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What the new John Lewis’ advert teaches estate agents

In this two-minute read, we discover what the annual John Lewis advert teaches estate agents about content marketing.

You know the run-up to Christmas has begun when John Lewis launch its annual feel-good festive advert.

And this year the theme is on kindness.

As with pretty much all the John Lewis Chrimbo adverts over the past five years, there is a big lesson here for estate agents about content marketing.

The Big Thing

The JL advert never tries to sell you products, ever.

But like with all exceptional content marketing, it attempts to get you to feel and remember something positive about the brand.

Usually, it looks to create a warm sense of homeliness, generosity, and trust.

And I’d argue it’s a worthwhile goal that your estate agency content should be aiming for.

But how do you do that?

It’s Pretty Simple

STOP only writing about property, the market and home moving.

Let me explain, using the content we create for members of my Estate and Letting Agent Content Club as an example.

We write, syndicate, and distribute up to three pieces of content to our 100 plus members each week.

Monday is lettings-based content written around landlords’ problems, interests, goals, and stresses in minds (PIGS). This establishes expertise.

Wednesday is sales-based articles with homeowners and moves in mind and addressing their multitude of PIGS. This shows care and knowledge.

Friday’s content we’ve dubbed CIA – Community Interest Articles. This can be about anything.

Usually, it’s something community based like supporting local stores. Although it can be to do with health, money, children, education, pets, you name it.

This CIA content follows the John Lewis advert approach.

We don’t talk about the core offering (agency services), but we do get the reader to (often subconsciously) feel that the agency is helpful, interesting, trustworthy and doesn’t just see or want us to be a walking wallet / potential customer.

Lockdown Lesson

When the first lockdown hit a lot of agencies who only focussed on property-based content were stuck. There was no market to talk or write about. Many just stopped posting content altogether.

But the agents that had realised there’s more to estate agency content marketing than market updates and How-to pieces (which 100 per cent play a part in a marketing mix) had plenty to share.

Our most popular pieces, by a country mile, during this time were our Feelgood Friday articles which shared positive stories from around the UK and the globe.

Again, nothing to do with property but everything to do with capturing attention, keeping it by being consistently interesting and creating positive feelings around their agency.

It’s worth some thought at the very least.

Better than John Lewis?

The Irish supermarket brand Supavalue have, in my opinion anyway, created a better Christmas advert.

Again, there’s not a product in sight. That’s because the smart marketing people behind it are focussed on getting the viewer to associate the brand it with a nice, warm, trusted feeling.

What feelings does your content create in your readers or viewers?

Thanks for reading,


PS: This is my opinion based on years of experience. I’m not saying it’s the ONLY way, but if it’s good enough for one of the country’s most trusted brands ……..


Sound interesting?

Book in a 20-minute chat with Jerry to find out more.

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