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From navigation utility to discovery tool


How do you fundamentally change how people use one of the world's most downloaded apps?


Quest: Map every moment

Google was transforming Maps from a mere mapping utility into a planning tool.


But people’s behaviors around Google Maps were deeply ingrained and focused strictly on getting from A to B. They turned to other apps to choose their destinations and optimize their experiences.


Long conversations with the engineers on the project unlocked their vision: a fundamental shift in how we use maps to navigate our lives. 


This unlocked a different way of looking at Google Maps’ role in the world: we flipped the meaning of ‘map’ from a noun to a verb. We made it a way of exploring time rather than space. Of discovering life, rather than merely navigating it. We built a persona of Maps’ most demanding users — young city dwellers across the globe — and defined myriad opportunities for Google Maps to optimize their lives.


Mapping out a clear path for a new Google Maps

To bring the Quest to life, we developed robust tone of voice guidelines and creative samples that helped align multiple stakeholder groups. We then defined critical features on the product roadmap that would bring Maps to life in new ways through in-app surprise and delight moments. Finally, we created internal and external communications that helped relaunch Google Maps during Google’s iconic 2018 I/O keynote.




We gave Google a new way of mapping their world

The Google Maps persona, with its two associated modes of "hustle" and "enjoy", has become fundamental to how Google engineers think about their users.


Google Maps’ Quest continues to inspire product development and communications.


See more examples of how we’ve helped to transform our clients.