In a post on our blog in late August this year (2007), Derek did a fantastic job of laying out ways to make Google work for you (instead of you working “for” Google). In that post Derek referenced Google Alerts and how to use this service …
I thought it would be fun to give people a list of some specific ways to use Google Alerts on a daily basis. While these techniques can be used by any online marketer, the tactics listed below are especially useful for B2B marketers (and we specialize in B2B SEO and online marketing )…
6 Ways to Use Google Alerts for B2B Online Marketing
Brand Management – Track your company’s name and product/solution brand names to monitor the web for mentions of your brand. This will allow you to quickly respond to online conversations about your company. If the mention of your company/products is positive, here is an opportunity to make sure that your website is receiving the best possible backlink. And, if the commentary is not flattering to your company, here is the opportunity to reach out and respond to the critique. I’d recommend setting this alert for Comprehensive & as-it-happens.
Competitive Intelligence – Track your competitors’ company name and product/solution brand names. By getting daily (or weekly) updates about how your competitors are being positioned or discussed on the Web you can take actions to counter their efforts (and/or make sure your company is being mentioned on the same sites if it is applicable). I’d recommend setting this alert for Comprehensive & once-a-day.
Find Bloggers – Use Google Alerts’ ability to only search blogs to monitor your top keywords to locate bloggers discussing news, opinions, conversations, etc. revolving around your company’s main solutions. When the blog conversations are especially relevant, post comments on those blogs and/or craft a blog post on your own company’s blog to participate in the conversation. I’d recommend setting this alert for Blogs & once-a-day.
Online PR – You can use Google Alerts creatively to build a list of websites where you can submit your press releases or reach out to ask an editor to interview you. For instance, if you are a marketer of data warehousing software, you might put a weekly alert in for something like ‘ “data warehousing” news ‘. The quotes around “data warehousing” will limit the search that Google does to those 2 words in that word order, and by putting in the word “news” not in quotes you will be asking Google to find information on websites that (hopefully) pertains to news about data warehousing. I say “hopefully” because using Google Alerts is as much an art as it is a science. You’ll have to experiment with how you put your words into Google Alerts to get the best results. I’d recommend setting this alert for Comprehensive & once-a-week.
Link Building – Using alerts for finding bloggers and building a list of news/industry websites as mentioned above dovetails nicely with finding websites where you may be able to acquire a link to your site. In addition, by mining Google Alerts for websites related to your top keywords you can find websites that are in your market space, and you can look to see which sites are linking to those websites (go to a search engine and type link: before a website address and you will see websites that are linking to that site – e.g. link:www.XYZwebsite.com). I’d recommend setting this alert for Comprehensive & once-a-week.
Find New Content – Try adding a Google Alert for something related to white papers, webinars, seminars, podcasts, etc. Receiving alerts for these kinds of content can help you stay on top of what competitors and industry resources are publishing. For example, put in an alert for “data warehousing white paper”. I’d recommend setting this alert for Comprehensive & once-a-week.
I’d love to hear any tips from readers of this post on how to use Google Alerts …