The Advertising Agency
for Today's Serious
Real Estate Professional

Does Your Personal Brand Meet “The Storytellers” Standard?

Creating A personal Brand for Real Estate Agents to Generate Leads.

We saw a commercial the other day that reminded us exactly why we’re so passionate about the business we’re in. Take a look:

No, we’re not in the car business. We’re not in the dog products business. We’re in the business of branding, and nothing does that more effectively than emotional storytelling. In this commercial, you see a story unfold before your eyes. An emotionally compelling story. In fact, you see a man’s life unfold in 30 seconds. It’s a story that makes you feel good about the product, a Subaru automobile. The commercial doesn’t tell you a single fact about the car, it’s engine size, number of cup holders or any other feature about the car. Yet, you feel a bond with the subject matter. You care because you have a story you can relate to.

Story telling is what drives the most effective branding campaigns, whether the product being branded is a car, a cereal or even a real estate agent. Emotional marketing works for Fortune 100 products and companies and it works for real estate agents.

Many years ago, we at Hobbs/Herder adopted the slogan “The Storytellers” to describe what we do. We were the pioneers of emotionally compelling, story-driven marketing in real estate, and we think it’s even more important than it’s ever been before.

When we look around the industry, we see a lot of “cookie-cutter” advertising. This consists of advertising with one-size-fits-all impersonal, templated designs and boiler-plate copy that may be less expensive but is also less effective. In fact, over our 25 plus years in the business, we’ve seen a legion of copycat companies who took our idea to create branded marketing materials for agents but they’ve pulled the story and the emotion out of the equation. Creating that story, that emotional connection is the hard part, that’s the heavy lifting that makes branding so effective when done right — and that’s what makes us more expensive than other real estate marketing and advertising companies.

The problem with cheaper, templated marketing pieces is simple – this is not effective branding. There’s no hook. There’s no story. There are no personally significant or captivating design elements that resonate with a compelling story. It’s nothing but a waste of money spent on marketing materials that will neither make you memorable nor differentiate you from your competition. You end up being viewed as a commodity with no discernable difference between yourself and every other agent out there. (And the next time you wince when a client starts complaining about your commission rate, remember, it’s not the consumers’ fault, they have been programmed to think of agents as a commodity because agents all appear to be the same with little to no differentiation).

Madison Avenue understands. Every successful brand has a story and an emotional hook that pulls you in, grabs your attention and makes a connection with you. When that magic happens, it’s powerful. Then that product owns a piece of your mind. And when you think of a car, a brand of tissue, a cereal or a perfume, you think of YOUR favorite brand because of that connection.

At Hobbs/Herder we’ve heard this countless times over the past two and a half decades. Clients call us as their campaigns gain momentum and they establish their brand with their Hobbs/Herder Powerkard in their farm. They tell us, “I got a call from a home owner to come list the house. They said I was their Realtor®, that they knew they were going to use my services when they move.” That is the magic of branding when a client gives us full reign to tell their story and create an emotional hook that prospects can relate to.

So here’s what we propose: Lay out all of the marketing materials you use on a table. Your business card. Your personal brochure, if you have one. (If you don’t, why not?) Your ads. Your mailers. Printouts of your Facebook and Twitter pages. Then, ask yourself a simple question – Do these materials meet The Storytellers’ standard?

If your honest answer is yes, then that’s great, you’re on the right path. But if your answer is no, then stop spending time and money on inferior branding that isn’t really “branding” you at all. Give us a call and let us tell your story. We are The Storytellers.