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Picture Yourself Working Here: How We Hacked Google Maps to Recruit Talent

People in New York City can’t live
without Google Maps. The constant roadway maintenance, the occasional closure of
subway stations, and the mad rush of traffic at peak hours make Google Maps a
necessity of life. Google search engine prioritizes the map navigation. A quick
search of any business in the city generates a Google map as the highlight
of the results page. If you work in SEO you would understand the value of such
placements, however outside of retail restaurants and hotels few businesses
take advantage of it. We saw a huge opportunity to attract top
digital talent to our career opportunities without spending a single
dollar by hacking Google Maps. The key to our success? Stunning pixel-perfect 360 degree panoramas In digital advertising Google
search rules. People pay top dollars to get their results to the top of the page
through SEM (search engine marketing) and optimization (SEO). Recruiting talent
especially in digital specialty areas such as: Analytic, Programmatic
Advertising and Search Engine Marketing is hard we have to find innovative ways
to reach and engage this talent. Anyone who lives in New York knows that
location is everything people make big life and career
decisions based on the where and a search for the company on Google Maps
is very often the first thing people do when they’re considering a career
opportunity. In August of 2018 the whole of group am including our 7 operating
agencies all moved to the World Trade Center in the financial district in New
York, possibly the best real estate in the
world. How do we leverage this great neighborhood amazing location and
beautiful space of the office to attract top talent and for free? The solution:
Google Maps! We uploaded more than 80 panoramic 360-degree high-definition
pictures of our office space to Google maps. GroupM is a group of companies so these were pictures of all of our subsidiaries: Mindshare, MediaCom, Wavemaker, Xaxis. Some of these pictures contained a
subtle call-to-action: “Picture Yourself Working Here” which leads to our career
site. To support this program we uploaded our pitches to a VR tour platform, RoundMe. This platform works in any web browser and requires no special
downloads meaning that visitors could go on a frictionless pixel-perfect journey
around our offices. To enrich this visually stunning experience we added
audio content featuring interview tips, information on team structure, culture,
and job openings. To make it truly informative these interactive virtual
tools can be embedded on any web page or social media platform as html5 code. Most importantly, these tools on RoundMe can be viewed as truly immersive experiences
on VR headsets like the oculus go our entry-level hiring team brings these
headsets to college career fairs so prospective employees are immersed in
the place where their career could begin those who miss the career fairs can
simply use a web link to access the tours. As a final part of this integrated
campaign we took a leaf out of the MTV Cribs playbook creating professional
video tours led by various agency employees to give a more in-depth view
of each company the results speak for themselves
if you search for media investment agency on Google GroupM is the top
result our 360 degree photos have generated more than 56,000 unique
impressions an average of 6,000 views in a single week. Our virtual tours on RoundMe have been taken a total of 4,100 times not including playback in the VR
headsets these are just the basic metrics that we could track. Most
importantly, this 360-degree content has proved to be extremely valuable to
enrich the candidate experience. We embed them on our job ads,
our LinkedIn posts, our Facebook posts, our company website and in our interview
invites. Meanwhile, our competitors have made zero effort to distinguish
themselves using Google Maps. Some of them have very drab looking photos
others have no photos at all, making this a unique point of difference for GroupM
so far this effort has resulted in influencing a couple of hires at group
and based on our entry surveys and all at $0. The pictures will be there forever
and so Google will continue to serve our recruitment marketing content to
potential candidates asking them to picture yourself working here


  1. Ivan Harrison Author

    Awesome work and would classify this as Google Maps TA 2.0 as many companies have done the virtual tour uploads but of static images not video walk through, or audio playbooks on culture, teams, and the business. Plus repurposing across different channels which in turn improves the SEO. So massive kudos for this. However, I'd argue that stating this was all done for zero dollars is misleading, as x amount of employees' time would have been required. Moreover, those in revenue earning positions spending time on a very useful Talent project but this all comes at a real cost to the business.

    As for the results, the costs incurred from the employees involved could be recouped via an increase in quality of hire from better showcasing the business culture, and therefore improving business output which would mean this was cost neutral or even profit making. The stats given are vanity metrics and really its about quality referrals and hires made, plus brand advocacy growth.


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