On-Demand Webinar | Lights Camera Sold: How To Outline Your Video

Before pressing record, it's time to think about how you'll get your point across. Watch the second session in our month-long series to learn how to create an outline and structure for the most engaging video.

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In this session, we'll discuss how to choose your topic, identify your target audience, write an effective script or outline, and set yourself up for success. Watch the on demand webinar, then click below to register for more webinars or join the MLS that gives you more for your money.

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Lights Camera Sold: How to Script Your Real Estate Video


Amanda: Alrighty. Good afternoon everybody. Thank you so much for joining me. My name is Amanda, I'm the marketing director here at StateListingsInc, My State MLS, NewYorkStateMLS. And today we are going to be covering the next session in our Lights Camera Sold series.

Amanda: This whole month we're going to be, each week, teaching you a new technique to help you utilize video content for your Real Estate marketing efforts. Be that marketing your properties, marketing yourself, or marketing your brokerage.

Amanda: Today we're going to be talking about planning your video. I know the temptation is there to just kind of think, well I know what I want to say and sit down and just talk to a camera and post it wherever but we want to really focus on, how you can be most effective with your time when you're planning a video. So to do that, when I'm starting out to create video content for State Listings, there are four main questions that we ask, which is why am I posting this video? Who is my target audience? Where will I use it? And what will I say? 

Amanda: And by the time you've answered the first three questions, the fourth question is pretty easy to answer and it will help you really quickly write your outline in your script because you'll know exactly who you're talking to and why.

Amanda: So like I mentioned, the first question is why you're posting? It is really necessary to answer all of the other planning questions and I know a lot of it boils down to, I'm creating this video because I want sales, you know I want more leads, I want more listings, but you need to think kind of a level deeper than that. So why am I posting a video? Do I want to generate more trust with my audience by showcasing myself as the Real Estate expert that I am? So that I can show how well I understand the market, how well I understand listing properties, so that leads will feel more confident work with me as their agent. 

Amanda: So am I doing it to educate people? Am I creating a video that's just for a listing? So I really want to showcase the best properties of this listing? Because, It's I'm just here to sell it, to make this listing look amazing or if you're looking for on the other hand, rather than to sell a specific property if you're looking to expand your brokerage or expand your team, you may be looking to grow your brand and showcase what being part of your brokerage or your team is like and all of those are going to be extremely different types of videos and without really keeping that top of mind, your video is going to come out pretty unfocused and you're going to lose people because we all know, attention span is pretty short on the internet.

Amanda: Your 'Why' will really help determine your audience. Hopefully you speak differently to your family members than you do to your boss or to potential clients and that really needs to come across in video. Growing an audience online isn't really about authenticity. It's about connecting with your audience and making them feel like they know you, they understand you, and they can trust you. And to do that, you need to choose a specific tone, you need to speak directly to your audience, instead of just trying to address the general public without much personality behind it at all. So when I'm looking to create a new marketing campaign for State Listings, sometimes we'll create fictitious representations of our ideal clients, our ideal members, and those are called buyer personas. They help us understand who will be the people, you know, watching our videos, attending our webinars, and reading our emails, so that we can write better to them and that's something that you can use to figure out your target audience when you're setting out to film a video.

Amanda: Creating an audience persona is about really understanding and getting in the head of who your ideal viewer would be. So that means knowing how old they are, what industry they work in, what's their day-to-day life like, and that's really important because it informs where you're going to post your video and who you're talking to. So for example, what do they read? What do they watch? What do they listen to? For example, are they big Podcast listeners? So you know that if you really want to promote a specific piece of content that you're creating, you might want to pull in Podcast advertising. If they are a younger demographic, they're more likely to be on Tiktok or on Snapchat, whereas different age groups tend to spend more time on different social media channels or maybe they tend to watch more traditional media and it'll help you really target where you're placing your content for it to be the most effective.  

Amanda: When you're writing your script and when you're planning what you're going to say, you also need to think about what they care about. Somebody who is a first-time homebuyer, who's looking for a good investment is maybe willing to put a little bit of elbow grease in but just doesn't understand the process of how to purchase their first home, has vastly different concerns than for example, an older couple who's looking to downsize. And, you need to make sure that you're addressing the really specific concerns of your audience, in order to connect with them.

Amanda: And finally this goes back to your 'Why'. You want to think about what problem you can solve for your ideal audience otherwise, why would they listen to what you have to say? So again, that could be understanding the first time buyer process, that could be more complicated examples of you know, maybe folks looking to sell their starter home and buy a bigger house, you know what does the process look like when you're selling and buying at the same time?

Amanda: The other thing that I've seen some pretty successful agents do, is create contents specifically for FSBOs. So that they're providing advice like, hey here's how to price a property, here's how to do all this stuff, and it seems counter-intuitive because obviously, you want those FSBOs as clients, however a lot of folks quickly figure out that, going for sale by owner is a lot more difficult than they thought and isn't worth the money they'd save and once they figure that out, the person that they're most likely to go and ask to be their agent is not the person who's been telling them they're stupid for going FSBO this whole time but the person who said, hey I'm here for you, It's hard, here's some of my knowledge and then when they do decide that they're not interested in pursuing the for sale by owner route, they're able to connect with those agents who've really been there for them the whole time. So that is another problem that you can solve, another potential target audience that you can reach with your content.

Amanda: Once you've figured out your target audience, as I mentioned, you've probably spent a lot of time thinking about where they spend their time online and you want to make sure that that's where you're posting. Later in this series, we'll talk about how you can repurpose content across multiple platforms. Creating one video doesn't mean that it'll only live on one site and we'll talk more about how to reuse it however, It's best to create your content to perform specifically on the platform that you want to prioritize.

Amanda: No matter how good your video is, attention is really limited online and you're not really going to pull people away from you know, their staple sites where they spent the most of their time just to watch your video. Some of the main options obviously, Youtube one of the most well-known video hosting sites. They have two billion monthly active users and they're the world's second most visited website after Google. Youtube can also have really huge impacts on your website SEO, so It's a good practice to start posting Youtube videos. Youtube prioritizes longer-form content more than any other of the websites that we'll cover, so if you want to do a really deep dive, educational, how-to video, It's going to perform best on Youtube. It's also really good for product reviews, so if you are looking to expand your brokerage and you want to bring in other agents, you can talk about different technology, different products that are available for Real Estate agents, Youtube would be the best place to post those videos.

Amanda: If you are looking to create a Real Estate podcast, which is a different topic than we're covering here. Many podcasts also post a video version of their show to Youtube, so if you are thinking of starting a podcast or if you already have one, don't neglect the opportunity to post it as video content as well. Some folks will just use a blank screen, some folks will have an animation or some folks will just have a camera on them, while they're recording their audio podcast and all of these are just a great way to kind of reuse your podcast content and potentially grow a new audience on Youtube.

Amanda: Moving on to Facebook. It has even more monthly active users than Youtube, they're about 2.4 billion monthly active users and It's the most widely used social platform in the US. So if your audience is a bit more general, Facebook may be the best place to post your content. Because Facebook is more of a social network than Youtube, content that's really emotionally driven, content that's really shareable, is more likely to perform well on Facebook. It definitely can house longer content than some of the other sites that we'll cover but I generally keep it under five minutes for Facebook. In addition, Facebook It's much easier to share content, so you'll want to repurpose video, even if you're not posting it to Facebook, you'll want to find a way to make sure that you repurpose that content on Facebook because I think that's where you have the largest potential to really go viral because you can share it to your own wall, you can encourage other folks to share it, you'll likely have the largest network there.

Amanda: Facebook also includes live streaming video capability with the option to save the video to your page permanently afterward. So if you'd like to create an event, if you want to have a live conversation with people, Facebook is a really great option. Youtube also includes live streaming video but I think that among agents, Facebook is a bit more popular just because that's where your audience is likely to be, for specifically live streaming and once you've completed that live stream, you're able to save it to your page so that folks can go back and watch it over and over again. You know, we've talked about you can repurpose video across platforms but with Facebook, you can repurpose the video automatically right on the same platform.

Amanda: Instagram is another great option. It has a billion monthly active users and 500 million who open Instagram stories per month. Instagram stories are short form, they're either photos or videos and they disappear after 24 hours. Instagram is best for videos that rely primarily on visuals, so if you have for example, a listing over a million dollars. It's going to be extremely important that you post that to Instagram, that kind of content performs extremely well there. Also, unlike Youtube, the audio for your videos won't be on by default, it'll generally start off muted. So you'll want to post any content that relies primarily on visuals here or you could include subtitles but really highly recommend focusing on those like really beautiful listings or other details of the homes that you're selling for Instagram. The other plus of Instagram is that. any video you post can be cross-posted to Facebook with just the click of a button. Generally, I advise against posting the same content to multiple sites without any editing but I would say that posting your Instagram videos to Facebook is the one exception to this rule.

Amanda: Finally, Tiktok. This is something that I haven't seen talked about a lot in the Real Estate space but It's something that's really quickly growing, I think the perception right now is that It's only for teenagers and there isn't a whole lot of use for businesses but Tiktok has seen explosive growth, especially over the last year. The last time we talked about Tiktok was in August, during our social media series then I told you that they had, they're approaching I think 800 million monthly active users and they've grown just since then to over one billion monthly active users. That number is actually probably quite a bit higher but unlike the other sites that I mentioned today, It's a lot harder to access Tiktok user statistics. So some sites are estimating even as high as 1.3 or 1.4 billion monthly active users. Over 60% of those users are under 30. So if your sweet spot is first-time home buyers who are younger and just looking for an agent that they can trust, meeting them where they're at on Tiktok can make you seem really approachable and can help you share quick bytes of information that'll really help you get their attention. Tiktok videos tend to be extremely short. The limit used to be 15 seconds, It's now been expanded. You can create 60-second videos as well but a lot of the videos that do well there, still stick to that 15 second mark.

Amanda: Tiktok is really great because of that for extremely short videos, that are funny or informational. There's a lot of really great quick bites of educational content available on Tiktok that'll help you grow an audience. In addition, because on Tiktok, the default screen when you open Tiktok is the for you page, which is curated by the Tiktok algorithm. Rather than exclusive to people who the user is following, you have a lot higher potential for your video to be seen by a much wider audience than you expected on Tiktok. It's something that you need some planning, some thought to do well, you need like a good idea and you need to spend some time understanding the platform but It's a really interesting platform that i'd love to see more Real Estate agents taking advantage of. And I've definitely seen some folks moving over in the past few months and creating some really great content and having a lot of success with it. 

Amanda: Finally, you know who your target audience is, you know what you're trying to communicate and you know where It's going to be. So It's time to think about what specifically you're going to say and that means deciding what type of video you're making. So common types of videos include Customer Testimonials. So that's where if you have a past client who absolutely loves you, you could ask them if they'd be willing to create a testimonial video which is where they speak for you by sharing their experience working with you. This can really help to build trust, if you're not focused on selling a particular listing or getting particular leads and you're more looking to build your brand as an agent. There's also a Demonstration, which shows the features of a specific product or I would consider a listing video as a demonstration. There's a Documentary, which shows your business over time. Potentially telling one overarching story, so again this is the kind of video that's really great for a brokerage to make, to grow their brand as a brokerage and would help them hire more agents as well as get more clients. You'd share you know, the story behind your brokerage, why what you do is different, what additional benefits you give to clients who aren't specifically listing with you right now. And finally, an Explainer, which shows how to perform a process, use a product or anything like that.

Amanda: So again, these are the kind of videos where you'd be showing. For example, those first-time home buyers, how to apply for a mortgage, any of those videos aimed at FSBOs that I talked about before, where you're showing how to do a specific product, I would count as an explainer video as well.  

Amanda: I know this feels like homework but you definitely will want a script or at least an outline in place before you start filming. A script works best for videos that require precise language. So for example, those really, really quick Tiktok videos where you only have 15 seconds to get across your message, I'd script that out. Whereas, if you're doing a longer video explaining a process that you know well, I think you can get away with just an outline. Both of those things will make sure that you cover everything that you want to say and that there aren't any points that are muddy or confusing to your audience or that are boring while you're waiting and searching for words. While you're creating your outline, you want to keep your audience in mind, you know who they are by now, you know what they care about and you need to use terms and language they'll understand. For example, If you're talking to those FSBOs, if you're making that video, make sure that you're taking the time to explain any Real Estate terms you're using, rather than assuming that they'll understand. You also need to keep your time limit in mind. Most platforms come with a time limit that I've mentioned, stick to one topic to make sure you're covering what you want to say without running over. Tiktok like I said, 15 seconds to a minute. Instagram I believe is a minute with the opportunity to create longer videos through IGTV, If you have that capability. Facebook like I said, keep it about under five minutes unless, It's a live stream which is a whole different ball game and Youtube, the time limits really vary depending on what you're saying. In general, about 10 minutes for a really in-depth explainer video is an okay amount of time to be spending there. 

Wrap Up:

Amanda: So that's all I have to talk about for planning your video. Right now we're spending this whole month teaching you guys how to make really awesome video content and at the end, we want you to show it off on April 29th which is the last Thursday in April. We will be holding the digital awards for Video Excellence or the Daves. You're going to take everything that you learn in this series and then you'll share your masterpiece with us. Submissions are open now on our website, which is mystatemls.com/dave_awards, the top videos in each of three categories will win some pretty exciting prizes that'll help you take your video production to the next level.

Amanda: So the person who has the best presentation meaning you followed all of Dave's recommendations that he shared last week for how to set up your video, will win a Hard Shell Camera Case as well as a brand new Tripod. The most informational video, the person who does a great job explaining something about the Real Estate industry, will win this really cool Teleprompter that I definitely want for these webinars as well as a Tripod and the most entertaining video, the person who makes us laugh will win this Vlogging kit which has its own light and microphone attached as well as a whole bunch of other really awesome accessories.

Amanda: So if you want to win, I highly recommend kind of keeping on track with us. So you know, last week your homework was to figure out your filming setup and get your practice in setting it up. Next week, you need to decide on your 'Why'. Why are you creating the video? Who are you speaking to? What problems are you trying to solve? I also want you to identify your audience and for bonus points create an audience persona. You'll also need to choose the primary platform where you want to post your video and write your outline or your full script before next week, just to keep on track. Next week, we'll cover how to film and how to edit your video. The week after, we'll teach you everything you need to know about promoting your video, including all of that stuff I mentioned about how to repurpose your video across platforms. And of course the week after that, we'll be holding the days where we will see the best videos. 

Amanda: If you guys have any questions in the meantime, just shoot myself or Dave an email. My email is amanda@mysteatmls.com. Be happy to talk video production with anybody and until next time, have a great week. We'll see you next Thursday. Bye

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