From 2016 to 2018, users watched a total of 64 million hours of home video tours on YouTube. That’s the equivalent of 7,300 years. Based on this staggering statistic, it’s not hard to see why so many REALTORS® are now turning to YouTube to market themselves and their listings. But making effective YouTube marketing videos is much harder than creating other types of content. Follow these tips to implement a successful real estate marketing strategy on YouTube:
Be Consistent With Branding
When it comes to real estate branding, consistency is key. You won’t have as much control over the design of your YouTube channel, but there are certain elements you can change to ensure your channel’s design matches your website’s design.
Start by uploading a branded banner and profile image on your channel’s homepage. The branding in these images should be consistent with the branding on your website’s homepage. You may want to consider including a headshot, your company name, your contact information, or photos from a recent listing in this banner image. Choose something that represents your company well.
Be sure to resize the images, too. YouTube recommends using a banner image that is 2,560 x 1,440 pixels and a profile image that is 800 x 800 pixels. If your images are not the right size, they might not display correctly on different devices.
Include Your Contact Information
Never assume that the people who are watching your videos know how to get in touch with you. Landing on your YouTube page might be their first interaction with your company. For this reason, it’s important to include your contact information so they know how to reach you.
Tell your audience how they can contact you via email and phone. You should also include links to your company’s Facebook, Twitter, and other social media accounts. Add a link to your website as well so they have an opportunity to learn more about your company. Provide all of this information in the “About” section on your YouTube channel.
Analyze the Competition
It doesn’t hurt to take a look at your competition before you start filming your first video. See what other REALTORS® in your area are doing on YouTube so you know what you need to do to make your videos stand out. Get inspired by REALTORS® in other markets, too.
As you watch these videos, make a list of things you like and don’t like about the content. For example, you might like the way another REALTOR® introduces viewers to the entire neighborhood rather than just the home itself. Make a note of this so you can remember to incorporate the same strategy in your videos.
Don’t forget to look at the engagement on your competitors’ videos. See which videos are getting the most views, likes, and comments. Then, use this information to guide your YouTube marketing strategy.
Determine What Type of Video You Want to Create
Now, it’s time to plan what type of content you want to create for your YouTube channel. Real estate marketing videos on YouTube typically fall into one of these categories:
- Home tours: Each home tour video takes viewers on a tour of one of your listings. These are promotional videos that are used to sell houses. This is the most popular type of real estate video on YouTube.
- Neighborhood guides: A neighborhood guide video is similar to a home tour video, but it showcases an entire community instead of a single home. This is a great way to introduce a neighborhood to buyers, especially those who are new to the area.
- Helpful tips: You can also create videos centered around helpful tips for buyers and sellers. Focus on different steps involved in the process of buying and listing a home. Explain what it means to get pre-approved, how to set a budget, what to consider when making an offer, and more.
Think about which videos you need to create to meet your goals. If you want to establish yourself as a real estate expert, helpful tip videos would be ideal. But if your goal is to sell as many listings as possible, prioritize home tour videos instead.
You can choose to focus on one type of video or create a healthy mix of all three types.
Optimize for Local SEO
Google search results often feature YouTube videos at the top, which is why optimizing your videos for local SEO is so important. Here’s what to do:
- Create a list of relevant local keywords. You can use SEMRush, Google Keyword Planner, or other SEO tools to research the best keywords to target.
- Incorporate targeted keywords in the video’s title. You should only use keywords that naturally fit into your title.
- Add keywords to your description. YouTube only displays the first few lines of your video’s description to viewers, so try to fit a few keywords into the beginning.
- Choose the right category. After the video has been uploaded, click on “Advanced Settings” to select a relevant category.
- Tag your video. You have the option of including tags when uploading your video. This is a great place to include keywords to improve your local SEO.
Add interactive cards to every video you upload on YouTube. A card is a visual notification that pops up on your video. It is used to direct viewers to perform a specific action.
For example, a card might direct users to watch other similar videos on your channel. Clicking on the card will redirect users to the recommended videos.
You can also include cards to direct users to visit your website or leave feedback on your video. Use this feature to direct users to look at your other listings or contact you to schedule a viewing of a home.
You can add up to five cards per video on YouTube. Because most cards direct users away from YouTube, it’s best to include them at the very end of your video. This way, your viewers will get an opportunity to watch every second of your video.
Choose the Right Thumbnail Image
YouTube allows you to choose what thumbnail image you want to appear for each of the videos uploaded to your channel. Choosing the right image is important since many users may decide whether or not they want to watch a video based on this thumbnail alone.
The thumbnail image should accurately represent the content of the video. The quality of the image matters, too. Users may not click on a video with a blurry or pixelated thumbnail image.
When choosing a thumbnail image, make sure it doesn’t clash with the other thumbnail images on your channel. Having some degree of cohesion among all of your thumbnail images will make your YouTube channel look more professional.
Your videos should appeal to all potential clients, including those who are hearing impaired or don’t speak English. To reach this segment of your target audience, include subtitles on your YouTube videos.
There are several ways to add captions to your YouTube videos. The first option is manually creating and uploading a transcript file to YouTube. If there isn’t a lot of dialogue in the video, it may not take long to create your own transcript file. But if not, the second option is using a third party tool or service to create video transcripts. Some of the top third party tools and services include:
- 3Play Media
The cost of these third party services can vary, so ask for a quote before you outsource this task to one of these transcript providers.
Don’t wait for people to find your videos on their own. Get more views by promoting your videos on your website and social media accounts. Every time you upload a new video, post a link to it on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and other social media sites. You can even include these videos in your email marketing campaigns.
Add your videos to your website, too. To do this, select the “Share” button on your YouTube video. This should pull up the HTML code, which you will need to copy and paste in your website’s code. Follow these instructions so you can embed your videos into blog posts, listings, and other pages on your website.
YouTube provides creators with a wealth of data on their videos. Here are some of the key metrics to keep an eye on:
- Impressions & watch time: This section will tell you how many times your video’s thumbnail was shown to YouTube users, how many times users clicked on the thumbnail to watch your video, and how much time they spent watching it.
- YouTube search: See how many people watched your video after using the YouTube search feature. This section will also tell you what users were searching for before they arrived on your channel.
- Traffic source type: See what sources drove traffic to your videos. This will provide you with a list of sources within YouTube (recommended videos, playlists, etc) and external sources.
- Audience retention: This section will tell you how many viewers watched your video all the way to the end. If viewers did not stick around for the whole video, you will be able to see exactly where they stopped watching.
Get in the habit of checking this data on a regular basis so you can see what’s working and what’s not. Then, make adjustments to your current video marketing strategy based on these results.