Google has started to highlight the experience level of Local Guides in the reviews they have published. In some reviews published by Local Guides, you can now see “tags” containing information about the number of reviews written in the same city or category.
For example, in this image, the user has posted a review of a shopping mall and we can see that this same user has a total of 6 reviews of shopping malls, giving his review more importance in the eyes of other users.
Follow the activities of your Local Guides community
You can now track the activities of people you follow from your Google Maps app’s News Feed. You can also follow reviews, discover photos and activities of businesses and people in your community.
From this feature, you can access the What’s New tab in your Google Maps application to see this feature. You can easily add local guide friends. Also, Google suggests friends who are also Local Guides to personalize your News Feed
Go to your own profile or news feed and click the Follow button for suggested people you want to add.
Local guide is very easy to use. Local Guides currently represent a community of 120 million users. But what is their role? How did they become guides? And what is the impact of this feature for businesses?
What is a local guide?
Since 2015, in order to continue to expand its services, Google Maps launched the “Local Guide” program. The idea is to assign a status to each Internet user who shares a comment, a note, a photo or even suggests a modification on a Google My Business page.
The purpose of Google is twofold: first, it allows to enrich Google My Business files with quality content relatively recent and, above all, representative of reality, since this information is transmitted by consumers and not by the companies themselves. The second is to create a community like a social network.
The gamification of Google
To motivate users to interact, Google has developed this feature as if it were a game. There are 10 levels in the Local Guide. To move up a level, you have to earn points, and to do so, you can post comments, share photos or videos, add new places, etc.
Overall, you can earn points in 9 different ways (see image below). For example, if you add a message you get 15 points, if you post a comment you get 10 points, if you leave a note you only get 1. You get level 1 by doing one simple interaction. For level 2, you need to reach the 15 point mark. For level 10, you need to reach the 100,000 point mark.
What is the point of achieving levels in Local Guide?
For Internet users, from level 4, you get the first seal. Badges allow you to make publications more visible. In addition, they receive privileges such as early access to a Google feature and exclusive benefits from their partners.
Every year, Google organizes Local Guide Connect, which brings together 200 local guides of level higher than 5 from different countries. The event is highly anticipated by millions of users of the platform.
What are the challenges for companies?
When users who are part of the Local Guides program earn a badge, their reviews become more visible. For companies, it is very important to pay attention to the comments made by these users, because if it is a negative comment, you must react quickly, mainly because it may appear at the top of the GMN file.
In addition, being a Local Guide user gives you the exclusive ability to answer questions from users as part of the new Q&A feature of GMB listings. As a result, these users can provide information about your business and help you answer questions from potential customers. If you want to take care of your online reputation, you may want to have a Local Guide user connected to your business and answer any questions your customers may have. Contact Five Reviews to learn more about this.