Shooting Video: An Increasingly Popular Real Estate Photo Skill

I've been doing Real Estate photography for many years now.  And while it’s a photo niche that won’t disappear anytime soon, there's something else that’s becoming increasingly popular for advertising property these days: VIDEO.

Shooting video used to be completely out of reach and unaffordable for the average person-- something only a closed inner circle of highly-trained specialists would know how to do. But a few years ago, Canon introduced the first DSLR capable of shooting video, making it much more approachable.

Originally meant for photo journalists to snap a few snippets while out in the field, it was quickly adopted into wedding photographers’ portfolios, indie filmmaker projects, and even movie and television show production, saturating the market with affordable video and filmmakers. And with demand growing even more and faster than ever, you can capitalize on this change in the industry, too.

It’s a fact that our brains absorb and digest audio-visual content faster and easier than the printed word. Most consumers would prefer to watch a movie to receive sales information rather than just reading about it from a piece of paper or pamphlet.

This is something I’ve taken advantage of in recent years. To give you an example…

Here are four pictures (with captions) that can be used in marketing material for a real estate listing of a condo:

Unique modern corner unit with water views from the living room.

The kitchen has high end cabinetry and name brand appliances.

Bedroom showing shower area with polished river bed rocks

Amazing views from extra wide balcony.

The captions on these photos are very basic, but with a good copywriter you could come up with a nice piece of marketing material to print on fliers and brochures. (However, this is actually quite expensive, not to mention a bit outdated and wasteful.)

A much more effective way to promote the property is to make a video. Initial upfront cost for the realtor maybe a bit more (because you charge more for this service), but there's no printing or distribution cost.

Below is a video taken at the same location with the property’s realtor. It’s the most basic and easiest kind of video you can make. I picked this particular video because it’s one of the first ones I ever made with simple, limited gear and editing. If I could make this when I was first starting out, you can certainly create something similar, too.

Here are the advantages of shooting video over still photos:

1. You get an almost three-dimensional feeling, a virtual feeling of actually being there.

2. You hear a voice explaining the features in depth.

3. You see a human being, so you relate to someone actually living there. (Plus, by placing this video on YouTube and naming it by its physical address, prospective buyers can also easily search for it on Google... which is basically a free advertisement.)

I promise, when shooting for real estate (or any niche, for that matter) taking video provides a high value for both you and your client.

Now go get them!

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