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How often do you update your headshot?

Because so often I don’t recognize you on your business card photo. Perhaps it was taken 10-20 years ago? When phones still had cords attached to them?

Updating your headshot every couple years is a good rule of thumb. Maybe even more often if your looks change. Ladies love changing hair style and color, we lose or gain a little weight, clothes styles change. These are all good reasons for an updated headshot.

I specialize in simple business headshots. The kind you’ll be proud placing on your Facebook, Instagram and LinkedIn. Your thumbnail avatar is often the first impression people get about you. Keep in mind that it’s showing up tiny on all these social media platforms, so a close headshot is better than waist up or full body shot.

I bring all my lights and equipment and set up in your office. If you have a good size conference room, that will work great! Groups of 10 and more get a discount. Book today (727) 418-9016

Here’re a few samples of real estate agent headshots I recently did.

Twilight Photos In Marietta

What You Need To Know About Twilight Photos In Atlanta and Marietta

Have you ever seen a featured listing in Atlanta on Realtor.com or Zillow and Trulia and it really stood out to you? Chance are you saw some twilight photos of that home. Especially if the house is outfitted with elegant lighting and landscaping is lit up too. It just looks magical. Sometimes I create my own light to accent darker areas of the property. There are only a few minutes of magic light when the sun sets. I get to capture those minutes and create beautiful photos of your listing. I work in Atlanta and Metro area. My pricing is here.

Why not add twilight photos to your listing? Call me today (727) 418-9016 and lets schedule our evening photoshoot!

Here are a few samples from my latest twilight session.

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Time To Use Video In Real Estate Marketing

Are You Using Video In Real Estate Marketing in Atlanta?

Because if you aren’t, you may be missing some clients. I once made a property video for a client and a buyer bought it site unseen after he watched the video on his iPad while on the plane 30,000 ft in the air.

video-in-real-estate-marketingSearch Google for a property address. If that property has a video tour it will pop up in the top of the results! You can place a video link in your MLS, On Realtor.com, Zillow and Trulia. All my video are made with purchased copyrighted soundtracks, so you will never be kicked off if you load it directly to Facebook!

Do you know you can now also directly upload videos to LinkedIn? THIS IS HUGE! Think about it. The more eyeballs you will have on your listing, the higher your chances are for selling that property quickly. And that’s what your seller wants. That is what you want too. I charge $200 for small homes, and $300 for properties over 2,000 sq.ft. Currently I include drone video in all my property video (if drone use is allowed in your area). Call me today (727) 418-9016 or send me a message to schedule your property video! Here are a few samples.

I make real estate videos anywhere in Atlanta, Marietta, Kennesaw and other towns of Atlanta Metro area. Ask me also about property photos, twilight photography, drone pictures and your headshots!

Why Saying You Are Better And Different Is Not a Wise Choice In Real Estate Marketing

Why Saying You Are Better Than Others Is Stupid. Especially If You Aren’t

better-than-you-realtor“Soaring above the rest”, “Why we are different from the rest”, “We answer our phones” – and so many other ways some of us advertise come across as passive aggressive, heck, sometimes plain aggressive.

A friend told me: I don’t want to be known for what I am against, but what I am for. Negative notes often speak to our ego. They reflect our immaturity. It’s one thing to address something wrong done by others, another to use a blanket statement to the rest of your competition. What will push you above the crowd is the respect of others, never just your own promotional efforts. The bullshit radar is so very sensitive right now among all generations. We spot arrogance, we see when someone lies and we don’t want to deal with them. Rolling that way online only magnifies things.

It will take someone 5 minutes to check on your real presence online, your work and your reviews. If there isn’t much to show then your statements of being “different” are foolish.

So how do you promote yourself correctly?

The simple answer is that you don’t just promote yourself. Today’s marketing is offering help and telling a story, providing service and education about product. It is not blasting mass emails to 1000 addresses you just bought and then try to immediately close, churn and burn style. Today it’s give, give, give, politely ask. Love them to sale. And I see more and more professionals in Altanta and Metro area doing just that.

Practically speaking

1) Like Gary Vaynerchuk says: become self-aware . What are your strengths? How can you use them in your business?
2) Decide how much of personal life you want to share with your audience. But share some.
3) Don’t just push your listings on your wall. Start thinking like your clients, what do they really want from you?
That’s right, they’ve already seen all new listings, maybe even those you yourself haven’t seen yet. What is your value to your client? Define it, package it, offer it.
4) Thank before you bank. Your past clientele is your best advertising tool. Take a selfie with your happy buyers or sellers. Help them move in. Ask for a positive review.
5) If you do something much better than others, don’t say so. Simply show it and offer it. “I love making property videos for all my new listings! Love to show to my community what’s new for sale in the neighborhood! Follow me on YouTube, new listings coming this week!” – Something like this is positive and offers value.

Geographical Area of Services

Where Do I Offer Real Estate Photography In Atlanta

Currently I service all areas of Atlanta and Metro Area. After 13 successful years in Florida my family and I moved to Atlanta, which has been our dream for a while. I also travel as far north as Canton, Milton, Alpharetta and even Chattanooga without additional trip charges. I’ll be happy to work on projects beyond Atlanta Metro, please request a quote. My services include Architectural Photography, Real Estate Photography, Twilight Photos, Real Estate Videos (Video Tours), Drone Photos and Video and Headshots.

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Why Have Professional Photos & Video For Non-Luxury Homes in Atlanta

Spend Your Marketing Dollars Smartly

Dining Area St Petersburg HomeI was just looking through listings online.  Majority of luxury real estate is featured with good photos and virtual tours.  Very few have home video tours.  The trend is picking up though, I get more and more orders for video alongside a photo-shoot.

To Go Pro Or Not, and Why

The sad part is that homes listed slightly below luxury level, say in the rage of 200k-450k almost never have a video tour.  Quite often even the photos are not professionally done.  There could be many reasons for that: the home is not showcase worthy, needs updating or the real estate agent doesn’t believe spending money on professional photography is required for a successful sale.  All are legitimate reasons (but if you are just being cheap – that’s not cool).

I believe, however, most agents should try and discuss with the owner bringing the home to a showcase state.  Often the sellers just don’t know how, they need some guidance.  Rarely will the sellers turn down an offer to help stage their home, or decline advice on quick updates.

Master Bath home in St PeteYes, sometimes good photos are good enough.  Even if you take them with your iPhone or Android, as long as you know a little bit about taking real estate picture, such photos will be ok for, say, a bank-owned property, or a home where staging or repairing is not feasible or in case of any other distressed or high-risk situation.  Though, good photos, videos and blogging can help you generate leads, but that’s a story for a different post.

Inventory is still low but, if you haven’t noticed, the sales have slowed down just a little in the past few month.  It’s normal, the market will fluctuate.  Yet, you have to remain steady and competitive with your marketing and avoid slacking when times are good!  You can’t afford to cut your marketing dollar just because.  Let me give 3 reasons why professional photos and videos matter during any time:

1) They make your SELLER look good.

Will neighbors Google your listing address to see how much it is? Do they want to see what it looks like inside? Yes and yes!

2) They will make YOU look good.

You have to think beyond one sale. Every listing is a door to a few more. Your listings online are like your business cards, they are also your reputation, what people can expect working with you. Will the potential clients check out your other listings? Will they want to know a little about your marketing plan? Yes and yes!

3) They will bring you BUYERS.

Because buyer not only shop with their wallet, they also shop with their heart, with their feelings. Buyers love to connect with their future home. What could be easier than helping them do it with photos full of character and a video that perhaps will make them smile and then click “Contact Listing Agent”?

Spending Smartly

I’ve filmed a few home video tours of homes that are not considered to be in the luxury or high-end category, yet they also deserved a well-made presentation.  The sellers and the listing agents were happy to have these extra marketing tools.  Smaller homes take less time for video and photos, bringing the cost of the shoot down too.  Providing the luxury level services when selling mid-end properties will pay off in the end.  Why?  Because such marketing services are affordable and sought after by your clients.  Spend your marketing dollars smartly.

Virtual Tours and How To Use Them Correctly

When I shoot real estate in Atlanta agents often request a virtual tour.  I always suggest doing a full-motion video tour instead but virtual tours are still popular and they are less expensive than video tours. A virtual tour is an online slideshow often provided with background music and some property info.

Here are 6 observations I made in regards to virtual tours and things you need to be aware of when using virtual tours:

1) Quality. If you use crappy photos, you will have crappy tours. The quality is often reduced even further because some brokerages use automated virtual tour providers who pull the photos from MLS where they’ve already been reduced in size and quality.
2) Number of photos. If you are using an automated tour, all your clients will see is a slideshow of photos they have already seen. Offer value to your clients, edit your tours separately and add more high-quality photos to it.

3) Music is cheesy. It take only a couple minutes to login to your tour and change the music, don’t go for preset cheesy tracks. Some providers will allow you to upload your own song.

4) Load time. I’ve only found a handful of VT providers where photos load quickly and with good resolution. Most of the tours will be turned off before they load by the potential buyer.

5) Your listings go to Realtor.com, Zillow, Trulia and other outlets. Check at least these 3, make sure your virtual tour link shows up.  Your virtual tour will not upload to Realtor.com automatically. VT vendor has to be approved by PicturePath and Realtor.com and they have to upload manually. Some big vendors who might have a contract with your broker are able to upload them from MLS to Realtor.com immediately but remember, login to your tour and upload high-rez photos. If your broker has such agreement with a vendor and you decide to use your own, the broker’s vendor’s tour will have priority and will show up on Realtor.com, Zillow, Trulia – you have to make sure you place your own link on MLS and then update it on Realtor.com.
6) You can plug it in (embed it) VT tour vendors provide with HTML code of the tour, so you can copy/paste it on your blog easily. A little harder with social media, though. You can post a link on Facebook, for example, but it will open a new window when you click on it. It won’t play directly on your Facebook wall, like YouTube videos do. Facebook doesn’t like when people leave their site, so I can bet you that your exposure will be limited. Much better to post a photo or a video. Fortunately you can convert a virtual tour into a video format and host it on YouTube or Vimeo, though quality of images will be reduced.

If you stay aware of these details about virtual tours – you will get the most out of them. If you need a virtual tour provider or a real estate photographer in Atlanta and Metro Area,  text/call me at (727) 418-9016 and I’ll be glad to work with you.

Real Estate Videos Don’t Sell Real Estate in Atlanta

They don’t, YOU do.  How would I know and why would I say this while being in business of producing real estate videos? Because before going into the photo/video business full time I was a Realtor in Tampa Bay for 5 years and I’ve used video from my first month in business.  To the very last day of me selling real estate full-time I’ve never had a huge and immediate boost in listings and sales because I utilized video.  What I did have was a gradual growth of clientele base who appreciated videos that I used in my marketing.

Real Estate Video St Petersburg Tampa FloridaI love photography and creating video content, so it was easy for me to choose and keep these tools in my marketing toolbox.  “Marketing” is the key word in the idea if using video, it’s not a sales tool.  Frankly when business becomes so very open and relational as it is today sales techniques diminish in their vitality.  They are still important but mostly refer to negotiating and closing skills. Marketing has become the lifestream of business.  The definition of marketing has become broader, fuller and more complex.

We choose marketing tools we like, feel comfortable with and believe will appeal to our clients.  We all know that producing a piece of marketing material is only a half of work done.  For it to be effective it has to be strategically placed. It works this way with video content too.  I’ve sometimes seen clients for whom I’ve produced photos and videos not really know how to showcase these gold nuggets to the world.

 

Here are a few tips from my personal experience on how video can boost your marketing campaign

 

1) Have a set schedule for your video production, by date and type

By creating a short video at least once a week you will soon have an impressive library of video content. But you have to be consistent and have a schedule.

 

2) Categorize your videos by:

– Informational (about real estate market in general)

People will come to you because you have real estate knowledge and skills to effectively sell or help buy a property. Informational video will help your clients understand your skills and level of knowledge quickly as well as figuring out if they’d even like to work with you. Sometimes we just don’t click with certain people, and that’s ok. You’d rather never have them come to you, than come and then leave. Your information videos will take care of that.

– Education (about specific neighborhoods in your area)

Education videos will help folks see that you know the area, and know details about neighborhoods, plus it adds value because you showcased the features and streets of the area they may be interested in. Eventually you will have a library of such videos and you can utilize them on individual neighborhoods pages on your website. How cool would it be to have a short video about a neighborhood and then list all available listing there right under the video?

– Home video tours

In your sphere of influence there will also be people looking to buy or sell. Producing quality video tours will capture attention of those looking to buy, because they just don’t see real estate videos all that often. Sellers will also notice because they will want one of their house done when they are ready to sell. Besides your sphere those looking at homes online always get excited when they see that little blue button with a camera on it. Motion video gets a lot more views than a slideshow.

– You can also do one on local activities and events, but keep those to a minimum, you are a Realtor, so stay with things relevant to your business.

 

3) Figure out how to distribute your videos and who your targeted recipients are.

 This topic deserves a separate blog post, look for it in the near future.

In conclusion

You probably don’t need video marketing if you don’t use internet to communicate with friends, family and clients.  Unless you buy TV ads most of your video marketing will be online.  But it’s not for everyone.  Either embrace it, use it, dedicate marketing dollar to it or stick with the tools you feel suit you best.  Remember, it’s all about quality.  Not production quality, thought it’ll help, but your content quality.  Step aside for a moment and take a look at your marketing pieces: email campaigns, Facebook feed, postcards, flyers, your website – does any of it deliver value?  Is any of it interesting, important, captivating? Is any of it telling a story?  Because if there’s no value or importance – we (your prospective clients) can at least enjoy a good story.