A quick tip for the writers out there. If you want to keep track of your words when they hit the Internet, here’s a little trick I use to discover if a web site has picked up and is publishing my content.

First, find a unique-sounding phrase from your post/article — you’re looking for something that shouldn’t appear anywhere else on the Internet except for in your document. For instance, in my popular Ten Things I Wish I Knew When I Started as a Professional Speaker post, this phrase…

“By total fluke once, a speaker after me happened to select the same case study I presented”…

…didn’t, at the time of my post, appear anywhere else on the Internet.

So I went to Google Alerts and created a running search for that exact phrase. Important: Make sure you put the unique phrase in quote marks, so Google searches for that exact phrase, not just uses of all those words. Set the options however you like (my preferred settings are in the example below), and hit Create Alert.

And that’s it! Now, any time someone uses your content online, you’ll get an email from Google. Enjoy!

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