StreetEasy Ads Bid New Yorkers to 'Win the Game of Real Estate'

In the style of classic board games

Finding or selling a home in New York City can feel like a hellish game where players struggle to pass Go. The process is often confusing, time-consuming and hyper-competitive. Folks frequently wind up with living arrangements that don't meet their needs. Or conversely, going months without finding a buyer and settling for a deal below market value.

With all that in mind, Zillow's StreetEasy platform—serving the five boroughs and New Jersey—crafted stylish new ads modeled on the look and feel of Monopoly and similar diversions.

OOH and print elements from Preacher and local artist Jon Contino bid buyers, sellers and renters to "Win the Game of Real Estate." That may sound like over-promising, but cards-and-dice imagery keep it real, suggesting StreetEasy's expert tools can prove invaluable, though outcomes are never guaranteed:

"We were always sure we wanted to represent a game board in some way, and we found it worked great as a background for headline-driven executions," Rob Baird, co-founder and chief creative officer of Preacher, tells Muse. 

Click the images below to enlarge and scroll through:

The ads mark an evolution of Preacher's past renter-focused efforts for StreetEasy.

"This new campaign needed to reach a wider audience, including sellers," Baird says. "We had a lot of information that needed to be conveyed for different people in different stages of their real estate lives. We thought the nostalgia of a board game could work for everyone."

The campaign arrives with real-estate inventory across NYC at its lowest level in nearly a decade, as prices climb back to pre-pandemic levels. Against that backdrop, Preacher sought to capture the public's attention in a playful way that wasn't easy to ignore.

"A majority of the OOH buy consists of subway takeovers where we get to fill the entire car with the campaign," Baird says. "So, we have a captive audience seeing the ads day after day. We made a conscious choice to go for it, with lots of copy, and visual magic from Contino. Many of us working on this campaign lived in NYC for many years and remember reading just about anything during our considerable train time."

He adds: "We felt if we could draw people into the campaign, they'd be amused and come away really understanding how StreetEasy can help. Then, maybe they'd discover something new on a second or third viewing. But at the end of the day, they're really pretty classic ad constructs of visual, headline, copy and logo—but hopefully in a unique presentation."

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