1. Go to http://mapbox.com and sign up for a Mapbox account.
2. Once logged in, click the home tab, and click to copy your unique API key to your clipboard. Leave this window open, you’ll probably come back here for that key a few times.
3. Open up Tableau Desktop v9.2 or later, and prepare by connecting to a datasource that you know has geographic fields.
4. In the main navigation bar find Map → Background Maps → Map Services…
5. The Map Services module will appear, find Add… → Mapbox Maps…
6. Name your style (this is how it’ll appear in your map options, name it anything.) Paste in your API token from step two above, and either choose a Mapbox preset style (which are great) or a custom map. For this exercise, I’ll choose the Mapbox preset Emerald.
7. Now you’ve got your new map style ready. Let’s drag out some geographic fields to see what’s different. Here I drag out city, and my map looks a lot different!
8. How about zooming in on the Seattle Metro?
9. We can even drill down to see a complete street system.
10. There’s a bunch of other Mapbox presets to explore. The image below is the Comic themed map. For more inspiration, check out some of the cool maps the Mapbox community has created.