While doing some research for a new real esate marketing project, we were referred to a website for 20pine.com, a new development by Michael Shvo. The website is extremely well thought out and makes use of well optmized high resolution 3D Renderings and 3D Floor Plans. It also illustrates a new philisophy in real estate marketing described in an excerpt from Fast Company magazine:
Shvo’s strategy–to turn each building he markets into a luxury brand of its own–is calculated to insulate his developers from such turbulence. His basic contention is that real estate should be marketed in the mode of Cartier, Gucci, or Rolex: massive market research; devotion to demographic and psychographic analysis; extreme attention to customer experience and service; integrated marketing across every touch point, every function, every channel.
That’s not news in the consumer-products realm, but it represents fresh thinking in an industry that, until recently, worried less about seducing customers than about simply feeding their insatiable demand.
“The real-estate industry is accustomed to being very conservative,” says Anna Klingmann, author of the upcoming Brandscapes: Architecture in the Experience Economy (MIT Press, fall 2007). “They have, by and large, relied on tried-and-true formulas.” In the urban condo market, that meant selling based on location, square footage, and predictable amenities (“Working fireplace! Park view!”). But as consumers have become more design savvy, demand has escalated for more upscale, sophisticated dwellings that serve, essentially, as a residential shorthand for a buyer’s style, aesthetic, and weltanschauung.
And that niche is where Shvo sees his opening. If the product is extraordinary, he says, it’s insulated from the dreaded competition that invariably afflicts commodity properties when the market softens. He raises a bottle of branded Shvo water– Shvo2O–to make his case. “If you’re buying this water from me for $1, and somebody else says she’ll sell it to you for 99 cents, you’re in a race to the lowest price,” he says. “But if I bring you a bottle of water from the Holy Land, you’ll pay $2 for it because you can’t get it anywhere else.”