If you market to very specific geographic locations, then you’re probably familiar with radio, newspapers and television advertising. If you’re reading this post, the chances are good you’ve bought some geo-targeted paid search ads before.
If so, and you own a store or stores you’d like to drive foot traffic to, then I suggest you trot over to Google Maps and update your business profile … and consider adding some coupons to your listing too!
So once you’ve updated your free listing there, I want you to think a little bit about where maps are pushing the web experience.
For example Google recently launched a “Geographic Web layer” that took “the rich data of Wikipedia, Panoramio, and the Google Earth Community and made a browsable layer in Google Earth.”
So if you’re running, say, a historic five star travel resort in Costa Rica, it’s now IMPERATIVE that you have a Wikipedia entry so that users who take virtual tours of Google Earth can learn enough about you to want to make a physical visit.
Watch over the next five years as we see maps merge with web data into a Second Life sort of experience.
And watch too as mobile devices become increasingly dominant and maps grow in demand for shopping on the go. (Here’s video of Google’s Craig Silverstein on how Google views the future of the mobile web. My apologies for the poor audio quality).