One of the best examples of social media for real estate agents I’ve seen

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I recently stumbled upon Jessica Riffle Edwards, a “realtor” in Wilmington, North Carolina. Her use of YouTube is one of the best examples of social media marketing for real estate agents I’ve seen.

Check out her real estate agent YouTube Channel. She’s made hundreds of videos and has 11,000 subscribers!

These videos provide tips about buying and selling property and talk about life as a real estate agent. They’re simple, to the point, and done just in her car (i.e. they’re low budget – pretty much zero dollars.)

Authenticity and keeping it simple works

I reckon, like most people, Jessica was probably nervous when she first started, but in these videos, she’s very natural and just herself which I think is a key reason they work.

More importantly, these videos show how you can create content for your business. It doesn’t need to be superfancy. You just need to answer your customers’ questions – in an authentic way. Have a look and you’ll see what I mean.

‘How to’ videos work

I found Jessica when I was researching selling my Dad’s house. I put into YouTube ‘how to choose a real estate agent’.

This is a smart video to make if you are a real estate agent by the way. (Or if you’re a small business selling some other professional service, you could make a video that answers a typical question your clients have.)

The point is your potential customers are out there on the web looking for answers to their problems. You can get found and get on their radar by providing an answer.

People get to know you (which really works)

The other benefit of videos is they help the viewer get to know you better. And help them decide whether you’ll be good to work with.

Which, I can tell you, after trying to figure out which real estate agent to sell my Dad’s house, can be the factor that tips the balance of who you go with or even just shortlist. There are so many real estate agents even for a specific suburb, many with good sales and awards etc, I found it mind-boggling to know who to choose (and how to make that choice.)

In the end, having someone good to work with is a little thing that’s really a big thing. And videos give you a much better sense of what a person is like than a webpage with a photo and a sales spiel.

How to choose a real estate agent? Here’s what I did

In my case, I had about 8 names after initial research (of sales in the area.)

I then got that down to 3 real estate agents. 2 of the 3 got there because of their videos. (The third was someone I knew through a connection.)

Here’s a video from one of the Brisbane real estate agents I shortlisted:

I called Nicole Devine after seeing this video. She was nice. When I told her how her videos played a key role in my decision making, she told me she was initially shy of the camera and found it confronting to do.

Which was a good first start I thought – humility in a real estate agent.

Being brave pays off

Most people find a video camera pointing at them confronting. If you feel like this you’re not alone. But I can tell you it’s worth being brave. You’ll get better at it and the nerves will get less the more you do.

Plus you’ll start getting business coming to you, rather than you having to slog it the old fashioned way e.g. running ads or cold calling folks who may not be interested. You’ll realise that “inbound marketing” is a much better investment of your time and resources. Camera fear is a minor hurdle in the scheme of things.

As internet marketing guru Seth Godin says: “If it scares you, it might be a good thing¬†to try.”

Cautionary note: it can go the other way

Having said all that, here’s a quick side note / word of warning / reality check.

There was another Brisbane real estate agent who was recommended to me and had good sales in the area. She also had done a number of videos, but when I watched them it made me think she wasn’t really my cup of tea. I struck her off my list. But I guess she might be right for other sellers.

How do you make a video for your business?

Yes, how does Jessica Riffle make those videos in her car?

I’m guessing it’s just her iPhone mounted on the sunvisor or on the windscreen itself. (If you’re a technical type maybe you can tell me how you think she’s done it in the comments.) Doesn’t look there’s any editing. Just a direct upload into YouTube from her phone. Cost = zero.

If you do this be careful with the audio. You may need a small microphone if the sound is tinny.

In Nicole Devine’s case she’s had a video maker shoot, edit and put it together. Don’t reckon it would have cost too much. There are more videographers now specialising in this sort of work – often for under $2K.

If you think about it, Nicole’s video isn’t just about selling that one Red Hill property, it’s also giving people the confidence to work with her for other properties as well. Like what happened in my case.

So apportioned over a number of properties the cost is more like a few hundred dollars – if you made one video for every 4 or 5 properties say.

Learn more about content marketing

I’ve written a series of posts on creating content that will attract people to your business and give them the confidence to buy from you. Check out these posts on content marketing – what it is, why it’s important, and how to do it.

ps. Only in America

If you watch a few of Jessica’s videos you’ll notice there’s a few where she’s driving and talking (doing her video) at the same time e.g.

Not sure that’s a good idea or even legal? Though anything is possible in America.

Phil Stubbs About the author

Phil Stubbs is Founder and Principal Trainer at Media School in Sydney, Australia. Phil launched Media School to help people like you learn how to use new media to achieve your goals.

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