Stop Stressing Your Realtor Brand Tagline

April 9, 2024

Over the past few weeks, as part of our regular workflow in branding Realtors, I’ve browsed a lot of real estate websites in particular.

Many of these websites make audacious claims on their Home Pages:






When I read statements like these, my first reaction is to imagine how I’d feel if our own studio had such messaging at the helm of our service. It’s almost frightening. Would my team and I even bother trying to meet such daunting expectations?

Then I think, clicking through the real estate websites and reading these default-boast taglines on repeat across the pages —

“Why the big splash? Are these grand statements doing anything for you guys?”

Obviously I have a unique perspective on this. But for what it’s worth, this is what I think about all those “bold” Realtor taglines:

The most successful real estate brands don’t force their value proposition via daunting promises that are impossible to keep.

Sure, you’re proud of what you bring to the table that other agents aren’t. You know all the power points that differentiate you. And so you should.

But coming up with the perfect overproduced sentence about all that (that most would call a USP — Unique Selling Proposition — but enough already) and proceeding to stamp it on all your communications isn’t going to convert more leads. 

Forcing dramatic taglines on us isn’t going to seduce us. 

This is because we shop with our hearts, not our heads.

Real estate brands with genuine personalities, thoughtful consistency and strong emotional pull  will often trump the brands that claim to be “Portland’s BEST” or “Austin’s ONLY” or the entire region’s “TOP TEAM.”

It’s because the most successful real estate brands are intuitive. Sensitive.

They respect the fact that human beings don’t just take a brand’s word for things.

Example: on Sunday my husband and I celebrated our 6th wedding anniversary and in preparation, I researched online for the right high-end restaurant to reserve for our night out.

Turns out the Yelp reviews left by savvy online strangers held infinitely more currency for me than the puffed-up taglines I saw on every restaurant website.

Social proof + the promise of a very particular kind of dining experience is what guided my decision.

Here’s the point…

If you can have a value proposition as a Realtor that is actually EMBODIED and WALKED OUT by you — instead of crammed into dramatic headlines that force unrealistic ideas into the market, or strong-arm people into agreeing that no one is better than your best-ness —

THEN you can invite people to participate in something rare and memorable.

An emotional experience.

Which is so much more believable, and true.

The real value you bring to the table isn’t so much in the real estate service you provide — it’s in the WAY you provide how.

The way you woo us, if you will.

By all means, live up to your best potential in this business. But the inflated claims, the immediately unbelievable opinions about your service or difference as some industry-default “positioning” stance…

Let’s erase all that.

Once we do, suddenly we’re on a level playing field. It’s way less daunting to market this way, when we’re people-centric (+ realistic) in our choice of words.

I encourage you to create *experiences* that give people a reason to want and choose you. Let that guide your messaging.

Like, what are the elegant mechanisms of your client onboarding experience?

What about your offboarding experience?

How do your business cards feel when you touch them?

What emotions do your brand visuals bring forward for people?

Do all that instead.

Do it the way my favorite local coffee shop does. I’m in this coffee shop so often, writing these posts and doing Realtor Branding Things on my laptop, that maybe the folks behind the counter are sick of my face altogether.

Still, every time I walk in they smile warmly and ask about my day. The most attentive baristas will remember that time I brought my toddler in and wonder, how’s Olivia this week? Am I going to buy her another purple cake pop today as an after-school surprise?

They know all about my work and this studio.

“How are the Realtors THIS week?” they ask.

The other coffee shops, they don’t do this. They aren’t curious, they don’t remember.

THIS coffee shop (“my” coffee shop, in my head) doesn’t have a slogan or tagline. They don’t need one. They’re honest, unhurried, charming, and incredible at making and holding eye contact.

Which yields exactly what keeps me coming back for more every week.

It’s what keeps your buyers and sellers coming back, too:

The joy of experience.

The loyalty of connection.

And, the opportunity to spread the word of discovery about their service MYSELF.

Due to my strong recommendation, many of my local friends have now come to love this same coffee shop with minimal “branding,” but magnificent emotional pull that sells itself.

It puts me in mind of that golden campaign by Mastercard, that doesn’t breathe a word about services or brand values or a tagline. Instead it showcases the beauty of experience via brilliant imagery awash with feeling:



(Btw, I’m promptly filing the above images into my folder titled, “Real Marketing Doesn’t Look Like Marketing, After All.”)

Now I WILL say, for the record, that taglines often have their brand place and as a studio, we’re fans. Just don’t ask your tagline to do more than your service and humanity can ever support.

Also remember that inflated tagline messaging only makes one person feel good: YOU. Doesn’t sound like a recipe for growing your bottom line.

Your audience, on the other hand, is rightfully allergic to agent platitudes. (OR they’re straight-up indifferent to them, which is maybe worse?!, because now you’ve blended in with the agent pack completely.)

Consider how much stronger your marketing would become if you replaced “THE BEST TEAM” and “THE TOP AGENT” phrases with more specific verbiage that actually tells a story that sparkles and sells you.

Instead of sweating over a big-splash tagline, scratch it altogether. Instead of leading into your home page with:

“AUSTIN’S TOP BOUTIQUE REAL ESTATE TEAM: We are proud of the results that make us THE VERY BEST in this business.”

Try something more specific, empathetic and fully probable. Like:

“There are too many smoke-and-mirror-promise agents out there, who would love to sell your home. But we know that’s not your style. What you need are caring consultants with proven strategies that don’t make you cringe. A team who knows how to cut through the transaction clutter and put more hard-earned investment dollars back in your pocket.

WELCOME TO INHABIT REAL ESTATE: We help you ditch the overwhelm and upgrade your lifestyle by equipping you to buy or sell in Austin without the fuss.”

Now you tell me which team you’d rather work with.

At the end of the day, there’s a lot to be said for managing expectations here. (And, well..reducing the cringe.) Really this is about removing yourself from the center of the marketing narrative – inflated Realtor taglines are, unfortunately, prime examples of this positioning slip-up – and putting your CLIENTS in that seat instead. Focus on emotional brand pull first, and keep your head on straight.

The rest will follow.


P.S – What’s BLUEPRINT, again? 

We’re a gaggle of designers, writers, and creatives on a mission to change the branding narrative in real estate.

We offer a signature branding service and the industry’s most elegant and high-converting digital products to help modern, stylish Realtors do three things:

➝ Communicate their worth;

➝ Become the obvious choice;

➝ Tell the right stories to stand out + SELL more.

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