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Visualization Today Raises The Bar For What Is Possible With Real Estate Marketing

Rendering by V1 of The Westly, New York

Go back 10 years, and those marketing a building pre-construction only had simple renderings and product details as tools to win over potential tenants or purchasers. But those days are long gone. Now developers can use cutting-edge visualization to tell the story of their brand and really create a point of differentiation before a single brick has been laid, said Caroline Donaghue, business development director at visualization firm V1.

“Today we can create many types of visualizations that are photo-real — films, animations, hybrid tours,” she said. “We can create moments that you would only previously get from a photographer shooting a finished space. All this is aimed at creating an emotive reaction in the viewer.”

V1 has extensive experience creating renderings and architectural visualizations for global real estate clients, crafting renderings that are hard to differentiate from a real photograph. Recent clients in New York include boutique developments The Westly, 2505 Broadway and 56 North Moore, which will deliver 75K SF of workspace in the Tribeca West District.

Rendering by V1 of 2505 Broadway, New York

Using technology available today, V1 approaches projects more creatively than simply making a rendering. While some clients might specify they want 20 renderings of a building, for example, Donaghue said the ideal client would approach V1 with a different brief — how can I tell my brand’s story through architectural visualization? This question allows V1 to go beyond creating a set of renderings to deliver a range of collateral that show what the architecture and décor could look like when in use.

“It’s about showing the nuances of what will happen in the space when it is complete,” V1 Creative Director Pat Corcoran said. “If we have the creative freedom to approach it like a photo, we create the space but also capture beautiful moments, such as a framed view to an architectural icon or the light shining on a coffee table. These are moments that you would only get if a photographer shot the finished space.”

The potential of this level of visualization can bring real benefits to real estate marketers. By focusing on the space as an experience, people are more likely to be able to imagine what it might really be like to inhabit the space, Donaghue said.

Rendering of The Park Bel Air, Los Angeles

“The fact that people will base their decisions on renderings gets overlooked by many companies,” she said. “Lots of energy goes into PR and marketing to create the brand, but the purchaser will base a decision on that rendering. Are they going to buy a new home they haven’t seen because it has a good logo?”

A developer can also use these visualizations to develop its brand presence more widely. Donaghue said she often looks at an image of a scheme and will immediately know who the developer is, due to the style and creative direction of the rendering or video.

For example, if a brand stands out for modernity, this can be accentuated. If its vision is based on trust and heritage, the team will “shoot” from a different angle or use a different tonality of lighting. It’s about telling the story of a brand that can continue across other assets.

Rendering by V1 of 56 North Moore, New York

To many clients, telling the story of a brand goes further than the architecture of specific assets. Today, many potential office occupiers or residents are looking beyond the property to its surroundings. When V1 created visualizations for 2200 Brickell in Miami and Four Seasons in Florida, the team’s aim was to communicate to people that the development could deliver the environment they are seeking.  

“Visualization is a way to demonstrate placemaking,” V1 Creative Director John Crighton said. “People want to be part of a community, in a place with a buzz and where things happen. Lots of what we do goes beyond the bricks and mortar to show what happens outside a scheme.”

Today, visualization holds the potential to create whole worlds to attract a tenant or purchaser. Donaghue said while the real estate industry understands what is possible, few are embracing it to its full potential. There is a real opportunity for visualization to help a brand and portfolio stand out.

This article was produced in collaboration between V1 and Studio B. Bisnow news staff was not involved in the production of this content.

Studio B is Bisnow’s in-house content and design studio. To learn more about how Studio B can help your team, reach out to