Marketing Celebrity Homes

Talk to Todd Jones of Rodeo Realty’s Studio City office if you’ve ever questioned whether or not to promote the fact that one of your real estate listings, or purchases, involves celebrities.
Jones is currently representing soap opera star Katherine Kelly Lang, and husband Alex D’Andrea, in the sale of their home in Sherman Oaks. The 5 bedroom, 3 bath, 3,410 square foot abode is listed at $1.449 million.
The house was featured last week in the Los Angeles Times, and Curbed LA blogged about the listing and posted a direct link to Jones’ web site. The property was also featured on news sites throughout the United States.
Note: All of this press was garnered without revealing the property address. The celebrity couple still lives in the home and requested the address remain confidential. News outlets are generally cooperative with privacy matters like this.
Jones used Google Analytics to track the amount of visitors to his web site. All of the press led to 550 more hits than usual. He said the Curbed LA mention probably contributed the most since it provided a direct link to his site. Jones’ name also appeared on the Web and in the Saturday print edition of the L.A. Times.
He said the publicity keeps the seller happy, because he’s able to show another one of Rodeo Realty’s strengths and capabilities. Follow-up from the exposure –meaning whether or not it leads to showings and an eventual sale- will also be a good indicator of whether the home is priced right.
Public relations is just one element of Jones’ overall marketing strategy for this home. The fact that he had a web site for the property gave readers a place to “land” and a way for him to track the numbers. Jones’ name appearing in the news is also a plus for landing clients in the future.
Of course, as real estate agents you need to respect the privacy and wishes of celebrity clients. And if confidentiality agreements are in place, you cannot break those agreements. But if celebrity clients are open to using their names to help sell the home, it can give your marketing efforts a significant boost.

Eric Billingsley, Publicist, Rodeo Realty