Building a VINTAGE Brand; 1.0
Blackberry just launched an overhauled operating system, the Z10 because of slumping sales and “lack of bling” according to their new spokesperson, Alicia Keys. PepsiCo has conceded to remove brominated vegetable oil from its sports drink, Gatorade, due to a negative online campaign launched by a 15-year old Mississippi teenager. With the Super Bowl just days away, the NFL is aggressively cracking down on the sale of counterfeit merchandise. Speaking of, the going ad rate for Super Bowl XLVI is $3.5 million for 30 seconds and up to $4 million if you want premium placement. How does any of this relate to historic and vintage homes? Plenty. It all plays into building, managing and maintaining our brands.
I frequently hear from homeowners and real estate brokers they feel that marketing and promoting Chicago’s vintage and Historic homes is, often, fighting an uphill battle. How we create fresh ideas in communicating what historic and vintage homes, buildings and neighborhoods have to offer is more an opportunity than challenge. Sounds like a chapter from “The One Minute Manager”, right? Building a recognizable brand involves creating a relationship or a connection between a product and the emotional perception of the customer. In this series I will discuss how we position older housing stock as a brand to be identified, segmented, managed and promoted. Branding is about finding and staying consistent to a core philosophy. In the real estate industry, we frequently reference Donald Trump as a go-to icon of business acumen, and strategic thinking. Like him or not, his brand is all about being No. 1, best of the best. Find your brand, develop it and stay on track. Otherwise, “you’re fired!”
Branding and image guy, Donny Deutsch of Deutsch, Inc., has built his reputation on thinking outside of the box. Donny’s leaner, meaner, faster, smarter philosophy helped build Deutsch into a leading marketing-communications company. Deutsch’s core philosophy is a great formula when it comes to building our vintage brand.
“People think creativity is the best version of the current thing,” Deutsch writes in his 2005 book, Often Wrong, Never in Doubt: Unleash the Business Rebel Within. “I disagree. I’d rather do something fresh and put my client on the line than knowingly do derivative work. I want something with a different flavor to it, the 32nd flavor of Baskin-Robbins, the 58th variety of Heinz. I tell our people, go where tomorrow is. Let everybody else catch up.”
Buying, restoring and selling historic and vintage homes is, to some, a labor of love. Kudos to those of you that do it to quench a preservation passion. To me, it is a business. No less passionate, more so because the process involves a focused plan of attack, execution and a final result.
Next up: Find your brand, develop it and stay on track.