Marketing Strategy

Be aware of your competitive environment using Google Alerts

Strategic marketing requires an understanding of what your competitors are doing and the nature of your competitive environment. Without this knowledge, you can’t possibly plan your offensive or defensive strategies.

Use Google alerts to keep informed about competitor activity and industry news. If you aren’t already using alerts, get started today. It’s free. It’s simple to set up and you’ll soon start to feel more informed about what is happening in your competitive environment.

Google Alerts are emails sent to you when Google finds new results — such as web pages, newspaper articles, or blogs — that match your search query. You can use Google Alerts to monitor anything published on the internet.

How you might use alerts

I use Google Alerts to keep up to date with business related news in Colchester as well as for marketing strategy and marketing planning news . I also have set alerts for each of my clients, so I can keep informed of what is published about them.  I also monitor a few companies, for strategic reasons.

You might want to:

  • find out what is being published about your company or products
  • monitor competitor news
  • keep up to date with news in certain industries

How to set up Google Alerts:

If you’ve not set up any Google Alerts before, here are some simple steps to walk you through the process:

Login to your Google account.

  1. Enter a search query that you’re interested in.
  2. Select the result type you want to be alerted. Google provides a drop down menu for you to choose from.
  3. Select the language.
  4. Select a region.
  5. Set the frequency that you want to receive alerts. Be careful here. You don’t want to fill your inbox with daily distractions. Start with weekly alerts, and see how you get on.  You can always change it later, to “As it Happens, for more time sensitive information.
  6. Set how many results you want to see – the best results, or everything.
  7. State which email address you want alerts to go to. I’ve set up an alerts inbox, simply so I don’t clutter my main inbox. This helps me manage my time better.
  8. Click Create Alert.

That’s it. Simple. Google Alerts checks regularly to see if there are new results for your query. If there are new results, you’ll receive them in an email, like this one…

Google Alerts are a simple way of keeping you informed about your competitive environment. By being more informed, you can begin to tailor your strategy for your market  – you’ll need different strategies for different environments.  If you are developing a more structured approach to your competitor analysis, you’ll find some helpful tips in a different blog article here.

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