Spartanburg establishments are about to blow up with reviews from this guy.
Most people know I have a reputation for reviewing restaurants, but now I have even more of a reason to write reviews.
Perusing Google+ recently, I stumbled across a post about Google’s “Local Guides.” According to that post and the link above, it’s a system in which individuals are rewarded for writing consistently high quality reviews. I had already written something over 50 reviews, which placed me in the level 3 category of local guides. Not a huge deal, but hey, I’ve already written them.
I decided to sign up for the program. Worst case scenario, they turn me down. Best case, I reap rewards for something I’ve already done and I get incentive to continue doing what I enjoy. In almost no time, I got a response that I had been accepted into the program. Apparently Google likes my reviews.
Looking at the benefits page, the next level up is reached at 200 reviews. Dear lord, that sounded like a ton of reviews. In order to start working toward that number, I looked around on Google Maps at places that I had and had not already reviewed. Surprisingly, I had written far fewer reviews than I originally thought. Most of my 50 or so reviews were for places I’d been to for the first time recently, experiences that were new to me. I had overlooked restaurants and stores that I’ve been going to for most of my 23 years.
I sat down and started on a list, with every place I could think of. Restaurants, retail stores, gas stations, EVERYTHING. If I’ve been, I want to review it. The goal of a local guide is to provide feedback on as many places as possible, even if it’s common knowledge for people who live nearby. Everybody around knows that Venus Pie is better than Mellow Mushroom (or at least that’s how I feel), but how is a visitor from elsewhere supposed to know?
At the time of writing this, I’m up to 96 reviews. (Update: Up to 134 upon publishing.) I’m not trying to get 200 reviews as quickly as possible, but they’re flowing rather easily. I want to spearhead the Google Local Guides’ presence in the Spartanburg area. Maybe if people see that I’m reviewing so many places, they’ll be more willing to write reviews themselves. More feedback on local businesses is better for visitors, better for business… just better all around. How I feel about any given place may not necessarily be how everyone else feels.
Feel free to check out the reviews I’ve written so far and keep up with my progress. If you’re from the Spartanburg area and disagree with my opinion, write your own review. For those outside the Spartanburg area, maybe this will inspire you to start reviewing businesses in your own area.