In a growing blogosphere it can be difficult to try and stay ahead of the pack. Keeping up with the news is no easy task. Having the latest news tips and information is one of the best ways of making sure your blog is getting a piece of the traffic pie. With that being said, it can also be one of the most time consuming ways of growing your readership.
Fortunately for us, there are now a plethora of free tools available for the general public. These tools can make watching the news as it happens a much easier process. The following is a list of ways you can make your story finding journey a little more pleasant.
Technorati is a massive blog search engines that combines tagging with spider crawls for a result that makes fumbling through the blogosphere an enjoyable experience. The tool allows you to search using your own keywords if you’re looking for something specific, or you can use keywords that others are using. You can also opt to search popular tags for a niche specific surfing experience.
Technorati has a full grasp of the importance of RSS and offers feeds for just about any page on the site. The results of Technorati are virtually real time, so you know you’re always getting the latest chatter.
PRWeb is arguably one of the biggest press release distribution services on the web. The amount of press releases that flow through the site on a daily basis is hard to fathom. With this amount of information being passed, you can guarantee you’ll be able to find news that hasn’t even hit the press yet.
Unfortunately, PRWeb is a little difficult to navigate. The categories are not well laid out and finding the right feeds for your niche can be a challenge. However, if you do find the right feeds you’re guaranteed to get the latest news at it’s released.
StumbleUpon is a concept that I think is still in its infancy stage. It’s brilliantly simple in the way it’s all laid out, but it hasn’t yet received the traffic and notoriety needed to boost it into the big leagues of social bookmarking.
The idea is basically that you have a button that allows you to surf websites that others flagged as interesting. It works similar to Digg in that the ranking ALGO is user based, but Stumble Upon works behind the scenes instead of using a website based system.
Using the FireFox plugin is the best way to go in my opinion. You can get more information and a download link here.
Well, this one is a given to be quite honest. Digg is a gold mine of information for any news junkie out there. You have to know your way around to find the good stuff, but it’s there if you’re ready to look for it.
With Digg, most users just visit the most popular links, but fail to stop in to the sub pages where the “upcoming” links can be found. This is where all of the latest news will be posted and this is where you should be.
You can also subscribe to the feeds of these pages and that takes a little leg work out of the process.
Digg for Firefox
I’ve only recently started watching Live Marks but I think I’ll start working on making more visits and more often. LiveMarks is a project to show del.icio.us and other social bookmarking services in real time. It’s a new and easy way to snag stories as soon as they touch the blogosphere.
This is one of the most common social bookmarking services out there. It’s very simple in concept and the network has a ton of traffic.
You can get the Firefox plugin here.
infoRSS is a Firefox extension that synchronizes with Gmail and scrolls your feeds live on the status bar at the bottom of your browser window. I wrote about the plugin over here so if you need more information feel free to take a look.
Then of course you have the obvious sources like Google and Yahoo news. These are good sources, but by the time a story hits these pages it’s a given that they’re already out floating around the web.
That’s all I can think of for now. If you have any other ideas please comment and let me know. I’ll be sure and add them to the list along with a link to your site.
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