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Video Best Practices: Avoid the Pitfall of User-Generated Content

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By Eric Carlsen

RISMEDIA, July 20, 2009-Talk to most successful real estate brokers, and they’ll tell you that video has become an integral part of their real estate marketing. From agent profiles to property tours, video has added another dimension for brokers and agents. With more Realtors jumping on the video bandwagon every day, it is important to make wise decisions when it comes to producing a video for your valued clients.

Real estate aside, today’s economy in general means everyone is looking to cut costs. Even some seasoned professionals have been tempted to take the do-it-yourself approach when it comes to producing video. With a few exceptions this is a very bad idea. Why? Well, why is it a bad idea for your clients to sell their home using a FSBO service? No doubt, you have plenty of valid reasons you could share. The same principle applies when it comes to utilizing video.

Here are 5 Reasons to Use a Video Pro:

Lighting - There is a reason that most video professionals carry around those big, expensive lights. Even the most advanced video camera does not see light as well as our human eyes. Shoot your video without proper lighting and your exclusive property will resemble an abandoned cave.

Lack of a good tripod - I know, handheld shooting looks oh so easy, but your finished video will reveal why the pros use a pretty serious tripod to get each shot. The truth is, most video professionals will carry a tripod, a micro dolly, and a mini-crane to get some shots that an amateur could only dream of capturing.

Audio quality - Whether you record your audio onsite or do it afterwards on your computer, it is unlikely you have access to the scripting team, recording studio and voice over professionals that a quality video production company has. Most production companies also have access to an expansive music library to complement your production.

Editing – It is impossible to get every shot you want in one take when shooting video. Fortunately, there are some phenomenal editing suites available to assist in producing riveting videos. Unfortunately, most agents do not have the tools or the experience necessary to edit their video footage and turn it into a quality production.

Hosting - YouTube is home to a variety of humorous user generated content. But it is not the best place for your real estate video. Poor quality encoding, media player limitations and a circus like environment do not lend credibility to your video. A good production company will host the video in a dignified and appropriate environment in addition to assisting you with web distribution.

Video providers range in price from $200 to over $5,000 depending on what you are looking for. Ask for specifics on the five points above when you contact a production company for a quote. Finding the right video professional can be a challenge. But for your video production to make the right impression and achieve the desired results, it is money well spent.

Eric Carlsen is co-founder and managing partner of The Scene Lab, a full service video production company. For more information, visit www.thescenelab.com or email ecarlsen@thescenelab.com.

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