Google Alerts is a valuable tool which allows you to be emailed when a new match comes up for a specific search term. You can set up as many alerts as you are willing to track. Your own personal name is one that should be set up, especially if you are using your name as your brand. It is also a good idea if you are in the process of looking for a job, since most all HR departments will “Google” your name before calling you or considering you for an interview. When you set up the Google Alert for your name, make sure to put it in quotations so that the search is performed on your entire name, not just Jim or Jones (if it were Jim Jones).
You many also want to be sent Alerts for any company you are working with or any product you have a major interest in promoting. You can schedule the Alerts to go to any email, so you many want to set one up specifically for this purpose, or these Alerts have the potential of overwhelming your email box if not attended to regularly.
Christina Hills of Website Creation Workshop has a short video that shows how you can easily set this up in just a minute or two.
Google Reader is another free search tool that is provided to keep constant track of the web sites, blogs and news sites that you indicate. Google has a number of tutorials on their site which can help you understand the basics.
Setting up Reader is a a project that you can either outsource or delegate to someone who has the time to set this up with your web site’s keywords in mind. The main reason you will want to set up Google Reader is to monitor topics that are of interest to your Customers and Audience. After setting up your list of Topics of Interest and Target Audience Avatar, you can use this list to search for blogs that are related. You will want to make sure that the blogs you add are current and being constantly updated.
After you have the Reader populated with interesting blogs you can add any blog easily from your browser’s URL bar. When you follow the link to a new article on most blogs there will be a small blue symbol on the right hand side of the URL. It looks like this:
If you click on this a drop down menu will appear. The drop down choices will include “Subscribe to exampleblog.com RSS Feed”. Click on this option and the Google Reader will pop up and prompt you to Subscribe via Google Homepage or Subscribe via Google Reader. Choose Google Reader (unless this is something you would want to view everyday on Google Homepage.)
Once Google Reader shows that you have over 500 articles to search you are getting warm. You probably want lots of choices because you will be searching these articles for information to repost on Facebook, tweet on Twitter, or link to on your Blog. You must give full credit to the Blog and the Author in your Blog Article posting. It is not permissible to copy and paste an article as your own. But you can summarize your thoughts on the article and post a link to the website that you find it on. This is an easy way to share valuable information with your audience without feeling the dreaded “Writer’s Block” every time you need to post something.
Writing your own material at least occasionally is advised. Your writing conveys a sense of who you are and what you know or believe. It is vital to your blog so that it has a personality. And that personality is what will attract your readers.
Do you face writer’s block when it comes to posting content on your blog? Have you set up Google Alerts and Google Reader to help with your Social Media Marketing? Please post your comments below.