Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Marketing to Women? Real Living's Been There For Years

Realogy, one of our top competitors and the parent company of Century 21, ERA, Coldwell Banker, Sotheby’s etc., recently announced their licensing abilities for the Better Homes and Gardens brand from Meredith Corporation. A historical point of reference here is that the name Realogy was born around 2005/2006. Yes, that’s REALogy.

Why am I blogging about this? To give the real story.

As the VP of new market development for Real Living, I found each of the three points below to be very interesting and each holds significance as they relate to my role of leading our franchise growth initiatives. As I’ll point out, the BHG purchase shows Real Living is not only on Realogy’s radar, but also in its cross hairs.

First – the very fact Realogy purchased the BHG brand holds significance as it seems that they, possibly due to our success, are finally recognizing that females account for 90% of the purchasing decisions. A woman’s buying power is huge, and other firms are missing out by not recognizing this fact. As I’ve discussed in recent blog posts, I find it funny that in the past, Realogy brands have not recognized the female consumer as a key decision maker. A prime example is that Century 21 is the title sponsor of Major League Baseball’s Home Run Derby – a program dominated by a male audience. Hmm. By the way, note the "red" logo on the home run derby link - isn't C21 gold?

Second -- I hear 1000Watt Consulting, a firm Real Living employed to assist with our franchise marketing, is in discussions with Realogy to assist with the roll-out and implementation of the BHG brand. This, while possibly just a rumor, is significant since 1000Watt is very familiar with Real Living’s brand.

Finally -- the very name Realogy coming into existence circa 2005/2006 is interesting. It seems to me that this is an effort to “get REAL” as we’ve been since our inception in 2002.

Maybe all of the above is just coincidence. Yeah, right.

As they say, imitation is the highest form of flattery. As someone who’s been with Real Living for 11 years and witnessed first hand our company moving into 21 states and grow from 400 to 4000 agents, I’m flattered that other companies are trying to emulate our successful brand. While Realogy certainly has the size and capital to effectively compete, I’m confident our leadership, creativity and enthusiasm will keep us one step ahead. Real Living will continue to take pride in staying years ahead of everyone when it comes to the coveted female consumer.

If you are interested in learning more about Real Living, our brand, systems and culture, please e-mail me chris.svec@realliving.com, call me direct 614-203-0801 or visit www.reallivingfranchise.com


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