Google has introduced a program which involves asking people to review local places and become what they’ve deemed ‘City Experts’ in return for some freebies. The program has been running somewhat un-officially via the @googlelocalsyd twitter account.
According to the signup page, to become a City Expert you have to live in one of the following cities : Austin, Birmingham (UK), Bristol (UK), Chicago, Edinburgh, London, New York, Portland (OR), Phoenix, Raleigh-Durham, San Francisco and Sydney. But if you choose to sign up but don’t live in one of these cities, Google will notify you if/when the program rolls out to your city.
Once you’re signed up, according to the FAQ page you’ll first have to either write or have written 50 high quality reviews previously, at which time you’ll be welcomed into the City Experts program. To maintain your place in the program you’ll have to write at least five reviews a month to remain active as a ‘City Expert’.
The definition of a high quality review is listed as
A high quality review is usually three to four sentences long and contains specific, helpful and balanced information about a particular business.
So, sounds like a lot of work, but if you do qualify, you’ll be eligible to receive :
- Access to fun, exclusive events in their local areas*
- Free custom swag
- Special online recognition
*see cities listed as eligible.
Sounds like a blast, the only downfall is that this is only open to Sydney residents at this stage, although the existence of a @GoogleLocalMEL indicates that this could quickly roll out to the city of Melbourne next. If you’re in Sydney sign up and let us know what you get, of course I’m always up for receiving some free Google swag if you don’t want it ;).