5 Online and Social Media Marketing Resources to Help Save You Time

First off, let me just say that I have been completely slacking off when it comes to blogging for our site.  I consult businesses daily on the importance of blogging and building community around content, yet I haven’t updated our blog for months.  I was speaking with someone yesterday, who told me that by having such an outdated blog, that it appears that we’re out of business.  Painful and embarrassing? Yes, but the truth is quite the opposite.  We’re so busy working with all of our wonderful clients and prospects, that it just hasn’t been a priority.  It’s not that we’re not trying.  Every time Kristi and I sit down to write something, we either stop what we’re doing because a client needs our help or we are doing research online for the topic we’re writing about and spend the next few hours learning about that topic so that we can pass the info on to clients and prospects.  Get where I’m going with this?  With that said, it’s time for us to “walk the walk”, if you will.

With that said, and the reason I am writing this post, is time, or really, lack of time that small business owners have to grow their business via advertising, specifically through online marketing.

Let’s face it, even if you had 10 free hours per week to keep up with social media, new product launches, changes to Facebook, Twitter, mobile marketing, etc., you couldn’t do it.  Sorry, it’s just not possible to keep up with the rapid pace, let alone try to manage your presence on social networking sites in order to grow your business.

So, I’d like to take this opportunity to provide you with 5 tools and sites that will help make your life a little easier and your brain a whole lot smarter:

1. http://alltop.com Alltop is a collection of over 32,000 information sources.  You can customize your own “MyAlltop” and create a “personal, online magazine rack” of your favorite websites and blogs.  The interface is so simple to use, just run a search on a specific topic, chose which publications you want to add with a click and you have your own page with your custom news feed.  Plan on spending some time on this site during set up.  When I set up MyAlltop for myself, there were well over 150 options to choose from within the Social Media category alone.  Well worth your time.

2. http://mashable.com People have mixed feelings about Mashable content.  My feeling is that they break news about Twitter, Google, Facebook, etc. faster and better than anyone else.

3. http://www.socialmediaexaminer.com This site is filled with Case Studies, How-Tos, Tools and Reviews about, you guessed it, Social Media.

4. http://www.smartbrief.com They publish industry specific email newsletters  offered in partnership with more than 100 leading trade associations, professional societies, non-profits and corporations.  These are quality newsletters….I get so many that I had to set up a separate email account for them.

5. GOOGLE-there are so many benefits to setting up a Google account and profile for your business that I will write another blog post about this soon.  I promise!  One thing you can do right now that won’t take a lot of time is set up Google Alerts to track what’s being said about you and your business online.  You can track any keywords that you like, including your competitors.  This service is available to you even if you don’t have a Google account.  Sign up here: http://www.google.com/alerts

Hope this list helps save you some time trying to sort through all the great information about online marketing and social media.


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