CCR Realty Finds A Home At Bates

Houston Shop to Introduce Internet Service via Mainstream Media
DALLAS–An online realty startup has hired Bates Southwest in Houston for its inaugural print, outdoor and direct response account.
CCR Internet Realty of Houston will spend approximately $2 million initially. A client official said the advertising account could grow to as much as $10 million in four years.
CCR hired Bates after a strategic shootout with Ogilvy & Mather, also Houston, according to Lee Rushlow, vice president of marketing for the client. The company aims to launch its World Wide Web home buying service no later than the fall, Rushlow said.
The company, which will work with Bates on developing a name for the site, will start out with Houston-area listings. Rushlow said the firm hopes to branch out nationally over the next four years, at which time the marketing budget could grow to $10 million-plus.
The agency will provide brand positioning and strategic planning for the Web site launch, promoting the venue through traditional marketing means, according to Bates Southwest chairman Jerry Kerr.
CCR currently has no plans to advertise on television or radio, according to Rushlow.
Kerr said the Internet site is meant to capture the attention of consumers already comfortable with e-commerce.
“Right now, you can log on to a . . . but the problem is it doesn’t give you addresses. It’s a lead generator for local realtors,” said Kerr. Buyers at CCR Realty’s Web page, he said, will be able to complete an entire transaction through the company. “Here’s the house, here’s the address, and here’s the process on how to buy it,” he said.
Rushlow said the company will be a representative for buyers, helping people find homes through a multitude of criteria. Incentives provided by CCR will include a 50 percent real estate commission rebate offer.
Although Bates has taken part in marketing three recent startups–the nonprofit Houston Image Group and Houston companies Belmont Corp. and Equistar–Rushlow said it was the agency’s creative strategy that won the business.
The account win builds Bates’ annual billings to about $80 million.