Real estate video has been getting a whole lot of attention lately. As it should. From new real estate awards to marketing influencer lists, we anticipate 2018 will see way more real estate agents, teams, and brokerages stepping up their video game. Especially because, while video has been key to marketing homes for sometime, shining examples of brand storytelling in real estate have been few and far between. But a few are starting to emerge. We believe this is one of those examples.
When we started designing a new website for one of South Delta’s leading real estate teams, dynamic real estate duo Trish & Teri, we already knew “hero videos” were key to driving engagement. And as we were building, we hit upon an idea for a brand video that perfectly reinforced the creative concept for their site.
Inspired by a video from the UK bank, Orange, we pitched Trish & Teri the filming of an interconnected series of portrait shots that would showcase both their teamwork and their strengths in a quirky, accessible manner that matched their personalities.
Trish & Teri were all in. And so were we.
Step One: Storyboarding
Our video’s frames would contain both individual and interactive stories. We’d have two agents, two screens—and one clear message of a strong team.
This process started with a team brainstorm.
We created broad categories for what the video needed to say and listed everything we could think of within them. From there we funneled our ideas into a more refined list. An outside observer might see a mess of words, but we knew we had the ingredients to show the specialist areas and terrific personalities of Trish and Teri. From there, Angela (graphic design) and Yu (videography) short-listed the ideas that best lent themselves to film and built a detailed storyboard. We shared the storyboard with Trish & Teri and then refined it.
Step Two: Production Planning
Our clients are very busy agents that couldn’t give us the days’ worth of time that a typical commercial like this normally requires. We had to work smarter—not longer.
Yu pre-reviewed every shot, tested camera placement and lighting in the room we’d be shooting in, and then reverse-engineered every shot. Next, we had to sleuth out the most effective arrangement for each shot and story. We wouldn’t be shooting in order of our storyboard. Nope. We rearranged our shot list for maximum efficiency.
We also had to be a prop department, a costume department and a film crew. Working in close coordination with Trish and Teri, we developed a list of everything we wanted to show in the video—awards and signs and market fruits, oh my. If we didn’t have what we needed, we bought it. If we couldn’t buy it, we made it.
Step Three: The Shoot
The day arrived, as did Trish and Teri, bringing with them an SUV packed with props. We had all hands on deck. Literally, for some shots. And let us tell you, Trish and Teri are champion handshakers!
Packed in a relatively small room, spotlights glowing, we worked as a team to keep everything running smoothly. Supporting props, passing oranges and offering scene direction where needed. In the film world, five hours is barely a blink. We had a lot of footage to cover in a short amount of time. Yu kept his eye to the camera, while Angela and Deana (writer) kept their eyes on the shot list.
When things didn’t work—or didn’t feel natural to Trish and Teri—we adapted. We knew that every sequence we’d mapped out might not work, which is why we had alternate approaches and ideas in our collective backpocket—ready to be pulled out when needed. This is also why we’d planned to shoot more footage than we strictly needed. Why make only one video, when we can use the lighting to also get expert headshots and extra footage for social media campaigns?
Step Four: Editing
Wow, five hours of shooting creates a lot of footage to edit. First, we logged. Next we chose a fitting music track. Then Yu began cutting, and he kept cutting until we had the perfect sequence of shots and narrative flow.
The finished video exceeded not only Trish & Teri’s expectations, but ours as well—and let us tell you, we’re judgy humans. The split-screen proved to be the perfect way to showcase Trish and Teri’s unique, team-based brand—an ideal platform for the power of two. And nestled neatly at the top of their shiny new website, it’s now impossible to imagine the site without it. Go ahead, see for yourself.