Skip to main content

Omaha Magazine

Maps No More!

Feb 22, 2024 11:48AM ● By Claudia Moomey
Emily Kassmeier omaha guidebook maps no more omaha magazine ac video march april 2024

Emily Kassmeier

Photo by Bill Sitzmann.

"Before you go to a new place–maybe it’s a restaurant or a coffee shop, or whatever it is–do you check out the place on Google Maps beforehand to see what the parking situation is like? Maybe you look at their tagged photos to see what the vibe is. Or, maybe you study the menu like it’s your job. If any of this sounds familiar, you are going to want to give us a follow.”

This is how Emily Kassmeier explains the purpose of her social media page, Omaha Guidebook, in a video pinned to the top of her Instagram profile.

Kassmeier is a marketing project manager for an agency, so she gets to work from home, which makes it much easier for her to run Omaha Guidebook in her free time. She originally created her channel as a means for people with anxiety to feel more comfortable when experiencing local places for the first time. It spans across most social media, utilizing TikTok, Instagram, Facebook, and a website of the same name, ensuring easy access for everyone.

Kassmeier began her project in July 2023 when she realized others may also have a need for extra preparedness. “I had a conversation with someone about how we wished something like this existed,” she explained. “I kept thinking about it and wondered how many other people would like something like this—so I decided to find out.” 

Sure enough, plenty of others liked it, too. 

Omaha Guidebook has since gained over 18,000 followers across its social media pages with around 100 reviews of local businesses and even some gift guides for holidays, birthdays, and special occasions. 

When deciding where to go and what to review, Kassmeier just goes with the flow. “Some places are requests from followers. I get some requests from business owners—or just places I like to go,” she explained. At the end of every video, Kassmeier invites her followers to “drop a comment” requesting new places to be reviewed.

The Guidebook posts at least once a week, sometimes up to five times, featuring places in Omaha and surrounding areas like Elkhorn and Lincoln. Videos cover everything people would need to know before arriving, including directions, parking, physical accessibility, how to navigate the buildings, and how to pay for products. 

“I have anxiety, so I definitely understand how it can be a little uncomfortable going somewhere new,” Kassmeier reflected. 

“The original intent was that it would be a resource for people who deal with anxiety,” she continued, “but as it has grown, I’ve realized it’s not just people who deal with anxiety who benefit from this; it’s also helpful for people who have ADHD, depression, mobility challenges, et cetera. Then there are people who don’t struggle with any of those issues, who just like to learn about new local places they haven’t been before.”

The Guidebook is not only helpful for customers, but benefits business owners as well. Erin Smith of Mango’s Manis had nothing but glowing compliments for Kassmeier and her channel when she visited Smith’s nail salon in October 2023. 

“She is wonderful—very sweet, detail-oriented, and very organized. You can tell she really has a passion for this,” Smith said. 

She was nervous, she admits, about allowing Kassmeier to create a video regarding her private business, but is beyond pleased with the results. “I was really anxious because I know some social media people can be mean, especially in the beauty industry,” she recalled, “but the way she presented my business was amazing; she captured the environment and everything so beautifully!” 

According to Smith, the Omaha Guidebook video “quite literally changed the trajectory of [her] year.” Over the weekend the video dropped, Smith acquired 150 new followers, 20 new clients, and a significant increase in attention to her small business. “I’ve gotten a ton of people who mention it, and it made me feel way more seen and heard in the community. It’s incredible! I highly recommend her to any business.”

Omaha Guidebook continues to rapidly gain followers and engagement on their social media, and Kassmeier remains optimistic about the future of her unique social media project. 

“I have gotten quite a few messages from people about how they’ve gone out and explored more after they have watched the videos, which is really encouraging,” she beamed. 

Follow Omaha Guidebook on social media platforms, including TikTokInstagram, and Facebook, or visit omahaguidebook.com.

This article originally appeared in the March/April 2024 issue of Omaha Magazine. To subscribe, click here. 

Emily Kassmeier

Photo by Bill Sitzmann.

 

Evvnt Calendar