The phrase ‘real estate brand’ is a bit of an oxymoron. There was a time not so long ago when this industry was booming. That was when you could just announce a new project and the cash registers would start ringing. That time has gone. Maybe it will be back soon, or it might take a while to come back. Until then real estate businesses should take a hard look at the way they engage with consumers and see what lessons they can learn from it.
Here is our take on real estate communication. This holds true for all geographies in India. And for all price segments.
- The focus of all real estate communication is a live project
- Every piece of communication highlights the features that the project offers
- All projects across geographies and within comparative price band offer the same features
- Everyone offers you a walk-through
- Every walk-through looks the same
The outcome of all of this is simple. Real estate advertisements cancel each other out. Apart from informing consumers of a new project, it succeeds in doing nothing else. So, what can real estate businesses do?
Here is our recommendation Real estate brands should start seeing themselves as brands. To do this they should
- Move beyond project-based thinking
- Refuse to get caught up in bland terms like luxury or buzz words like Spanish architecture
- Invest in understanding consumers
- Underline the value that they bring to the lives of consumers
- Define themselves more clearly and bring their distinctiveness alive in every piece of communication. And they need to realize that this distinctiveness is a deeper truth about themselves, far deeper than a few features offered by a current project
The few brands that have done this continue to hold value with consumers, they continue to command a premium.