Natural Search Blog


Where’s Waldo in Google Earth

In a very clever bit of marketing, Canadian artist Melanie Coles has created a large rooftop image of the iconic character found in the popular Where’s Waldo? book series.

Where's Waldo in Google Maps?
(click to enlarge)

The image is located somewhere in Vancouver, British Columbia, and was created with the specific intention of being findable via Google Earth (warning, I have the location pinpointed in a link and geocoordinates at the end of this post). It will be a while before Waldo can be found in Google Earth (or in Google Maps, Yahoo! Maps, or MS Live Search Maps, for that matter), because there is a time lag in between when satellite images and aerial photos get updated in those services — so, it could be six months to a year before the image is really findable and viewable online.

The image was created as a demonstration of a viral game for Coles’ graduation art project at the Emily Carr Institute. Her blog statement on the project says: (more…)

Ultimate Local SEO Tactics

After I earlier wrote some Extreme Local Search Optimization Tactics, one of my SEO coworkers, Steven Spaulding, “out-extremed” me by joking that one could go even further by getting a custom city name made from beneficial keywords! For example, one could end up with a street address like:

257 Viagra Drive, Cialis, Texas

Map Illustration for Ultimate Local Search Optimization

(Ugh! I’m probably going to regret using those keywords in my blog posting!)

Until Steven joked about this, it just hadn’t occured to me to even consider using a city name for keyword optimization purposes. It’s undoubtedly far-fetched, but I began to wonder, is it within the realm of possibility? Actually, I think it is. So here’s this post – an addendum of sorts on my previous article. Here’s two more local search optimization strategies which are so extreme, so over-the-top, that I’ll label them “Ultimate Local Search Optimization Tactics”. Someone with enough money and desire might be able to pull one of these off!

So, read on if you’re morbidly curious, and don’t worry, Dave Naffziger, these are so extreme that they’re unlikely to cause you to lose any sleep!

(more…)

KFC Ad Targeting Google Maps, Yahoo Maps, and MSN Earth

KFC just constructed a giant ad of their logo/mascot, Colonel Saunders, out in the Nevada desert, in order to “make it viewable from space”. The ad was intentionally constructed near Area 51, the secretive military site that many UFO conspiracy theorists claim to be a hotbed for military testing of alien technologies. Their press release states:

“The Colonel Sanders ‘astrovertisement’ was built in Rachel, Nevada, the ‘UFO Capital of the World’, just off the world’s only extraterrestrial Highway, in the infamous Area 51.”

Here’s a Google video of its construction.

KFC space logo
(click to enlarge)

Aside from all their jokes about advertising to space aliens, KFC has actually constructed something that will show up in the satellite pix that many are viewing through Google Maps, Yahoo! Maps, and MSN Live Maps.

For a fun bit of linkbait, the ad’s website allows one to search around for a hidden message by zooming in and panning around. Finding the message allows one to win a free sandwich.

Now, I’ve joked before about optimizing roof ads for Google Maps, but this gargantuan Colonel ad is no joke — this took some serious money to construct! One of my friends who works for Yum! Brands’ corporate offices remarked that she could now see why their executives were pushing so heavily for cost-cutting — they’re spending tons on marketing to space aliens!

Jokes aside, this type of advertisement may become increasingly serious business as more and more businesses target people who are browsing around viewing satellite pictures through Google Maps, Yahoo! Maps, and MSN Live Maps. This sort of thing is being called “mapvertising” or “roofvertising”.

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