I'm perusing the newspapers today, eying the real estate sections, and — tell me if you've ever noticed this — everyone featured in builders' ads is positively giddy. Or, if it's for an adult community, over-the-top laughing older folk.
It scares me.
You know, I drive by a lot of peoples' homes — young and old — and rarely do I see them guffawing and laughing. Sometimes they're gardening, maybe washing the car. But, it isn't Comedy Central and they aren't doing standup.
So, why the laughing thing?
I asked a builder friend of mine who says it's meant to get the upbeat, coziness of home ownership across.
Kids laughing. Parents laughing. Grandparents laughing. Maybe they're laughing because they can't figure how the heck they're going to pay the new mortgage. I'm thinking everyone in the family has snapped.
Go ahead, look in your real estate section. I defy you to find a pensive couple, or a down couple.
Pensive and down doesn't sell. Giddy, even crazy, does. There's one ad with a father riding his kid's tricycle and having a blast. I'm thinking to myself, “lock him up!”
The builder wants you to see them positively ecstatic. So why look like you're popping lithium? I think we make some profound assumptions in advertising. Like those other ads featuring couples joking and laughing in a car dealership. I don't know about you, but that experience is very close to root canal for me. But again, that's me.
Don't get me wrong: I'm a hugger. But even I try to keep my distance from crazy people. I might consider buying their home. But first, I suggest, put them "in" a home. Just not the one I'm looking at.
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Neil Cavuto serves as senior vice president, anchor and managing editor for both FOX News Channel (FNC) and FOX Business Network (FBN). He is anchor of FNC's Your World with Cavuto - the number one rated cable news program for the 4 p.m. timeslot - as well as the FNC Saturday show Cavuto on Business. He also hosts Cavuto on FBN weeknights at 8 p.m. In addition to anchoring daily programs and breaking news specials on FNC and FBN, Cavuto oversees business news content for both networks and FNC's weekend business shows, including Bulls & Bears, Forbes on Fox, and Cashin' In. Click here for more on Neil Cavuto.