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Building on its successful 2021 campaign, Sotheby’s International Realty has launched a revamped brand ad campaign to embolden buyers and sellers to pursue a real estate transaction in a future of limitless possibilities.
“Nothing Compares to What’s Next,” developed with global design agency Huge, builds on the firm’s 2021 “Nothing Compares” campaign, positioning clients to a future working with a Sotheby’s International Realty agent. The campaign aims to show that following the COVID-19 pandemic, the reopening of borders and new market shifts, Sotheby’s International Realty agents are available and ready to help their clients into their next chapter.
“When we launched our ‘Nothing Compares’ campaign in 2021, there were a few things that made it very unique,” Sotheby’s International Realty’s Chief Marketing Officer Brad Nelson told Inman. “First, I think as a brand, Sotheby’s International Realty is certainly well-known for the price category of homes that we transact, but with that campaign, we really talked about the reality that nothing compares to the level of service our agents deliver.”
“It was also our first transcreated advertising campaign,” Nelson continued, referring to a campaign that’s adapted across different languages while preserving its intent. “So we went through a transcreation process into many different languages and we really saw the campaign come to life in every corner of the globe. We also used a very unique, modern design system that allows our network to really localize the campaign. So if you were working with historic properties in the Georgetown neighborhood of Washington, D.C., or if you’re selling expansive, panoramic farm and ranch properties in Wyoming, we worked very hard to have a design systems that would allow that local aesthetic and architectural vernacular come to life in each of those local markets.”
To reflect the changes that have happened in the world since 2021, Nelson said the brokerage sought to show potential buyers and sellers the hopefulness in moving forward into a new era with the revamped campaign.
“On the positive side of things, we have come out of quarantine and a lot of borders have fully reopened, which has unlocked some of the international market,” Nelson said. “What we found with speaking with clients is, again, with the concept of the shifting market, no one ever moves because they think it’s particularly fun. It’s actually a pretty painful process. COVID and hybrid and remote work changed a lot of people’s needs and what they needed in a home, which is why we saw such historic transaction volumes in 2021. But this time, we were really leaning into that emotional sense of giving clients permission to dream about what’s next.”
Built first for social media, the campaign will be seen across video, digital and print formats. Nelson said at each step, the ad campaign team first asked if an idea would work on an Instagram Story or TikTok, for instance, before translating it to traditional media forms.
The campaign also leans heavily into video, and one key component is Sotheby’s International Realty’s investment in Google’s YouTube Connected TV to bring the campaign into consumers’ homes via their TVs. With Sotheby’s International Realty’s video action campaign, consumers will be able to push sothebysrealty.com to their mobile device in order to search properties or connect with a Sotheby’s International Realty agent.
“The newest phase of the campaign, ‘Nothing Compares to What’s Next,’ is strategically and creatively sharper, and invites the brand’s discerning clientele to define what ‘next’ means to them,” Jon Judah, global client president of Huge, said in a statement. “It allows every Sotheby’s International Realty agent to open the door — both literally and figuratively — to the next chapter of their clients’ lives.”
Sotheby’s International Realty’s 2021 brand ad campaign drove a nearly 12 percent increase in positive brand lift, a press release noted.
“Nothing Compares to What’s Next” will be available in several languages and can be localized across all Sotheby’s International Realty offices. The multi-million-dollar ad spend will be advertised in high-visibility places like The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, Dwell, Architectural Digest, Nikkei (an Asian Pacific financial news publication), Google, Facebook and Instagram, in addition to YouTube Connected TV.
“What excites me, personally, is the commitment that we’ve made as a company to truly marketing globally,” Nelson added. “I think when you think of a brand marketing campaign, it’s not only what you say, but it’s where you say it. Our brand messaging itself is reinforcing that as a brand we stand for a quality of service. Our media buy that we’ve purchased in conjunction with the campaign is really focusing on reaching prospective clients that our agents at Sotheby’s International Realty want to reach and creating a very efficient and broad platform to do so.”
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