5 Million Views on Google Maps


From Gmail to Google Local Guide and Beyond

Last Spring 2018, I received an email from Google to join as a Google Local Guide. It was easy to sign up with a Gmail account and then to post photos, reviews and answer questions. The Google Local Guide program helps local businesses gain visibility from real visitors searching on Google Maps. Google founders are real philanthropists and they want to help the “little guy”, not just big advertisers with their Google Local Guide program.

It Started With Photos from The Art Party
Many art galleries post Facebook events and since I already attend these art events on behalf of The Art Party, I captured hundreds of photos at local art events from 2018 to 2019, as well as hundreds of photos of restaurants, bars and hotels. Altogether, these postings resulted in 5 million photo views on Google Maps!

The Art Party is a social networking community and endorser of Earth Charter®. We leverage our +10,000 social media contacts to disseminate the Earth Charter® and raise awareness in our local community. One of our joint events was on local food artisans with over 300 guests at our Earth Charter partner location, DUDOC January 2018.

Our Facebook Page and Facebook Group
We’ve also produced and promoted over 20 of our own local events for creatives and changemakers since 2010 on The Art Party Facebook Page and The Art Party Facebook Group.

We chose Facebook as the main platform to promote events for The Art Party, as it was the dominant site in social networking in Canada where 86% of social networkers have a profile with Facebook. Our Crowdfunding Success Workshop for Creatives and Changemakers was sold out January 2017. That’s when we realized we have a local audience interested in skills training workshops: The Art Party has grown an audience of +10,000 social media contacts and +1000 email contacts.

Skills Training for Creatives and Changemakers
Our skills training workshops and talks occurred during evening hours or on Saturdays to ensure the highest level of attendees, as many are working in day jobs Monday to Friday. We intend to continue to focus on evenings and Saturdays for skills training to meet the needs of most attendees.

There are almost 20,000 cultural workers in Vancouver, of which almost 5000 are artists, the highest per capita in Canada. There are not enough collectors locally. Artists need skills training in digital technology to reach a global audience. An arts education provides academic studies and practices for art-making, but does not provide adequate skills training in business and digital technology to enhance income.

In addition to The Art Party Facebook Page, The Art Party Facebook Group allowed us to funnel our Facebook Friends into a “smaller space” for social networking and promotions. These Members support the arts in Vancouver, including live painting entertainment events. We’ve shared and promoted over 400 live local art and music events on our Facebook Group to help build our local arts community: https://www.facebook.com/groups/theartparty.

Next? Google Ads Grant for Non Profits
When we started The Art Party in 2010, it was an idea to help local artists with online promotions. It started as a promotional campaign for the Main Art Drift – local small businesses supporting local artists on Main Street, Vancouver in 2010. Our tag line was “Buy Local to Support Local Artists”.

The Art Party social media journey from Facebook to Google has been organic and over a decade. We’ve had over 50 volunteers over the years who share our mission. Today, it has evolved to focus on the development and promotions of Creatives & Changemakers in the Creative Economy.

We’re incorporating The Art Party in 2020 after 10 years, as it has a proven track record in reaching local creatives and changemakers. This will allow us to access the Google Ads Grant for Non Profits through TechSoup Canada. It works just like Google Ads online advertising, by displaying our message to people who are searching for nonprofits like ours. As a qualifying nonprofit, we can receive up to $10,000 USD in in-kind Google Ads every month.

Creative Startups + Establishing Your Online Authority
This month at YVR Startups and The Art Party, we will be covering topics related to establishing your authority and show you some techniques rising brands are doing to give themselves authority. Liza Lee will be giving an introduction to Google Local Guide. She has 5 million views on Google Maps. Edward will provide a teardown of a few brands and their marketing systems so we can all learn for our own business/brands.

Networking and community announcements to follow afterwards.




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