SCORE Small Business Blog

Productivity: Google News Alerts Can Help You Manage Information Overload
13 Comments

Anytime an article hits the Web on email overload, an alert shows up in my Inbox. I signed up for Google Alerts, which are email updates of the latest, relevant Google results (web, news, etc.) based on your choice of query or topic.

As stated on their site, some handy uses of Google Alerts include:

  • Monitoring a developing news story.
  • Keeping current on a competitor or industry.
  • Getting the latest on a celebrity or event.To sign up:
  1. Go to www.google.com/alerts.
  2. In the box to the right, create the type of alert you want.

I wanted to make sure I only received alerts for articles that have the words, email overload, written together. So I put the term in quotation marks, as in “email overload”. And since some people write email with a hyphen, I added another alert for “e-mail overload”.

I also wanted to make sure I receive alerts any time something hits the Web with my name, so I created another alert, and wrote it as “Peggy Duncan”. I didn’t want articles about another Peggy Duncan, but I don’t think my name is that common (if you have a common name, you may want to add a term(s) to your alert that usually accompanies your name, such as “attorney”. (You would write your alert as “Your Name” attorney.)

Now you’ll choose the type of alert you want (I chose “News & Web”), and how often you want to be notified (I chose “as it happens”).

I’ve already been quoted in a follow up article on MiamiHerald.com because I sent comments and tips for an article they had published online that day. My tips showed up the next day! I knew I was on the site because of the alert I’d created for articles with my name. I rarely read the Miami Herald, and never would have known that an article about my topic was on their site.

Google News Alerts will streamline how you manage information overload or help you get media mentions that build your credibility. It only takes a minute or two to sign up, and just imagine all the time you’ll save looking for specific data going forward. Or your next big break could come from being so media savvy.

Peggy Duncan, SCORE Atlanta
View more posts by Peggy

I’m a productivity and technology speaker, trainer, author, and consultant. I own The Digital Breakthroughs Institute in Atlanta GA.
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Discussion (13) Comment

  1. Yes indeed Google News Alerts can help us manage information overload

  2. They are excellent way to track oneself in the media.

  3. If you are using Google News Alerts, you know that you can make google send you only news articles that contain certain keywords, and also exclude articles using a minus in front of the keyword.

  4. Google Alerts all the way


  5. AriffinVisitor

    Congratulations for the new blog.


  6. web gadgetsVisitor

    I personally recommend Google Alerts for tracking all information about your business.


  7. Google NewsVisitor

    I have google alerts set up myself for tracking


  8. J. BarnesVisitor

    Hi Karen. At our office, we use the company name and keywords from the press release. For example, if we had a new board member named Jane Doe, we would use “ACME Company”, “board member” and “Jane Doe” as our search terms. I would suggest using words from the title of the release. We’ve found that online PR can be extremely viral. Within a day of sending out a new release, hundreds of online newspapers, blogs and Web sites across the country had already picked up the story.

    If you need help writing stories the media will pick up, SCORE has excellent articles on the Web site. “How to Get Free Publicity for Your Small Business” (http://www.score.org/m_pr_18.html), “Unleash the Power of the National Media” (http://www.score.org/m_pr_6.html) and “Online Marketing Strategies to Promote Your Business” (http://www.score.org/article_online_marketing_strategies.html) are good ones.


  9. Bobbie HarrisVisitor

    I have google alerts set up for the very key words that define my business. That way I stay up-to-date on everything in the news, blogs and articles published in my industry.

  10. Great tip Peggy. For those of us in the B2B world, this can also be a great way to keep track of customers, their competitors, and developments in their industry. We become more valuable to our clients when we can give them a heads-up on recent developments and provide suggestions to help them take advantage of these developments.


  11. Karen MooreVisitor

    J. Barnes, what do you put in for your company, your name or industry to get info on your PR efforts? Thanks


  12. Google NewsVisitor

    Google Alerts are indeed the right choice when it comes to tracking.


  13. J. BarnesVisitor

    As Peggy mentions, Google Alerts are an excellent way to track yourself in the media. It’s also an essential tool for entrepreneurs to measure the effectiveness of their PR efforts. We use it at our office and receive same day notifications of online media hits. It’s particularly effective for businesses with small PR budgets or those who rely heavily on internet marketing. Thanks for the great info!

 

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