One of the most powerful tools that any real estate agent has to build their brand is Video!
At the time of writing this article you may, or may not, be surprised to know that few real estate agents use video today.
In this series of articles, videos, and podcasts I’ll show you how to use video to grow your brand as an agent.
Today, we are talking about listing videos. More specifically, listing videos for properties with large lot sizes.
I have some examples of my work below and if you want to see more videos CLICK HERE.
Real estate agent branding and marketing
Most homeowners have no idea what their home looks like from a drone’s point of view 200 feet above their property.
When you can show a homeowner this unique point of view with both professionally edited videos and photos your home sellers will love you and the marketing you are creating to help them sell their home.
This is what branding really is.
Branding is not just your logo.
Branding is what your prospects and clients believe you are representing and delivering as a business.
Furthermore, what is the experience that you are delivering to them by working with you? I cannot stress how important this is.
Your ability to produce professional marketing media, or have them produced, indicates to your home sellers that using modern marketing techniques and technology to sell their home.
You want your home sellers to firmly believe that they made the right choice in choosing you as their agent.
What you need to start filming real estate videos
Putting together a real estate video requires gear, software, and experience in video shooting, editing, and flying a drone.
Let’s break this down into a list:
- The Gear: Video Cameras and Drones
- The Editing: Software and Plugins
- A Video Distribution Plan: You need to know where this video will be uploaded so that people can actually watch it.
- Shot List: A simple list for what you want to shoot and put into your video.
- Royalty Free Music: Without music you will have a really boring video and few people will watch it past 6 seconds.
In this article I will break down this list and share has much information as I can so that you can start filming real estate videos.
The GEAR you need to start filming real estate videos, with lots of acreage
The essential gear that you will need to film real estate videos are:
- Mirrorless or Full Frame Camera.
- Wide Angle Lense for your Camera.
- Camera Stabilizer
- A Computer with decent computing power.
The Best Drones for Real Estate Videos and Photography
Without a drone you cannot capture the aerial topography of the property. It’s an amazing piece of technology that will give your real estate videos an edge.
One of the coolest things to do with homeowners is to show them the aerial view of the property with video and photos, trust me, they will love it!
From DJI the best drones they offer for filming real estate videos and shooting real estate photos are:
a. DJI Air 2S: Pro-sumer Grade. This is a budget friendly small compact drone that does a great job for getting you professional grade photos and videos.
b. DJI Mavic 3: Professional Grade. If you have the budget then you have to get the latest Mavic from DJI which is the Mavic 3. It’s one of the best drones for filming real estate in 2022.
I currently fly the DJI Mavic Pro 2.
The Best Mirrorless and Full Frame Video Cameras for Real Estate
When you’re filming a property with a lot of land you don’t just want aerial shots, you want to include some ground level footage into it as well. A good video camera that can produce high quality footage will match up great with your drone footage.
Just like drones, even the entry level video cameras today are affordable and capable of producing high quality video footage.
I’m a Panasonic Lumix user and have shot all my videos on their cameras since 2016. For me I believe they are the best for shooting real estate. I currently shoot with a Panasonic GH5s and Panasonic S5.
The Panasonic GH5s is great in low light, solid dynamic range, shoots in 4K60, and is lightweight which is great when it’s on a gimbal. At the time of writing this article the new Panasonic GH6 was just released and we are waiting for the new updated version of this model to be released. The GH5s is a mirrorless Micro 4/3rds camera and is currently being used to film all of our real estate videos.
The Panasonic S5 is an affordable full frame camera with phenomenal low light performance, high dynamic range, it can shoot at 4K 60fps but with a crop, it’s lightweight and has great colors. We are shooting all or our agent portions of the the videos with this camera. Because of the crop factor we are still looking for lens that is wide enough to accommodate for the crop factor when shooting at 4K 60fps.
Some of the features that you will need in a video camera for real estate are:
1: 4K 60fps (or 1080p 60fps): You will need a camera that can shoot 4K (or 1080p) footage at 60 frames per second. This will give you sharp clear footage that you can slow down to a 24 or 30 FPS timeline for “buttery” smooth real estate videos.
2: Wide Angle Lens: You will need a wide angle lens for your camera that is at least, or equivalent to, 16mm. Some cameras will have a “crop factor” when you shoot at 4K 60fps. In these cases you need to make sure that your lens is wide enough to maintain 16mm in width, or your footage won’t be wide enough.
3. Low Light Performance: When shooting real estate you will find a lot of rooms and spaces that are not well lit. In these cases you need a camera that you can bump up your ISO to 2000 or even 4000 ISO. This will allow you to make the room you are shooting bright enough without introducing noise into the picture.
4. Dynamic Range: A lot of the new cameras being released today have at least 12 stops of dynamic range. This is important for shooting real estate videos because another problem you will encounter is unbalanced lighting. A lot of homes will have one side of a room brighter than another because of a larger window. Dynamic Range helps to not completely “blow out” windows in your videos.
The Best Camera Stabilizers for Shooting Real Estate Videos
To get those smooth looking shots you need to stabilize your camera onto a camera stabilizer.
Just like drones and video cameras there are plenty of affordable high-quality camera stabilizers available today.
DJI makes some of the best camera stabilizers with it’s line of Ronin’s. I currently use the DJI Ronin SC.
But other manufactures like Zhiyun produce great camera stabilizers too.
When choosing the right camera stabilizer, you need to consider the total payload of your camera body and lens, then choose a stabilizer that can accommodate that weight.
The best video editing software for creating real estate videos
After you shoot the property you’re going to need to edit the video. This is what you will need…
- A Computer with a decent amount of processing power.
- Solid State Storage, you will have to edit the video with either internal or external SSD. (This will make the editing process faster)
- Video Editing Software.
- Video Editing Plugins – Pixel Studios FCPX Shape Tracker
There are plenty of software options for editing videos. If you don’t already have a preferred video editing platform, then you will need to choose one and begin learning it.
Here are 3 of the most popular professional grade video editing platforms:
- Final Cut Pro X
- Adobe Premiere
- Black Magic’s DaVinci Resolve (Free Version) and DaVinci Resolve Studio (Paid Version)
If you are an Apple computer user, then I would recommend Final Cut Pro X. It’s easy to learn how to use and runs fast on Apple computers. This is the software that I use for editing all the videos we produce for El Guapo Media.
Adobe Premiere is probably the most popular video editing software for content creators and video editors.
DaVinci Resolve is becoming one of the best and most powerful video editing platforms today.
Video Editing Plugins
One of my favorite edits to add to a property with a lot of acreage is outlining the property lines.
To accomplish this I use the Shape Tracker Plugin from Pixel Studios.
This plugin is only available on Final Cut.
With this plugin you can outline the lot lines of a property with your aerial footage.
In the video below, you can see the plugin in action. When you see the aerial shots we use the plugin to outline the property lines of this home.
Distributing your real estate videos online
After shooting and editing your real estate video you’ll need a plan to distribute it online so that people can actually watch it.
Here is our marketing plan for distributing real estate videos.
- MLS Non-Branded Videos: We create a non-branded version of the real estate video for the MLS. We host these videos on our Vimeo Pro Account and remove all branding from the video to comply with the local MLS rules. We also host these videos on a non-branded single page website, you can see an example of one by CLICKING HERE.
- Social Media: You will want to publish your real estate videos on Facebook and Instagram.
- YouTube: YouTube is the world’s 2nd largest search engine and a great place to host your real estate videos.
- Zillow: You can directly upload your real estate videos to an active listing on Zillow. Because Zillow is the number 1 most viewed real estate search website having your videos here is highly valuable for agents.
- RedFin: You can add links to your videos on your listing at Redfin.
How to create a shot list for your real estate video
You need a plan when shooting real estate videos and these are called a shot list.
Once you get back to a computer and start putting all of the footage together you will need a collection of shots which can be put together to turn them into an actual real estate video with a storyline.
If you just slap a bunch of footage together and there is no order to them, a storyline, then you are going to have an incomplete video that viewers won’t quite understand.
You’re shot list should begin with an introduction to the property, followed up with some of the best features/parts of it, and then continue on to show the other parts. Finally, the video should conclude.
Here is a typical shot list for most of my real estate videos.
- Opening Shot: I like to use a drone shot to establish the either the city, area, and/or neighborhood that the property is located in.
- Actual Shot of the Home: Depending on the property sometimes this might be the same as the opening shot.
- Agent Introduction: When we have an agent in the video this is where we want to place them. Remember to not make the introduction too long. Viewers don’t want to see the agent, they want to see the house, so keep the agent scripting short and to the point and just introduce the property.
- Best Parts of the Home: You want to show the best parts of the home now. This may be the Kitchen, Living Room, or the Backyard. You will need to make a decision on what you want to show first.
- Rest of the Home: After you show the best parts then you want to show the rest of the home in an ordered manor, but do not repeat a section. It should go in this order: Living Room – Kitchen – Dining – Master Bedroom – Master Bathroom – Bedrooms – Bathrooms – Extra rooms/offices/finished Basements – Backyards.
- Agent Closing: Let the agent give a clear Call to Action at the end of the video.
- Video End: Pull away from the property to signal that the tour is over.
How long should video shots be in a real estate video?
People’s attention span is low in our modern online world. So keep the pacing of your videos to be quick. Some clips should be short like at 2 or 3 seconds. While others may be a little longer, but for your longer clips there better be some good movements going on or you will lose your viewers attention.
In the video below, see if you can follow the shot list we used to produce it.
The best royalty free music for real estate videos
Finally, we have to put it all together and this is what music is for.
The music you choose for your real estate video should both establish a vibe for the home and your brand as an agent.
For music we use Musicbed, but there are a lot of great options available today with high quality music for real estate videos.
- Musicbed: Expensive, but has a great catalog of songs.
- Artlist.io: Affordable, great collection of songs.
- PremiumBeat: Not a really deep collection of songs, but they are quality. Prices are ok.
- Epidemic Sound: The most popular site for royalty free music with a great catalog of songs and moderately priced.
Just start creating….
The best way to get better at shooting and editing real estate videos is to create more of them.
Every home is different and there are different features that you will want to capture and each will have its own vibe.
As you go into more homes with a video camera and drone, your creativity will evolve, and you will see improvements.
Also, watch other real estate videos for inspiration. Look at shots you like and shots that you don’t like to help you improve and develop your own style for your real estate videos.
If you have questions or want me to check out your real estate videos just ask and send them over.
I hope this article helped.