When John Simpson, vice president of enterprise sales at Covideo, first connected with his real estate agent, it wasn’t in person. Rather, the agent sent him a video.
After 10 years and three home purchases, Simpson still relies on the same agent. He is a client for life and his agent’s use of video made a significant impact on him. Simpson knows better than anyone that a good video can set an agent over the top. His experience goes to show that agents can use this kind of media for far more than showing off their property listings — though listing videos are still important.
“The first three to five seconds should communicate your value-add. What are you giving your viewers, listeners and connections that is valuable, besides promoting yourself? It is a piece of knowledge. You become a trusted advisor,” said Simpson.
“A video is not a magic wand. If you send one video, it is not like you are going to close the deal. But, in that process, you are engaging in a relationship.”
Videos of introduction
If you send someone a video as a way of introducing yourself, you are sure to stand out.
“It’s as simple as a voicemail. Leave someone a message saying, ‘Hey this is John. I’m going to send you a video email. Keep an eye out for it in your inbox.’ From a psychological standpoint, you are now creating anticipation,” said Simpson.
In the body of the email, include a written line saying hello and indicating that the recipient should click the link to view the video. You can even add a GIF from a still shot of the recording to increase the click rate.
The video itself can include any information you want to communicate to the recipient.
“The fact that it says ‘video’ is going to increase your open rates alone by about 19%. If you include an animated GIF, the click-through rate is going to jump to about 65%. And what we really see is about a 200% increase in response rates, which is key,” said Simpson, who got the information from a HighQ report.
Listing videos are the most common pieces of content that agents are already creating, but Simpson shared several tips for improving the quality of listing videos.
“Let them know who you are. Your non-verbal communication, tone and inflection are a huge key to it. So, I suggest a brief introduction to yourself, “Hey this is John. I’ve got a great property for you.” Then, you have the ability to flip the camera and do a walkthrough of the property,” said Simpson.
Focus on the areas that buyers have said are important to them.
“The nice thing is that there is analytical reporting within videos. An agent can go back and see a heat map of the views. You can see where the client looked at a repetitive piece of that particular video. Maybe they’re really interested in the primary bedroom or bathroom,” said Simpson.
Use that information to reach out to clients, ask what they liked about that feature and get some insight into their needs.
If you find yourself with a lot of transplants or out-of-town buyers, videos highlighting the community are a prime opportunity to show them highlights of what makes local areas special.
“Understanding the schools or the walkability, or the neighborhood in general, are important,” said Simpson.
He recommend using pre-made videos from the community. Often, marketing departments for a state or town will create highlight reels for an area, encouraging people to move to the city or region. You can link to these assets on your website or — with permission — merge them with your personalized videos.
Referral business videos
“In the real estate world, we know that referrals are key to driving business. So, who else are you working with? What are other agents doing? How can you help each other out by simply introducing yourself,” said Simpson.
Using videos in your referral business empowers not only you and your team but also the housing professionals you work with within your community and in other businesses. Use the multi-media platform you’ve created to connect clients with preferred loan officers, title companies or even other agents.
“It’s a one-stop shop. You give clients a video, rather than all this text that they need to fumble through in an email. Instead, they can watch your video message and you can guide them wherever they need to go.”