It’s fair to say that the Covid pandemic has affected every part of consumers’ lives, none more so it seems than the property rental market, which has seen demand for “bijou” city centre residencies plummet as tenants migrate towards homes with more space, indoors and outdoors, as a result of three successive lockdowns.
The online sector is highly competitive, with the big three portals of Rightmove, OnTheMarket and Zoopla battling it out. However, there’s a new gang in town, One Dome, who are keen to disrupt this cosy threesome.
And just by coincidence Rightmove is launching a new TV ad, devised by Fold 7 and directed at tenants, which follows one renter’s home, work and social life.
Called somewhat predictably “The Renter”, the 60-second TV ad follows a decidedly chipper tenant as she moves into a property, adds her furniture and belongings, rearranges it all then puts it back again, visits a chip shop and a gambling club, and ultimately gets her own cottage in the countryside with her dream job in a cheese shop.
The voiceover states: “The renter settles in, stays out, and snaps up the dream job. Because, despite an unusual navigation technique, the renter has a certain knack for finding what’s right, for right now.”
The thrust of the message is that renters have the freedom to move anywhere they like, unlike their poor old mortgaged home-owning counterparts who are lumbered with a big debt. (Funnily enough it doesn’t mention that Rightmove also do house sales.)
The ad will appear in prime slots on Channel 4, All4 and ITVhub, as well as on online video platforms and will be supported by a large-scale national outdoor campaign, running from Aberdeen to Plymouth.
Rightmove marketing director Iain Kennedy said: “Through this campaign, we hope to stimulate the market further by encouraging movers to ‘explore the life that could be’ and get moving.”
Fold 7 chief creative officer Ryan Newey added: “Finding your happy doesn’t only mean falling in love with the home you buy, it can be about falling in love with the lifestyle and possibilities you have as a renter.”
So, what is the consensus around the Decision Marketing office?
Well, looking at this campaign you might left be wondering what on earth all those renters are moaning about. They’ve got the freedom to live where they like, when they like and are not tied down to a stressful mortgage.
But away from the smoke and mirrors, the reality is that the rental market is far more stressful and expensive, with holding payments, deposits, up two months’ rent in advance, crap landlords, incompetent managing agents, short-term leases, annoying neighbours and the threat of eviction.
Ah well, that’s advertising for you.
Decision Marketing Adometer: An “economical with the truth” 6 out of 10