It can be hard to stay on top of industry trends and news. Social media can help. There are three things you can do that will take less than half an hour of your time today, and will save you a lot of time in the future, as well as give you instant updates on important news items in your industry or field, or news in general.
1) Digg it. Did you know that Digg has an option to receive email alerts of their best and biggest stories? You can set the alert to go to your email daily, or if you don’t want to be deluged, you can have it sent to you weekly.
2) Get even more Linked In. You may already be on Linked In, but are you taking advantage of the many networking groups on the site? They have networks for a wide range of industries and professions, many broken down by regions and even cities. They have networking groups for the unemployed, the self-employed and the part-time employed. They are so many different kinds of groups there is probably one for marketers who sneeze too easily, or doctors who cry at Hallmark ads. Again, you can set up your email to receive alerts when one of your groups has new discussions or topics posted to the board. It can sometimes be an enormous waste of time, particularly when members go into overdrive on self-promotion, but often you’ll find great articles and links to websites that may have valuable, or at least useful, information.
3) Google Alerts. This may seem like a no-brainer, but if you haven’t set up a google alert for the news or information you need the most, you’re missing out. You can set up a Google alert to come to your email on any topic. Boston Terriers, new movie releases, diamonds, celebrity engagements, your favorite brand, your competitor, your company— definitely set up an alert for that one! If it exists, you can set up a Google alert for it. The search engine will notify you when an article or blog post hits their radar.
This is just a short list of easy ways to stay connected without having to search for news that interest you. Send me your favorite ways to stay connected, whether it’s picking up the phone and talking to a colleague, reading the news paper, or a useful website.