Video marketing is an excellent way to engage your audience and drive conversions. However, getting started isn’t always smooth sailing. If this is your first foray into video marketing, you likely have questions and maybe a few concerns about how to do it the right way – and that is what this post is about.
Making a video might look easy, but to achieve a professional-looking, attractive result, preparation always pays off. Creating awesome real estate marketing videos doesn’t have to be difficult, and it certainly doesn’t need to be expensive. With a few practical tips in your back pocket, you’ll be well on your way to success.
What Kind of Videos Can You Create?
Here are some ideas for what kinds of real estate marketing videos you can produce:
- Virtual tours
- DIY how-to’s
- Interviews with home inspectors, builders, and interior designers
- Product demos
- Vendor highlights
- Neighborhood tours
- Company updates
- Educational content for your team
- Social media content
- Happy customers/case studies
And the list goes on. Truthfully, you’re only limited by your imagination. The more engaging, informative, and entertaining your content is, the more interest it will bring to you and your firm.
Video Pre-Production: Tools and Tips
Now that we’ve got your wheels turning, let’s move on to the next step: planning your video.
Once you have determined what kind of video you are going to make, you need to decide how you’re going to make it. This phase involves deciding on the right equipment, software, places, and people to get the result you want.
Essential Video Equipment
1. Video Camera
Probably the most obvious thing you’ll need to shoot a video is a camera. However, before you run out and rent or purchase an expensive camera package, think about the output. Where will you distribute the video? Will it go on your YouTube or Vimeo channel? Or will you be putting it on your website? Often, the camera on your smartphone or laptop will do just as well.
Knowing your output is critical. The quality of the video and the size of your frame can be limited based on the equipment you use. Fortunately, most new smartphones have video cameras capable of shooting a 4K image – which is plenty good quality for what you’re doing. In recent years, you might be surprised at how many feature films have been shot on iPhones. Most people wouldn’t even know the difference!
In your camera settings, be sure you select the highest quality and largest frame size possible, and you should be fine.
Laptops and computers are suitable for static shots, but be sure you have a way to capture your audio separately. Invest in a decent USB microphone.
2. Script and Shot List
Sure, you could wing it – and there are plenty of instances where you absolutely should do this – but having some idea about what’s going to be said, who’s going to say it, and what’s going on in the background is essential.
Take some time to think through the video from beginning to end. Ask yourself these questions:
- What is my video trying to accomplish?
- How long is it going to be?
- What do I want to show the viewers?
For example, let’s say you’re doing a property feature. You will want to talk about the property’s features, attributes, and maybe a little about the neighborhood. On camera, you’ll want to walk through the home and grounds.
Since you want to highlight the property, you don’t want the person doing the narration to be on camera all the time—or maybe you do, but think about that too. Until you are completely comfortable visualizing the end product, you will want to ensure you have as many options as possible. That means shooting different angles and maybe doing an entire run-through without anybody on camera at all. Dialogue can always be added later.
Here’s another thought. If it’s a spectacular property, would it be advantageous to get an aerial shot with a drone? Lots of companies out there that specialize in drone photography, so it’s not something you would have to manage yourself unless you have the gear and the impetus to do so.
To put a script together, make a list of all the shots you need to get and some semblance of what needs to be said. You don’t have to shoot everything in sequence, but your script will help you assemble the finished product.
If you want a more precise script for the narrator to follow, hire a freelance copywriter who is experienced in commercial script writing.
3. People: Choosing Your Crew
Having a team isn’t necessary to produce your own professional quality video. But if you have the budget to hire a professional video production crew, then by all means. However, if you are just starting to flesh out your video marketing strategy, don’t be afraid to experiment with the people and tools you have on hand.
At its most basic, you will need a camera person, a sound person, a director, and an editor. If you are taking sound from the camera itself, you won’t likely need an extra person or any additional equipment.
The most critical person, at least from a technical standpoint, is the editor. There are lots of apps that make it easy to create professional-looking videos, complete with titles and transitions. Still, if you want the project done quickly, you’ll never go wrong by investing in professional editing talent.
If you are determined to edit the video yourself, choose your software wisely. You want something that suits your skill level, and that also offers some flexibility. Many entry-level applications don’t allow you to do some of the niftier stuff, so be sure to check out the features or use a free trial before buying.
Alternatively, you can hire a freelancer to do a professional edit for you. Depending on your timeline, this might be the most expedient and cost-effective option.
Last but not least, you’ll need to distribute your videos. ZipperHQ is a complete video marketing solution that combines the capabilities of MailChimp-style mass marketing with powerful hosting and analytics capabilities.
ZipperHQ makes it easy for you to create, upload, and market your videos, providing in-depth insights into their performance and supporting a holistic real estate marketing strategy.