Anyone can be a Great Video Master!

Real Estate Agent with Coldwell Banker Wright Realty

These days anyone can be a great video master.  All you need is a digital video camera to record, transfer and share! After experimenting the last few months, I have come up with a list of "video tips" that work:

Windows Movie Maker How-To Center

1.  TELL A STORY.  Don't just start shooting.  Plan out your "story" - what do you want to capitalize on this short clip?  Have a beginning, middle and end in mind before you start to record.  This can be as simple as panning the outside landscaping on a home, then ringing the door bell before you proceed inside a home!

2.  KEEP IT SIMPLE.  Include only images the audience needs to keep them informed and interested in your subject.  That means editing the video for a final version that is clean and focused.  There are lots of free editing software out there.  For snazzy tutorials on many of them go to

3.  KEEP IT BRIEF.  Most folks can only assimilate information in short bursts, so try to keep your video brief.  Once again, that means editing to eliminate excess material.  For real estate videos highlighting property my suggested length is around two minutes.  It sounds short but your audience won't stay with you much longer than that.  Also is now confining the length of their videos to 10 minutes.

4.  KEEP  IT STEADY.  There's nothing more aggravating (or nauseating) than shakiness on a video.  Avoid this by purchasing a tripod (there are many available for as little as $30) or keeping as steady as possible.  Be careful of zooming in and out too fast---it makes the video uncomfortable to watch.

5.  PROPER LIGHTING.  Proper lighting is essential for capturing details.  Practice experimenting with room lamps and window shades to see what comes across on video.  Sometimes too much light can also ruin the try out different scenarios to see which one works best for your video camera.  Do a couple of quick videos in varying lights to compare.  For those of you that want much more information than I can give you, read this blog on lighting.

6.  LABEL IT.  How many times have you taken videos and later can't remember where it was?  I always name the video and label it with the location and date for future filing.

7.  FINAL PRODUCT.  Polishing up your video with simple editing can be the difference between a mediocre video and an outstanding one.  You can add voiceovers, music, sound effects and some editing software allow you to put dialogue balloons with text in them. 

Comments (4)

Julie Cleland
Prudential California Realty - South San Francisco, CA

Great advice!  I would only add that if an agent is thinking about being the star of their own video they should be honest with themselves on how great an idea that is.  Professionals make it look easy to stand in front of the camera and talk but that's because they work at it.  For every business owner that sounds great doing their own commercials, think George Zimmer with the Men's Warehouse,  there are others that give cringe worthy performances.   You want the viewers to focus on the product, not the agent's ability, or lack of, to present the product. 

Jan 10, 2009 04:20 AM
Cindy Edwards
RE/MAX Checkmate - Johnson City, TN
CRS, GRI, PMN - Northeast Tennessee - 423-677-6677

This helpful-Thankyou-great pictures too>

Jan 10, 2009 09:25 AM

Found the Video Summit at Inman this week VERY enlightening! But the overall consensus seemed to be that doing video on your own is very difficult and time consuming if you want it to look professional.

I see these house tours done with Flip cameras and they amaze me!  I can't imagine a more unprofessional way to present yourself to the public.  I have never seen ONE that wasn't embarrassing. I think they're good for testimonials or video blogging, but nothing else, yet Realtors are buying them in droves.  

I will hire a pro to do my videos.  My time is better spent in the field, and my IMAGE is the most important.  It needs to look professional, not like my 3rd grader did it!

Jan 10, 2009 11:36 AM
TeamCHI - Complete Home Inspections, Inc.
Complete Home Inspections, Inc. - Brentwood, TN
Home Inspectons - Nashville, TN area - 615.661.029

Rose, Excellent tips. Finally to find a good video editor. Looking forward towards trying out iMovie 09. While iMovie was okay, it was a real dumbed down version of iMovie 06...

Jan 10, 2009 08:46 PM