Last year, Coldwell Banker Real Estate shot, edited, and published over 200 videos in-house.
“Video has always been important to us,” says their VP of Brand Engagement, David Marine.
“We were the first real estate brand to create a YouTube channel to actually put homes for sale on YouTube and allow people to search for them.”
He says they created the channel after discovering that YouTube was a powerful search engine, and ever since then, video has become a part of everything they do. That includes weekly home features, daily tip videos, announcements, event promotions, video content from partnerships, and internal education videos to name a few.
Videos like their “Home of the Week” series give agents easily shareable and digestible content for their listings.
Video is the most interesting piece of content out there, and it's the most shareable as well.
“You don't have to read anything, it's immersive, and we also feel that it best represents our brand. We're able to showcase quality people expect from us. Video is the most interesting piece of content out there, and it's the most shareable as well.”
They also create videos of their senior leadership and experts to help them share the brand's message with their networks.
“When everyone's behind it, and video is a major component of what you're doing, you can see some great results,” he says.
David says they've had over 17 million video views of their unique content with an 183-percent increase in views year-over-year.
Recently, they partnered with 20th Century Fox to promote the film, X-Men: Apocalypse.
The co-branded videos came about after 20th Century Fox reached out to Coldwell Banker Real Estate. Apparently, the company was impressed with Coldwell Banker Real Estate's use of social video for last year's Home's Best Friend campaign and asked them to become their official real estate partner.
David and his team were given the script ahead of time and discovered that the Professor Charles Xavier's School for Gifted Youngsters, or “The X-Mansion,” played a large role in the film.
“We liked for our content in social to be focused on the emotional value that a home has. This being an essential part of the movie and almost a tertiary character within the film, we saw there was an opportunity here.”
From there, they created a “Home of the Week” listing of the X-Mansion, behind-the-scenes videos, and a few trailer-inspired videos using clips from the movie.
“We do most of our videos straight out of a closet in our home office,” says David.
David explains that most of the videos are shot and edited by one team member, Gustavo Gonzales. When he expressed interest in helping create video content two years ago, David says he gave Gustavo a small budget to buy equipment and a cleaned out a marketing closet to set up lighting and backdrops.
He says they can also go out to a property, shoot about 30 videos in one or two days for their “Home Tip of the Day” video series, and have content for one or two months.
“We've seen some significant efficiencies from the media side of things too,” he says, “especially on Facebook, where the cost of someone watching our video is one cent. It can't really improve any more until Facebook pays us to run our videos on their network.”
Sometimes David's own team members are the stars of the video.
They're often on camera sharing the Home of the Week or illustrating the Home Tip of the Day. He says, “There's a comfort level that comes with working in front of the camera as well as behind it.”
Their latest video series, Awesomeness, features home videos with heartwarming candid moments at home. In one, Coldwell Banker Real Estate's Senior Manager of Media Engagement and SocialMedia.org member, Lindsay Listanski, shares her surprise pregnancy announcement to her parents.
“We're getting excited about the shorter and shorter our content can get,” says David.
They're testing Instagram ads with a focus on 15- to 30-second videos. They're also evolving their video quality with drone footage of their properties, 360-degree virtual home tours, and virtual reality.
“Seeing how much more immersive video can get is sure to be the trend for the next two to three years.”
David's been a member of SocialMedia.org since 2009. Follow him on Twitter and ask about The Mets Lifer Daily.