The new realtor.com brand
In a complete overhaul of one of the largest real estate search sites in the nation, realtor.com has not only rolled out a new website, but a new logo, tagline and color scheme in a complete rebrand. With the rebranding of realtor.com, the company is asserting that they are not an outdated real estate search giant, and that they are deserving of their being a finalist at the 2013 appy awards, standing tall as a technology company rather than a stuffy REALTORS® organization. The modern look gives the brand some much needed energy, and with the clever logo of streets converging to form a house, realtor.com has a shot at broadening their appeal.
Andrew Strickman, Vice President of Brand & Creative at realtor.com tells AGBeat, “As we heighten our focus on developing a rich consumer experience and creating an emotional attachment to our audience, we recognized that it was time to update our realtor.com branding, positioning and tagline.”
Strickman continued, “We conducted extensive research and spoke with consumers from across the country as key input to the development of our revised logo and new site look and feel. We heard from them that a valued online real estate brand is one that embraces the notion of home — whether that home is their first rental out of college, or the 3-bedroom house that marks the beginning of a new family growing out of their starter home.”
“Most online real estate brands feel clinical, data- and machine-driven and do not have a human feel, even though they are all about creating connections with real human beings,” Strickman added. “Our role with this rebranding effort — and graphic iconography that represents home in the center of a community (‘all roads lead home’) is to draw a much stronger connection between realtor.com and the people that fuel its service — both consumers and REALTORS.”
So why teal? Why ditch the traditional blue?
The company says that the teal color selected represents credibility, authority and leadership. Teal conveys a feeling of security and is often identified with money and prestige.
Dave Arnold, Executive Creative Director at Pereira & O’Dell said, “Teal is one of the new web colors that is emerging as a differentiator from the Facebook and Twitter blues that are everywhere. Pantone has made emerald the color of the year for 2013 so I’m sure we will be seeing a lot of variations in the blue / green world.”
“Color does stimulate emotion and I think a blend between blue and green, or teal is a smart one for realtor.com,” Arnold noted. “Green symbolizes nature, environment, and money — all great takeaways for the brand. It’s also a calming color, which for some can be much needed when house hunting.”
Can they really lower case the letter R?
Upon release of the rebrand, various realtors objected, noting that “REALTORS®” is a trademark of the National Association of REALTORS®, which has an operating agreement with Move, Inc. (parent company of realtor.com) in place. Some noted that the use of the word “realtor” is meant to be capitalized, others stated via social networks that the word should always be in all caps with a trademark logo.
Regardless of past use, a trademark was filed by the National Association of REALTORS® on February 6, 2013 not only on the new realtor.com logo, but on the words and letters used in the logo (meaning the tagline along with the specific spelling of “realtor”).
While there may be chatter between industry professionals, the lower case “r” and typography of the new logo along with the design, tagline, and color scheme bring the brand into a modern era, and due to its minimalism could give it a stronger chance of being timeless as many of their competitors remain firmly rooted in the aesthetics of pre-2006.