Google Maps - My Maps was introduced in 2007. It is a great tool with dozens of Real Estate applications such as mapping community events, local businesses, or home tours.
But, for me, the work-flow of creating a map was puzzling; and the brain-fit wasn't quite right.
For anyone else who may have the same work-flow/brain-fit problem, here are my notes assembled as a Google Maps - My Maps Basic Tutorial.
Go to http://maps.google.com - Sign in with your Google account.
Click "My Maps" then "Create new map"
Title the map and check the privacy setting
Search for an address. After Google finds the location, click the address marker, a dialog balloon will appear. Click "Save to..." If you want to add the location to a previously created map, click the drop down arrow at "Which map do you want to save to?" and select the map you want.
Search for your next address, save to your map. Continue adding addresses until you have entered all your locations.
And here's where the work-flow/brain-fit part comes in: As you continue adding addresses and saving to your map, your map will not be open, and you will not see the location markers being added on the screen.
When you have finished entering and saving all your locations, click "My Maps" and click the name of your map in the left column to open it.
Your map will open, and you still may not see your location markers! If you don't see your markers, look in the lower left panel, then place a check mark becside each address. You also may need to adjust the zoom level or map positioning.
If you don't see the lower left panel address list, you can toggle it on by clicking the tiny "+" mark below the upper address list.
To add text, photos or links to each location's info ballow, click the Edit button.
Then click the address in the (upper) left column.
After clicking Edit, basic editor tools will appear in the dialog balloon. With the editor tools, you can add and format text, and insert photos and links.
You can change the appearance and color of the location marker by clicking on the marker icon in the dialog balloon.
Also note, if you need to delete an address from your map, it is done with the Delete link in the lower left hand corner of this dialog balloon.
When finished, click Done/Save.
Cheryl Johnson, Bob Taylor Properties, Inc.