Real estate site Trulia announced the launch of a new brand campaign, entitled “What Locals Say.”
The site worked with San Francisco agency Venables Bell & Partners on two spots, letting potential homeowners hear about the neighborhood they’re set to live in, with the locals who make up each community’s fabric.
One spot takes you on a ride with Pete, a paperboy who’s as snarky as he is charming. It’s a half-pitch to all the good things about the town, from the pool with a high diving board to the market that’s “great for eggs”—right before tossing the shelled yolk at the door of a terrible neighbor. It’s also important for all the neighbors to look out for, with the added lesson of making sure you’re nice to Pete.
In the other, a dogwalker named Dana drags you through a sprawling city with her and her litter of canines, showing you all the bars: “dive bar… sushi bar… we’ve even got a place where we do that barre thing.” Everyone’s friendly in the town with the “nice townhouse,” friendly enough to get Dana’s seal of approval.
Most of the players in the real estate space pull data from the same sources, so creating any brand messaging with strong personality in a market with such parity is important. “What’s different here,” Reiter says, “is that we launched a brand new feature that actually crowdsources insights from the local who really live in a place and stay.” For Reiter and Trulia, the feature and VB&P’s creative highlight the most important questions: Is it dog friendly, do you feel safe walking around at night, do you know your neighbors by name?
“People take care of their lawn, they decorate for the holidays.” Reiter added. “This is the feeling side of the equation that is really well-complemented by the data-driven map overlays of things like crime stats and school performance.” To Trulia, the two go hand-in-hand and set it apart from its competitors. “It gives people a really comprehensive view of what it's really like to live in a place.”
Inherently, house-hunting is bigger than just buying the right home for your family needs—it’s also important the environment that you’re becoming a part of and how one fits into it. Agency and client pulled a lot of research from their audience in before coming to their “What Locals Say” campaign. “It's just this super personal thing,” says Reiter. “Start and talk about, ‘Well, I want the school district to be good.’ But then very quickly, they'll start telling you about ‘how much joy they get when they drive up there block at the end of the day or you know, that sort of bug them. But deep down inside, they sort of love and care about where they live, and there's this sense of identity. If you think about it, one of the first questions you ask people is ‘Where do you live?” And when you give that answer, like there's a piece of yourself that's wrapped up in it. There's a lot of really like profoundly human stuff in neighborhoods.”
On the work that Venables created with Trulia, Alissa Reiter, Trulia’s vice president of marketing, praised the agency, saying: “We're in love with their work is as I'm completely redefined what it means to look for a house and we just discovered that neighborhood is a really big factor.” In research done, Trulia found that 85% of people say that the neighborhood is just as important as the house itself.” She considered it “absolutely in our DNA to solve this problem in a way that no one else does.”
The resulting 30-second spots, she adds, are “all about these neighborhood insiders who kind of show you around the blocks and let you in on all the juicy secrets about a neighborhood. And this is, you know exactly what people are looking for when they're shopping for a house. And what's beautiful,” she adds, “is that these kind of oddly normal characters personify what Trulia is providing this experience. Totally unvarnished view of what it's really like to live in a place.”