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Each week the Secrets of Top Selling Agents Facebook Group is bringing you live training on topics that matter in these challenging times. One of our sessions featured Sue “Pinky” Benson – a top real estate video rock star. Find her tips for creating video open house and virtual home tours below! Find more resources and other training recaps on our COVID-19 Resources page.

Video has been around for a long time, yet many real estate agents have been slow to adopt it because they’re afraid of how they look or sound on video. But, as Benson points out, there’s nothing you can do about how you look or sound.

Benson herself was very quick to adopt video when she joined real estate. With Facebook Live, Benson had to learn digital editing all over again because she initially learned how to edit on VHS cassettes, but it was worth it. When she relocated to Naples, video was essential in rebuilding her business.

There are two main types of video: canned video (which is taped) and live video (interactive). On live video, you can make mistakes and that’s fine because your viewers know it’s live and you’re allowed to make mistakes. With canned videos, viewers expect the content to be perfect.

Where to Go Live

You can do virtual open houses and other live videos on Instagram, Facebook Live, and in a lot of other places.  Zoom is another option. Some people can share video on LinkedIn. The point is, there are a lot of different platform options.

Benson favors Instagram because it enables you to share pictures and videos of your listing while you’re live, allowing you to showcase different features of a home while having your video still going.

Now, said Benson, is the time to learn Instagram. “It’s a very powerful outlet and you have lots of opportunity in there.” You can also download your Instagram live video and repurpose it on other sites like Facebook.

Creating a Live Video

The key is to let people know when your live video will be happening, just like you would promote an in-person event. Share the word across lots of different channels and offer teases about what will happen in the video so that buyers will be enticed to come back at the designated time. Remember to tell them where to go and when. You want to make it easy for them to know how to tune in.

“Whenever you do a video, it’s really important to do an intro.” Spend 15 seconds introducing yourself and sharing what your video is going to be about.

Live videos are meant to be interactive, so acknowledge your audience members by name and work on keeping your engagement up by asking your audience questions. Have a lot of energy on video and remember to smile. According to Benson, “If you’re smiling, more than likely people are going to engage with your content.” Smile and give it energy! “It’s going to come across great in front of the camera.”

However, before you push the button to go live, you need to know what you’re going to talk about. Choose a topic and make sure you know it well. If you’re making a listing video, know all the stats, but also consider what questions people would normally ask about the home. Do some research into the home and area so you can talk about HOA fees, the history of the neighborhood, and any amenities nearby. Whatever content you want to cover, write out some bullet points you want to cover and practice it.

A lot of the information you will need will be available on Google. You can also talk to your sellers. Why did they buy the home? What was the best part of living there? Benson recommends you “Focus on these topics and break it down into five fun facts that you can really home in on.”

Additional Tips

There are several additional ways to help your live video go smoothly and come out well.

“Make sure you put the ‘do not disturb’ on your phone.” That way you don’t get interrupted and you don’t get distracted.

Maintain eye contact with the actual camera, not the image of yourself. This will help you interact and engage with your audience. Ask them questions to start the engagement. Don’t wait around and wait for more people to show up. Start interacting with your audience right away as you wait for them to arrive.

Have your elevator pitch really simplified for your intro. Before, during, and after your live video, interact with your audience and remember to thank your viewers for attending.

“Get them in. Pull them through. Then you want to make sure you have a call to action…make sure they know what to do at the end of the video.” Give them a specific, easy to do action to complete at the end of the video, like messaging you.

“Think of it as your practice time right now” because, Benson explains, people may not care about buying a house right now or may not want to receive a pitch. “You might not get the huge engagement that you want right now, but this is the time to practice and learn these skills.”

For more ideas to grow your business during quarantine, join the Secrets of Top Selling Agents Facebook group! Here you’ll find an active community of real estate professionals and experts as well as daily live videos on a wide range of topics.

Text “SECRETS” to 313313 to get a daily text update before each event.