This February 14th, Google is letting users get lovey-dovey by reminding a Valentine of a special place. The Map Your Valentine campaign is a fun way to get consumers using Google maps, and it might remind marketers that their store locations are more likely to be shared among internet users if they claim Google Places pages.
To participate, users enter the email address of their beloved, as well as their own email addresses. Then, they pick a meaningful place, find it on Google Maps it (using two of its standard balloons, which notably form a heart) and they write a custom message reminding the recipient why that place holds meaning. The email is sent off like a Valentine e-card, revealing the special place upon opening.
Once users have sent their special message, they have the chance to either send another, “send chocolates” (which brings them to maps of nearby candy stores), “send flowers” (which offers map location of neighborhood flower shops) or “find a date.” Find a date brings users to search results for this key phrase, with the likes of FindADate.com, Match.com and – perhaps ironically – Yahoo.Match.com taking top spots.
At press time, Google's MapYourValentine.com was getting minute-to-minute social mentions, according to Google Realtime results.
It's a silly and fun concept, but the takeaway for marketers should be that consumers are increasingly relying on Google Maps to mark their favorite spots. As Brafton has reported, the company recently launched mobile Google Map-based check-ins for Latitude users, so businesses may find the stakes are now higher than ever for boosting brand awareness through Places listings.