As tech services go, few companies have impacted data mapping and geolocation technology the way Google Maps has. And, Google Local Guides – a social engagement platform for Google Maps – has been staggeringly successful, accumulating over 50 million users to date. A huge part of that success has come by innovating the way geolocation technology is being used, providing us with several amazing use cases.
Let’s look at some of the smart ways that Google Local Guides has used geolocation technology to build a successful social platform:
1. Data Collection
Google Local Guides encourages users to enhance the information and content of local businesses, enhancing Google’s overall data on them. To date, there are 700,000 new places being added to Google Maps each month. Google has essentially created a social community that is motivated to add value to their service each and every day. That type of data is invaluable in today’s digital business landscape.
2. Geolocation Gamification
Users are awarded points for taking action as they are out and about. They can receive a variety of points by leaving local store ratings, adding reviews, sharing photographs and videos, providing insights with answers, responding to questions about a place, updating information with place edits, adding missing places or verifying information by checking facts.
3. Perks, Levels & Badges
Google Local Guides points lead to higher levels of the program, as well as benefits, like early access to new Google products and special perks from partners. For example, at Level 4, you unlock your first Local Guides badge, which helps your contributions to places get more noticed. Whether users are encouraged by the free offers or the elite status that comes with a badge or level, it is a smart system for promoting social engagement.
4. Social Community Building
Some will be shocked to learn that the Google Local Guides community is not made up of Millennial hipsters reviewing bars and pubs, they’re people from across the world who are trying to help contribute and, in many cases, take a great deal of pride in their work as a Local Guide. Around the world, they’re adding more than 700,000 new places to Google Maps each month.
5. Global Events for Users
Google recently held its second annual Local Guides Summit, which brought the top contributing Local Guides from around the world to San Francisco. The event had 150 total attendees from 62 countries – double the number from last year’s event. For a platform only in its third year, hosting an event with such a vast worldwide audience speaks volumes for its quick rise in popularity and global reach.
6. Business Listings Boost
Google Local Guides works synergistically with their business facing platform, Google My Business, by allowing end users to update business listings. This helps business pages that have never been claimed and updated by the business’ owner to still accumulate images, videos and other various forms of content. So, whether you have businesses managing their listings or Local Guides doing it for them, Google is still collecting valuable location data on business listings around the world.
Not already a Local Guide? Sign up here to get a better understanding of the service and gain a few free perks along the way!