Video Blogs can be used in your HTML email newsletter, on your Facebook page, YouTube or on your company website in the news section.
So what would you blog about? Clients of ours video blog about everything from new offices through to internal videos with their team. This video below which was filmed for a Medical Recruitment company in Christchurch shows you that with a camera a good microphone you can video blog almost anywhere! This video was filmed in the snow room at the Antarctic Centre in Christchurch New Zealand.
• Video blogs shouldn’t be any longer than 3 minutes
• The person being filmed should always be looking down the barrel of the camera to ensure a honest friendly feeling for the viewer
• The blogger should read from their head rather than trying to follow a script to give a natural approach
• One take is best if you can manage it
• Changing shots from wide to tight where possible will give your video some variation
• Always use professional audio! We can’t stress this enough! No one wants to watch a video with poor audio you will discourage your viewers within the first few seconds of the video!
• Include a baseline introducing the video blogger and any company graphics to ensure new viewers can identify with you and your company if the video is shared across social networking sites
Video blogging is great fun and has high success rates!
With millions of visitors a day, YouTube is a fantastic potential marketing tool and should sit alongside Facebook, Twitter and other social media services in your online marketing toolbox. Pretty much any business type can benefit from marketing on the world’s biggest video sharing site,but getting started can be daunting, especially if you have no experience in that arena.
Its amazing how many small businesses are using video however are not using YouTube as a channel to promote their videos. YouTube is free and is so powerful!
We can assist you to set up a YouTube channel and of course produce some video content for you. However if this is something you prefer to set up yourself you will find some handy hints below;
Set up a channel and brand it!
Checkout the options available to customise your channel. You can view the Grid City YouTube channel here to see how ours has been branded www.youtube.com/gridcityproductions
Tag your content
YouTube has an internal keyword system which shouldn’t be overlooked. When tagging your videos remember to put yourself in your customers shoes, what would they search for? For example, “Legal Services Christchurch” or “Finance Company Auckland”
Annotations allow you to link your videos within YouTube or direct them to websites. You can view an example below
Promote your content with an advert
Everything that you have done to promote your YouTube channel so far is free! The next step to obtain the maximum benefit is to promote your videos. YouTube’s promoted videos can help you to reach your audience and get more video view. http://www.google.com/support/youtube/bin/topic.py?hl=en&topic=16040
YouTube has a great help section which can be found here http://www.google.com/support/youtube/
We hope this information is helpful and remember we are here to do it all for you from set up through to providing video content!]]>
Writing a script for your video might be new to some of you so we thought we would share some ideas to help you along.
What is the purpose?
Firstly, take a moment to consider what is the purpose of your script? You may think the purpose of your script is to sell the property, which is incredibly important, but you also need to consider the message of every line you write. The purpose should be to keep the viewer engaged until the very end, and then motivate them to all you.
So how do we do it?
“Its not what you say, it’s the way you say it!” How many times have we heard that!
Think about the line “this house has 3 bedrooms” and think about the selling features of the house, are the bedrooms big? Is the house modern? Cosy? Then incorporate that into your sentence;
So “This beautifully presented home has 3 spacious double bedrooms all with double wardrobes”.
Keep it simple
Keep focused on the purpose
It is easy to get carried away and go into detail. Remember to write not what you want to say but what your prospective buyers want to hear.
Features and benefits
Is it suitable for me? That’s the question on the lips of every potential buyer. Lets take an example of how you can convert a feature into a real benefit;
“The home is located amongst quality schools”
“This home provides your family with a wide range of schooling options at your fingertips”
Match your script to your photos
If you have say 10 photos look at what those photos consist of. Your photos needs to match your script so if you write about the wine cellar, the swimming pool and you only have photos of the kitchen and the lounge then your video won’t flow and you will lose you audience. You viewer’s will be watching and listing to the video at the same time so you don’t want to confuse them with photos that don’t match the script.
How many photos will you need and how many words do you need to write?
We work with a general rule that for every 6 photos you will need around 60 words. 60 words and 6 photos will generally give you a 30 second video or 120 words and 12 photos will give you a 60 second video. Once you have written your script just time it with a stopwatch and then add or delete copy as you need to.
Call to action
Once you have engaged your viewers and taken them to the end of your video you need to give them reason to call rather than just move onto the next video!
Try ending your video with a call to action like “This property is bound to attract strong attention, register your interest by calling me now”
Hopefully you are ready to start writing some great scripts! ☺]]>
Research indicates that if users cannot quickly ascertain details regarding the person or company they are contemplating dealing with then they simply move on to the next option.
Video profiles are a great way to get your message across quickly and professionally. As you can use your Video profiles across a range of networks such as Facebook and YouTube, new customers can find you quicker than when trawling through numerous Real Estate websites. Even better, you can also see how many times your video is being viewed which is an option that wasn’t available to John Wanamaker in 1903 when he commented that; ”Half the money I spend on advertising is wasted; the trouble is I don’t know which half”
Our selection of Video Profiles will provide you with a point of difference and help you to grow your Real Estate Business. Bespoke or “tailored” requirements are also no problem along with assisting you to develop your own Facebook Pages, Twitter Accounts or YouTube pages. These can promote both yourself as well as your Listings.
We offer various types of Video Profiles to cater for a range of budgets … we know everyone isn’t that keen to jump in front of the camera so we also offer a video profile which is made using still photos and a voice over (see example below).
A comment that we often hear is “I’m not sitting in front of the camera” or “that’s just not me”. We agree, being filmed is a new experience for most of us but is no different from when you are sitting with clients and building re pore.
If you are thinking about making a video yourself think very carefully about what message you want to get across. Getting a professional video profile will be the difference between someone pushing play and stop within 5 seconds and someone watching the full 90 seconds and picking up the phone and making the call. Poor sound, poor cinematography and poor content can turn viewers off. Also, if you aren’t prepared to invest in quality marketing for yourself then it doesn’t set a very good example to potential clients or vendors that are thinking about listing their home with you.
For as little as $350 you can get yourself a video profile to put on your website, post to Facebook, Twitter and YouTube. All Grid City Video Profiles include hosting so you will receive a hit counter each week informing you of how many hits your video has had. Below are some Video Profile examples as you will see you can include client testimonials, background music and graphics. It all depends on what look and feel you want to achieve.
Online Video Profile using still photographs- Trudy Hudson, Harcourts Four Seasons
Online Video Profile with Client Testimonials – Jo Rodgers, Ray White
Online Video Profile – Laura Gregory DBR Property Financiers
Online Video Profile – Eddie McLean Harcourts Grenadier
To find out more about a video profile. Don’t hesitate to get in touch]]>
Struggling for inspiration we consulted with Getty Images library and found a vector image that looked very similar to our Grid City buildings that we use in our logo. See image below.
So we downloaded the pink and baby blue city and Matt got to work.
A colour change, a sun, some broadcasting signals and a Grid City sign transformed the image. See below.
From here this we then made 6 different videos transitioning from morning through the next morning. You can view an example of our night animation below. For this one Matt used After Effects to add some flashing lights to the side of the building, some lights to the aeroplanes along with sound effects – techno music, cicadas and the sound of the moon snoring.
It just shows you what you can turn a pink city into]]>
How do you get more business?
Trying to find a new customer? Trying to find a way to unlock sales without committing to expensive marketing programmes? The answer lies in your very own customer and business contacts database. This database is your businesses most valuable resource.
Many businesses fail to maintain contact databases or if so contact their customers is a haphazard and irregular manner meaning their efforts are lost in the “noise” of modern life. Databases are untapped goldmines and the Grid City team can show you many simple and cost effective ways for you to market your products and services to your database.
The most popular method that we assist our customers here at Grid City with is email marketing. We know only too well that tasks likes this can be put on the back burner which is why we manage email mail outs on behalf of our clients from the initial design through to the compilation and distribution. Some clients provide us with content, some clients employ us to find the content but most importantly if its set in the diary to go out at a certain date we make that happen.
Below are some tips to help you if you are thinking about email marketing or already doing so;
Storage of Contacts
• You don’t need any fancy programs, Microsoft Excel or Microsoft Outlook provides a great platform store your contacts details.
• If you are starting out, it is important that you split first names, last names and email addresses into separate columns or fields.
It’s Not Just About Sales
• Use your newsletter to ask questions of your customers, find new staff, or even use them as a test before you take a product to the market.
Entice With an Offer
• If you make an offer – make it a good offer.
• Also include a call to action!
• Research indicates that it takes that most people have to receive a minimum of 7 marketing pieces from a company before they will even consider buying from them. Don’t expect that you will get instant results. You need to send your email newsletter at least once a month for 6 months to see results.
Email marketing with Grid City
Below is a set by step guide to our email marketing process.
We design you an email newsletter template
We set you up with an account that you will be able to login to and update your contacts.
We design you an online form which we will send you each month prompting you for content.
You will provide us with a CSV or Excel file of your database which we will upload for you.
When you are ready to send out
Upon receipt on your order form we will compile your email newsletter. We will check that all the links are working, images are in the right place and run a test through both Mac Mail and Explorer to check that it displays correctly.
Upon confirmation we will distribute your email newsletter to your database.
Once the email newsletter has been sent, you can login and see who has read your campaign, how many times they have viewed your campaign and what links for files they have clicked on.
Don’t be afraid to contact your clients using email marketing! Informative information is not spam! If you users do not want to receive the email newsletter they can unsubscribe using the unsubscribe button at the bottom of the newsletter. And finally … don’t remove anyone off your database unless they specifically asked to be removed. Contacts are gold.
Until next time
Firstly it might help if you watch the finished product below
To create that I used
Side note: It doesn’t matter what ‘CS’ is used, just like it doesn’t matter what car you drive or what hand bag you wear. It still gets you from A to B and carries all your stuff.
I was given
With those things, I went into Photoshop a did this:
Done! Simple. I now have an opening to the video “welcome to project manager.com” Now to ‘build from there’.
This looks cool right? But it’s a bit flat, not a lot of oomph! At this point I have no idea what I want to improve. So I find things I already like and see if I can make them a wee bit better. I like the gradient background, so Ill change the blues and see what happens. I like the icons so I make them look a little bit more three-dimensional by adding reflections. And I like the logo how it is. In retrospect my design decisions are primarily based around the logo, it’s one of the most important references I have for my overall style decisions. After those few changes are made this is what I’m left with.
I’m stuck now; I want a busier background because I know it’s the only part of the animation viewers will see for the entire time. At this point I need some inspiration. Luckily I’m really awesome and came up with an idea in minutes. What did I use for inspiration?
The default desktop from Mac OS X Tiger
So my current design plus inspiration equals
It may not look like much of an improvement but trust me, some flowy lines that move ever so slightly can make the difference between the client saying “I don’t like it” to “great, send me the invoice”.
Now all that’s left is to animate. I’m not going to go into detail but instead give a few pieces of advice. If you view the opening of the video all you will see is the logo and icons moving on and off screen, nothing special, some scale and position key frames is all. The trick is to make it flow, and keep the timing right. I can’t teach timing but I can let you in on a couple of secrets to help make it flow.
I am going to assume you know a little bit about After Effects, and know what key frames are used for. A setting I use regularly when animating key frames is the ‘Easy Ease’ option. This means to ease speed coming both into and out of selected key frames. So rather than a constant speed from one key frame to another the change begins slowly, speeds up and then slows before stopping at the second key frame. This provides a more smooth transition. You can make your key frames Easy Ease by selecting them and hitting ‘F9’ or by right clicking and under ‘key frame assistant’ hit ‘Easy Ease’
Lets say you are animating that bar graph icon on the right. You want it to enter the screen and stop where it is, you know easy ease key frames will help it look better, but what else could you do? Make it more realistic maybe? Find a ruler. Hold it still. Now give it a flick like your trying to catapult something at the guy or girl you didn’t like very much at school. See how it doesn’t just go from one point to the other? But it flexes many times before coming to a stop. Try and incorporate that kind of realism when animating. I’ve provided two examples here. The first using easy ease key frames as well as the ‘realism’ technique and the second with standard A to B key frames. You can decide which flows best.
Small things make all the difference]]>