Make sure you are always alerted.

Getting the news first and reacting first to it is one of the hallmarks of market leaders; in fact people have made their fortunes from being the first to the key news in their field – notable examples exist in the banking and financial sectors.

Nowadays it’s hard to be first with the news because people around the globe are more connected than ever to what’s happening; that’s why a couple of Google tools are so valuable for your online business and can help to propel you to the top of the heap.

Google Reader – or Reeder (iPhone)

Google Reader (Reeder on the iPhone) is a fantastic tool to ensure you don’t have to flit between 20 different websites to read the news you want to read.

Google Reader allows you to pick the most important sources in your industry (most market leaders have blogs which you can select) and it collates all relevant daily updates and posts in one place for you to read.

How convenient is that? It allows you to tailor the news you read every day and then presents it to you in a single place, so there is far less searching through irrelevant stuff to get to the nuggets of information you’re after.

It’s an excellent way to keep up to date – but not only that. The best articles and info you can re-Tweet or share on your Facebook wall – so it’s a great content generator too.

If you spread great content through social media you rapidly rise in authority online, as it shows you are on the cutting edge.

Plus, of course, Google Reader is also a great time saver for busy people; you can choose to read the news “on the go” (via your iPhone), while sipping a cup of coffee or over a cold beer at home later on!

Google Alerts

You can set Google Alerts up so that you get notified when your main keywords are used anywhere online; this helps you keep across all the news, views and developments that are directly related to your business – and it can be delivered daily in an “Alert” to you, for each keyword.

This is a great tool for giving you the latest news and, more importantly, the opportunity to be the first to react to it.

When a topic is hot or news is breaking it attracts media attention; being first to develop content around these hot topics means you can also grab some of that attention and essentially “ride on the back” of the buzz! That helps to position you as one of the market leaders.

These are just two of the tools discussed in the Competition Crusher workshop at www.CrusherWorkshop.com; you can find plenty of other essential online marketing tools and general online business tips there.

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