Working in marketing is a grind. Those who’ve been in the business know it’s one thing after another after another. There’s little time to reflect on your work or connect with the product you’re selling. The client wants an ad, you make an ad. Then you move on to the next thing.
Despite its image as a “creative” industry, the marketing business is notoriously uninspired and boring. If anything, marketers seek homogeneity. Why be original, when it’s so much cheaper to do the same as everybody else? What start new when you can do what you did before?
In marketing their developments, Polygon Homes seems to have fully embraced a template approach to condo advertising. Look at this copy for Montage, a new condo in the Brentwood Mall area of North Burnaby:
Discover Montage, Polygon’s newest collection of apartment homes in Burnaby’s up-and-coming Brentwood neighbourhood. Enjoy the convenience of urban living surrounded by a sense of freedom.
That’s straight from Polygon’s website. See how it compares to the copy for another Polygon project, Meridian Gate:
Discover a community rich in both tradition and lifestyle in central Richmond. Discover Meridian Gate – the first of many new communities by Polygon in the up-and-coming Alexandra Gardens neighbourhood.
But why stop there? Take a sniff of this stink from Polygon’s Cathedral Grove:
Nestled in a serene setting amongst a grove of existing trees, you’ll discover Cathedral Grove, Polygon’s new executive-style townhome community in the revered Morgan Heights neighbourhood of South Surrey.
In each case, the reader is invited to “discover” the said condo or townhouse. Each property is positioned as belonging to a certain kind of neighbourhood, which is further characterized as being part of some larger community. All suggest an enveloping experience for the buyer — i.e. urban living surrounded by a sense of freedom, a community rich in both tradition and lifestyle, a serene setting amongst a grove, etc.
Polygon commits no wrong in marketing its properties with a set style and format. But it does suggest an emptiness to the ideas being presented. Once broken down into elements, the messaging is easily seen as being applicable to any condo, anywhere.
As a final thought, I offer a definition of the word montage:
The technique of combining in a single composition pictorial elements from various sources, as parts of different photographs or fragments of printing, either to give the illusion that the elements belonged together originally.
The illusion of originality as a name for a condo? This may be the smartest and most honest thing I’ve seen in condo marketing in a long time.