Local Guides are passionate about supporting small businesses. Some of you have even formed partnerships with businesses to hold meet-ups. These partnerships can be great for everyone, but there are some important things to keep in mind if you’re thinking about hosting a sponsored meet-up.
Please take a look at our guidelines below. You’ll soon find them in the Local Guides program rules and help center, too.
Caption: A chalkboard at a cafe that reads, “Welcome Google Local Guides”.
Meet-up sponsorship guidelines
Local Guides can partner with businesses to make their meet-ups more fun and less expensive for attendees. A business might agree to sponsor a meet-up by providing goods or services (for example, a discount to rent a venue, or complimentary snacks). However, it’s important that sponsorships don’t influence contributions on Google Maps. Below are the guidelines that Local Guides should follow when hosting a sponsored meet-up:
Local Guides should not accept sponsorship in exchange for contributions on Google Maps. For example, you shouldn’t agree to write positive reviews about a business that sponsors a meet-up — or negative reviews about its competitors. This applies to the Local Guide hosting the meet-up and to all attendees. Attendees should not be required to do anything for or on behalf of the business in order to participate in the meet-up.
Local Guides should not accept any form of payment in exchange for hosting a meet-up in partnership with a business.
If a meet-up is sponsored, the host should mention that fact in their meet-up description. For example: “Jason's Ice Cream Shop is sponsoring this meet-up. They'll be providing ice cream for us all to enjoy. They understand that none of us is promising contributions of any kind to the business in exchange for sponsoring the meet-up.”