Sometimes the best storytellers and advocates are your own employees.
That’s what the team at Re/Max learned when it began to craft a campaign for Pride Month this year. Kayla Roofe, senior social media manager for the organization, was able to bring in real estate agents who identify as LGBTQ to share their stories and what “home” means to them.
The result was a winning social media campaign that told an important brand story online and built community at a time when in-person gatherings are restricted.
The roots of the campaign go back to 2019, Roofe says.
“In 2019, RE/MAX joined the Business Coalition for the Equality Act alongside 200 leading brands in support for the Equality Act. … We celebrated this historic moment by flipping our social channel profile photos to the Pride flag on June 1st 2019, and throughout the month, we shared articles and creative content on how to be a better ally and real estate agent to these groups through education and acceptance,” she says.
This year, the team wanted to take things a step further, helping Re/Max agents who identify as LGBTQ to tell their stories. “With so much hate and bullying happening on social media right now, our goal is to share love, kindness and positivity by highlighting a few members from our network of 130,000 agents and letting their voices be heard,” Roofe says.
The #HousePride campaign was designed to use the Re/Max platform to let employees tell their stories.
“We started by reaching out to members inside the Re/Max LGBTQA Coalition Facebook group to gauge interest in the campaign,” Roofe explains. “After we had identified our groups of 10+ RE/MAX affiliates, we worked closely with those individuals to figure out what types of content they were comfortable participating in.”
It was important to create prompts and a structure to give the series some uniformity.
“We had them all record a one-minute video reading from the same script to launch the campaign discussing the importance of homeownership for all,” Roofe says. “From there, each person either recorded a personal video or sent in a headshot with a quote.”
We celebrate Pride Month and support homeownership for all. Together, we can work towards eliminating discrimination and grow opportunities for members of the LGBTQIA+ community to attain homeownership.Share your stories on social media throughout the month on what “HOME” means to you as someone who identifies as LGBTQIA+ or as an ally to these groups using the hashtag #HousePride.
Posted by We Are RE/MAX on Monday, June 8, 2020
To help employees prepare for their moment in the spotlight, the social media team sent video best practices along with topics and questions to spark ideas and help them create their content.
With such a personal story, it was important to have employee input at every stage of the process. Roofe says that the team made sure to get the final sign-off from the employee participants before the video was published live on their channels.
To measure the campaign, the team will be watching video content views and also looking to see how people engage with a call for user-generated content. “We will be tracking to see if there is an uptick in mentions of Re/Max and #HousePride in order to engage and amplify any UGC content we see across platforms,” Roofe says.
That means having a robust social listening program in place. For Re/Max, they rely on Khoros to monitor things. “We use this tool to track our analytics, schedule posts, to help with community management and to conduct social listening,” Roofe says.
“It’s about the people, not the brand,” Roofe says. “ I think people get so caught up in thinking about ‘What is my brand doing to celebrate Pride Month?’ that they forget that it’s about the people they are impacting and supporting more than anything.”
A campaign that fails to incorporate the human element behind Pride Month risks appearing empty or tone-deaf. “We see several brands get this wrong every single year,” Roofe says. “Posts without meaning. Logos being switched without action.”
Re/Max was able to lean into its core purpose (finding homes for people) to find a message that was perfect for the occasion.
“Real estate is a people business,” Roofe says. “I’m proud that we are focusing on the people who make up our brand this year through the #HousePride campaign.”