Make Your Wardrobe Your Brand

One Florida agent’s signature pink ensembles have become her talking point with clients.

July 29, 2016

Sue “Pinky” Benson wears a lot of pink.

Seven years ago, when she started her real estate career in Naples, Fla., Benson realized two things in her market: It was oversaturated with real estate agents, and a lot of them were named Sue. That would make it difficult for her to stand out from the crowd, but she knew she needed to make herself memorable.

“One day, I was told I looked really good in pink,” says Benson, a sales associate with RE/MAX Distinction Realty. “Also, at the time, ‘Legally Blonde’ was my favorite movie, and the main character, Elle Wood, always had her signature pink.”

Benson began to think: What if the color pink became part of her brand?

“I love the color. It’s eye-catching. There are lots of shades of pink, and it goes easily with other colors,” Benson says. “And it’s an upbeat color.”

She slowly started adding pink into her wardrobe, and when one of her clients referred to her as the “pink lady,” she knew instantly her marketing tagline was born.

She’s now known as the “Pink Lady of Real Estate,” even down to her website URL, PinkLadyOfRealEstate.com. She uses the hashtag #thinkpink on her social media and creates marketing videos with titles such as “Pinky knows Naples” and “Pinky knows Florida.”

She wears pink hats, pants, shirts, nail polish, shoes, and jewelry — but “I’m not going to wear a pink pantsuit,” Benson says, primarily because it’s too hot in Florida for that. “My wardrobe looks like Barbie’s fashion closet,” she adds.

Benson is especially on trend this year, as the Pantone Color Institute named the pinkish hue of rose quartz as its Color of the Year for 2016.

Benson stays loyal to her favorite design house, Gretchen Scott Designs, which embraces the Florida nautical lifestyle and uses plenty of pink in its fashions. Benson says she likes to shop at local Florida boutiques because that helps to make her wardrobe a conversation piece with clients, which can lead back to talking about the town of Naples and the local real estate market.

Some people may see her fashion sense as gimmicky: Benson admits that even her family grows tired of all of her pink at times. But “this is how I differentiate myself in this business. This is how my clients know me,” Benson says. “This isn’t just my wardrobe. It’s also my marketing. And I’m very consistent with it. It’s my pink thing.”

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