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Being There

August 12, 2019
How to conquer the real estate market through video

Here at Videocide, we're setting out to explore a variety of markets. We are currently looking at our options and screening videographers in the hopes of expanding into the national real estate market. There's nothing revolutionary or even special about the niche itself -- and I am sure that there's a lot of competition in that specific segment. However, it is worth a trial if we can add something unique to the field. 

In doing the necessary business planning for this new adventure, I stumbled upon a not-so-negligible amount of articles commenting on the steps necessary to produce a good video for real estate. The goal of the research is to establish with some degree of certainty 1) what customers want and needs, 2) what exists on the market that fulfills those needs, and 3) which such needs are not currently addressed.

Among those articles, one titled 4 Video Design Ideas For Real Estate Listing caught my attention. 

Let's be honest: despite the way it advertises itself, the article is, at best, just as vapid as 98% of the content rolling out of marketing mills daily.

  • The title grossly overstates what the article delivers
  • Almost/ all the content (a dozen paragraphs) could have -- and probably was -- written with a different subject line before being re-purposed under a new title
  • The copy brings nothing at all to the table
  • It could have been -- and probably was -- written by someone who has no experience in making videos, let alone doing so for the real estate market

Conclusion: Reading this article is an absolute waste of time. I'm willing to bet that a simple consumer-grade AI text generator would have produced a better copy. At this point, you're probably wondering why I am wasting your time and bandwidth even talking about it. The answer is: because it is yet another proof that being there matters. The article's author was never there: she likely never shot or edited a video in her life. She may know little, if anything at all, about real estate. Why even bother?

The first -- in many cases, the only -- requirement to shooting a relevant video is to be there. Ask any (real) journalist. 

The video medium is a means to recreate an experience: the first-hand, human experience of being there. "There" is, of course, wherever the subject of the video is. In most case, that is: where the camera is pointing to, or from. The extraneous material (the text and titles, the visual effects, the layer of narration, etc.) can only perform its function when it gets added to the original layer of content.

The common-sense requirement of being there, which ensures that the viewer will feel engaged in the stream of images and audio that is coming to him or her, is too often ignored. Keep this in mind: if you are to put together a video for some real estate property, the first order of business is to get there, on location. 

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