The new year is here, which means it's time for – you guessed it – new year's resolutions!
Did you know that this practice dates back thousands of years? Ancient cultures often held oath-taking ceremonies (pledges of loyalty to rulers or promises to fulfill certain duties) as part of traditional new year's festivities.
Today, people make all kinds of new year's resolutions, but most have to do with improvement: improving relationships, health, or even a business.
If you're making new year's resolutions for your business, one great resolution is to incorporate video into your marketing plan.
HouseLens artists shooting a test house in Florida.
Need convincing? Check out these statistics, just a few of many that show why video is an important part of any effective real estate marketing plan:
- Video helps you communicate more information in less time: just one minute of video is worth 1.8 million words of text. (source: Forrester Research)
- Homes marketed with video generate 4 times the inquiries of homes marketed without video. (source: DigitalSherpa--original study by Domain real estate listing portal)
- 85% of buyers and sellers prefer to work with an agent who uses video marketing. (source: 2012 NAR Profile of Home Buyers and Sellers)
- 86% of buyers use video to learn more about specific neighborhoods or communities; 70% use it to tour the inside of listings. (Source: NAR/Google, The Digital House Hunt)
Convinced that you need to try video, but not sure how to use it? Here are some suggestions for how to incorporate video into your marketing efforts.
Video listings. This is the most obvious use for video, and it's extremely effective: our clients tell us that their listings sell faster and, often, for more money when they use video. Even smaller or lower-value listings can benefit from the power of video marketing. If nothing else, you'll become known as the agent who uses video marketing--and sellers love the idea of working with someone who's going to use the best tools available to market their home!
Community videos. Many agents don't think of this option, but (as I mentioned above) it's even more popular with buyers than video listings. You can go about this in one of two ways: make dedicated videos about your local community, or incorporate community and neighborhood information into your listing or bio videos. Focus on the things that make your community a great place to buy a home, and don't forget to appeal to a range of buyers when appropriate. For instance, urban living might appeal to young professionals for the short commute and hip nightlife, but retirees might like it because of ready access to public transit, health care, and cultural offerings.
Video Bio. Think of this as a chance to share your personality and expertise--in short, to show buyers and sellers why you're the best agent for them. You can also use a video bio as a virtual resume if you're applying to a new brokerage! Buyers and sellers love to work with an agent who seems approachable, friendly, and knowledgeable, and a video can communicate those qualities much better than any written bio. (See my posts on using video to market yourself and presenting yourself successfully on camera for more tips on this topic.)
HouseLens crew shooting agent bios for D.C.-area Coldwell Banker offices.
Broker Promotional Videos. If you're a broker, you're probably more focused on recruiting top agents than you are on selling homes. Video can help you, too! Hire a professional to help you put together a video that shows prospective agents why your office is such a great place to work. You can include a guided tour of your office, testimonials from current agents and/or clients, a personal message, and more!
Vlogging. If you use blogging to help increase your visibility, video blogging (or vlogging) is one of the easiest ways to incorporate video in your marketing. It adds variety for your audience and for you--and it's especially handy if you find that you're better at speaking than writing. See my post on vlogging for more info.
Value-added content. Whether you create your own videos or share others' content (with proper permission and credit, of course), video is great for value-added content. Think educational videos (e.g., home maintenance tips), fun stories from your community, and the like. Of all the options I've mentioned, this one feels least like marketing, but it can still reap major rewards. Sharing value-added content – whether on your website, through a blog, or on your social media pages – strengthens your relationships with your clients. You'll stay at the top of their minds, and they'll keep coming back to you when they have new needs.
What are your new year's resolutions for your business?
This post is adapted and updated from one I shared on January 1, 2014.