As one of the Co-Founders of HOMEADNET I made my way into a Real Estate focused business through my experience in media and production and not Real Estate. Real Estate has always been a quiet passion of mine. I’ve always paid close attention to my own Real Estate transactions and grew to really appreciate what a good agent brings to the table in closing a deal. The decision to move forward with a Real Estate platform like HOMEADNET was a discovery that Real Estate and media can exist in perfect harmony.
Let’s focus on video. I have been creating content for television and marketing for almost twenty years. OK, I just dated myself. I’ve watched the evolution from traditional production methods into painfully efficient (read small budget) digital production practices. Every step of the way I have seen how important video is at the center of any marketing strategy. Let’s face it, whether the video is a form of entertainment or a training video there is some marketing component within or attached to it. TV shows have commercials and carefully placed products. Training videos work to increase adoption of a program or process. In all cases video has the potential to be highly engaging.
Real Estate is the perfect industry for video. It’s visual and it’s social. A good sales video can introduce you to new clients and create a carefully crafted image for your business and brand. You can also use video to showcase your listings. Many agents do. However, I see many problems with agents trying to infuse video into their sales workflows. I’ll break them down into two categories: Production Quality and Distribution. In this blog I will cover Production Quality.
There is no question that video production has become more accessible to more people because of technology. A mobile phone can now produce High Definition quality video. And there are simpler ways to assemble and edit shots together, add titles and music. The problem with this is not everyone knows how to create good videos. Shaky hand-held video walk-throughs of a condo with bad sound are not pleasing to watch. In fact they can actually do more harm than good when trying to promote a listing. Not everyone has the budget to have top quality videos produced for them but if video is central to your marketing efforts you need to establish an efficient way to create engaging videos that potential buyers will actually watch. I preach a method I like to call “Content with Mileage”. With my clients I create programs where I create reusable elements they can amortize over a series of videos. I create an opening sequence with a logo and music and graphical title elements that can be strategically placed throughout the clip. Once the first video is produced they can reuse all of the creative elements and just plug in new shots for each new listing or sales video. The end result is a professional looking video that also works to enhance their brand and services while creating efficiencies over a series of videos. If you are insistent on doing this yourself try to watch your videos as a viewer and NOT the creator. Would you watch this video? Keep things simple. Here are some tips:
- Make sure to have a clean opening title sequence that introduces you and your business. Include a point of contact!
- Instead of “walking” through a property set the camera on a tri-pod and pan gently across the room keeping the shots steady.
- Make sure there is enough light in the room so your viewers can see details. If you don't have portable lighting make sure to shoot your video in the daytime and let in as much natural light as possible. And light always works best facing the scene and not shining into your camera.
- If you are talking in the video prepare a script in advance and read it cleanly without mistakes. Use a microphone plugged into your camera so your voice doesn’t sound distant.
- Keep it short. Show everything you can in less than two minutes. Beyond that you will lose most viewers.
Many agents are doing amazing things with video. You can say so much in a creative 2 minute video presentation. So if you are planning to add video to your repertoire you need to do it right. Identify an efficient and effective process that you can afford and have fun!
Here at HOMEADNET we are video production experts with facilities in Toronto. Don't hesitate to contact us if you have any video quesitons. In my next blog I will discuss Distribution: What to do when your video is done.
Thanks for reading!!!