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Exclusive interview: NAR’s new “That’s Who We R®” campaign

(ASSOCIATIONS) The National Association of Realtors (NAR) has launched a new ad campaign – we dig deep into the creation and meanings.

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NAR - that's who we r campaign

Today, the National Association of Realtors (NAR) is launching a new campaign, entitled, “That’s Who We R®,” separating their members from non-member real estate agents who don’t subscribe to the Code of Ethics.

In a statement, the association says the campaign reinforces what NAR has always stood for, while signaling the organization’s future, educating consumers about the Realtor difference, and inspiring pride among Realtors for their everyday actions.

Watch:


To learn more about the creation of the ad campaign and the process, we asked Victoria Gillespie, Chief Marketing and Communications Officer at NAR a handful of questions that will give you deeper insight into the campaign:

1. Who’s the narrator!?? Voice sounds familiar. 

Damon Taylor. I’m glad you find his voice familiar – he could be your neighbor, your friend or your REALTOR®. We cast a wide net to get the right sound, across style of voice, gender, and delivery, and ultimately felt that Damon did the best job of bringing this new message forward in an ownable way.

2. The commercial is included in a more high profile way than in the past – what’s the thought process behind that?

We wanted to highlight all the work NAR and REALTORS® do – that includes all aspects of real estate that REALTORS® are involved in, so in addition to the residential aspect – it’s the work we do on the commercial side, the advocacy and even the incredible volunteer work we do in the communities.

3. Where will this be distributed? Online? TV? And for how long? 

The channels that define our communications approach reflect the modern ways in which buyers, sellers, AND REALTORS® consume media, including Video, through TV and digital access points, Audio, through terrestrial radio and streaming online, Custom Branded Content partnerships with digital-first publishers like Vice, Apartment Therapy, Thrillist, The Atlantic, Washington Post, and on social media and search platforms. The campaign launches Feb 25th and runs through the end of the year.

4. We picked up on the vibe that all of this happens “inside” the R, kind of behind the scenes, tell us more about that.

In order to really create meaning behind the mark, we wanted to elevate it’s meaning. We turned it into a larger than life icon that could become a portal into the world of NAR, which has countless stories to tell. The spot is in fact titled “Inside the R” and it was very intentional to show a peak of the different things that REALTORS® do that some buyers and sellers might not even be aware of. We wanted to tell a more holistic story and going inside the R allowed us to do just that.

5. Any comment on ultimately going back to the classic logo over the rehaul?

Last year, NAR heard from REALTORS® that they love the REALTOR® R membership mark. So it only made sense to lean-into this iconic trademark and leverage it, and the shapes that make the R. This is a national branding campaign for REALTORS® and the membership mark which represents them, so it is featured prominently in the work. We begin and end the spots with the R, and use it to transition between scenes.

6. Politics was also subtly included this time – was part of the goal to be more expressive of NAR’s wide-reaching role? 

Exactly. REALTORS® and NAR have so many amazing stories to tell, yet many don’t know all the results we have achieved, often behind the scenes, on behalf of property owners across the country. This is an important role we play – and we want consumers to know that we have their backs.

7. What was the creative process? Which orgs were included, which committees, how long did this take to pull together?

First and foremost, Havas listened. They were a new agency to the account and wanted to understand where NAR was in this journey and what we were looking to do. That was last fall. As Havas began to do some of their own digging, they became very inspired by the Code of Ethics.

More and more, people are craving purpose driven brands, and NAR has at our core what we stand for, and we have for over a century. Havas brought us four unique ways in, each with their own style and tone, and landed with That’s Who We R. It was a compelling message and theme which fascinated us with its possibilities.

It was important for this new campaign to be and feel authentic. Havas worked with NAR’s CAC project director and CMO, as well as NAR’s Leadership team and the Consumer Communications Committee. Throughout the process they met with additional NAR teams from Legal, Advocacy, Commercial, speech writing, media and social.

Lani is the Chief Operating Officer at The Real Daily and sister news outlet, The American Genius, and has been named in the Inman 100 Most Influential Real Estate Leaders several times, 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.

Real Estate Associations

NAR ad campaign aims to show importance of Realtors amid COVID-19

(REAL ESTATE ASSOCIATIONS) The NAR have run ad campaigns in the past about the importance of Realtors, and things are no different even in the midst of COVID-19.

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Gillespie realtors

Last year, the NAR launched its new ad campaign titled “That’s Who We R” with the goal of promoting Realtor values in local communities both in residential and commercial properties. In light of the coronavirus pandemic, the real estate market has experienced changes along with the rest of the economy. We followed up with NAR Chief Marketing and Communications Officer, Victoria Gillespie on the state of the campaign since the COVID-19 outbreak.

“We have been working diligently with our agency partner Havas to ensure that the Consumer Ad Campaign (CAC) is responsive to the current environment and directly addressing the concerns of both Consumers and Members,” said Gillespie. “When it comes to our mass advertising (TV), we are currently fast tracking a new message that will speak to how REALTORS® are continuing to actively help Americans achieve their dreams of property ownership, even in uncertain times, with an optimistic look toward the future.”

Gillespie also explained how the campaign is producing new national radio spots and working with other content partners to share the ways in which Realtors are addressing recent housing issues such as advocating to Congress, to fighting for homeowners, and advising consumers directly. The NAR hosted an interactive online Q&A featuring President Vince Malta to answer questions largely catered towards first time homebuyers (the main target of the campaign).

NAR is also focusing on social media messaging by highlighting the value of Realtor expertise during uncertain times.

“Real estate has changed, however the dream has not and REALTORS® are still trusted advisors. We have transformed the way we do buying/selling with the same commitment to consumers; however, our lane and our voice is broader than that,” explained Gillespie.

“REALTORS® fight for mortgage relief, emergency loans, e-notaries and more. REALTORS® are good neighbors helping in communities across the country. Consumers will remember those brands and businesses that are doing something during and after this pandemic and will reward them with loyalty and future business.”

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Real Estate Associations

NAR and MBA urge Congress to help troubled homeowners hit by COVID

(REAL ESTATE ASSOCIATIONS) NAR and MBA wrote a letter to Congress seeking more emergency mortgage and rental assistance for homeowners because of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.

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Emergency mortgage

The National Association of Realtors (NAR) and the Mortgage Bankers Association (MBA) sent a letter to Rhode Island Senator Jack Reed and California Representative Maxine Waters on May 7. The letter supports legislation that funds emergency mortgage and rental assistance to Americans facing financial hardships due to the Coronavirus pandemic.

Waters is the Chairwoman of the House Financial Services Committee, which oversees banking, public and assisted housing, and insurance. Reed is a ranking member of the Armed Services Committee and a minority member of the Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs committee.

Mortgage lenders and REALTORS® are working through unusual and adverse circumstances to provide vital housing security,” the letter states. “Across every state and local community, we have seen the need for Congress to help homeowners and renters faced with the sudden loss of income…A comprehensive response by Congress to these needs would include direct emergency mortgage and rental assistance to advance housing stability.”

According to the letter, 3.8 million homeowners have requested mortgage forbearance since the beginning of the pandemic. Payment forbearance and lowered interest rates are crucial to the housing sector’s ability to survive the economic downturn caused by the pandemic. As of April 29, 2020, the Federal Reserve has announced it would maintain a mortgage rate of 0 to 0.25% until the economy returns to a trajectory towards maximum employment.

The letter lauds the Housing Assistance Fund created to support homeowners ability to make mortgage payments and lenders ability to create flexibility for payments.

The NAR has been engaged in a series of legislative activism to protect Americans’ homes and keep people housed in a time when income has been significantly impacted. In just the last two weeks, NAR wrote two letters to Congress including this one and also supported two coalition letters. The coalition letters also supported emergency rental assistance for Americans with lost or reduced income. They also advocate for creating a comprehensive portal for consumers to access that emergency mortgage and rental relief. The fourth letter was to the Federal Housing Administration about increased premiums.

Though it is unclear the extent to which lawmakers have been economically impacted by the pandemic, they like everyone else have been impacted by the coronavirus. Waters’ sister died of COVID-19 in Saint Louis, Missouri last week.

It is never quite certain what it will take for Washington to stay connected to the needs of the average American and respond accordingly. Sweeping legislation has been passed in record time in response to the economic shutdown, but the government has a long way to go to prove to the American people that it is trustworthy enough to protect both lives and livelihood all together.

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Real Estate Associations

NAR pushes politicians for more PPP, EIDL funding

(REAL ESTATE ASSOCIATIONS) While COVID-19 is hanging around, you may need some help. The NAR has your back with the CARES act to ensure you can keep what’s yours up and running.

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CARES act

Congress approved the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act at the end of March, giving the American public and businesses much needed aid. Two weeks later, as this is being written, many people have already received their $1,200/person stimulus. Forbes estimates that over 70% of small businesses have applied for an emergency loan under the CARES Act’s Paycheck Protection Program (PPP).

Although payouts are lagging, there is concern that the money will run out. Congress appropriated $349 billion for PPP loans, and another $10 billion for the SBA Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EDIL). High demand is straining the resources of the SBA, which is the agency responsible for administrating the loan programs.

Will the CARES Act be enough?

Given the demand, the National Association of REALTORS® (NAR) is urging Congress to “to provide additional funding for the PPP and EIDL programs in future COVID-19 response legislation, ensuring the need for these loans is met as this crisis continues.” According to a letter sent by Vince Malta, 2020 President of NAR, there are “legitimate concerns that necessary funding will quickly become depleted.”

In addition to the high demand for loans, SBA lenders don’t have clarity from the Treasury Department and the SBA on how to process the loans. Given that many banks are operating without full staffing teams, the system is being taxed. The NAR is also asking Congress to “clarify implementation to resolve issues with added limits and requirements that are not in accord with legislative intent.”

For more information about PPP, EDIL and other coronavirus funding options for small businesses, the SBA offers Coronavirus Relief Options here. The SBA is offering loan relief for some SBA loans and additional relief for disaster loans. There are added resources for small businesses on this page.

We have also covered many resources as well.

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