A good opportunity for visibility, local coverage and links is press releases.
Now, before the eye rolls start, I need to address the fact that even press releases have been turned into spam by some entities online. The key to a successful press release is a good, strong and legitimate angle that will make you pressworthy to your local paper(s).
Newspapers and print media are not worthless, despite what some will have you believe. It's simply that their significance and their "place of value" in your marketing has changed in this Internet age. Print media serves one main purpose: To create visibility that will drive people to where they can find you online and learn more about you.
Yes, you want that print ad or that coverage to lead people to call you or come see you at your office, but that just doesn't happen with nearly the same frequency that it used to.
Press releases are valuable when they're used properly. Online, you can find countless forums with marketing spam masquerading as "press releases." A true press release is an unbiased statement of facts. There is room for opinion in quotes used in press releases, but you have to make sure that it doesn't disrupt the spirit of an unbiases factual statement.
I've written press releases for over 10 years and gotten businesses cover stories in their local newspapers, and the key to this has been simply talking with the editors and finding out what kinds of stories they're looking for. The truth is that press releases can lead to unpaid advertising for you through a story in your local paper and it's important to handle this aspect with respect. Editors will love you for that. Nothing ticks them off more than being inundated with truly un-newsworthy press releases.
Which brings us to the headline of this post...what makes you newsworthy? There can be several answers to this, but what I want to address here is how long you have been in real estate. This won't apply to newbies, but if you have been in the real estate business for 10 years or more, you are a valuable resource of information because you have witnessed first hand the changes that have occurred in the past decade or more.
Anniversaries of over 10 years tend to be of interest to local business editors as long as there is a legitimate newsworthy angle. How long have you been in real estate? Mark your calendar for your 10 year, 15 year, 20 year, etc. anniversary and plan to get a press release (it may take a few tries depending on how much other news you're competing with for page space) to your local paper with the angle of your "Nth" anniversary in the real estate business and your observations of what has changed in that time and the impact that it has had/will have on home owners/buyers/sellers.
This is vital information of legitimate interest, and who better to offer it than you? As with all press releases, there is no guarantee of coverage, but even if you don't get the coverage you hope for you can forge a relationship with your local media as a local expert an could find yourself quoted in a future article. They don't know you exist if you don't let 'em know:)
If you have any questions about press releases, just give me a call or shoot me an email.
(NOTE: my apologies if you get a Malware warning on my site. It shows up okay in some browsers, but I was hacked and as of 11/6/11 I'm waiting for Google to give me the final stamp of approval. In the meantime, you may just want to email or call me)