The CREA accentuates the positive side of using realtors

The real estate association evolves its caveat-filled creative approach to target first-time buyers with new perceptions of "home."

The Canadian Real Estate Association (CREA) is going after first-time home buyers using a more positive approach as to why they should opt for a realtor.

In its latest spot, “Welcome Home – Future Features” a couple being shown a home by a realtor sees a child’s growth chart appear on a wall, as well as a tire swing in the yard materialize, and are thus able to envision a life for themselves.

“Since March 2020, ‘home’ has taken on a new meaning for a lot of people,” says Claire Payette, VP, marketing and communications at CREA.

Payette tells strategy that consumer sentiment repeatedly reveals that homebuying is the most important purchase of a person’s life, and that this is especially the case during lockdowns where domiciles double as home offices and gyms.

This thinking informed the focus on the “emotional positive side” of the homebuying experience, as compared to previous CREA work – caveat-filled creative about obstructed views, construction noise and other unforeseen issues a buyer could experience absent the help of a realtor.

According to the group’s latest insights, national home sales declined 3.5% in July on a month-over-month basis, while the number of newly listed properties dropped by 8.8% from June to July, resulting in what it calls “record-low inventories.” However, CREA maintains that by historical standards, the market is still very active.

The housing market is “tricky” right now, Payette admits, and she says there needs to be knowledge about the homebuying process, especially for its target of first timers – the group that would benefit most from a realtor’s expertise.

In addition to the 30-second spot, the campaign is supported by 10-second digital iterations that also show spaces transforming as potential buyers walk through them, reinforced by highlighting a realtor’s knowledge to guide a buyer through the homebuying process.

“We tried to showcase the different types of first-time buyers,” Payette explains, adding that it’s a diverse group that encompasses couples, singles, BIPOC, and a demo that skews slightly younger and more urban.

The integrated campaign was created by Union, with which the CREA has had a decade-long relationship. It’s currently live on TV, TikTok, Spotify, and other online channels.

Payette says it wanted to innovate in its media mix to find out how placements resonate with its target, saying choice of platform is a “balancing act.”

The ad spend is similar to past efforts, with funds less directed toward TV in favour of a more digitally-focused approach.