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As real estate, mortgage and title company professionals we are seeing marketing shifting to video more and more. Why? Video is one the most powerful and fastest ways to convey a message to your target audience.

In today’s world, consumers would rather see a video of a house or a real estate agent talking about relevant real estate topics versus still pictures or words. As I meet with real estate agents day to day they tell me that they don’t necessarily want to use video in real estate because they are afraid or because they have certain fears.

Many agents agree that video is a powerful tool and a future necessity in their business, yet they still don’t want to be in front of the camera. I tell them that they need to overcome their fears and anxiety because using video will shorten their sales cycle and lead to new business.

In fact, according to a recent study done on Mashable, 73 percent of homeowners were more likely to list with an agent offering videoHere are some misconceptions about using video and how it can effectively assist in cultivating clients:

If I don’t look perfect, no one will watch my video.

This is a common theme I find with real estate agents. The one thing agents need to know when using video in their business is that it does not matter how you look — the consumer is watching your video because they want to listen to what you have to say. It is the content and message that are important to the person watching your video.

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I know upfront this might seem hard to get past, but it is a must. The best way to get through this uncomfortable feeling is to create a top-10 list of relevant real estate topics your target audience would find interesting, then get in front of the camera and start shooting. It is all about practice. If you mess up, just hit delete and start again.

I don’t have the best camera equipment.

You don’t need the best camera equipment to start shooting videos. With today’s technology there are many things that can be used to shoot real estate videos. Here are few options starting from thrifty to more expensive:

  1. iPhone/Samsung
  2. Kodak Zi10
  3. Flip Mino
  4. Canon PowerShot/T3i
  5. Nikon L Series/D Series
  6. Canon Mark III or Mark IV DSLR Camera

In today’s world, most real estate agents have smartphones. These cameras shoot in very high-definition, and they allow you to directly upload videos to YouTube or Vimeo. Kodak Zi10’s and Flips are $80 to $100, which is cost-effective starting out, then you can go to the next level of a Canon/Nikon series, then the big boys, which would be the DSLR camera. All of these cameras are effective and can shoot good video for your real estate business. Start where you feel comfortable and go from there.

I don’t know video editing.

Guess what? Most agents don’t either nor do many have the time. It is fine to shoot videos that are one continuous shot; I, personally, shoot videos this way, and the effectiveness is still strong. If you want advanced videos that are green screen, edited, and have transitions and music, there are many companies around the country that work with real estate agents shooting and editing their videos. Leave the professional video work to the professionals and focus on great video content ideas.

The real value of video is the payoff.

What video can do for your real estate business is huge. I think sometimes real estate agents don’t see the immediate value in video because the payoff is not always immediate. With that said, videos created today can and will sell for you 24/7 online, and they can be syndicated to your social media network to maximize exposure.

Video also drives website traffic. Websites with video keep prospects on websites longer and it also helps retain visitors. The average website visitor spends up to 88 percent more time on a website that contains video versus a website that does not. The more time someone spends on your website learning about what it is you do, the greater your ability to convert that person into a client. Here are the benefits of what video does for your real estate business:

  1. Fastest way to convey a message to your target client.
  2. Sells and promotes your real estate business 24/7.
  3. Allows the consumer to see, hear and get to know and like you — before you meet them.
  4. Shortens your sales cycle (Who doesn’t like that?).
  5. Will continue to be a growing segment of real estate marketing going forward.

The one thing that is constant in real estate is change. Now is the time to overcome your initial fears of using video in real estate and start shooting. Your target audience will thank you for it.

Wade Vander Molen is the director of sales/marketing for Stewart Title and has been in the title industry since 2005.

Email Wade Vander Molen.