Google+ Local Now Features Frommers Rich Content

Linda Buquet

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(Copied from the Catalyst blog.)

When Google acquired Frommers, the travel guide, back in August there was speculation about how Google would use/integrate all their rich travel content. I think I discovered one of the ways last week. It looks like they recently started adding Frommers content to Google+ Local pages.

<img src="http://marketing-blog.catalystemarketing.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/12/Frommers.jpg" alt="" title="Frommers" width="500" height="590" class="alignnone size-full wp-image-7239" />​

Has anyone else seen these big rich descriptions above the "At A Glance" section of Google+ Local pages before? I think this is new. Have not seen anyone blog it yet. Here's how I discovered it.

I helped the <strong>Children?s Discovery Museum of San Jose</strong> at the <a href="https://productforums.google.com/forum/#!msg/business/0X8m3gaqhNE/XJ4mLTi7ANQJ">Google Forum</a>. You can see the description added to the <strong><a href="https://plus.google.com/112181531790861558921/about">Museum's Google+ Local page</a></strong> right above the reviews. The description was incorrect and out of date, so he wanted to know how to change it.

When I searched for the content I found it on the NYtimes travel domain, some Google books, Frommers and several other sites. So initially I just thought Google was scraping it, like they do the review sentiments in the "At a Glance Section". Then I remembered Google purchased Frommers back in August, so it makes sense they would integrate the content.

Here are a couple articles about Google's Frommers acquisition.

<strong><a href="http://money.cnn.com/2012/08/13/technology/google-frommers/index.html" target="_blank">Google buys Frommer's travel brand - Aug. 13, 2012</a></strong> CNN

<strong><a href="http://searchengineland.com/zagat-take-two-google-to-acquire-frommers-travel-content-130373">Zagat Take Two: Google To Acquire Frommer?s Travel Guides</a></strong> - SearchEngineLand

See any other good examples?
I have not had time to do a deep dive on this yet.
 

Nick Rink

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Jul 20, 2012
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Thanks for the heads up on this Linda, looks pretty interesting. Have had a quick peek at some local pages for hotels here in London and it seems to be a pretty mixed bag. Most show no extra content but there are one or two of the more well known hotels that are showing content from either Frommer's or Zagat.

Some of them also look like they've gone ahead and merged their business page with their local listing - they generally look to be the 5 star hotels in town like The Goring and One Aldwych.
 
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Hi Linda,

thanks for the post. I have seen this across a few of my local listings starting last week i believe. for example my park hyatt aviara page had this text appear above the 'at a glance' section. park hyatt aviara.jpg

after researching i found the exact same text on a frommers site park hyatt aviara2.jpg

thanks for the great forum !



 

Linda Buquet

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Hey Nicholas, thanks for confirming and for taking time to do the great screen shot.
It really does a good job of illustrating the integration!
 
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Wow! Great catch, Linda.

Here's a variant I found for the top ranking hotel in San Francisco:

The Fairmont San Francisco Hotel - About - Google+

You see, there is no At A Glance, and just a few words in the snippet. This looks totally new to me, for sure.

----------------
Returning to this post a moment later. This is weird, actually, Those quotes are from Zagat, apparently, but I cannot find an indexed example of them other than from Google+. The quote on the +Page reads:

A “historic” “bastion of refinement” in a “pristine location” “atop Nob Hill”, this “lovely ...

All of those quote marks are in the snippet...almost like they've been pulled from reviews and cobbled into a sensible sentence.

Is this normal? Did this already exist? To me, it looks like a very different approach to sentiment analysis.
 

Linda Buquet

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That's an ODD one Miriam. I agree looks like different reviews cobbled together.

But yes sometimes I think they do pull in from Zagat too.

Forgot to post about it but the Museum contacted Frommers to get their description changed and I guess it's hard to do online and they have to wait til the next book is ready for publication.

"I put our PR/Marketing person on the case. Apparently it's not easy to get Frommer's to change something, at least in-between book printings. The Web descriptions come from the physical books."
 
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Interesting to know that looks odd to you too. They'd better be careful if that's the path their going to take. Can't you just see it:

This "dump of a" restaurant specializes in "dog hair in my soup" in a "stuffy dining room" featuring "rude staff"

:D
 

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