Quite a few sites have reported on how Shiv Nagar, a village in India, has renamed itself “SnapDeal.com Nagar”, out of gratitude to the company which paid to give them running water. But, I don’t think anyone’s reported on how this is going to give SnapDeal.com a free mapvertisement in Google Maps and Bing Maps.
Shiv Nagar, India, renamed itself SnapDeal.com
It appears that this was not intended to be a guerilla marketing tactic, but it is a defacto bit of commercial promotion, and once the town’s name becomes changed on maps it will become “mapvertising”.
As you may recall, I’ve written before about how corporate sponsorships can result in towns getting renamed after companies and products (here and here), and there are quite a few different companies and individuals who have been fascinated with the prospect of getting their names and messages set up to be visible in Google Maps one way or another.
Indeed, ShivNagar is not the first town to rename itself after a company — DISH, Texas has done this, as you can see:
Considering how I’ve written before about exploiting town sponsorships to get free advertising in online mapping systems like Google Maps and Bing Maps, is it really any wonder that a town has chosen to rename itself after a corporation has helped it?
What is surprising is that it was SnapDeals.com that achieved this before MicroSoft, Apple, Google, Starbucks, Wal-Mart, Target, or thousands of other companies which far larger charitable giving programs.