January 08, 2021
7 Mistakes to Avoid in Your Real Estate Branding Strategy
Preparing your real estate branding strategy comes with a host of challenges. You may be struggling with creating a positive recognition with your brand, increasing brand awareness, and developing an emotional connection with your audience. You're not the only one, and you won't be the last.
Your real estate branding strategy directly influences your reputation, and it shouldn't be taken lightly. Brand strategy mistakes can be costly both in price and consumer relationships, making it critical that you avoid mistakes when possible.
HubSpot explains that "branding can be the deciding factor for consumers when they make a purchase decision, gives your business identity beyond its product or service, makes your business memorable, supports your marketing and advertising efforts, [and] brings your employees pride." Start reaping these benefits and more by checking out these seven common mistakes to avoid in your real estate branding strategy.
1. Targeting the Wrong Buyer
Creating buyer personas is a crucial first step in developing a successful real estate branding strategy. It shows that you intimately understand your consumer's problems and establishes your home and/or community as their solution. It takes considerable research and time to learn about your current and prospective buyers, but you mustn't rely on how you think your consumers feel. Instead, know how they feel.
Too many people fail to relate to their buyer at the beginning of their strategy, which ruins the rest of the strategy. If you're targeting the wrong buyer, all of your hard work will be for nothing because your message won't resonate with the right real estate audience.
HubSpot has many tools that help you gather the right information to develop your personas:
- Look through your contacts database to uncover trends about how certain leads or customers find and consume your content.
- Use form fields that capture important persona information when creating forms to use on your website.
- Discuss leads with your sales team to learn more about the ones they're interacting with the most.
- Conduct consumer interviews to learn more about what they like about your product or service.
2. No Clear Positioning
Real estate branding strategies take an immense amount of effort to plan before implementation can begin. It will take you a significant amount of time to not only develop your buyer personas, brand promise, name, logo, etc. but also make sure they all effectively relate to each other. If you jump in too quickly and cut corners, it will be impossible for all these pieces to build on each other, creating a lack of cohesion in the entire strategy.
You must have clear positioning so you can set a brand promise and deliver on it without any doubt. Brand Value Academy names these characteristics of effective and clear branding positioning for you to consider:
- Value — clearly communicate to buyers the value your business offers them.
- Unique — the more unique your business is in relation to the competition, the more memorable you will be.
- Clarity — lack of clarity in communication can lead to miscommunication, mistrust, and a lack of understanding of how your business can benefit buyers more than other businesses.
- Deliverable — only decide to deliver your brand's position when you’re confident it embraces all of your fundamental differences.
- Relevant — keep your target buyers at the forefront of all of your brand positioning decisions. All of your decisions should be directly relevant to them.
3. Neglecting Your Initial Plan
While it’s important to be ready to make adjustments, you should avoid the temptation to stray far from your initial plan and brand positioning. If you do that correctly, there is no need to completely change your real estate branding strategy after one month of implementation. However, it is always important to expect the unexpected to stay on top of the competition.
Set a strategy you are confident in and stick to it — this is something Milesbrand does great. In fact, we help you build trust by:
- Conduct a brand charrette.
- Differentiating your brand positioning.
- Developing your brand storm of creative ideas that best express your brand promise.
- Communicating your brand plan to take you to market.
4. Lack of Storytelling
The real estate industry is incredibly emotional, and engaging storytelling is one of the best ways to communicate your brand to the buyer. Studies have shown that 79% of buyers prefer brands that tell stories, with a significant amount more enjoying humorous stories and 64% thinking brands do a generally good job of telling stories.
Forbes explains that storytelling should be a priority for marketers because it "enables marketers to develop a deeper connection with the[ir] audience [through] a fundamental human experience that unites people, [acts as] a powerful method for learning [by] transmitting knowledge and meaning, [and] an important tactical tool that lets marketers engage consumers in a fragmented media world."
5. Focusing on Features Instead of Benefits
Features are great, but you have to show how those features benefit your buyer to create a true connection with them. So many marketers make the mistake of giving more focus to specific features rather than their overall benefit to their buyers. This can be communicated in several ways.
Here are a few to consider:
- Videos — home how-to's, home reviews, and more that show why your development is the only choice that meets their unique needs.
- Written content — beneficial content centered around your homes can be great for digital channels. It can encourage buyers to save, share, and engage with your brand on an emotional level.
- Showcase your homes — give focus to your features while communicating how those features specifically benefit your buyers.
6. Uninteresting Photography and Creative
Creative work allows you to showcase your homes in a tangible way that words/phone calls/promises cannot. Venngage reports show that when asked how essential visual content was in their marketing strategy, 71% of respondents said it was "quite important" or "very important," with 19% saying "their strategy is nothing without visual content.”
Investing in photography and creatives to make an impression on your buyers can make the difference in a competitive environment like real estate development and home building. The more aesthetically pleasing your brand is, the more appealing you will be to buyers.
7. Adopting a Follow-the-Pack Mentality
What works for other developers doesn't necessarily work for you. Even if it did, you wouldn't want to firmly follow their lead because it wouldn't give your business the differentiating factor it needs to survive against the competition.
Consumers don't want several of the same options. They want the best of the best who clearly stand out, resonate with their buyers, and differentiate in the best possible ways.
Branding is an emotional bond that connects buyers and businesses in a significant way. It gives your brand a voice! One that can't be replicated and should embrace all your one-of-a-kind values and perspectives. Use your positioning/promise/value proposition to create a unique brand strategy that clearly differentiates you from the competition and conveys all of your best qualities.
More Tips and Resources
Real estate branding can be challenging at times. Still, with the right resources and tips, you'll be well on your way to creating brand awareness, recognition, and emotional connections among prospective buyers.
The key is to receive branding wisdom from experts who understand the industry, your challenges, and the appropriate solutions to your problems. Our team at Milesbrand has the latest articles, case studies, trends, and more to keep your business not only growing, but thriving.
With over 35 years of experience, you can rest assured that Milesbrand has the ability to help you avoid these mistakes and more. Contact us when you're ready to learn more about placemaking and marketing for real estate developers and home builders.