With stay-at-home orders in place through the end of May, many of us are adapting to a “new normal,” which includes new video communications tools and technologies to help us do business.
In a world that now consists of webinars, Zooms, Hangouts, FaceTimes and virtual happy hours, there are dozens of resources available to help you craft better videos and remain a resource to your clients and colleagues.
Although we hope to be having in-person meetings again soon, we predict that video communication is here to stay. For busy real estate agents and attorneys, video communications gives you the opportunity to have important face-to-face connections without leaving your home or office.
We’ve pulled together a few tips you should consider before hitting ‘record.’
Practice Makes Perfect
You’re a real estate agent or a real estate attorney, not a reality TV star, right? So, remember that nobody expects your videos to be professional quality, especially not in the beginning!
While you want to come across as polished and professional, no one expects you to be a pro videographer or editor.
If you want to gain video practice with minimal exposure, start by recording desktop videos in your email browser with BombBomb. You can make quick, personal greeting videos for your clients and send them individually. Keep them super short and as you warm up to the camera you can explore longer form videos.
Another low-impact way to get used to recording video is on Instagram stories. If you are using Instagram to promote your brand or business, you can post short, 15-60 second videos recorded right in the app. Instagram stories live on your profile and disappear after 24 hours so it is a great place to get some video practice in.
If you’re really camera shy, record a few practice videos on your phone to get yourself in the groove before you share them out. Remember, everyone starts somewhere!
Upgrade Your Equipment
We have asked our videographer friends to tell us what video communications equipment is most necessary for at-home recording and you might be surprised by the number one thing the pros think you need: a smartphone.
The phone on your camera, especially if it is one of the newer model iPhones, is probably going to be better than the webcam on your computer, so instead of buying a fancy webcam, you can buy a desktop tripod from Amazon for around $20 and arrange your phone on your desk.
The trick? Use the “front-facing” camera instead of selfie mode. It might take a little tweaking to get the set-up right, but the result will be a clearer video than you can record on your desktop.
If you are going to invest in any equipment for at-home videography, grab the tripod and an inexpensive microphone that will connect to your computer or phone via USB. Upgrading the quality of your audio presentations will lend to that more professional and polished vibe.
Keep an Eye on the Time
On social media, people tend to have short attention spans. Generally, the rule of thumb when creating video is, “less is more.”
In fact, Instagram even limits the length of your videos by only allowing you to post videos under 60 seconds to your feed, under two minutes to Instagram stories, and under 10 minutes to IGTV. Although Facebook does not necessarily prohibit you from posting longer videos, try to keep them under two minutes as a best practice.
If you are creating longer form video content like podcasts, webinars, or Zoom chats, you can run a little longer — think 30-45 minutes. Because those followers are usually opting in or signing up to participate in the content, you’ll generally have a more engaged audience.
Know Your Audience
As with any kind of content, you should think about your audience and what kind of information they would like to receive. Right now, people are looking for content that is informative and educational, but also supportive and hopeful. If a message doesn’t resonate with your audience on a particular platform, use that as constructive feedback to inform your next video.
Overall, this is a great time to be dabbling in video communications. Whether you are thinking about getting on Instagram to make short, behind-the-scenes videos or using Zoom to share your expertise through a series of webcasts, there are plenty of tools and resources out there to get you started.