locally is much easier to do than nationally. Therefore, if you can successfully rank your Google Business profiles and lead generation sites, local business owners who don't have the time or skills to do it themselves will look to pay you for leads, if they're smart.

But you don't want to rely on Google map listings because it's getting harder and harder to verify listings. A few things that can cause a listing to get suspended are listed below.

  • Violating Google's terms of service
  • Being flagged as spam
  • Business information doesn't match up
  • Multiple businesses claiming the same address
  • Duplicate listings
  • Having a residential address
  • Stuffing the name with keywords

For all these reasons, it's far more reliable to have a website ranked #1 along with a map listing.

The Original Lead Generation Training Program

Dan's local lead generation training program teaches the same business model Chad teaches and then some. While Chad mostly only focuses on Google map listings, we teach SEO and how to rank lead generation websites along with map listings.

What makes the local lead generation training program the best among all rank and rent courses is not only the skills you learn, but the contacts and resources you have access to. Chad's group only has a little over 1,800 students, while Dan's program has over 7,200 members. There is even more daily engagement within Dan's group, as you can see below.

In our program, there are 2 weekly coaching calls that are consistent and value packed to help us all become better entrepreneurs and assets in our communities. Not just a few times a month.

Our private community has been trained to generate leads for other businesses consistently. As a result, they've been able to reach financial freedom.

You can do the same for yourself.

For more info, read about the local lead generation training program.

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Ippei Kanehara

$52K per month providing lead generation services to small businesses is for digital hustlers, industry leaders and online business owners.

His #1 online business recommendation in 2024, is to build your own lead generation business.

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