Movie lovers and locals alike will enjoy this montage of Bakersfield Movie Shout Outs.Read More
I’ve been into GIS along with all things spatial for a bit now, and there’s no doubt in my mind that Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAV) and GIS are the new dynamic duo. Read More
In April 2014, the Kern County Board of Supervisors approved a spay and neuter program targeting specific zip codes. I was excited to see the interest, especially for someone like myself who works with Geographic Information Systems (GIS) and spatial solutions. Read More
If you’re a Bakersfield small business owner, it may seem tough sometimes to keep up with the big box chains when it comes to technology and seemingly endless budgets. One advertising area, which in the past was expensive, included digital signage. Read More
Live or Die by Reviews, They’re Here to Stay
Years ago, Google rolled out a business listing program where people could hit the pavement and sign up businesses to be listed in Google Maps.
Locals collecting info would input information into a submission form, and Google would then send the business a postcard to confirm its listing.
Google has come a long way since then, and now it’s trying a new way to empower local content. The program, called Google Local Guides, puts locals in control of content.
Previously called City Experts, Google has done a refresh on the program by making it more community friendly.
The program highlights what I see will be an important aspect for all businesses, regardless of type and location. Reviews. I’ve seen it coming for a while now, and as Google and others start including additional review sources, it will become even more important for businesses to pay attention to their brand, because with or without you, reviews of of your business or service will be shared.
Combine that with the fact that mobile searches are now exceeding desktop searches, and the tipping point has occurred when it comes to how important mobile will become in businesses’ strategies.
As it is, 80% of people use mobile for searching, and 50% of local searches are carried out on smartphones.
Google touts the new guides program as a way to “help others and support businesses by writing local reviews on Google”. I would almost liken the program to your local food critics.
It also includes levels of benefits depending on how many reviews you can write. Submit 200+ reviews and become a Level 4 guide, which is eligible to be featured on official social media pages, and even receive an annual thank you gift for consistent, high-quality contributions to Google Maps.
I think a local guide this would be good for Bakersfield, in that it could really highlight the hometown feel this town still has. In also gives local businesses another tool to separate themselves from chain and corporate companies, and even their competition.
Google may also weigh local guide content as more important, or in other words, letting the cream rise to the top. And if you’re a new business owner, who wouldn’t want a local guide to kick things off as to promoting a business.
I wonder who in Bakersfield will step up and become a local Bakersfieldian guide?
If you’re a small business owner, embrace reviews now, because with or without you, they will become an integral part on how people search and make decisions on services and products.
Even better, if you’re a local blogger, journalism student, or someone who wants to represent Bakersfield and can write reviews, sign up as a Google Local Guide.
If you’re a Bakersfield business owner with a physical location, why not dabble in location-based marketing such as Deals within FaceBook Places? Especially because of this writing, mobile is the hottest thing since the internet. Read More
Its taken many years, but I’ve found my restaurant, and it doesn’t even serve food! And not only that, Bakersfield doesn’t have one yet! So what the heck am I talking about? I think Bakersfield is well overdue for a community technology center (CTC). Read More
After Best Buy denied rumors two weeks ago that the retailer was in a dispute with Apple over iPad sales and inventory, my guess is the iPad 2 Best Buy ‘upcoming promotion’ will be an iPad 2 Father’s Day bundle. Read More
Content consumption and storage choices are changing every day–and now you can upload, watch, and share videos within Google Docs. Read More