When Branding Goes Bad... (part 2)

Education & Training with Realasponse.com
Untitled Document

1) Your "best friend" is not your prospect's "best friend"...

First off, you are NOT Paris Hilton. I love dogs, trust me I do, but this has got to stop. Some agents think it’s cute or that perhaps they’ll connect with pet lovers when offering their services. Check this out…go out and ask any prospect who owns a pet whether they have this “secret connection” with you just because you own a pet or whether your skills are more important. In fact, according a NAR's homebuyer and seller profile "knowledge of neighborhood and market" ranked second as the most important factor when selecting an agent. Remember, YOU are your prospects best friend.

2) Key Dangling Debacle

Oh great! You found my keys!!  ...oh wait…no, it’s another agent offering me keys to my “dream home” via another overused image: The notorious Key Dangle. You’ve seen them, I’ve seen them and so have just about every prospect. The key dangle was the original “call-to-action” image that worked for buyers anxious to jump into a home some years ago and is still being abused. However, here’s the problem I have: In the aftermath of a subprime lending fiasco, where mortgage companies used teasing images of the like, you have to be mindful not send the wrong messages of “getting a home super easy”. You run the risk of being mislabeled. It’s more so a balancing act, nonetheless, key dangling is walking a tight rope.

3) Cartoon Network meets Real Estate

I do admit…the artwork is great and wins a laugh here and there; and perhaps when the market was performing smoother it was nothing of concern. However, here’s what concerns me: According to NAR’s profile on buyers and seller, 57% of buyers and 41% of sellers rank reputation as the most important factor when selecting an agent to work with. Caricatures, though cute, cloud a prospects ability to measure your reputation given its light hearted nature. It may do fine for a follow-up piece but for first impressions it’s a gamble…and today’s market is no place to take chances.

4) Attack of the Blurry Picture

Blurry or pixilated pictures are the worst! I’ve seen a number of agents, for whatever reason, content with pictures that are out of focus and distorted. How could they miss over this? Usually, it’s one of two things: (1) The agent used a “web” photo for a “print” ad and doesn’t know the difference between the two worlds (2) Doesn't know much about using a digital camera. Here’s a link to a video that will help you: Take amazing shots. Remember, the prospect is going to be building a relationship with you and should not have a hurdle to jump over when learning about you.

5) Depression hits motivational postcards

The “Tony Robbins-in –a-postcard” approach is so ten years ago and so broken! Listen, don’t get me wrong, it’s certainly great to share words of encouragement with anyone you hope to do business with, however, that’s once you’ve shown yourself as one worth listening to. The problem with motivational postcards are that they attempt toward aiming for deeper meaning that oftimes is too intangible for prospects to make sense of. In other words, the prospect has to work with metaphors in order to translate your real message. One question, why have them work for your message if you represent convenience? The company pushing this particular postcards states, “Inspire your clients to call you…” Give me a break, since when has revelation ever hit a prospect, looking at a seagull or bee, all of a sudden compelled them to pick up a phone and call you.

Oh, and one more thing... I thought the birds and the bees meant something else entirely different.

Copyright © 2007 By Realasponse Inc, All Rights Reserved

The material herein may not be copied, reproduced, distributed, transmitted, displayed or published. All rights reserved. Plagiarism will be detected and is punishable by law.

Mizan Goldman | www.realasponse.com

Comments (11)

Stephen Joos & Chris Brubaker- HouseFront
HouseFront - Denver, CO
Ha, loved these tips they made me laugh becuase I've also seen all of those mistakes so many times.  Great Blog.
Sep 05, 2007 11:40 AM
Mizan Goldman
Realasponse.com - San Francisco, CA
Right on Stephen...also, I checked out HouseFront...very nice.
Sep 05, 2007 12:41 PM
Birmingham Alabama Real Estate, Stephen Wolfe
LivingInBirmingham.com - Birmingham, AL

Mizan, I like the tips. My favorite was the offer for something of value. As much as I like motivational books and slogans and the such, I think the offer for something of value would bring more business.

I have to something though, you left something out. What about the pictures of someone talking on the phone? I have always wondered why the photographer was so impatient that he just couldn't wait until they were done.

Sep 05, 2007 02:26 PM
James Lowenstern
Castles Unlimited® - Newton, MA
Castles Unlimited. Newton MA Real Estate
not a great advertisement for Broker Agent either I'm afraid.
Sep 05, 2007 03:00 PM
Pretty funny!
Sep 05, 2007 03:05 PM
Shannon Lefevre
John R. Wood Properties - Naples, FL
Shannon Lefevre, PA Your Naples Smart Girl
I like the pictures of the agents who appear to be driving in their car...uh what'd you do stop for a pose??? 
Sep 05, 2007 03:09 PM
Ilyce N. Powell
Financial Revitalize - Baltimore, MD
CMPS- Certified Mortgage Planning Specialist
Branding part 1 was very good, and part 2 was right on point, too. I was thinking about the caricature idea, but I could never figure out how to best use it. All I knew was that I didn't want to put it on the front of my business cards.
Sep 05, 2007 04:01 PM
Maureen McCabe
HER Realtors - Columbus, OH
Columbus Ohio Real Estate

This looks curiously like  Marc Davison's recent program about branding...  or between the two posts of yours I think you've covered his material well.  Probably just a coincidence though, there are only so many pet peeves about branding / real estate to work with.  The dogs, the caricatures...  here, Wendy in her bikini in your other entry.  Related to his company?  I know they are in CA too.

do you think if you put a </b> at the end of your html all your comments would not be in bold?  You also have the first point outside the entry on both of your posts. Or maybe it is a snafu with ActiveRain.  I have not noticed it on other's posts though.

Welcome to ActiveRain.

Sep 13, 2007 05:42 AM
Mizan Goldman
Realasponse.com - San Francisco, CA
This material is not that of someone else. There are two photos which are credited, however, all content and perspective is original. I'm sure I'm not the first to comment on these pet peeves and won't be the last.
Sep 13, 2007 06:09 AM
... ...
... - Autaugaville, AL
Somebody has to try everything to see if it works.
Sep 13, 2007 09:35 AM
Tracy Nicole Hamilton
Elk Grove, CA
Realtor - Elk Grove CA, Sacramento, CA
I really like the information you provided here.  Thanks for your insight!
Sep 13, 2007 09:42 AM