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MATTHEW SLUTSKY
Senior Buzzer
reply 2173 vote 122
 

Why is there so little sex in real-estate advertising?

Sex sells, right?

We've seen it in the new-build market, with advertisementsof big-lipped ladies, and sexy videos, but I have only seen it a handful of times in the re-sale market.

On MLS, I see thousands and thousands of listings, with the same old-boring copy. I see flyers in my mail, daily, with the same old picture of a real-estate agent (typically taken in the 1980s), but I rarely see the industry using sex to sell homes.

So, why hasn't real-estate been using sex to sell? Has anyone seen any good examples? Does anyone have a good reason why?

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General Chit-Chat
 
 
 
BRIAN ELIZABETH
Buzzer
reply 162 vote 7
 
 
4 BEST REPLY
Here is an incredible ad for a website in Spain that deals in rentals: http://youtu.be/xUbv_u3EiK0

The idea: stop living in your parents house and having to make out in cars when you could lease your own flat.
 
 
 
JOSIE STERN
Buzzer
reply 104 vote 50
 
 
1
I'm going to take a stab at this one.....

First you should know that many agents refer to a saleable, highly attractive resale house as "a sexy house". That's pretty much where it ends in the resale market.

I think the new developments that cater to the younger crowd are selling a sexier lifestyle which comes at a certain time in a person's life or they are selling newly constructed houses which come with a certain amount of maintenance free living for a while.

The resale market is about home ownership of older homes (which isnt't sexy but a huge responsibility) and that usually but not always follows the sexier carefree condo lifestyle. Does this make sense? Many buyers of resale homes have anxieties about buying a resale home because it comes with a huge responsibility and there's nothing sexy about that Also not all resale homes are suited to be advertised in that way as they may need a great deal of work. I just don't think advertising with couples sipping champagne in hot tubs would work in the resale market.

On the other hand Sage Real Estate used a video to promote and sell one of their more unique properties by showing a handsome man parking his  expensive car in his driveway, went into his house to change and get ready for a big night out. Then took a look at his dog's sad face and realized this is where he belonged and skipped the night out. They sold this property because the video exuded warmth and catered to the person's nesting instinct. This was not sexy but it was very creative. 

It doesn't mean that we shouldn't learn from your comments to make the resale market advertising more interesting though!

I too would love to hear what others say about this.
 
 
MATTHEW SLUTSKY
Senior Buzzer
reply 2173 vote 122
 
 
Here is one from Australia that really uses sex to sell: http://blog.buzzbuzzhome.com/2011/03/wierdest-real-estate-ad-ever.html


This is going way over the top from what I am talking about!

@Josie Stern, I see your point about responsibility and the realities of owning properties, but that doesn't mean that all the language used should be so boring. Why not spice up the write-ups a bit? Or, make the photos a bit more revealing? 

Realtors are currently hiring professional photographers to take the listing pictures, so why not spice them up a bit and create a story out of them?

PS: I really dug the Sage Real-Estate video. It was one of the "few" that I was thinking about.  
 
 
ANONYMOUS
 
 
2
My favourite:

http://vimeo.com/31319142
 
 
MATTHEW SLUTSKY
Senior Buzzer
reply 2173 vote 122
 
 
@Tara Azari ...wow! That one is definitely the winner on using sex to sell real-estate! So, the count is at 2 or 3 around the world!

Do you know if it worked? Did the house sell?
 
 
JOSIE STERN
Buzzer
reply 104 vote 50
 
 
These are awesome videos , but I think too controversial for our market.

On the other hand , a creative lifestyle living video with a an emotional twist can be very effective and grab attention. 

I think we'll start seeing more of these.
 
 
JOSIE STERN
Buzzer
reply 104 vote 50
 
 
I'm not sure about the younger generation either. You could do a mini poll with many groups of friends and that will give you a clue.
 
 
MATTHEW SLUTSKY
Senior Buzzer
reply 2173 vote 122
 
 
@Josie Stern...if it interesting that you say that ads like that are "too controversial for our market" while we are surrounded by ads like this:


And this:

And this:

Controversial: YES! Too controversial for our market: I don't think so.

Terry O'Reilly has a great series on Sex in Advertising, here: http://www.cbc.ca/undertheinfluence/season-1/2012/04/21/sex-in-advertising-1/ 
 
 
ANONYMOUS
 
 
@ Mathew I agree with you 100%
 
 
JOSIE STERN
Buzzer
reply 104 vote 50
 
 
Yes I understand but these are not about naked people romping around their home.
 
 
JOSIE STERN
Buzzer
reply 104 vote 50
 
 
I actually find the 3 Matthew included as very creative and attention grabbers.
 
 
MAXWELL SCHWARTZ
BuzzStaff
reply 43 vote 4
 
 
I agree with @Josie Stern that you wouldn't want to market a single family home as sexy. On the other hand, I can definitely see how marketing a new condo with sex can be effective as you have many young, single professionals moving into many of these units. Having a condo that might get you laid might be viewed by some of these people as a big boner...I mean bonus!
 
 
NICHOLAS GAVEY
Buzzer
reply 60 vote 11
 
 
I definitely agree with @Matthew Slutsky that we should work on having better write ups for our properties that sound more enticing then just listing a bunch of specs. One of the problems is that MLS only allows so many characters and you usually can't fit everything in. 

As for using sex appeal in our advertising I'm not sure how appropriate/effective it would be. While the videos posted have been hilarious to watch on a Monday morning they didn't really make me want that house any more.
 
 
CAROL GIROUX
Buzzer
reply 11 vote 1
 
 
That is the most dumb Idea really this is about selling homes not what goes on behind closed doors.Really that is a pig. Grow up out there...,,,,
 
 
MATTHEW SLUTSKY
Senior Buzzer
reply 2173 vote 122
 
 
Hi @carol giroux ...which is a dumb idea? Or, generally, the whole idea of using sex in real-estate advertising is dumb?
 
 
KELSEY BLAIR
Buzzer
reply 10 vote 5
 
 
2

I also think that "sexiness" in real estate is tough because often sexy adds appeal to one gender while risking alienating the other.

For example: while some people might appreciate this ad, it would for sure make me pause before I kept reading.

 
 
MAXWELL SCHWARTZ
BuzzStaff
reply 43 vote 4
 
 
@Kelsey Blair - Great point! Do you think a more gender-neutral approach would be better? Do you think ads can use sex without being overly suggestive?
 
 
JOSIE STERN
Buzzer
reply 104 vote 50
 
 
1
It's interesting that in this forum, the males seem to be more comfortable with the idea of using sexy ads to sell real estate than the females. Personally I think it would be too controversial and I don't see any serious real estate agent being a pioneer and risk alienating their client base.

We need more interesting and creative advertising, though, especiially with the availability of websites giving us more room to be creative.
 
 
KELSEY BLAIR
Buzzer
reply 10 vote 5
 
 

@Maxwell SchwartzIt seems to me that the key would be humour. I think the combination of sex andhumour(wit, more specifically. Not bathroom humour)can be really catchy and take the edge off.

@Josie SternThat is really interesting. I think this may have to do with the fact that a really high percentage of sexualized ads are aimed at men.

 
 
ANONYMOUS
 
 
Be artistic & not vulgar. I still think this one is brilliant!

http://vimeo.com/31319142
 
 
MAXWELL SCHWARTZ
BuzzStaff
reply 43 vote 4
 
 
@Kelsey Blair Yes. Agreed. Humour is the key!
 
 
MATTHEW SLUTSKY
Senior Buzzer
reply 2173 vote 122
 
 
1
Here is a great one from a New York rental site:

 
 
JOSIE STERN
Buzzer
reply 104 vote 50
 
 

@Matthew Slutsky This one is really really good.

 
 
MATTHEW SLUTSKY
Senior Buzzer
reply 2173 vote 122
 
 
S1homes.com in Scotland is launching a new campaign to drive traffic to their site. 

I am not 100% sure that this would be defined as "sex sells", but maybe it does?

Check out the video:

http://youtu.be/PPfCxCrbM-M      

...pretty hilarious.
 
 
JENNIFER YEOMAN
Buzzer
reply 26 vote 2
 
 
Niagara Falls is extremely sexy!  Weddings... Honeymoons, ...Passion is rampant! The resale residential market here, though, is like an old married couple who have almost forgotten how!  Unfortunate!
 
 
JOYCE CHEN
BuzzStaff
reply 50 vote 19
 
 
@Jennifer Yeoman "Niagara Falls is extremely sexy!  Weddings... Honeymoons, ...Passion is rampant! The resale residential market here, though, is like an old married couple who have almost forgotten how!" --> well, there just went my morning coffee, all over my sweatshirt
 
 
JENNIFER YEOMAN
Buzzer
reply 26 vote 2
 
 
Sorry Joyce! Amazing but true! The general trend seem to be: list an older residential property, any price range, wait a year to see if it sells, take it off the market, then try again! Sexy Niagara Falls! Non-sexy residential resales! However, mop up your coffee,-commercial/industrial is hotter than hot! Have a great weekend!
 
 
SYED SHAH
Buzzer
reply 10 vote 1
 
 
Most definitely an alienation problem. Also it might deter the average home buyer who is actively looking for a home for his family. Another reason is that it might not be fitting to have a bikini model at the entrance of http://groperty.com/12_Degrees_Condo.html , what do you think?
 
 
JENNIFER YEOMAN
Buzzer
reply 26 vote 2
 
 
Right Syed! A bikini at the door definitely wouldn't go over well with a plump wife! I think the family would be definitely be deterred! Mom would be put off! SHE alone carries a lot of weight in a family's home buying decisions!
 
 
BRIAN ELIZABETH
Buzzer
reply 162 vote 7
 
 
@Syed Shah Good point, but posting it with a link to your site with no relevancy is definitely not sexy-advertising for you.
 
 
BARBARA
Buzzer
reply 65 vote 4
 
 

WOW about time eh mate....I'd buy if HE came with the place  :)

Be artistic & not vulgar. I still think this one is brilliant! http://vimeo.com/31319142
 
 
BARBARA
Buzzer
reply 65 vote 4
 
 
I think when it comes to family houses women definitely hold all the cards, so no bikini clad women or gorgeous babes...BUT a few muscled men might do the trick,,,how does it feel guys to be on the other end 'Ahem' of the sex pitch ..
 
 
MATTHEW SLUTSKY
Senior Buzzer
reply 2173 vote 122
 
 
I just came across this ad on our blog:

Does sex and food sell? How a woman drenched in chocolate? 
Source: http://blog.buzzbuzzhome.com/2012/09/top-7-worst-real-estate-listings-part-2-pics.html
 
 
JENNIFER YEOMAN
Buzzer
reply 26 vote 2
 
 
Selling point for the above ad,- granite is easy to clean if someone's a messy cook! Don't think the average woman would be sold on it- although you never know! Fantasy can go either way!
 
 
SCOTT
Buzzer
reply 84 vote 8
 
 
A home is for the family. Not only for a teenager or a young man/ lady who would like to spice it up. It would be quite embarassing to have hoardings like the one above, right over/ on/ near your apartment. Secondly, you need sex for selling, when the product has no redeeming features of its own. A sexy ad only helps in tantalising. It would put off serious buyers.
 
 
AARON MOHAMMED
BabbleBee
reply 320 vote 46
 
 
It all depends on who the ad is targeting. I have seen plenty ads where I believe sex may have worked in the benefit of the property. Particularly with studio units.
 
 
MARK STIRPE
NewBee
reply 3
 
 
It would be impossible to make a sexy ad work for our private little cul-de-sac development in the quaint town Orangeville, ON...without losing the "family values" we have to project.  www.LMdevelopments.ca
But for edgey, condo-living in downtown TO....absolutely...and I agree, need to appeal to both women and men.
 
 
MATTHEW SLUTSKY
Senior Buzzer
reply 2173 vote 122
 
 
@Mark Stirpe, why cant @Highland Ridge of Orangeville have some sexy ads? Deep down, who wouldn't it appeal to?
 
 
MARK STIRPE
NewBee
reply 3
 
 
Deep down?...we could appeal to some, however we could never risk offending potential home buyers who ALL want the safe, family-focused environment in their neighbourhood.
 
 
BRITT M
NewBee
reply 1 vote 2
 
 
2
What about Streetcar's new site? These buyers are urban loft-lovers so it's the perfect demo. There's definitely a way to be edgy and tasteful a the same time.


 
 
 
 
 

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