Local Guide program’s gamification encourages point scoring for the sake of it

New Ideas in MarketingEssential news for marketers, summarised by YouGov
December 20, 2019, 2:54 AM UTC

Non-guide reviews are more likely to be genuine.

This piece presents views of experts of the local search community. The Google Local Guides is a community with a perception of “bad actors,” “gamification”, “misuse” and more. Contributions of photos, reviews or Q&As are worth points and more points increases a guide’s “level”.

Steady Demand’s Ben Fisher, a Google My Business Product Expert states that the Local Guides system is easily manipulated. The program’s gamification leads users to feel like they have power that they don’t, which in turn encourages behaviour to gain points for the sake of gaining points, adds Fisher.

Greg Gifford, SearchLab states suggests looking at non-Guide reviews as they are more “legitimate”, as they have been left people that genuinely wanted to leave a review and not by those wanting to earn extra points.

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