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Tuning into YouTube

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By Gee Dunsten

RISMedia, June 14, 2011—Officially launched in December 2005, YouTube now has over 500 million subscribers worldwide. YouTube receives more than 2 billion viewers per day and is now the second largest search engine in the world (next to Google).

Anyone can surf YouTube as often as they like in anonymity. When you want to do something interesting however, like upload your own video, create playlists, subscribe to YouTube channels, etc., you have to create an account. The account is free and YouTube makes it very easy and hassle free by only requiring a few simple pieces of information and a promise to agree to play by their rules.

Most leading social media-marketing real estate professionals strongly recommend creating your own free YouTube channel; it can be a big game changer in building your brand online and offline.

YouTube videos have the potential to go viral. Viewership can grow exponentially in a short time and have an enormous direct impact on your image.

Creating the perfect video can easily become a reality by following these guidelines and tips:

1. First, make sure you know how to transfer the video from your camera to the computer. This is a simple step but if you don’t understand your video camera and what cord does what, this initial step can bog you down.

2. The video must be rendered in a format supported by YouTube.

3. You’ll need to do some editing (Windows Movie Maker or Apple iMovie).

4. If you’re recording a subject that’s backlit, the background is brighter than your subject—something you don’t want to happen.

5. If recording a subject that’s in heavy shade (i.e., under an umbrella) and the rest of the scene is brightly lit, zoom in on the subject.

6. When recording a night scene, it is important to manually set the focus on your subject.

7. Mount the camera on a tripod when you are interviewing someone. It is better to have the camera at a slightly higher level shooting down on the interviewee, than placing the camera slightly lower and shooting up at the interviewee.

8. Use an external microphone whenever possible.

9. Compose your scenes before recording.

10. Don’t record the date or time in your video.

11. Limit the video to 1½ to 2 minutes max.

The subject matter for your videos is endless. Be sure to include a mix of real-estate specific topics along with interesting insights about and coverage of your community.

For example, winning topics could include:

• Home improvement ideas
• Energy-saving ideas and safety tips
• Home marketing and staging strategies for sellers
• Local market reports
• Short sale myths and truths
• Live reports from:
– Local sporting events or school functions
– Local school PTA meetings
– The new restaurant in town, complete with your review
– Planning and Zoning meetings
– Fundraisers and charitable activities

Position yourself as a real estate expert as well as an expert about your neighborhood. This will give your videos the best chance of going viral and turning YouTube into a viable business building tool.

George “Gee” Dunsten, president of Gee Dunsten Seminars, Inc., has been a real estate agent and broker/owner for almost 40 years. Dunsten has been a senior instructor with the Council of Residential Specialists for more than 20 years. To reach Gee, please email, gee@gee-dunsten.com. For an extended version of this article, please visit www.rismedia.com.

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