The question of staying connected seems simple. Spend all day, every day surfing the web searching for interesting, relevant information, hoping that with the right combination of luck and an innate ability to know WHO’s got the best info, you’re bound to stay on the bleeding edge, right? Ok, not so simple….

So, what about just being everywhere, all the time? Getting warmer… but cool your jets Zeus.  Just because you aren’t omnipresent, and can’t be everywhere at once, doesn’t mean you can make everything, from every place, appear in one place at one time. And that’s where this handy little guide comes in. Tech to the rescue.

CONTENT AGGREGATORS

The general idea behind this class of technology is to collect and organize all the kinds of content that you may be looking for without having to scour the 50 different sites every hour on the hour to stay fresh. There are a host of these if you look hard enough, but here are some of our favorites.

  • ALLTOP
    This is an oldie, but a goodie. It can be a little intimidating at first, but once you get the hang of it you can customize the bejeezus out of it to keep relevant interests, news stories, industry info, or just applicable content front and center. It’s like bookmarks had a child with RSS feeds… and the offspring is gloriously useful.
  • FLIPBOARD
    Very similar to Alltop, Flipbook allows you to choose the feeds you want to receive – be they hotel info, travel info, current events, pop culture, etc. but in a pretty flipping-type user-interface — and on your phone. The only downside is that you can’t choose just “any” sites or topics. But its pretty chock full of info nonetheless.
  • GOOGLE CURRENTS
    Again, similar to Flipboard. Slightly less interesting interface. But they add back in the ability to follow ANY site or content you choose. And (added bonus) it also recommends content based on your current setup. Also available for your phone.
  • PINTEREST
    You probably know Pinterest as a great place to collect design ideas or recipes, but if you set it up correctly, you can not only “follow” relevant information, news, pop culture, “zeitgeist” trends, and so on, to keep YOU up to date… but if you then reshare what you find relevant to your Pinterest account, your “tool” can also become a unique content feature for your social media efforts
  • GOOGLE ALERTS
    Its not exactly aggregation, as such, but it does allow you to customize the information you’re looking for in a very specific way. Long and short of it is this: You set up keywords that you want to search (biking, hotel room, pizza, whatever you’re interested in staying up to date on) and then you choose the frequency of delivery and the amount of results you want with each delivery, and Google will send you those searches. The benefit of this is that you only need to check it as often as they send them to you. The disadvantage is that with a query that is too broad, the relevant matches will be few, and you’ll have to wade through a lot to get to those… and that if the query is too specific, you’ll miss out on a lot of possibilities, too. But this is great to use in conjunction with the rest.

CURRENT INTEREST / INSPIRATION

The general idea behind this second class of websites is simply to stay “in-the-know” as to what’s going on in webspace. As opposed to the link aggregators you customize, these are sites that are, more or less, being aggregated based on the collective interests of “the web.” In other words, what is new, fresh, hot in people’s minds right now, and what they are reacting too. These may not be for everyone, as these will vary GREATLY based on what YOU’RE persona is interested in, but we find these to be very effective in connecting to our consumers on a more personal, interest-based, sharing type of communication.

HOTEL MARKETING SPECIFIC

To stay on the cutting edge and to be “in the know” in any discipline of any field is a challenge. To do so in multiple disciplines is no less of a task. So, since we’re also providing you with inspiration and connection for your social media marketing, we wanted to also give you a couple great sources to stay inspired and connected to the hotel industry as a whole.

It’s a lot to take in, and its not exactly automated, per se… but once you ease these into your routine you’ll soon find that you’ll be spending much less time looking, and much more time finding. Keep up the hard work and you’ll soon be the most connected brand on the block.