Monetize Monday ~ Today is a day where you start the momentum of the week.  In our Weekly Productivity Program, we like to focus on tasks that generate revenue for our business – following up or signing a contract, building your team and filing paperwork to register new reps (this way you have all week to work with them), following up on outstanding invoices – or do your invoicing and most important – build relationships (real ones!).  If you start your week showing  some sort of revenue it inspires you for the rest of the week….

Google Alerts, what are they?

Google Alerts is content change detection and notification service, offered by the search engine company Google, that automatically notifies users when new content from news, web, blogs, video and/or discussion groups matches a set of search terms selected by the user and stored by the Google Alerts service. Notifications can be sent by email, as a web feed or displayed on the users iGoogle page.

You should know… Google Alerts only provides content from Google’s own search engine.

Why should you use Google Alerts?

We all know I love Google’s free tools and Google Alerts is no exception to this rule!  Do you ever wonder how you can find out what is going on in the world with your competition, talked about in the world in regards to your key words, or what is being said about you in the world without spending hours and hours doing the research manually?  How you find it all out but save time while doing it?  That is where Google Alerts comes in!

Not only does Google Alerts alert you to things about you and you can monitor good and bad things being said, it also will bring you information to use a content in your own article writing.  Google Alerts can guide you to be a better blogger by showing you what others are doing and telling you what people want to  know about – if you set your Google Alerts up properly…

You need to have a Google account to set up Google Alerts – this does not mean you have to use Gmail – just set up a Google account.

Google Alerts allows you to set up and customize what Google searches to send your your “Google Alert” – you can choose the type, how often you receive it (can be changed for each alert depending on importance to you), the volume (in reference to the amount of hits that post or comment gets), and where to deliver your Google Alerts to.

Google Alert
Google Alerts set up

At the top just to the right of the Google Alerts logo – typ e in your key word, topic, or name and then you will see a preview of what items would come up on Google Alerts for that item…

Google Alerts Christina Littrell Williams
Google Alerts preview for my name...

If you like the preview and it is giving you the type of information you wanted to be receiving from this Google Alert, then click the red box “create alert” and you are done.  If it id not the information you were looking for in this Google Alert, modify your key words you put in the search box and preview another one.

If you set up Google Alerts before and want to make changes, at the very bottom of this page on the left, is a Manage your Alerts – click that and you will see Google Alerts set up before and you can edit them and narrow your search terms if you needed to.

You should have Google Alerts for:

  • Your Name (to be alerted when someone writes about you)
  • Your Company name (whether it is your business or a network marketing company keep in the loop and see what is being written about your business or the company you represent)
  • Your Social Media accounts (to be alerted when someone writes about you)
  • Your website (to be alerted when someone writes about your website – if specific stories or pages on your website are important to you set up a Google Alert for each story/page)
  • Your competition (know what they are doing or what is being said about them)
  • Key words/Trending Topics (see what is happening in the topics and terms that are important to you)

 Tips for narrowing your searches…

  • When you set up your searches you can use quotes around your terms or phrase so you get a more narrowed search – like “virtual assistants in California” – this keeps Google from search each individual term and sending you a wide range in your Google Alert.
  • You can also set up Google Alerts for phrases that might pertain to your audience – like questions or concerns they have – if it is go green peeps use a phrases that are buzz word phrases and put it in quotes. Fit into what they are looking for in your area of products or services – this will give you the opportunity to visit blogs where people are asking questions and you can give answers and be helpful – make yourself visible!
  • Set up the phrases or keywords you want to get ranking for when you blog – remember the quotes around them to keep your Google Alert focused.
  • When setting up your Google Alert for your competition… remember to use their website – you can also see who they are doing using keywords you like to use too – put your keyword in the search box with quotes around it and also in the search box put their website address – and you can see what they write on using that keyword… your preview pane will tell you if there was anything written in the last day or not and will show the results of what they do have.

Don’t miss out on this valuable free tool!  It is not only a time saver but is a business builder as well – get out there and get to know what is being said about you, your company, what your customers what to  know and what your competitors are doing!