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As part of eMarketer’s CMO One-to-One interview series, Brad Maglinger, CMO of MapQuest, talks about the ubiquity of maps on mobile and about their effectiveness as a marketing tool.
eMarketer: How are maps used today?
Brad Maglinger: Before we were doing digital, we were printing maps to take on road trips, and the core function of maps is still the same. It has become much more interactive, and we’ve evolved with that.
eMarketer: How do demographics vary from desktop to mobile app versions?
Maglinger: Mobile app users skew a little bit younger, below the 35-year-old threshold, but our desktop audience is still holding strong between a 34-to-55-year-old audience.
eMarketer: Will map numbers continue to grow along with mobile?
Maglinger: Absolutely. The mapping function within mobile is a core piece of all applications, ranging from Yelp to MapQuest. Maps are an underlying feature to every single app that’s deployed on the mobile device today. Obviously there will be a ceiling to that growth, but, yes, it will continue to grow.
eMarketer: What about privacy? Is that going to be an obstacle?
Maglinger: No, not at all. Our current terms and conditions are up to date, and whenever we deploy an app we adhere to the regulations and rules from the Federal Trade Commission and the [industry self-regulating group] National Advertising Initiative (NAI). Anything that we would need to do from a guidance standpoint—not only from the government, but also from the concerns of our consumers—we do.
eMarketer: Are maps useful as marketing channels?
Maglinger: They are. We just signed a great partnership with Major League Baseball that expands game-day experiences with original contest content. There are map integrations within their At the Ballpark app and website, as well as 30 team websites.
eMarketer: Would you say maps are a cornerstone of local digital marketing?
Maglinger: Absolutely. We [choose] partners [based on their willingness] to bring that cornerstone to our product. If you look at our mobile app, we have this concept of layers, where you can bring your favorite brands right into the experience and right into your route. That is the cornerstone that we’ve been talking about so frequently.
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