Using Luxury Metaphors in Your Real Estate Marketing

By
Real Estate Broker/Owner with Wayzata Lakes Realty: Eric Kodner Sells Twin Cities Homes

This is Part Two in a series of posts dealing with Luxury Marketing Techniques.  The first installment, Basic Black is Always Elegant, Simple and Never Out of Style in Marketing Materials, dealt with the advantages of using bold black & white graphics to convey an upscale look and feel in marketing materials.  This is particularly true in luxury home marketing.

Luxury metaphors are symbols that speak the language of luxury.  Effective use of luxury metaphors can quickly and quietly communicate what you're trying to say without resorting to terms that may become cliche such as "elegant, expensive, exclusive, magnificent, upscale" and the like.

LuxuryRealEstate.com lion logo       LuxuryRealEstate.com lion graphic      Bronze lion

Lion logos courtesy of LuxuryRealEstate.com.

Bronze lion photo by Eric Kodner.

 

Many luxury metaphors, such as the lion, have heraldic origins.  The lion has been found on family crests and coats of arms for many centuries.  The creators of the LuxuryRealEstate.com website and "Who's Who in Luxury Real Estate" have used the lion graphic very effectively in both print and online marketing.

Another luxury metaphor would be the seal or medallion.  This "seal of approval" symbol is made to resemble the wax seals that were once used by royalty to seal a document. 

CLHMS Seal with column

 

 

 

 

 

CLHMS seal courtesy of the Institute for Luxury Home Marketing

The Institute for Luxury Home Marketing has created a powerful combination by combining the seal with a "column graphic" (a column is an element of classical architecture that was commonplace in ancient Greece and in the Roman Empire).  The column is also considered a luxury metaphor.

The Luxury Institute (http://www.luxuryinstitute.com) uses the laurel wreath and a stylized "Greek temple" logo to speak the language of luxury.

 

Other luxury metaphors in advertising may include: equestrian images and graphics (the Ralph Lauren Polo logo is an example), yachting images (sailboat or catamaran), architectural elements (columns, arches and so forth) and musical instruments (the violin, viola, cello, harp, grand piano, lyre and horn are common luxury symbols). 

Luxury symbols are everywhere in product marketing.  Look at Hermes or Louis Vuitton or Coco Chanel or Fendi and you'll see the powerful simplicity of luxury logos and images.  The "red carpet" is a luxury image.  A champagne flute or a snifter of Napoleon brandy may be a luxury image

Products themselves may be luxury metaphors as well, like Rolex, Bentley, Patek Philippe, Mikimoto, Mercedes-Benz and BMW. 

What makes a luxury metaphor useful and effective in advertising?

Luxury metaphors speak differently to viewers of differing ages and backgrounds.  Overall requirements for marketing effectiveness would be:

  • The metaphor should be tasteful, not crass or overly commercial.  A photo of a stack of one hundred dollar bills may communicate value, but it's not exactly subtle.
  • A luxury metaphor should be obvious.  Choosing a symbol or image that most people would associate with luxury is best.
  • A luxury metaphor should make sense in the context in which it is applied.  If you're marketing property in an equestrian development or area, a simple black silhouette of a rider on horseback may be powerful. 

 

There are thousands of possible images and graphics that can be used to communicate luxury.  Choose symbols and images that work best for you and use them sparingly, like seasoning, rather than as a "main course".  Your message will benefit and the luxury client will recognize and acknowledge your good taste!

[The content of this post is taken from a course syllabus which I wrote in late 2007 on the subject of effective real estate marketing to the luxury consumer.  This material is copyrighted and may not be used or reproduced without the permission of Eric Kodner.]

 

 

Wayzata Lakes Realty - Minneapolis Saint Paul Real Estate                               Global Luxury Home Search - LuxuryRealEstate.com

Not all real estate answers can be found on Google.

Let us help you gather the information you need to achieve your real estate goals.  Contact Wayzata Lakes Realty today at 612.670.2539.

Eric Kodner is a luxury property specialist and real estate educator in the Minneapolis & Saint Paul area with a unique perspective on the Twin Cities real estate market. Wayzata Lakes Realty LLC is a member of the LuxuryRealEstate.com broker network.

 

© Copyright 2007-2008 Eric Kodner & Wayzata Lakes Realty

 

Posted by

Contact Broker Eric Kodner with Wayzata Lakes Realty about Minneapolis & Saint Paul area properties, including Lake Minnetonka, Edina and the Minneapolis City Lakes area (Lake Calhoun, Lake of the Isles, Lake Harriet). We also sell on the Saint Croix River and on Lake Superior, including Bayfield, Wisconsin and Madeline Island homes.  With sixteen years experience marketing and selling waterfront properties in Minnesota and Wisconsin, we know Lake Minnetonka and Madeline Island real estate.

Wayzata Lakes Realty LLC (Minnesota) and Madeline Island Realty LLC (Wisconsin)

Real Estate Brokerage licensed in Minnesota & Wisconsin

Phone or Text Message 612.670.2539

EMKodner@Gmail.com  or

MadelineIsland@Gmail.com

Wayzata Lakes Realty

 

 

 

 

close

This entry hasn't been re-blogged:

Re-Blogged By Re-Blogged At
Topic:
Real Estate Sales and Marketing
Groups:
Luxury Home Marketing
Luxury Properties $750k+
Bloggers Choice Selections
LuxuryRealEstate.com Network For ActiveRain Members
Tags:
institute for luxury home marketing
luxuryrealestatecom
whos who in luxury real estate

Spam prevention
Show All Comments
Ambassador
3,694,641
Patricia Kennedy
Redfin - Washington, DC
Home in the Capital

Eric, I am bookmarking this one!  It's good information for high end agents.  A lot of us have companies that incorporate this type of thing into the company materials, and a lot of the time individual agents are clueless when we put our own stuff together.  Good job on this post!

May 22, 2008 11:37 AM #1
Rainmaker
428,555
Eric Kodner
Wayzata Lakes Realty: Eric Kodner Sells Twin Cities Homes - Minnetonka, MN
Wayzata Lakes Realty: Twin Cities, Madeline Island

Patricia,

The post is condensed from a course syllabus I wrote last autumn on the subject of luxury marketing in real estate.  The study of the origins of luxury symbols and which ones resonate with people of various age groups or backgrounds has always fascinated me!

May 22, 2008 11:40 AM #2
Ambassador
588,902
Konnie Mac McCarthy
MacNificent Properties, LLC - Cobb Island, MD
Broker/Owner - VA & MD "Time To Get A Move On!"

Hi Eric..love the post...I am trying to break into Luxury Real Estate in my area, I have 2 listings now...this information is helpful...I am trying to learn as much as I can about this genre....thanks..

May 22, 2008 11:40 AM #3
Rainmaker
428,555
Eric Kodner
Wayzata Lakes Realty: Eric Kodner Sells Twin Cities Homes - Minnetonka, MN
Wayzata Lakes Realty: Twin Cities, Madeline Island

Konnie, I hope you found the information useful.  It's a pretty extensive topic.  I plan to write more on the subject as time goes along.

May 22, 2008 11:42 AM #4
Ambassador
1,894,119
Cindy Jones
Integrity Real Estate Group - Woodbridge, VA
Pentagon, Fort Belvoir & Quantico Real Estate News

Eric-nice post.  One of the things I learned last year when I sold new construction over 1M is the attitude of the buyers is different than the average buyer in our area.  As a result they also have expectations on how the agent presents themselves as well as the marketing materials they expect to see.

May 22, 2008 11:50 AM #5
Rainer
86,739
asdf zcxv
Keller Williams Realty - Ann Arbor, MI
Ann Arbor Area Real Estate

Eric,  How are you?  I've missed chatting w/you.  Did you know there is a women's shop which is Black & White.  Nothing else!  I love both and now I know why.  Very interesting.

May 22, 2008 12:22 PM #6
Rainmaker
428,555
Eric Kodner
Wayzata Lakes Realty: Eric Kodner Sells Twin Cities Homes - Minnetonka, MN
Wayzata Lakes Realty: Twin Cities, Madeline Island

Cindy, thank you!

Buyer attitudes are absolutely different in the upper brackets!  They want high-calibre marketing materials and an approach to prospective buyers that makes sense to them.  It's like speaking a different language with buyers in that category..not something that comes easily to the agent who sells starter homes or foreclosure properties.

May 22, 2008 02:10 PM #7
Rainmaker
428,555
Eric Kodner
Wayzata Lakes Realty: Eric Kodner Sells Twin Cities Homes - Minnetonka, MN
Wayzata Lakes Realty: Twin Cities, Madeline Island

Karen,

Black & White can be a powerful combination in marketing.  It gives a very clean, "chiseled" look to a logo or stylized company name.  It's great to see you here and thank you for commenting!

May 22, 2008 02:16 PM #8
Rainmaker
218,087
Joan Mirantz
Homequest Real Estate - Concord, NH
Realtor, GRI, CBR, SRES - Concord New Hampshire

A bit out of my league Eric....but very interesting!

May 22, 2008 02:56 PM #9
Rainmaker
428,555
Eric Kodner
Wayzata Lakes Realty: Eric Kodner Sells Twin Cities Homes - Minnetonka, MN
Wayzata Lakes Realty: Twin Cities, Madeline Island

Joan, with so many agents exploring the possibility of selling in the luxury brackets, I figured this information could be helpful.  Luxury marketing is a very different aspect of the real estate business.  You have to get inside the thought processes of well-to-do clients.  This series of posts is an effort to shed some light on the subject.

May 22, 2008 03:23 PM #10
Rainmaker
1,042,380
Charles McDonald
Charlottesville Real Estate Solutions - Charlottesville, VA
REALTOR®, Blogger, Principal Broker®, Owner

I have not thought about using these but maybe I will. Thanks for the idea.

 

May 23, 2008 01:22 AM #11
Rainmaker
428,555
Eric Kodner
Wayzata Lakes Realty: Eric Kodner Sells Twin Cities Homes - Minnetonka, MN
Wayzata Lakes Realty: Twin Cities, Madeline Island

Charles, my intent was to offer some marketing tips for those selling in the upper brackets.  I posted another about the use of simple black & white in logos and marketing materials for a high-contrast look that can be very elegant.  I plan to post more of these if they continue to get read.  Thanks for your comment!

May 23, 2008 01:40 AM #12
Rainmaker
635,448
Leesa Finley
RED Properties - Wake Forest, NC
RED Properties - Raleigh NC Real Estate

Eric - Great post with some really insightful information!  It's all about getting to know your niche and how they relate!

May 23, 2008 01:49 AM #13
Rainmaker
245,054
Geordie Romer
Windermere Real Estate / NCW - Leavenworth, WA
Serving Leavenworth, Lake Wenatchee, and Plain

Eric - some good ideas about images and metaphors. Thanks for adding to the conversation. I'm looking forward to the next installment.

May 23, 2008 03:25 AM #14
Rainmaker
428,555
Eric Kodner
Wayzata Lakes Realty: Eric Kodner Sells Twin Cities Homes - Minnetonka, MN
Wayzata Lakes Realty: Twin Cities, Madeline Island

Leesa -- Glad you found the post informative.  Metaphors are a great way to say "luxury" without words!

Geordie -- I could write forty pages on this subject!  What I did was to condense from a course syllabus I put together about eight months ago.  I'll follow up with more detailed information in a later installment.

May 23, 2008 05:22 AM #15
Rainmaker
613,637
Sharon Simms
Coastal Properties Group International - Christie's International - Saint Petersburg, FL
St. Petersburg FL - CRS CIPS CLHMS RSPS

Eric - interesting comments on luxury. The lion rampant is a familiar image in Scotland.

When a company serves more than one market it's tough to find a symbol or logo that will meet all of the markets - your Wayzata Lakes Realty logo, for example, seems very appropriate for the resort and second home market, but doesn't proclaim luxury. Did your course address this dilemma at all?

May 29, 2008 12:40 PM #16
Rainmaker
428,555
Eric Kodner
Wayzata Lakes Realty: Eric Kodner Sells Twin Cities Homes - Minnetonka, MN
Wayzata Lakes Realty: Twin Cities, Madeline Island

Sharon,

We've experimented with the Wayzata Lakes Realty logo and signage over the past several years.  I could easily turn this comment into a separate post about creating branding and image for two very different markets.

Unlike our Madeline Island (Lake Superior) market which is largely vacation homes/second homes, the Lake Minnetonka market is a primary homes market with a recreational emphasis.  Our competition in this area is Edina Realty (block white lettering against a solid red background), CB, Keller and a variety of other assorted firms. 

Ours is a mixed market area, not entirely composed of luxury bracket properties.  I wouldn't describe our competitors' signage as luxury-oriented either.  Our marketing decision was to opt for visibility and a clean look that would stand out as highly visible.  We also chose a sign that was oriented vertically, as opposed to all the landscape-oriented signs used by competitors.

Wayzata Lakes Realty 

Our circular boat logo was designed at Imagewerks, in the Saint Paul area, a company which was founded by Todd Butzer (Todd created and consulted on the branding and logos/signage for Keller Williams).

The designer went with a serif font (like the Keller signage), rather than using a flowery script that's difficult to read and tends to drop out when reproduced.

We needed something that stood out among the competition in the western suburbs.  Apparently what we did worked.  We've added a fine double blue border around our white sign, but have kept it simple and bold.

Thanks for commenting. 

May 29, 2008 01:10 PM #17
Rainmaker
613,637
Sharon Simms
Coastal Properties Group International - Christie's International - Saint Petersburg, FL
St. Petersburg FL - CRS CIPS CLHMS RSPS

Eric - thanks for the explanation and history. I like that you've secured your vertical sign with a side bolt - I've seen too many of them get wrapped around the horizontal bar when there are heavy winds.

May 30, 2008 04:29 AM #18
Show All Comments

What's the reason you're reporting this blog entry?

Are you sure you want to report this blog entry as spam?

Rainmaker
428,555

Eric Kodner

Wayzata Lakes Realty: Twin Cities, Madeline Island
How Much Is Your Twin Cities Area Home or Condo Worth?
*
*
*
*
Spam prevention