Free photo shoot for Google Places

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Fifty-nine E-Webstyle.com SEO Podcast May 7th 2010. Second page of Transcription

Chris: [Laughs] We also have a review and you know how much we love reviews. This is what we love. You can also find our podcast at ewebstyle.podomatic.com. So, there’s no www in there. You could find our podcast. That’s where we actually host our podcast. Go there, create an account, become a friend, put a review, give us a shoot-out or whatever ‘cause we love that. We also love it when you do it on iTunes. Here’s a guy, his handle is DTRF Webmaster and what he had to do is he went to iTunes, he created an account and then he submitted a review. We’ve got 20 ratings on our podcast now…

Paul: That’s what’s up.

Chris: …on iTunes. Fifteen of them or five star, five of them are four star, which gives us an average – thank god they round up – of five stars!

Paul: Five stars… [Laughs]

Paul: [Laughs] And that was a 4.599 so…

Chris: Come on, just give me the star.

Paul: That’s what’s up. Very cool.

Chris: And here’s what – the title of DTRF Websmaster’s review was entertaining and educational, which by the way there’s a world for that. It was coined in the previous review by BSN Jedi. It’s called edutainment so…

Paul: Edutainment. Yeah.

Chris: So “entertaining and educational. I’ve been listening to some podcasts in the car.” I’m assuming he means some of our podcasts.

Paul: Okay.

Chris: … “in the car on the way to work. I’m a web developer who’s just starting to get into SEO and SIVO.” He’s actually quoting…

Paul: Oh, search engine visitor optimization.

Chris: Exactly. Search engine visitor optimization. If you don’t know what SIVO is then listen to this podcast. “I usually learn at least one thing on the way to work.” Wait. This is kind of recurrent theme right? A couple of other reviews have said that they’ve learned at least one thing on the way to work. And he’s been able to use some of these ideas in his new designs. Boom. That’s awesome.

Paul: Very cool.

Chris: DTRF, I didn’t really Google it. Maybe that’s the name of your website or something, send us an email…

Paul: Oh, he did. Sorry. [Laughs]

Chris: Oh, he did send it me.

Paul: I owe him a website review.

Chris: Oh, a website – okay? Oh, we’re still doing them?

Paul: Yes, we still are.

Chris: Website analysis. So, you can get a website analysis, all you need to do is go to our website ‑ It’s free, right, still? ‑ e‑webstyle.com. At the top you’ll see SEO. When you get to the SEO page, you can just give us a call or there’s a little link below it where you can actually get to a form and submit your information. And we’ve got to have exceeded our Gino time limit and we don’t really care.

Paul: No. [Laughs]. Sorry about that Gino. All right, what’s on the menu for today? We’re going to talk about… [Laughs] Google Places.

Chris: Google Places, yes, yes.

Paul: I drew a blank like, Oh snap what?

Chris: I’m on air, think faster. No, no, no think faster than that.

Paul: Yeah.

Chris: No, that’s not fast enough. [Laughs]

Paul: Man, I just completely blanked out for a second. I had no idea. We’re going to talk about Google Places.

Chris: And Darren I’m sorry, I only have coffee today. I don’t have a Coke. I’m sorry about that.

Paul: Darren Booy what’s up my man? I’m going to show you this. So if you are not watching this, you have no idea what I’m looking at. But if you’re looking at the video, that is a picture of the search engine results page. You see that map that comes up? There are about seven or eight listings next to it? Those are the Google maps listings. Google Local Listings are now known as Google Places or Google Favorite Places. I’ve heard it coined a million different ways. So you search – I search for Plummer, Houston so a map comes up. There’s about 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7 listings that come with it and those are the ones that we’re referring to.

So, a lot of people have asked, “How do you get on the Google Maps, the Google Local or whatever they want to call it? How do you do that? How do I get my listing up there?” And Chris filled in a call from Google himself about what was it?

Chris: Yeah. So, it was about what, four podcasts ago or so…

Paul: Okay.

Chris: Which would make it – I don’t know – 55 or something. So you can look at the title. You can also find all of our podcasts – we actually transcribe all of our podcasts and post them on our blog. So, if there’s anything you like in one of these podcasts and you want the text of it or whatever. As long as you give us link love, feel free to do that. So go back to 54 and we talked about – I had a 45-minute conversation with the Google sales rep who was selling Google sponsored listing, which apparently now would be Google sponsored places.

Paul: Places. So, you can highlight your Google places listing so… If you’ve never been out there, I’m going to go over a little bit about what Google places is and things you should and shouldn’t do and how it can possibly help you. Okay…

Chris: Any idea as to why they would change the name from Google Local Listings to Google Places?

Paul: I don’t know. That’s a good question.

Chris: There’s probably a good reason like not business related or something that would cause them to do that.

Paul: Something in the end that will probably help promote Google another way. [Laughs]

Chris: [Laughs] You think that’s all they’re about, self-promotion? Oh, yeah that’s right.

Paul: Profit, yes. Okay. So, this is something – I’m just going to read this. I pulled this off of Google Places’ site. Four million businesses have already claimed their place page on Google to the local business center…

Chris: By the way – I’m sorry, I keep interrupting you.

Paul: That’s all good.

Chris: This is important. This is to Google. Google look me in the eyes. You need to have a way to have multiple email accounts control a Google Place or local listing. I don’t care what you want to call it. ‘Cause right now, it’s only one. And so here in our office, I had initially set up our account with my personal account so now I’ve got to share all my personal information – which actually I don’t have a problem with – but I know there are a lot of big brother people out there who like, “Oh, I set it up with an email that I used to visit those sites that I don’t want people to know about…”

Paul: Ah, yeah.

Chris: “Now I’ve got to share it with my employees” or whatever. Come on. Make it happen, it’s not that hard. You’re already doing it in Google – the dude at Google Analytics who wrote software said that you could actually share the users, move him over to Google places.

Paul: To Google Places, yes.

Chris: Let him work for a couple of months and then bring him back.

Paul: [Laughs]

Chris: I’m just saying…

Paul: Just loan him.

Chris: You know what I’m saying?

Paul: I know what you’re saying…

Chris: Anyway, go ahead.

Paul: So four million business have already put up their local listings.

Chris: And three million of them want that feature.

Paul: There you go. And basically Google Places allows you to verify and supplement your business information including like hours of operation, you could add photos, videos, coupons, product offerings. And basically, it lets you communicate with your customers. You know, helps people make smart business decision so… Just go to Google, Google the term Google Places, the first answer is going to be right where you need to go. You sign in, you have to have a Google account and then it’ll really walk you through the process and it’ll tell you how complete you are. Okay.

So, it allows you to do a couple of things and I’ll go over those pretty quick. Your service areas, if you are a service provider and you don’t provide service at your storefront, you go out and service the public, you can put your service areas there. It’ll help you advertise with that $25 sponsored listing…

Chris: Sponsored local places listing.

Paul: There you go. So for $25 they can highlight your listing…

Chris: Yeah, LPL, local places listing.

Paul: It’ll spotlight your LPL. Actually, it’ll spotlight every LPL that’s out there. If you’re not on the first page of the Google Maps Listings, it’s not going to bump you up to the first page if you pay.

Chris: Oh, okay.

Paul: That’s a question that we had about it. It won’t. Now, just ‘cause you’re not on the first page, you could still get the listing but you might be four pages back on the listing so I’ll leave you guys up to that. So now, you can get these little tags or whatever in Austin, Atlanta, DC, as well as Houston, and San Jose, California.

Chris: H-Town whoo.

Paul: H-Town stand up. In the coming weeks…

Chris: Do we have like a hand H-Town gesture?

Paul: Yes.

Chris: That’s it?

Paul: Yeah.

Chris: Oh, no that’s cougar.

Paul: That’s cougar.

Chris: Oh, that’s…that’s…

Paul: Everybody said what are you all doing? [Laughs] ‘Cause it looks like an H.

Chris: Okay. Cool H-Town.

Paul: If you live in Chicago, San Diego, Seattle, Boulder, Colorado, or San Francisco

Chris: If you live there, just move to Houston.

Paul: There you go.

Chris: …city. We’ve got a better economy.

Paul: Those are the next coming cities. Okay. What else can you do? You can add a business photo, you’ve got a photo of your business… But here’s a little different, you can upload your own photos. But you can actually – businesses in select cities can request a free photo shoot of the interior of their business, which will be used to supplement existing photos of businesses on the Places pages.

Chris: What?

Paul: That is from Google.

Chris: What?

Paul: I’m reading this. I pulled this off their site.

Chris: What?

Paul: Somebody take advantage of that and let us know how it goes.

Chris: And let us know. Do we know what cities those are? Same cities or…

Paul: It didn’t say. It just said selected cities. But I assume it’s going to be one of the ones I just read now.

Chris: Can we call and say we’re ready for our photo shoot?

Paul: He was supposed to be here yesterday.

Chris: Should we wear bikinis for that? I don’t know, thong?

Paul: I’m not ‘cause I’m married. [Laughs]

Chris: [Laughs] Well, they won’t know.

Paul: Oh, they’ll find out quickly.

Chris: That’s a nice felt sweater that he has. [Laughs]

Paul: [Laughs] Oh, yeah. Okay what else? You can get customized QR codes. I call them bar codes. We have a bar code. I’m going to show you what this looks like. Back in September, Google sent out a hundred thousand of these things. Okay and this is what it looks like. You can put it on your window and if you see the lower – what’s that? Right-hand corner? There’s this little square looking dot. It’s got a bunch of dots…

Chris: Directly from the movie, “The Matrix.”

Paul: There you go. So basically that’s a bar code, that’s a new age bar code. If you get Website Magazine, you can see that. The reason I know that is because I was reading Website Magazine about a year ago ‘cause we have a stack of them in the bathroom and so that’s what it is.

Chris: What’s interesting is that technology in that corner? Man it was probably two years ago, Popular Science was trying a technology like that…

Paul: Oh, really?

Chris: …with the phones already. Yeah. It was pretty interesting. Actually no, it was like with webcams.

Paul: Okay.

Chris: So, they would put those things in an article then you can hold it up to a webcam and this offer will take you directly to that page, which seemed like a total waste of time. Although this with the mobile phones and the fact the they’re going to be 4G soon ‘cause 3G sucks.

Paul: Uh-hum [Laughs]. But I think that’s cool. So, if you’ve got one of these awhile back, consider yourself very lucky. They only sent out a hundred thousand of them. They are doing a second round. I just read that they’re going to send about 50,000 more of these window decals to put up in your window. And basically what it is, if you have some software on your – I’m holding this up but you can’t see it. If you have some software on the phone…

Chris: You can like point the camera at it and that’ll roll. Like you know Google’s working more on visual picture photo searches so they’re going to take picture of things. And it uses a coordinate – so this is pretty cool stuff.

Paul: Uh-hum.

Chris: It coordinates with GPS. So, you take a picture of the Eiffel Tower while you’re reading the magazine in the loo, it’ll give you some information about the Eiffel Tower in general.

Paul: Oh, what’s that called? Goggles?

Chris: Yeah. Yeah. You do it while you’re standing next to the Eiffel tower, it’ll give you like – it’ll know you’re next to it and it’ll give you more relevant stuff like pricing… You don’t need pricing when you’re just looking at the magazine…

Paul: Yeah.

Chris: …you need it when you’re actually standing there. So, its…

Paul: What’s nearby.

Chris: …pretty smart searching capability is pretty – those guys…

Paul: Yeah. I’d say that this, like Google Goggles is probable an advanced version of the bar code ‘cause it’ll just take a picture of anything right?

Chris: Yup.

Paul: So, more of those are coming out. If you don’t have one, you can actually get on Google Places and print one – and print a paper one and put it in your own window decal and put it on your window so now people can find you. It’ll take people directly to your Google Places listing, they can look at reviews, they can look at everything else. I think it’s a cool tool. I think it’s going to be more popular in the coming months and years.

Chris: It’s kind of interesting. It seems like they should have at least put the name of the business on it…

Paul: Yeah.

Chris: I don’t know.

Paul: Yeah, probably so.

Chris: I’m just saying…

Paul: But then again, they’re probably like, “Ah, that’s going to cost the hell lot of…”

Chris: It’s our name. That’s all they care about. You’re right. It’s just self-promotion. The bastards.

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