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How Do You Real Estate Videographers Deliver Video?

Published: 06/07/2016

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VideoMike who is just starting out asks about delivering video:

I'm shooting both stills and video drone photography now for local agents. I'm having a few challenges on what resolution to deliver to the agents for their MLS listing, Especially VIDEO! What is everyone using for video format (mpeg4, avi, mov etc) and the resolution (HD, 720P etc).

The part of your question about delivering stills photos, we have covered in the past.

The part of your question about video we've not explicitly talked about. Here is my take on the question. The red below are updates  on 7/6/2016 based on Fred Light's comments:

  1. I would never send clients a straight video file unless they specifically ask for it. Even then, it's probably not a good idea unless you know that they are very technical savvy. 95% of agents won't have a clue what to do with it. It will just create confusion and it's not what your competitors are providing. As Fred points out in his comment below giving a mp4 file to your client is essential for clients to upload to FaceBook which is a very important venue for real estate marketing videos.
  2. At a minimum, I would upload video to YouTube and deliver a link to the client. Having the video on YouTube provides good exposure for the video. Many video providers upload videos to multiple hosting sites just to maximize exposure.
  3. Many video providers use Vimeo or iPlayerHD because they provide a clean professional interface to video that agents can embed or link to from their sites. Beware of using Vimeo for real estate video. Vimeo terms of service say real estate video must be private.
  4. Nowadays HD (1920 x 1080) is standard and if you upload that resolution to YouTube, Vimeo or iPlayerHD then usually viewers can select which resolution they want to view. Some are starting to shoot in 4K.

Does anyone else have advice for Mike on this question?

Larry Lohrman

13 comments on “How Do You Real Estate Videographers Deliver Video?”

  1. I have been using a business video hosting service. It can be made to be IDX compliant. I just today though, started looking at Vimeo for future projects. I also use Tourbuzz because a video slide show can be auto exported to you clients Youtube channel... Keep in mind if you use you will have to make a few changes to the Viewer (they can help with this) to make it IDX compliant.... If you need a sample for them to go by have them look at my account.

    here is a sample of an unbranded video slide show...

    you can ignore the fact that it is not a true real estate video... just look at the player and how it has no links or clickable icons to get out of the video... It just plays the video in a basic viewer mode. I upload 1080p mp4 seems to work fine... If someone wants to download the video right from the player they can.

  2. Most video editing software (certainly Adobe Premier) give a choice of presets for exporting so it's pre-encoded for YouTube, Vimeo, etc. This is preferable as it means those sites don't need to re-encode it, though a general HD mp4 of good quality is still fine for various platforms. 🙂
    I think Vimeo don't allow real estate videos though..?

  3. I have not yet started shooting video, but will be working on it very soon.
    I am however shooting many properties with a Typhoon 500 4k camera, and setting my camera to shoot RAW DNG stills. Also on this drone, I started shooting all manual, as sometimes my screen goes so dark, I can't see what I'm shooting.
    Not working with video yet, but my question is this, If I set my camera to shoot in their default 4K Video instead of their DNG RAW still settings, can I later extract a hi-quality still image from a 4k video file or frame?

  4. We used for a few years. A for real estate video hosting site. Was not happy with our search results. We are now mostly hosted on youtube and we get better search results. It's all about eyeballs on the video

  5. I export 1920 to Vimeo mainly because I can easily make a completely unbranded version for the client linked by a custom tinyurl as well as a regular embedded version. I have used iPlayerHD a few times, but I liked the Vimeo interface better.

    To answer the earlier question about real estate videos on Viimeo, I think you can't do a commercial video unless you use a Pro account, which I use.

  6. I have to put a vote in for

    You upload pretty much any format in any resolution, they optimize it and present it in a nice, clean player. You send your clients a link to the video and they can download it directly from the player with a simple click if they want the native file. They also have a feature called "FrameCatch" where the viewer can grab any still frame from the video. My clients use that feature all the time. They provide tons of options for embedding. You can password protect videos, put an email capture in the video, or a call to action at the end of a video (like a website link). The company's customer service is second to none. I've gotten responses directly from the owner at all odd hours of the night. I think I'm grandfathered on some annual plan, but even at $19/month, iPlayerHD is worth it's weight in gold to my business.

  7. I will also give a big plug to iPlayerHD. I've been with them since the beginning, and they have been FLAWLESS. Incredible customer service (rarely needed BTW), and never, ever an issue. No, it's not free. But free is not always good. Yes, I had issues with Vimeo. Not once, but twice, and I would STRONGLY suggest that unless you totally understand that your videos must be made PRIVATE I would not use them under any circumstances. They will cut you off at the knees, remove your videos and THEN notify you.

    As far as sending off the video file, I send every client an .mp4 file of their branded video so they can upload wherever they please. YouTube is free and definitely gets exposure (I have over 3M views and over 4,000 subscribers... and I have NO idea who watches this stuff there...or why!) But the #1 place for video online is not YouTube... it's Facebook. And in order for it to work well you must upload the actual video file to Facebook (not a LINK to YouTube, Vimeo or iPlayer). Facebook is the biggest secret in video and it's almost magic... it's THAT good. And if you pay to "boost" your listings, it's relatively inexpensive for tremendous coverage. Don't forget, Facebook has been sucking up YOUR data for a decade now, so you can target your audience in pretty incredible ways for little money.

  8. What Michael and Fred said! Youtube and IplayerHD are solid, Vimeo is not. Vimeo will backfire on you eventually and it's ugly.

    I'm happy to hear no one has mentioned DVD's! Progress.

  9. Busy yesterday and missed the topic, but very timely as just completed first full video. Previously, gained experience with simple clips within a Tourbuzz tour. Ruled out Wellcomemat as not designed for multi-client professional photographers/videographers hosting for their clients, but appears great for the individual realtor. Semi-ruled out YouTube as I might use it for a private draft review since it is free. Also, I describe it to Realtors as the "necessary evil" with their ads and pushed video. The last thing a Realtor wants is a pushed video of another Realtor talking about how great they are and to list with them, or a competing property pushed after they finished looking their property. However, I encourage them to upload the video to their personal YouTube account to both support Google searches (keywords critical) AND be one of those properties pushed.

    While I had a basic Vimeo account, signed up for the Pro to support commercial usage and didn't even last the 30 days before requesting a refund. Hardest part of the refund was finding out how as the front end notes the free trial, but the FAQ and site map fail to tell you how. Sent an email through "Contact" and was processed within 20 minutes. The biggest problem was that it seemed so convoluted as their focus is more on the professional sharing/learning model rather than client model then shoehorn RE in with the requirement that be "Private".

    Spent the extra $100 and went with iPlayerHD. What a breath of fresh air! They are set up for commercial videographer support with one area of focus on RE. I haven't used all of the features yet - issues with the current client and 2 Brokers on the same property (a rare/unheard of event) and their internal issues limits developing a RE web page(s)/link that combines video, written info, and stills, but I see the potential. Also had an extended discussion with Wes at iPlayerHD who is very responsive to input and gives excellent suggestions. Until I figure out how to otherwise, have to upload 2 versions - branded and unbranded, but any drafts prior to final got to YouTube (private/link access only). In addition to the links for MLS (or forwarding branded to prospects) also includes HTML iframe language for web site embedding, and the link to download which I encourage both for their personal archiving and uploading to their "Joe Realtor" account at YouTube to be pushed on others.

  10. What I have found that works best for me is using my Vimeo pro account to send private links to the Realtor/client to approve the video and suggest any changes and have not had any problems with them. Once they are happy I create a 1080HD .mov file which I deliver via dropbox for the client to upload to their own website, facebook etc

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