(Read this and then take the test at the end.)
by Mark Micheli
Luxury apartment buildings are springing up everywhere and one savvy real estate developer is making his project stand out from the competition by telling a story that blends history and art.
Andy Montelli of Post Road Residential in Connecticut asked us to help him tell this story.
The story of the Corsair Apartments goes back about 100 years ago. This location in the desirable East Rock neighborhood in New Haven, Conn. was a factory that over the years built everything from corsets and steel pipes, to airplane propellers for the Corsair airplanes that helped win World War II.
Montelli didn’t just renovate this old factory building, he restored it. He then hired 15 artists to create artwork for the common areas that pays homage to that history.
Now he could have just written down this story for prospective tenants to read but he realized that marketing plans work only when you reach your audience. And reach no longer means simply being visible. Reach now means connecting emotionally with your market and the best way to do that is to tell your story through video.
Promoting the History
The first video we created was 2 1/2 minutes long and talked about the history of the space and the amenities of the historic East Rock neighborhood. We followed that up with two shorter, 15-second videos — a perfect length for social media attention spans — one that highlighted the manufacturing history and one that highlighted neighborhood.
Promoting the Art
Next, we were asked to create a video that highlighted the artists and artwork. However, the artwork was still being created and we realized that a video that talked about the artwork but didn’t show the finished work wouldn’t work as a serious piece.
Meanwhile, Montelli was eager to get the word out about the art as soon as possible, so Reel Partners came up with a plan to create two humorous videos that would act as placeholders until the main video about the art could be created. Both worked well to build anticipation and excitement for the artwork.
The first one, “Look! It’s the Artwork of the Corsair Apartments” was only 43 seconds: short enough to capture attention on social media. The second one, “Coming Soon: Art to the Corsair Apartments,” is a spoof on movie previews. Both were posted online and played on a continuous loop inside the model units until the main video about the artwork could be completed.
A few months later, all of the artwork for the Corsair was completed and installed and we were able to create the main video about the art: “Corsair: Made by Hand.” It was finished in time for the Corsair Apartments opening night on Sept. 22, 2016 and played on a continuous loop in the courtyard theater. It continues to be shown on a continuous loop in the model unit: giving prospective tenants another reason to choose the Corsair over the competition.
Now for the test. You just finished reading about this project. Now watch these two videos: the first one about the history of the Corsair and the second one about the artwork. Which method — print or video — makes you more likely to want to live at the Corsair?
DISCUSS: Please discuss your marketing ideas with us. We look forward to working with you.