How many of you are using Google Alerts as a source of blog food?
Ok, I admit that sounds like a question I ask folks when I am doing blog training. But it is a critical question. Many of us are not tapping into this powerful, I mean powerful resource.
Ok, what is Google Alerts?
As defined by Wikipedia:
The Google Alerts is a content monitoring 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.
Google Alerts only provides content from Google’s own search engine.
Currently there are six types of alerts sent when new content matches the search terms of the alert:
* Comprehensive – (default setting) aggregates News, Web and Blogs
* News – sent when matching content makes it into the top ten results of a Google News search
* Web – sent when new web pages appear in the top twenty results for a Google Web search
* Blogs – sent when matching content appears in the top ten results of a Google Blog Search
* Video – sent when matching content appears in the top ten results of a Google video search
* Groups – sent when matching content appears in the top fifty results of a Google Groups search
Users determine the frequency of checks for new results. Three options are available: “once a day”, “once a week”, or “as it happens”. These options set the maximum frequency of alerts and do not necessarily control how often they will receive alerts. Alerts are sent only if new content matches the user-selected search terms.
The first option, for example, means they will receive at most one alert email per day. The “as it happens” option can result in many alert emails per day, depending on the search.
Google Alerts are available in plain text as well as HTML. In October 2008 Google also made alerts available as RSS feeds.
MY CHALLENGE TO YOU
Develop a Google Alert for”
- Topic Area of your blog
- Your name
- Blog Titles
Try doing a comprehensive notice everyday for a week. You can always edit it. Then blog every day and include the title of each blog post in your alerts.
Glean from some of the news listings and other blogs and add them to site as a blog post. Remember to provide all links included in that blog post and credit to the authors
Are you up for the challenge?
Please share some of your results.
PS Use an email address that can tolerate the traffic.