Today we are unveiling the newest TV spot in Zillow’s “Find Your Way Home” advertising campaign, which we first launched last year. This ad campaign shows how modern families use technology to collaborate, shop for and ultimately find not just a house — but a place for their lives to happen.

In our newest spot, called Family Search,” parents and a young son search for a house with more room to accommodate the expected arrival of a new baby brother. Using Zillow on iPad and a mobile phone, they hone their search criteria to find the right neighborhood, the right kind of backyard and ultimately, “the one.”

Music is a huge part of Zillow’s advertising, and finding the right song for our TV ads is something we belabor, sometimes for weeks or months, to get it right. In our last two spots, we fell in love with songs from Bright Eyes and The Lumineers. This time around, it wasn’t so easy. After three months of listening to song after song, exploring bands and songwriters that were old favorites and ones that were new, we still hadn’t found our own version of “the one.”

So, we had it made. We love the unique sound of singer/songwriter Ray LaMontagne, and we asked if he might be willing to take a shot at composing something original for the spot. Thankfully, he agreed, got to work, and within a day we received a piece of music that when we heard it, silenced us all in the room. Not only was it beautiful, but it was right — it was absolutely, and definitely, “the one.”

We asked Ray about his creative process for this spot:

Q: What inspired you to work with Zillow on the “Find Your Way Home” campaign?

A. Growing up in a transient family myself, I can recall very vividly the feeling of wanting our own home, wanting to settle down somewhere in a house that was ours. I also remember that above all else I wished for a tree house. So, the short film they sent to me really struck me as a sweet sentiment. One that I could connect with personally. It was a fun project and I am so pleased that they asked me to be a part of it.

Q: How did you begin the creative process?

A. After watching the footage, a melody presented itself very naturally. I just got out of the way and let the tune blossom. The sentiment and the melody felt unforced, that’s when you know it’s going to be effective.

Q: How do you view the role of music in creating compelling ad campaigns?

A. I really feel like film and music are meant to share the same space. It has always been like that, since the very first silent films music has been an integral part of communicating human drama and complex emotional situations. Those two art forms go hand in hand. They complement one another. It’s a very natural pairing.

Check out our newest spot, and let us know what you think. You’ll see this spot, along with our last spot, “Long Distance,” across network and cable TV in the months to come. And by the way — Ray has a new album out this month — you should check that out, too.

About the Author

Amy Bohutinsky is Zillow’s chief marketing officer. She joined the company in 2005, prior to Zillow’s launch, and oversees all marketing and communications, including brand, PR, social media, advertising, email and business development.

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