What We Can Learn From Marketing The Business Using The PB&J Sandwich Analogy

Services for Real Estate Pros Retired

"The creative process is fueled by divergent thinking—a breaking away from familiar or established ways of seeing and doing."—The Innovator's Toolkit, Harvard Business Essentials.

The key to marketing the real estate business is creativity. It's easy to get overwhelmed by the fierce competition and feel you're offering the same thing as everyone else.

The classic PB&J analogy can help us understand how to differentiate ourselves and stand out from the crowd.

I work with real estate builders and developers, assisting clients in managing their projects, from procuring raw land to building townhomes and condominiums. And market them as new constructions.

At this junction, we recruit local realtors to sell my clients' homes using the PB&J analogy to market these new properties.

The PB&J analogy I use with my clients goes like this: There are two peanut butter and jelly sandwiches on a table in front of you. I describe the first PB&J sandwich as "a peanut butter and jelly sandwich—Classic and Timeless."

I describe the second PB&J sandwich in more detail, like "a toasted peanut butter and strawberry jelly sandwich on two sliced pieces of fresh sourdough bread. Crunchy toast on the outside and the most delicious, oozy, gooey peanut butter and jelly on the inside. This sandwich will bring you back to your childhood memories." 

Which one would you prefer to eat?

Like the classic PB&J sandwich, as you already know, there are endless ways to market real estate to increase sales. For example, you can add different kinds of bread, homemade jellies, and authentic spreads to make your PB&J sandwich unique and attractive. 

The same applies to selling in the real estate market: you can set yourself apart from your competition by offering creative solutions. 

Focus on the details when describing your listing, blog, or ad piece that make it stand out from others, and use words and phrases that help your potential clients visualize themselves living there. You could turn a cozy two-bedroom home into a luxurious retreat with minor upgrades. Or you could design sleek real estate images to promote your properties on social media and digital channels.

Expand your focus and look at how you can improve your pitch. Come up with a creative home staging plan to help your clients envision themselves in the property before seeing it.

It's not just about selling the same thing as everyone else—it's about finding something unique to make clients love you and your work. 

The classic PB&J analogy has helped my clients stand out in the competitive market, build a successful real estate business, and hence, help my business prosper. And in any market conditions!

Note: Margaret Rome Baltimore 410-530-2400 inspired this post as she and I casually commented on one of her posts: Why Am I Still Blogging? Thank you, Margaret.

Photos by Shutterstock

Posted by

I have wandered from a vibrant corner of the world
to the majestic Olympic Peninsula in Washington.
I am now retired after a successful career of 22 years as a real estate pro.

I am ready to pursue my lifelong passion for writing!
I invite you to follow along in my new journey via the posts on
my new writing website, "Written by Aura Alex".
Be sure to also follow my Facebook Page
so you will see when I add new content.

— Aura Alex


Comments (34)

Anna Banana Kruchten Phoenix Broker
HomeSmart Real Estate - Phoenix, AZ

I have always seen marketing as painting a picture of the home in ones mind and they feel as if they're right at home the minute they walk to the front porch and open the door. Photos do the same thing with an excellent photographer....make them WANT to be the first to see the home. Welcome!  And yes of course speak the the audience - many types of homes and buyers.  Love the PB&J analogy.....simple yet oozy and gooey when need be Aura!

Dec 12, 2022 01:08 PM
Aura Alex

Anna Banana Kruchten Phoenix Broker, yep, when all else fails, get out that "oozy and gooey" stuff and be ready to write an offer!!!

Dec 12, 2022 01:57 PM
Emily Medvec
eXp Realty LLC - Santa Fe, NM
Broker | Realtor | Serving Santa Fe & Northern NM

Afternoon from snowy Santa Fe! I think I will take two of them! IMO the bottom line is the story. Often the MLS descriptions are just that...boring. I use this PP&J analogy telling the same story differently to target and test appeal to the various niche markets I target and serve, such as 2nd home, downsizing, upsizing, lst time buyer, condo etc. I will vary image and story alot on SM and selective blogs on my websites. You are right on target! Thank you!

Dec 12, 2022 02:47 PM
Aura Alex
Seattle, WA
Retired Real Estate Pro

Hi, Emily Medvec; I'm glad you're safe and are here to read and comment. Thank you.

I chuckled when I saw some descriptions on the MLS printout. I could almost tell that the agent was pretty new or too busy to spend time describing the lovely home. It was a missed opportunity, the way I saw it. 

One of my clients (a multifamily developer) has just studied the demand for rental in NM, and it was discussed at last week's zoom meeting in which I was included. The consensus was that NM is one of many southern states with high demand for multifamilies.

Do you know an agent with multifamily experience in NM?

Dec 12, 2022 03:03 PM
Cathy Criado
Criado Realty - San Antonio, TX
Making Real Estate Profitable

What a super smart analogy. I like the fun and creative way to present yourself and to look for alternative ways to make yourself stand out. Great blog!

Dec 12, 2022 03:50 PM
Aura Alex

Hi, Cathy Criado; I am glad you liked it. It was fun and easy to write because it was a simple analogy lurking around us. Thank you for your read and comment.  

Dec 12, 2022 07:41 PM
Margaret Rome Baltimore 410-530-2400
HomeRome Realty 410-530-2400 - Pikesville, MD
Sell Your Home With Margaret Rome

Aura Alex,

Outstanding post and I am proud to be your inspiration this one time. 

Dec 12, 2022 07:00 PM
Aura Alex

Hi, Margaret Rome Baltimore 410-530-2400; Your words struck me when you said:  "I'm always looking for the jelly."

I knew I needed to share this post. I hope there will be more than "this one time!" Thank YOU!

Dec 12, 2022 07:49 PM
Myrl Jeffcoat
Sacramento, CA
Greater Sacramento Realtor - Retired

I had never even considered a toasted Peanut Butter and Jelly sandwich.  I need to give it a try.

Dec 12, 2022 08:33 PM
Aura Alex

Oh,  yes, Myrl Jeffcoat, I use a panini grill press for sandwiches. But you can use a toaster. I just had one tonight for dinner as I got home late and didn't want to eat a big dinner after 6 pm. 

Instead of strawberry or grape, I use pineapple and mango jellies for my PB&J, and they open up a new world of classic American food. Yummm..! 

Dec 12, 2022 08:44 PM
Myrl Jeffcoat
Sacramento, CA
Greater Sacramento Realtor - Retired

CONGRATULATIONS Aura, on having this blog FEATURED in the Old Farts Club group!  

Dec 12, 2022 08:34 PM
Aura Alex

Thank you so much for the feature in your famous group, Myrl Jeffcoat.

Dec 12, 2022 08:46 PM
Endre Barath, Jr.
Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices California Properties - Beverly Hills, CA
Realtor - Los Angeles Home Sales 310.486.1002

Aura Alex  loved your post and funny I really enjoyed the comments and the back and forth... I have never been a fan of the PeanutButter and Jelly sandwich it has been over a few decades since I had one... now with that said your post still stands on its own, Ende

Dec 12, 2022 09:33 PM
Aura Alex

Endre Barath, Jr. 

I had never heard of PB&J outside of the US, only when I came here. And I didn't learn to like it until after the marathon.

I didn't care for the sweet jellies, and I would have only the peanut butter without jelly for a while. Then I discovered mango and pineapple jellies (closer to my familiar tropical fruits). Now, I can't live without PB&J. Go figure!



Dec 12, 2022 09:50 PM
Endre Barath, Jr.
Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices California Properties - Beverly Hills, CA
Realtor - Los Angeles Home Sales 310.486.1002

Aura Alex  go figure we all change over the years... decades... and it is all good, Endre

Dec 12, 2022 10:08 PM
Aura Alex


Dec 12, 2022 10:20 PM
Bo Zivak
Zivak Realty Group - Nashville, TN
Nashville Real Estate Broker

Excellent analogy, but honestly, I don't know about PB&J. I learned a lot from this blog, and I thank you for sharing your experience and your advice.

Dec 13, 2022 05:41 AM
Aura Alex

Hi, Bo Zivak; I am glad that you liked the analogy. Thank you for your read and comment.

Dec 13, 2022 07:53 AM
faye schubert
Retired - Branson, MO
Living the Branson Lake Life

Outstanding analogy!

The reason I follow you on Activerain is because you provide information that is unique, detailed and creative thought.

I'm sure home buyers and sellers do the same thing for the same reaons.

Dec 13, 2022 05:45 AM
Aura Alex

Thank you so much, faye schubert , for the follow and comment. I appreciate it. 

Dec 13, 2022 07:58 AM
Peter Mohylsky
PMI. Destin - Miramar Beach, FL

I like the idea, great analysis, and I know what I am having for lunch.

Dec 13, 2022 07:40 AM
Aura Alex

Enjoy your lunch. I hope you pick the right PB&J for you! Peter Mohylsky. 🍞


Dec 13, 2022 08:26 AM
Ed Silva
Mapleridge Realty, CT 203-206-0754 - Waterbury, CT
Central CT Real Estate Broker Serving all equally

I labor with this as my mind is very structured and seldom has the little flourishes that might make a PB&J sandwich seem like an epicurean delight

Dec 13, 2022 07:56 AM
Aura Alex

Ed Silva - thank you for your read and comment. Enjoy your day. 😀

Dec 13, 2022 12:37 PM
Anne Corbin
Long and Foster - Lake Anna - Spotsylvania, VA
Serving Lake Anna & Central Virginia

Clever analogy!

Dec 14, 2022 06:38 AM
Aura Alex

Thank you, Anne Corbin. I am glad you liked the post.

Dec 14, 2022 09:15 PM
Laura Cerrano
Feng Shui Manhattan Long Island - Locust Valley, NY
Certified Feng Shui Expert, Speaker & Researcher

Not only are you teaching marketing, but you’re making everybody in here want to go make a delicious peanut butter andjelly sandwich

Dec 15, 2022 11:21 PM
Aura Alex

Laura Cerrano, simplicity but differences are the keys to standing out in the crowd, right? Not much that can go wrong with a yummy peanut butter sandwich!

Dec 16, 2022 06:47 AM
Fred Carver Personal Real Estate Corporation

Laura Cerrano  I’m with you, let’s make one only lets make sure it’s with sour dough bread

Jan 07, 2023 11:09 AM
Michael J. Perry
KW Elite - Lancaster, PA
Lancaster, PA Relo Specialist

Growing up PB&J’s were  almost a Daily Staple  ! !! As I got older I started mixing up the Jelly Flavors (lol).

Dec 16, 2022 05:50 AM
Aura Alex

Michael J. Perry: haha...I do the same sometimes to experiment. 😄

Dec 16, 2022 06:43 AM
Peter Mohylsky
PMI. Destin - Miramar Beach, FL

I keep coming back to this post for two reasons.  I love peanut butter and I love your writing style.  

Dec 16, 2022 08:02 AM
Aura Alex

And I keep feeling flattered, Peter Mohylsky. Thank you so much and you have made my day!!!!🥰

Dec 16, 2022 12:28 PM
Diana Dahlberg
1 Month Realty - Pleasant Prairie, WI
Real Estate in Kenosha, WI since 1994 262-308-3563

Loved this creative, clever Analogy!  Love TOAST!  I will be trying this soon!

Dec 26, 2022 12:45 PM
Aura Alex

Diana Dahlberg, I am glad you'll try the toasted PB&J. Once I tried, I wouldn't have it other ways! LOL!

Dec 27, 2022 06:22 PM
Diana Dahlberg

@Aura Alex thank you again.  I think I have to agree!  I feel like I now know a New Secret! 😋

Dec 27, 2022 06:44 PM
Jan Green - Scottsdale, AZ
Value Added Service, 602-620-2699 - Scottsdale, AZ
HomeSmart Elite Group, REALTOR®, EcoBroker, GREEN

Love this post!  You've expertly laid out how to drive marketing from a differen perspective. Love it! 

Dec 28, 2022 10:31 AM
Aura Alex

Thank you for your compliment, Jan Green - Scottsdale, AZ

I love marketing and am having fun thinking outside the box! 

Dec 28, 2022 07:07 PM
Roy Kelley
Retired - Gaithersburg, MD

Thanks again, Aura, for sharing your experience and your advice.

Have a very productive 2023!

Jan 02, 2023 08:55 AM
Aura Alex

Thank you so much, Roy Kelley, and I wish the same to you.

By the way, I may be joining Facebook pretty soon as soon as I get this "side project" website done. I'll be looking for you on FB. 

Jan 02, 2023 07:35 PM
Roy Kelley


Jan 03, 2023 04:27 AM