still from new NAR commercial

@ National Association of REALTORS®

New Perspectives on the R

An 85-second video takes you into the real estate world created by Havas Chicago and director Brett Foraker.

February 18, 2020

Award-winning director Brett Foraker has made visually arresting short films and commercials for some of the world’s biggest brands, including Sony, Samsung, and Lexus. Now, he’s the man behind new 15- and 30-second commercials from the National Association of REALTORS®.

For year two of the popular “That’s Who We R” consumer ad campaign, NAR and its creative agency, Havas Chicago, envisioned vignettes that would bring the REALTOR® R into focus within the context of a real estate transaction—on an urban street, in a commercial office space, in a neighborhood of single-family homes.

“In 2019, we told consumers who REALTORS® are, and we made it clear that R equals REALTOR®,” said Karen Bebart, director of consumer brand advertising for NAR, in a behind-the-scenes video. “This year we’re really going to show them who we are and have consumers look for the R.”

The ads employ the use of parallax, a film technique that creates a sense of movement in static objects; as the camera pans, ordinary elements like pipes, lamps, and roads combine to form the rectangle, semicircle, and triangle that make the REALTOR® membership mark. Meanwhile, a voice-over uses alliteration to reinforces the R.

Foraker is a master of the parallax technique. In fact, when Havas requested bids from production companies, it included a commercial Foraker had produced for a UK television channel as a reference for this type of visual effect.

“We were surprised and honored to get a proposal from Brett himself,” says Bebart. “Not only that, he included a personal note about the relationship he had with his REALTOR®. He really understood that bond.”

NAR's Consumer Communications Committee was involved in creation of the spots, everything from the selection of the director, to casting, scripts, voice over talent, and how all the elements come together in the spots themselves. The member perspective is critical to the process so that the campaign looks, feels, and sounds authentic, Bebart says.

"Adding these 'Look for the R' messages as part of That’s Who We R is a chance to showcase why prospective property buyers and sellers should seek a REALTOR®’s unmatched focus, expertise, reliability, and integrity to help them realize their goals and dreams,” says Jay Mitchell, 2020 chair of the committee and managing broker of Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Towne Realty, in Virginia Beach, Va.

In addition to the new ad spots, the 2020 campaign is extended through social media, streaming services, radio, and digital audio and through content partnerships coming in the second and third quarter. You can participate in the campaign, too. Utilize campaign logos, ads and banners—some even in Spanish—at ThatsWhoWeR.realtor. Also, the new, free NAR+Photofy mobile phone app allows you to easily personalize preloaded "That’s Who We R" campaign assets and share them on your social media accounts.

“The full suite of campaign assets allows our members to personalize and localize these important messages to consumers in their own wonderful and diverse markets across the country,” Mitchell says.