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Viral Video | Why It Ain’t Worth Much In Real Estate Marketing

So, I’m at home editing a cinematic HD real estate tour for a client when I get an email forwarded from another client. It’s a video marketing class being taught here in Phoenix, Arizona; of course I have to check it out.

Real estate video marketing is to today what “REO” was in 2007, “Short Sale” was in 2009 and “Green” was a few years ago – EVERYONE wants to talk about real estate video marketing so vendors (title, mortgage, appraiser, home warranty, real estate brokerages)  want to teach about it. Why? To get in front of you, their target audience.

But there is a problem.

Very few real estate professionals are qualified to teach about real estate video. Why? Because there is no theory in real estate video, you can only teach on something IF you do it and very few real estate professionals do real estate video and even fewer do it well. Combine this with the fact that 80% of what we say is communicated through our body language and you can start to see why you better know your stuff – it’s not hard to pick out the poser in real estate video marketing. Thankfully, this particular class is being taught by someone that knows a thing or two about a thing or two.


As I looked over what was going to be covered in the class I saw it, the gimmick. We all have one. For some real estate agents it’s their “21 point marketing system” when in reality, it’s a THREE point marketing system, you may have heard of it, it’s called – M. L. S.

This gimmick was titled “How To Go Viral”.

Now, in this guys defense, maybe he doesn’t know that “going viral” is a gimmick or that it ain’t worth much in real estate marketing, but I do. And now, so shall you.

NO $$ In VIRAL Videos

When you think of viral videos you may think of YouTube sensations like “The Evolution Of Dance” or “The Old Spice Guy” or “Charlie Bit My Finger”. These videos have hundreds of MILLIONS of views on them. You have seen them, you have shared them. They are hysterical. Unlike most viral videos these viral videos actually made $$ for their creators in the form of advertising dollars. The creators made money because YouTube sold advertising space on and next to these viral videos. These are few and far between, the fact is 99.9% of viral videos make no money for their creators.


The reason is pretty simple.

Viral videos are a MISTAKE

Viral videos are a mistake. There is no rhyme or reason as to why viral videos occur. There are companies established to analyze what makes us likely to share a video, some promise you can go viral too! Can You? Probably not. Viral videos usually incorporate something shocking or funny or controversial or goofy or unexpected in them, this is what makes them unique, this is what makes them share worthy.

Viral videos are an ACCIDENT

Viral videos are an accident. Think about it. If there was a way to make a video go viral, wouldn’t everyone have one? Wouldn’t President Obama have one? Your PTA? Your kids school? Your church? The bakery down the road? Your daughter? Son? Of course! Yes, if it was that easy, if there was a science to viral videos EVERYONE would have a viral video. Do they? No. Why? Because viral video is an accident.

But why is viral video not worth much in real estate marketing?

Where do you sell real estate? Atlanta? LA? Miami? Minnesota? Phoenix? Question: does it help you if someone looking for a home in Atlanta watches your video if you sell homes in Phoenix? Probably not.

Quality over QUANTITY

I know real estate agents that have 1000 friends on facebook. Sounds impressive huh? Until you realize 950 of them are other real estate agents. Having other real estate agents on your facebook page likely won’t help you. In reality, they are your competitors. I would rather have 50 people on my facebook page that are likely to watch and share my videos than 1000 of them that couldn’t give a damn.


Same thing with real estate video. NOT ALL VIEWS ARE CREATED THE SAME. Again, I would rather have 5 views on a video where those 5 people searched out and cared what I was talking about than 1,000,000 views by consumers that found me by accident. Marketing is all about a TARGET AUDIENCE, viral videos don’t have one

Sure,  you can make the argument “there is no such thing as bad marketing” and while this may be true, marketing that is not placed in front of your ideal client is a waste. This kind of marketing ain’t worth much in real estate video though as we deal with niches in real estate.


Viral video is an accident. Viral video is a mistake. If you are going to use video in your real estate business, and you certainly should by the way,  you should be creating video content that consumers not only would search out but also watch. This content should be created for a specific niche, “Val Vista Lakes”, “Buying a home in Phoenix”, “Phoenix homes for sea near Intel” etc. Why you are the best agent in the world is worthless. Why your brokerage is better than another is a waste.  There are so many benefits to using video in real estate, but that video needs to ultimately be  of value for the consumer. Anything else is a waste.

I Want To Learn More About Marketing With Video

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Hi I'm Stephen Garner, I'm just a guy in the title industry {in Phoenix} trying to change how real estate agents market themselves and their services. To that end, I teach my clients HOW TO leverage sales technologies like WordPress, Content, Video, Camtasia, Final Cut X, iMovie and indexable IDX solutions to convey value and help your ideal client find you online when they are most interested in learning about you and your services. I work for escrows. Hire me!

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