The demise of Google Reader has gotten all the attention over the last two weeks but for those in sales and marketing, another favorite web tool also appears to be on it last legs – Google Alerts. Users have relied on Google Alerts to notify them every time new information from search results appear on the web for specific keywords important to them.
Updates for the popular program have all but stopped. Many active users are reporting that the frequency has dropped and some are even saying that they are not receiving Alerts at all. This created the observation that Google Alerts might be the next to be shut down, in the same way that Google Reader was dumped recently.
I have counted on Google Alerts to monitor all the keywords that are important to me for many years. It has become an entrenched part of my daily sales process. With each new notification in my inbox, I have been able to stay aware of mentions of my company name, stay current on competitors activities and most importantly for my purposes, monitor information about each of my key customers and prospects. It has always been fresh and relevant reason to contact my customer or prospect about the info. It is not uncommon to have them respond with “I hadn’t heard that yet, how did you know?”, serving as a productive way to establish and build credibility with them.
In my search for worthy alternative I discovered a tool called Mention. Mention allows you to create alerts for your brand, your industry, your company, your name or your competitors and be informed in real-time about any mentions on the web and social web. Sound familiar.
As with most worthy web tools, they offer both a free and a premium version for individuals at $19.99/month and a team version for group use. They also offer multiple versions including a PC and Mac desktop, Chrome add-on, and both Apple and Android versions for your smartphone.
Mention provides much richer, deeper capabilities than Google Alerts. You can do all of this right from your phone or desktop:
- Media and Social Monitoring - Monitor millions of sources in 42 languages and don’t miss anything published on social networks, news sites, forums, blog or any web page.
- Anti-Noise Technology - Remove the noise coming from homonyms and spam by using their in-house technology that learns from your behavior.
- Team Work - Share your alerts with any user and assign tasks to your team members, in real-time right from your smartphone or desktop. Leverage the power of your team.
- Live Alerts - Get alerted in real-time via email and push notifications of new mentions. Don’t waste any time. React quickly and efficiently.
- All Devices - Access mention from anywhere. Use the web app, Chrome app, desktop version for PC, Mac or Linux or mobile version with the iPhone or Android app.
- Smart Actions - You can react to any mention the smart way. Retweet a mention, share positive mentions directly on your Facebook page….
- Priority mentions - Most important mentions are flagged according to several criteria : influence and authority of the source and latest interactions you had with them.
- Statistics & data Export tool - Get an overview of your mentions by source, language, over selected period of time, generate PDF reports or export data in CSV format to analyze them your own way.
I especially like the Smart Actions capability, being able to respond with a tweet or mention using the social platform that I know my customer is monitoring.
The statistics and data export capabilities for those of you who enjoy digging into the details of your actions.
Google Alerts is still functioning for some, especially those with five or fewer alerts, but if you are an active user that is dependant on getting this type of information to perform your job well, check out Mention.
Three questions that I would like your responses to:
- Is Google Alerts still working for you?
- Have you noticed any slowdown?
- Have you found any other alternatives that are working for you?