What Eminem Can Teach Us About Marketing a Home

Chrysler 200 Headlight

by Jay Zenner on March 27, 2011

If ever a city had a loser image it is Detroit. I’m usually a part of the large audience that watches the Superbowl every year for the football or the ads or both. For me it’s usually more about the football. But even a little groggy from too much food and a few beers, one ad caught my attention immediately.  The Chrysler 200 ad was clearly a winner. If you were in a coma for the last couple of months watch the video below and then I’ll make my points about why I think it was so good and how some of the techniques used by the ad makers can be used to better market homes.

If you use videos for your properties or just visual tours, remember that you are really creating an ad. If your ad looks like every other ad it is going to be tough to get noticed.  Most of the same techniques that we see in the Chrysler ad can also be used to market homes.

1. It tells a story. The video is a little more than 2 minutes long and yet it tells a comeback story…of Chrysler, of Detroit, of the American auto industry.

2. It’s emotional. You’ve heard the expression “sell the sizzle not the steak.” There is nothing said in this commercial about the horsepower, the cornering ability, the leather seating, the number of cupholders. Those things matter but they don’t sell cars, emotion does. Amazingly, this ad buffs up the image of both Chrysler and Detroit.

3. It uses strong images. There are several pieces of sculpture in this ad including one gold plated and another the gigantic fist of a fighter. What are they trying to convey? How about luxury and strength.

4. It uses sound…great narration, a moving beat and even an uplifting gospel chorus.

5. It teases. Nobody is going to buy a car strictly based on this ad. The first thing I noticed about the ad was it didn’t show the car during most of that 2 minutes.  I was curious enough to walk away from the game and see if I could find a good picture of the car on the internet. What the ad really is attempting to do is drive traffic to the dealerships.

6. It uses a memorable tagline, “Imported from Detroit.”

For reasons that almost everybody understands, Chrysler has been on the ropes. If there is any hope that it can survive it has to become a great marketing organization. In the worst housing market that any of us can remember as real estate agents we do too have to become great marketers.

Challenge yourself to try to use some of these techniques in putting together your next video. What would you do if you had to produce the video with no shots of the house? What kind of story can you tell about the house and the neighborhood? Can you tease by using strong images that drive curiosity? Are you brave enough to try some narration? Remember the first steps towards closings are showings. If your video drives traffic to the home it has done its job. If it looks like every other video or visual tour, it’s probably not worth the effort.

When I was searching YouTube for the Chrysler 200 commercial I came across another one that I hadn’t seen. This has a similar feel but a very different sort of message. View this one too and leave a comment.


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