I had the pleasure of interviewing Cindy Ashton, a presentation strategist whose expertise is messaging and video, and asked her to share her tips on how to stand out in 2021.
Q: What is your number-one tip to make a virtual showing stand out?
Show, don’t tell. Grab attention in the first seven seconds of your video with a story.
- Tell the story behind the features and benefits of the home.
Instead of showing the garden and saying how beautiful it is, tell the story about how the couple that lives there got married in that garden and has been happily married for 50 years. You can start your video by saying, “Fifty years of marriage all started in this bed of roses.” Or talk about how the living room was used as a speakeasy back in the 1920s. Start with, “Cigar smoke filled the air…”
- Get your potential buyers imagining what is possible for them when living in that home.
“Imagine your kids riding their bikes around this private cul-de-sac with the other neighborhood kids.” Or, “Imagine you are working in your virtual office, you feel stressed, and all you have to do is lift your head and look out at that amazing view of the lake.”
Q: Everyone has moved their business online. Now that REALTORS® really can’t network in person, what do you recommend they do to stand out digitally?
1. Be a real person.
Too many agents come across on camera like “slimy” salespeople with canned phrases like, “I can sell your home for the highest price in the least amount of time.” People hire people they like and feel connected to. Don’t try to be too polished. Instead, plan out your talking points, get that great opening line that tells a story, and then just talk to the camera as if you are talking to your best friend or favorite client.
2. Be of service.
You stand out when you make your videos about your clients. In addition to posting videos about the homes you are currently selling, also post videos that give helpful tips on things that are important to them. If your clients have families, ask yourself what you can share that would help them, such as, “Four ways to keep your kids engaged with virtual learning.” Or, “Three fun things your family can do together while stuck at home.”
Q: Video is simple now, with our handheld technology of cellphones and iPads, but there are nuances to creating a great video. Could you give us your top three skills to master so you stand out on video?
Always have the light facing you. If you are outside, face the sun. Inside, face the window where the light comes in. You can buy a light ring or broadcast light. Or go old school and take the shade off a lamp and put the lamp in front of you.
If you can’t be heard, the viewer will keep scrolling. If you record your videos from your computer or laptop, snowball microphones are great. Newer phones have good internal microphones. If they don’t or you are filming outside, get an external lavalier microphone.
If you have all kinds of clutter behind you, the viewer will be distracted. Be sure to choose a location that is organized, clean, and aesthetically pleasing. And try to be at least three feet from the wall or any object behind you, as it makes you appear more powerful and confident.
Learn more about Cindy and Christina at www.CaptivateandCashIn.com/Agents.
Christina Daves is the founder of PR For Anyone®. She has trained thousands of real estate agents in gaining visibility by using traditional and social media together for maximum effectiveness. Agents she has worked with have appeared in national magazines, newspapers, radio, television, and blogs. Learn more about her at www.ChristinaDaves.com.