It’s true: Hillary Clinton’s presidential political campaign will almost certainly be relying heavily on marketing postcards and other direct mail to communicate her stands on important issues, drum up financial contributions, criticize opponents, encourage voting and more. Her last presidential run did. All political campaigns do – because direct mail is inexpensive, and it has a long history of being able to influence human behavior.

But that’s not really what this article is about.

The headline and first paragraph of this article are simply examples of a marketing technique called “Newsjacking.” In short, to illustrate how effective postcard marketing can be, we linked it to a trending topic in the news: Hillary Clinton’s latest presidential run. You can use the same technique to promote your business.

(And just to be clear: We’re completely impartial; we take no sides in this or any other political race.)

How to get started

newsjacking-how-to-do-itJust pick a topic (it doesn’t need to be political) that’s getting a lot of attention (news stories, social media comments, etc.) then think of a connection to your world of real estate sales.

Once you’ve discovered a connection, create a blog post discussing it, dash off a tweet mentioning it, launch a postcard campaign featuring it, send out a marketing email focused on it. Among marketing experts, Newsjacking is most often mentioned in relation to blogging, but the technique can easily be applied to most any form of advertising / marketing you use.

For your social media-based efforts (blog, Twitter, Facebook, etc.), be sure to litter your writing with lots of name-specific mentions of the trending topic – which will make your piece rise toward the top in Google searches.

For the best results, act quickly once a hot topic comes into view. You aren’t the only one who’s going to be trying to newsjack it.

Why newsjacking is so effective

This marketing technique packs a lasting punch. Here’s what makes newsjacking so powerful and unique:

  • It’s easier for people to understand, appreciate and remember a real-estate industry insight if it’s connected to a real-world analogy (a topic that’s getting lots of news coverage).
  • Because the subject-matter is so popular, your marketing will naturally gain more attention. People will be far more likely to open your emails, even share them with friends … your postcards will get set aside, maybe even stuck to the front of the fridge … your blog posts will rise to the top in online searches … your tweets will get re-tweeted.
  • Those who see your newsjacking opinions and insights will not only perceive you as quick, thoughtful and articulate, but also an industry leader.
  • The average consumer is far more likely to let down their guard and pay attention to your underlying marketing message when they think you’re honestly trying to inform, educate and help them.
  • Newsjacking is a great way to put a completely new spin on what would otherwise be tired, overused marketing messages.

Examples of what you can do

As soon as you see a topic in the news that you think could blossom into something bigger, look for a connection to your business:

  • Trending topic: Layoff announcement at a large local employer
  • Your take: How to lower your mortgage and home insurance payments
  • Trending topic: Large employer moving to the area
  • Your take: 10 things you need to know before relocating to the area
  • Trending topic: Concerning update about our dwindling natural resources
  • Your take: The resource-conserving features of today’s green homes
  • Trending topic: The release of a blockbuster action movie
  • Your take: The joy of owning a home with a media room
  • Trending topic: New study about the ever-longer work commute
  • Your take: Local neighborhoods with the best public transportation options
  • Trending topic: A new and exciting mobile phone launch
  • Your take: Something most buyers forget to consider when buying a new home: cell phone reception

A final note

Be wary of newsjacking controversial subjects. No matter what you write, some people will forever more associate your business with the tainted topic.

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