Responding to my previous post, reader Paul argues that this blog has a role in making a positive contribution to the craft of condo marketing. In his view, our critiques of advertising should be free of biases such as “hating the market, feeling priced out, hating Yaletown, density, etc.” While I do not agree with Paul’s advice, his challenge brings up a larger question: What’s the point of condohype?
In simple terms, condohype is a satirical commentary. Through the blog, I attempt to deploy irony, sarcasm and wit — basically all the goodies in the humourist’s toolbox — to lampoon the hell out of Vancouver condo marketing. I’ve chosen this target because it’s so perfectly emblematic of what’s wrong with Vancouver. Think about it, what better symbol than the Vancouver condo ad with its celebration of arrogance, narcissism and indifference?
These ideas manifest themselves not only in the content of the ads but also in their construction — by way of typos, errors and an aversion to good design. I attack these “mistakes” not because I take pleasure in nitpicking, but to call attention to the gargantuan bluff that defines the industry. When the market tanks and all is revealed, my commentary comes to an end.
To return to Paul’s point about making a good contribution, I believe condohype is and always has been a positive blog. Condohype takes the real and widespread angst about the crisis of affordable housing and channels it into comedic expression. This makes the writing fun to read for the broadest possible audience — which also means getting the word out to the broadest possible audience. From the single college grad feeling priced-out to the developer looking to learn the trash talk about their condo, this blog has a little something for everyone.
As for what “good” real estate marketing looks like, well, some firms do it better than others. On the basis of its colour scheme and defined target audience, Onni’s ad for V6A deserves some respect. The copy is a weak point though, especially the last three sentences. “Stake your claim in Vancouver’s most up-and-coming urban environment. The time is right to make your move. Don’t wait until it’s too late.”
I mean, really, who needs this crap? That’s five seconds of my life I’m never getting back.