It goes without saying that keeping up to date with all of the changes that are occurring in your industry is a good thing. However, when you’re trying to run a business, juggle staff and bring in some sales, it can be difficult to know where to find this information quickly and easily.
But, keeping your finger on the pulse isn’t too difficult and there are a number of different ways that you can stay reliably informed. Two of the most classic ways of doing this are going on professional development courses and reading industry-related publications. However, there are a number of other ways that you may find even more beneficial, including:
Conferences and Networking Events
Even though the whole idea of these types of events is to network, they’re also a great place for hearing what others are saying about changes in the industry. You could ask people what their opinions are or you may overhear some groups discussing the latest changes. Equally, if there’s a conference that’s related to your industry, attending this is a no-brainer but don’t forget about those conferences that might be related to a subsidiary industry too. For example, if you were an oven retailer, you may find a conference on powder coating ovens relevant and informative for your industry.
Find out where your industry peers are hanging out and get involved in the conversation because this can be a fantastic way to hear about all of the latest changes that are happening. You may find that there are Facebook groups that are specifically focused on your industry or that there are regular Tweetchats. Not only will this provide you with the latest news and updates but it’s also great for meeting new people and networking.
Google News Alerts
To stay on top of the news as and when it happens, why not create some Google news alerts? Using keywords or phrases, you can be instantly notified of any newsworthy stories that are relevant to your industry. You could even set up one about your own company, so you can pick up the latest press releases and stories when they happen.
Even though social media has taken over from these somewhat, they’re still a great way of keeping updated with the latest how-to information. Online you’ll find lots of boards and forums where people can discuss topics and share their experiences, so you’ll hear first-hand how things did or didn’t work for other people in your industry.
Search for a board that discusses something relevant to you, e.g. a tool that you use, and get involved. If you participate yourself, you’ll get more from these types of informative sources.
Magazines might seem a little outdated and you may find that some industries have ceased producing magazines in favor of blogs, so find these great sources of content online. There’s plenty of blogs out there and you’re sure to find some that are relevant to your industry. These will discuss the latest news, trends, what’s working, what’s gone wrong and what the forecast is for the future. You’ll find these blogs in a variety of different formats, so find ones that suit you, your industry and your company.
The beauty of podcasts are that you can listen to them as and when you’ve got the time – so when you get a spare minute at home or your driving to or from work, you can tune into these. You don’t have to listen to them when they’re broadcast and you can even pause them if you need to do something else, which makes them incredibly convenient.
YouTube News Videos
You might think YouTube is just full of cat videos but you’d be wrong. There’s a plethora of information available on YouTube including the latest news, reviews and instructions. Look at companies you work with to see what they’re putting on there and tune into manufacturers / suppliers that you deal with so you can keep updated with what they’re doing. A lot of industries are now producing videos on YouTube, and again, these sources of information are there for you to access as and when you have time.
Thanks to the Internet there’s now a whole lot of information available at our fingertips, making it quick and easy to find out the latest industry news. Find sources that are related to your industry as well as subsidiaries that may provide you with valuable information too.
Dominic Shepherd is a business analyst who enjoys sharing his knowledge with a wider audience online through his written articles.