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realtor.com: new brand, new logo, new feel

In an effort to not only modernize their look, but their brand, realtor.com has rolled out a completely new identity, overhauled from top to bottom.

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realtor-logo

realtor-logo

The new realtor.com brand

In a complete overhaul of one of the largest real estate search sites in the nation, realtor.com has not only rolled out a new website, but a new logo, tagline and color scheme in a complete rebrand. With the rebranding of realtor.com, the company is asserting that they are not an outdated real estate search giant, and that they are deserving of their being a finalist at the 2013 appy awards, standing tall as a technology company rather than a stuffy REALTORS® organization. The modern look gives the brand some much needed energy, and with the clever logo of streets converging to form a house, realtor.com has a shot at broadening their appeal.

Andrew Strickman, Vice President of Brand & Creative at realtor.com tells AGBeat, “As we heighten our focus on developing a rich consumer experience and creating an emotional attachment to our audience, we recognized that it was time to update our realtor.com branding, positioning and tagline.”

Strickman continued, “We conducted extensive research and spoke with consumers from across the country as key input to the development of our revised logo and new site look and feel. We heard from them that a valued online real estate brand is one that embraces the notion of home — whether that home is their first rental out of college, or the 3-bedroom house that marks the beginning of a new family growing out of their starter home.”

realtor.com logo

“Most online real estate brands feel clinical, data- and machine-driven and do not have a human feel, even though they are all about creating connections with real human beings,” Strickman added. “Our role with this rebranding effort — and graphic iconography that represents home in the center of a community (‘all roads lead home’) is to draw a much stronger connection between realtor.com and the people that fuel its service — both consumers and REALTORS.”

So why teal? Why ditch the traditional blue?

The company says that the teal color selected represents credibility, authority and leadership. Teal conveys a feeling of security and is often identified with money and prestige.

Dave Arnold, Executive Creative Director at Pereira & O’Dell said, “Teal is one of the new web colors that is emerging as a differentiator from the Facebook and Twitter blues that are everywhere. Pantone has made emerald the color of the year for 2013 so I’m sure we will be seeing a lot of variations in the blue / green world.”

“Color does stimulate emotion and I think a blend between blue and green, or teal is a smart one for realtor.com,” Arnold noted. “Green symbolizes nature, environment, and money — all great takeaways for the brand. It’s also a calming color, which for some can be much needed when house hunting.”

Can they really lower case the letter R?

Upon release of the rebrand, various realtors objected, noting that “REALTORS®” is a trademark of the National Association of REALTORS®, which has an operating agreement with Move, Inc. (parent company of realtor.com) in place. Some noted that the use of the word “realtor” is meant to be capitalized, others stated via social networks that the word should always be in all caps with a trademark logo.

Regardless of past use, a trademark was filed by the National Association of REALTORS® on February 6, 2013 not only on the new realtor.com logo, but on the words and letters used in the logo (meaning the tagline along with the specific spelling of “realtor”).

While there may be chatter between industry professionals, the lower case “r” and typography of the new logo along with the design, tagline, and color scheme bring the brand into a modern era, and due to its minimalism could give it a stronger chance of being timeless as many of their competitors remain firmly rooted in the aesthetics of pre-2006.

Lani is the Chief Operating Officer at The American Genius - she has co-authored a book, co-founded BASHH and Austin Digital Jobs, and is a seasoned business writer and editorialist with a penchant for the irreverent.

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Proven, clear-cut strategies to keep your company’s operations lean

(BUSINESS) Keeping your operations lean means more than saving money, it means accomplishing more in less time.

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The past two years have been challenging, not just economically, but also politically and socially as well. While it would be nice to think that things are looking up, in reality, the problems never end. Taking a minimalist approach to your business, AKA keeping it lean, can help you weather the future to be more successful.

Here are some tips to help you trim the fat without putting profits above people.

Automate processes

Artificial intelligence frees up human resources. AI can manage many routine elements of your business, giving your team time to focus on important tasks that can’t be delegated to machines. This challenges your top performers to function at higher levels, which can only benefit your business.

Consider remote working

Whether you rent or own your property, it’s expensive to keep an office open. As we learned in the pandemic, many jobs can be done just as effectively from home as the workplace. Going remote can save you money, even if you help your team outfit their home office for safety and efficiency.

In today’s world, many are opting to completely shutter office doors, but you may be able to save money by using less space or renting out some of your office space.

Review your systems to find the fat

As your business grows (or downsizes), your systems need to change to fit how you work. Are there places where you can save money? If you’re ordering more, you may be able to ask vendors for discounts. Look for ways to bring down costs.

Talk to your team about where their workflow suffers and find solutions. An annual review through your budget with an eye on saving money can help you find those wasted dollars.

Find the balance

Operating lean doesn’t mean just saving money. It can also mean that you look at your time when deciding to pay for services. The point is to be as efficient as possible with your resources and systems, while maintaining customer service and safety. When you operate in a lean way, it sets your business up for success.

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A well-crafted rejection email will save both your brand and your time

(BUSINESS) Job hunting is exhausting on both sides, and rejection sucks, but crafting a genuine, helpful rejection email can help ease the process for everyone.

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Woman sitting at computer with fingers steepled, awaiting a rejection email or any response from HR at all.

Nobody likes to hear “no” for an answer when applying for jobs. But even fewer people like to be left in the dark, wondering what happened.

On the employer side, taking on a new hire is a time-consuming process. And like a box of chocolates, you never know what you’re going to get when you put out ads for a position. So once you find the right person for the role, it’s tempting to move along without further ado.

Benn Rosales, the CEO and co-founder of American Genius, offers an example of why that is a very bad call.

Imagine a hypothetical candidate for a job opening at Coca Cola – someone who’s particularly interested in the job, because they grew up as a big Coke fan. If they get no response to their application at all, despite being qualified and sending follow-up emails, their personal opinion of the brand is sure to sour.

“Do you know how much effort and dollars advertising and marketing spent to make [them] a fan over all of those years, and this is how it ends?” Rosales explains. This person has come away from their experience thinking “Bleep you, I’ll have tea.”

To avoid this issue, crafting a warm and helpful rejection email is the perfect place to start. If you need inspiration, the hiring consultants at Dover recently compiled a list of 36 top-quality rejection emails, taken from companies that know how to say “no” gracefully: Apple, Facebook, Google, NPR, and more.

Here’s a few takeaways from that list to keep in mind when constructing a rejection email of your own…

Include details about their resume to show they were duly considered. This shows candidates that their time, interests, and experience are all valued, particularly with candidates who came close to making the cut or have a lot of future promise.

Keep their information on file, and let them know this rejection only means “not right now.” That way, next time you need to make a hire, you will have a handy list of people to call who you know have an interest in working for you and relevant skills.

Provide some feedback, such as common reasons why applicants may not succeed in your particular application process.

And be nice! A lack of courtesy can ruin a person’s impression of your brand, whether they are a customer or not. Keep in mind, that impression can be blasted on social media as well. If your rejections are alienating, you’re sabotaging your business.

Any good business owner knows how much the details matter.

Incorporating an empathetic rejection process is an often-overlooked opportunity to humanize your business and build a positive relationship with your community, particularly when impersonal online applications have become the norm.

And if nothing else, this simple courtesy will prevent your inbox from filling up with circle-backs and follow-up emails once you’ve made your decision.

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Ageism: How to properly combat this discrimination in the workplace

(BUSINESS) Ageism is still being fought by many companies, how can this new issue be resolved before it becomes more of a problem?

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Ageism void

Workers over the age of 55 represent the fasting growing sector in labor. The U.S. Department of Labor estimates that 25% of the labor force will be over age 55 by 2024. A 2018 AARP survey found that over 60% of the respondents reported age discrimination in their workplace. The figure is even higher among older women, minorities, and unemployed seniors. Age discrimination is a problem for many.

Unfortunately, age discrimination lawsuits aren’t uncommon. We have covered cases for Jewel Food Stores, Inc., Novo Nordisk, Inc., AT&T, and iTutorGroup, all alleging age or disability discrimination in some form or fashion. This could be from using vocabulary such as “tenured,” hiring a younger employee instead of promoting a well-season veteran, or pressuring older employees with extra responsibilities in order to get them to resign or retire early.

How can your organization create an age-inclusive workforce?

It is difficult to prove age discrimination but fighting a lawsuit against it could be expensive. Rather than worrying about getting sued for age discrimination, consider your own business and whether your culture creates a workplace that welcomes older workers.

  1. Check your job descriptions and hiring practices to eliminate graduation dates and birthdates. Focus on worker’s skills, not youthful attributes, such as “fresh graduate” or “digital native.” Feature workers of all ages in your branding and marketing.
  2. Include age diversity training for your managers and employees, especially those that hire or work in recruiting.
  3. Support legislative reforms that protect older workers. Use your experience to create content for your website.

Changing the culture of your workplace to include older workers will benefit you in many ways. Older workers bring experience and ideas to the table that younger employees don’t have. Having mixed-age teams encourages creativity. There are many ways to support older workers and to be inclusive in your workplace.

What steps are you taking in your organization to reduce ageism in your workplace?

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