Are you listening to your voice?

__________’s premier real estate company.


Your full service real estate brokerage.

Independence and results since 1967.

Tag lines like these sit under your logo like dead leaves on the forest floor. They’re lifeless. Ignored.

Or worse, not believed.

What a shame. Because….

These things do matter

Being a full service real estate brokerage matters. An in-house mortgage, title, insurance and home warranty company can allow clients to move through transactions faster, easier, and with less stress.

But that’s not readily understood by the general public.

Left undefined, “full service” might be misinterpreted by people as way for you to take their money coming and going.

Being independent matters too. It suggests a connection to the community. Speaks to roots and history. Perspective. When defined and supported, it can translate into local knowledge. And trust.

Left undefined, people could view independence as a lone soldier with only a whistle for a weapon. No reach. Few systems. Little technology.

Being “Premier”… well, that should garner respect, right?

If I needed surgery or had to defend myself in a lawsuit I’d want the best working for me – the premier service provider.

Left undefined, however, this claim can seem hubristic and empty.

Empty claims unsupported by facts and a story lead those receiving them to draw their own conclusions.

For example:

This company claims their brand is “Where the experts are.” So I searched the site hoping to find one of them, seeking, perhaps, to discover what being an expert means and how it might benefit me. What I found instead was frightening.

2011: the year you find your voice

I know you need to get a leg up on your competition. Everyone does. Your story, and the voice in which you tell it, would be a good place to start making that happen.

Oliver Goldsmith, PSKaufman and Vanilla Bicycles, are three of my favorite obscure brands. They could easily bloviate about their value, service and products using the same careless, pompous copy real estate brands lean towards. But they’ve chosen a different path. Listen to the voice on these sites.

Jax Vinyard is another great example. Surrounded by pressing competition, the brand appears bigger, better and cooler through the clever and selective use of great copy. The words on their site have more differentiating power in the marketplace than any competitor with a “time honored tradition.”

So what

Over-confidence is boorish in face-to-face conversations. It’s repellent. 2011 must be the year you realize that’s the affect it has on the Web too.

If you’re great, back that claim with proof. An explanation. A story. Tie it to a meaning that matters. Something people actually care about. Something that translates into a benefit for them.

Read your home page copy out loud. Is it something you would offer to a stranger you just met if they asked you what your company does? Does it speak to who your customers are and what they might say or write about you?

If so, you’re on to something.

Take it all the way through every word and every pixel on every page

If not, well, you’re just another real estate company talking smack.

And that’s not going to fly anymore.