2012 Multimedia: What Your Peers Use
In This Guide
2012 Multimedia: What Your Peers Use
Standing Out From the Crowd
“I don’t think I could have been as successful as I have without multimedia,” observes sales associate Ryan Benton, with Rose and Womble Realty in Suffolk, Va. He uses Borino’s Listing Presentation Plus, customized with information on comps and his marketing plan, to convince buyers he should represent them. As soon as an appointment is scheduled, Benton stops by the home to record a brief video from the outside on his iPhone. Then, he edits that clip into his presentation.
“They’re not expecting to see their home, and that always makes a good impression,” he says. “If you don’t do things that make you stand out, you just blend in with everyone else who’s trying to get that listing.”
When Melissa McKinney, broker for McKinney Realty Group at Keller Williams Realty in Fayetteville, N.C., makes her pitch to potential clients, she hands them her iPad. “It captures their attention and they’re usually impressed with my use of technology,” she says.
She builds her presentations in Apple’s Keynote software, combining visuals with local market analysis, information on her company and marketing plans, and live links to the Web. While prospects view the screen, she can read notes about each slide on her iPhone with the app Keynote Remote. “It actually helps to remind me what I need to say and lets me control what they see,” she explains.
The Tour Treatment
For initial meetings with sellers, Bryan Robertson, sales associate with Sereno Group in Los Altos, Calif., runs a straightforward PowerPoint presentation, catered to the home’s value with an applicable marketing plan. Listings get the multimedia tour treatment. Multimillion-dollar homes are featured in what he describes as a “Hollywood-quality commercial.” Other tours he builds himself.
“I’ll use a professional to take pictures or record video because I want the best possible quality,” says Robertson, who combines those images and clips with a soundtrack and other information in Tour Factory. “It’s very easy to use, and I can quickly change the order of pictures or video however I want.
“I’ve found a couple of soundtracks that work especially well,” he adds. “People have actually told me the wrong music playing in the background can be very distracting when viewing a tour.”
Gina Lemos, a sales associate at Momentum Realty in Yorba Linda, Calif., is such a strong believer in the marketing value of multimedia, she relies on a combination of production tools: PowerPoint for basic presentations; Sony’s Vegas Movie Studio for video editing; an Animoto account for creating quick tours with a soundtrack; and Capstasia software to combine all of these components in multimedia mini-movies.
“It does take some time, and when you’re very active it can be tough to find it,” Lemos cautions. She estimates it may take hours to complete some projects, from photo or video capture through distribution.
For her, it’s well worth the effort. In fact, Lemos is putting together a series of educational clips for her YouTube channel explaining procedures related to real estate and mortgage financing terms and procedures. “Most people today would rather watch a video than read a lot of text,” she explains. “Multimedia has become an essential tool in this business.”
After years of relying on professional providers to create their virtual tours, Harding Real Estate, in Port Washington, N.Y., brought production in-house. “We were paying others for that service and weren’t always happy with the results,” says Sales Associate and Marketing Manager Brent Harding. “Now we’ve got much better control over how our tours look and how quickly we have them, and it’s something I enjoy doing.”
His tour solution is the HD Fusion Software package from RealTourVision. Harding uses its features to combine panoramic images, stills, and the occasional video or interactive floor plan.
“Everyone uses picture tours so we try to make ours stand out more,” he says. “The first things people see have to be perfect so you can catch their attention enough that they want to go through the rest of that house.”