What’s the first place buyers go to look when they’re searching for a property? The web, of course! And what’s the most engaging, involving, and dynamic way to check the online market? Videos!
Videos do have a way of engaging the audience like no other media. Sure, a pretty picture says a lot, but certainly not as much. Unlike written content, where your words need to do the talking and unlike images that only show a few chosen shots, videos just do a lot more.
In fact, it wouldn’t be the first time a buyer buys an apartment or house based on the video alone, without even making a trip to the place. (Trust me, I know, as we sell hundreds of turnkey properties to folks from all over the world that never travel to the U.S.). This is because videos are a great way to give a realistic view of a property. But with all the good they can do, a shoddy video can ruin your property’s image and company’s branding. Over the years, I’ve created plenty of property videos, and there’s a lot I’ve learned along the way. And for all those who’d like to shoot real estate property videos too, I thought I’d tell you about my experiences and knowhow in today’s article.
Often overlooked, this first step is very important when you’re making a video. Before you start off with a camera, it is best to first think through the content you want to deliver. I mean, have a plan in place. Decide on who your target audience is (whether it’s buyers, sellers, or just the broad market of real estate investors) and start thinking from their point of view. You need to focus on what they’d want from this property.
Also, decide on the length of the video before you start (I suggest two to three minutes, max). Doing this before you start will help you select the features you want to talk about. Making it too short will not give people the information they want, while very long videos can get really boring and will lose your audience’s attention.
Finally, decide how you’d like to show the property: Would you rather create a walk-through or try something creative and different? I’d recommend that you walk through the property first. This will help you find the areas you’d like to highlight in the video. Whatever plan you choose, make sure that you create a video that is different, will appeal to the emotions of potential buyers and that stands out from other videos like it. Tip: Start filming from the outside so your audience can get a good view of the front of the property along with the neighborhood.
I genuinely believe that “success comes from doing this differently,” so stay true to yourself and the mistakes you make by not editing your two minutes video into 30 little sections and then combining it all. In today’s day and age, I don’t know of anyone who doesn’t edit their videos. That’s great, as it gives you the opportunity to be different and present in a raw way, where hiccups and mistakes are made. Your audience will relate and love you for it.
Also, you should have a little pre-written script that will assist you with having a smooth ride through every video you do. What should go into the script? I’d say you should start off with a memorable introduction rather than a common one. It’s a good idea to introduce yourself and your company. Always think about emphasizing your brand, and represent the company with whatever crazy attire you want (don’t forget to always be consistent with your attire).
The content of the video should also touch people’s feelings. It should get them excited about the property and the future they’d get by owning it. At the end of the script, create a proper “call to action.” While you’re at it, make sure to tell them how to contact you easily and quickly. At this point, make sure to provide plenty of contact details in the description below the video.
Using the Right Equipment
This is a funny one, as half of the videos we have on our YouTube channel are pretty poor quality. Good video quality is possible only with the right equipment. If you’re on a budget and want to keep it simple (like I always do), the camera with the clearest video is the Samsung Galaxy S6, hands down.
Now, I’m not a fan of the Galaxy phone, but it really does have an awesome video camera. If using an iPhone or a Galaxy, please do me a favor and turn your phone sideways. The GoPro is is another great tool to get some awesome fish eye videos of your property. It allows you to catch literally every corner of the every room in the house. I suggest you go low budget here until you reach Gary Vaynerchuk’s status, and then you can have two or three videographers following and filming you everywhere you go.
The Right Coverage
However creative you get when you’re deciding on what to shoot in the video, make sure you at least have these few basics covered. See to it that the entrance or the outside view of the property is included. This is often the first thing people want to look at. A walk through the various rooms and a voiceover about where you’re headed is a great addition.
Get the camera person to turn the camera to you on occasion when you talk, but most of the time, it should be pointed to whatever you stress in the voiceover. Talk about the make of the ceiling and floor materials, and highlight the benefits of the quality you offer. Whatever you do, remember to focus on aspects that will make a property desirable for a buyer. Also, cover the property in a manner that doesn’t confuse the viewer as to where you’re headed next. Finally, have a call to action at the end of the video. A great way is to just tell everyone to check out the description in the video. Make sure to have every link necessary in that video description.
Avoid Common Pitfalls
Property video makers often focus so much on the house that it becomes their only point of shooting. Have a person in the video — it can be you, or you can have someone else in it too. This way, the video becomes more personable and has a better appeal to viewers. Also, before you begin shooting, walk through the property and see to it that it’s clean, doesn’t have loose wires hanging about and doesn’t look too cramped with furniture. Use videography techniques only to improve the quality of your end product and not to show off your skills. The purpose of the video often gets defeated in such pursuits.
Video making is a growing trend for marketing properties, and it will remain popular. But that popularity isn’t enough. Preparing a good video is only the job half done. Most importantly, you need to see to it that the video itself is marketed. This means that when people search online for property videos in your region, you top off their searches. More often than not, hard earned money goes into making the video, but no one ever sees it.
Marketing isn’t rocket science, and in my next article, I’m going to share how to market your videos online. That’s of great importance in real estate, and you should have the relevant skills to do so. For starters, your marketing efforts should make people aware that you exist online and should showcase your specialization as an expert in the business. It should give the investor/client what they’re looking for and most importantly solve problems that the investor or client may foresee. These four aspects are very important, and if you want to get to know a few actual strategies, then do tune in for the next post.
Now get your smart phone cameras out and start filming. Light, camera, action! #BOOM
Investors: Have you ever filmed videos of your properties? What tips would you add to this article?
Let me know with a comment below!