Branding in the Homebuilding Industry

Branding is the summation of each and every one impression and communications that a home buyer and potential buyer have with a homebuilding company. Branding can also be defined as the formation of a brand promise and obligation to fulfilling that promise on an unswerving basis. Corporate branding is to a greater extent the marquee of all medieval times, which as a result give consumers assurance that the company's quality would be reproduced for the buyer consistently. All that these buyers and potential buyers might experience, observe, and listen to all constitute to branding.

Advertising is undoubtedly part of branding; however it is always considered a comparatively small quantity of the general branding image. The most important focus of a company's branding initiative is aligning their customers with the focus on openness, reliability, and distinction .It is only after the company employees have been aligned with these core values, that their customers and shareholders advantage (Wood, 2008).

In addition to sales representatives, the managers, the mortgage company itself and the design centre workforce must all be incorporated into an organized customer experience, so as to have gratified clients. In building the main undertaking is always to deliver the best new home experience in the industry and therefore each and every activity is driven toward that. This is not only for the customers but also for the company’s image projection and competitiveness. Thriving home builders’ branding also tends to centre a larger extent on the customer satisfaction than on the product itself.

Some companies, for instance, dedicate themselves to supplying the buyer with a quality home and outstanding home buying experience. And as such, each and every company always tend to produce a brand with all the diversity as much as possible. The consumer's buying experience is always the general thread and it has worked out well over the years as the amalgamating brand experience for most companies (Prof. Fred Abernathy, 2009).

The vibrant development of many builders geographically and into innovative product lines through internal expansion and acquirements, has generated its own set of challenges. To check and polish up the brand, the company therefore has to embark on a huge venture by doing research with members of staff, home shoppers, and home buyers. This enables them to comprehend the anticipations and what they know about the company (M.D.C. Holdings, 2007).

Acquisitions are always a massive approach of growing a business but they sometimes make it more complicated to manage the brand experience at the regional level. It is also very essential for companies growing by acquisition to comprehend their overall business strategy and then align their brand strategy with it. Most of the large builders have been consistently accomplishing brand promises by putting into practice repeatable business traditions, branding themselves is demonstrating to be a repeatable procedure for home builders. All of these large builders’ posses a tag line guaranteeing home buyers more inner space at a lesser cost. They all also guarantee more option and a more pleasant home buying experience than competitor builders. In print adverts, billboards, radio advertisements and a few minutes televised commercials has been at the centre of the brand strategy for most companies.

Most researches show that home buyers expect more houses at a lesser cost. Many of the promotions include an advertisement that only has the brand announcement and a phone digit and a radio commercial series that humorously portrays people going astray in homes with rooms the size of some states or countries. Some companies collaborated with online advertising firms to build up a unique model for a dimensional mail program tailored to suit the homebuilding industry. As an example, a chain of four chronological watercolor paintings were commissioned by one of the online advertising companies. After a period of three months, limited edition of framed paintings of the watercolors which had been painted earlier on, were posted in high-quality branded enclosures to a list of marked 47 C-level managements at the largest most homebuilders in that region.

Every one of these paintings suggested a theme of building the foundation, administering the suppliers, using the precise implements, and assuring the buyer. Their point being addressing a particular pain points experienced by managements in the homebuilding industry towards the end of the 19th century and that still exist in the early 21st century. In addition to the mail, a short correspondence accompanying each painting gave details on how the advertising company helps its customers lessen that pain with efficient IT techniques and strategies (Prof. Fred Abernathy, 2009).

This ground-breaking, well-organized promotion made it past the executives’ doorkeepers, broke through the muddle, and generated quantifiable results for the company in many ways. For instance, it generated tough brand awareness for the company amongst top well known homebuilding executives. Most of these series of framed paintings ended up dangling on the walls in the receivers’ places of work and reception areas. It also opened numerous entries with targeted executives whom the company was unable to reach in the past. It encouraged constructive feedbacks from most of the managements who received the paintings including one of them who sent a personal thank you note to the company. Consequently, one motivated high-flying national homebuilder submitted a RFP to the company, featuring an application for a major IT consulting proposal (Borderano, 2010).

If a company’s business policy is to have the biggest footprint and acknowledgment in the marketplace as having a regional or international presence, then all the purchased assets must share the same brand. In contrast, if the company’s business policy is to have a big footprint and more of a local presence, then the company must have an alliance with the local brand that makes local people feel more secure as far as mortgage is concerned. All in all, home builders make use of both approaches and even sometimes hybrids. For example, many companies can go to market under a particular single name. Other companies conversely manage their messages to a range of market subdivisions through a family of brands. All the brands must have the same characteristics of quality and integrity. As an example, while one group of companies’ brand might stands for a home and a community experience of a lifetime, the other group of companies’ brand might in contrast stand for the distinctive lifestyle and facilities with a view of targeting energetic adult home purchasers. Still on the same note, others might focus on a built-solid construction message and an equivalent worth provided to its buyers.

Some homebuilders are currently refining their brand strategy through stratifying their messages to different market segments by product category, using a group of names. The overall group brand is about guaranteeing value for their clienteles. They achieve this by having the correct product at the right place and at the right price.  In some regional markets, however, the some companies’ brand is most of the times used to designate the companies’ move-up merchandise. Legacy is always a sure way of an entry-level brand. On the same note, production opulence homes are always marketed under the companies’ name (Perot Systems Corporation, 2009).

The assurance of product value is always a common branding strategy across the industry. But, as it normally turns out sometimes, value in the mind of one customer might be totally dissimilar to the true meaning of value in the mind of another buyer. Key factors such as product, location, price and marketing for each and every one of the companies’ brands must always mirror both the general component and the discrepancies between them, based on the companies’ comprehending  every one of their customer. Therefore, home builders that get their branding right always find that they can leverage it in a number of ways. The brand, on the other hand can affirmatively persuade trade partners as well as home shoppers. Land dealers and developers are normally the repeat customers who fetch the home builders’ customers and create the subsequent subdivision.

These brand and sub-brand strategies lets them understand that the companies build in quite a number of types and not just move-up or opulence production. This therefore creates opportunities that may otherwise have been overlooked. A difference with brokers has been noted over the years as a result of this branding strategy. When dealing with a large number of trade partners, the brand influences a lot how the company deals with them and what the company anticipations are and the impact on the ultimate customer. Other builders on the other hand use deep-rooted brands to penetrate new markets.

Some companies for example, who are distinguished for their luxury connotations, over the time have sometimes resorted to using their names to drive into the metropolitan markets. However, using the brand in this manner is a balancing act and thus the company might desire to defend the core meaning of the brand while at the same time try to broaden it to suit the purpose (Borderano, 2010).

Nevertheless, some analysts argue that a return on brand equity is normally not what the home builders are seeking. The argument is that when talking about how the brand influences the listed home builders, one has to distinguish between the primary issues that drive their sales or assessment factors that drive the companies’ stock prices.  Therefore from an investment point of view, brand is not always considered an important issue, for the reason that brand is basically a good will on the balance sheet. Home builders therefore tend not to want to spend so much on that good will. It has been found that they are far more concerned with the sustainability of earnings, income growth and returns on investments since those are the aspects that sustain continuous increase in stock price (Wood, Single Family Housing Megatrendz, 2010).

However many builders also realize a direct advantage to branding attempts. Examples of these benefits include a higher selling price. It has been established that when a company get it right in branding, there is a lot of value for the company. The company can command a stronger price due to the intrinsic level of standing the company has created. A tough brand however is sometimes an obstruction to competition. This can create monopoly because no company wants to come into a market place that is already dominated by a standout home builder.

Though in times of uncertainty, there is always a flight to quality by most companies. If a company has a history of upholding value and its brand can sometimes be seen as the builder of quality and as such buyers will be possibly tend to cross its threshold since it is considered a stable choice of investment. This therefore indicates that a definitive measure of a home builder's brand is not when they sell a home, but rather when their customer later in life, sells the home to another buyer (Wood, 2008).

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