Real Estate Video:  3 Ways to Overcome Being Camera Shy

In a sales meeting with my team at RE/MAX, everybody says they’re stoked to do some real estate videos.  The team is amped up: “Hell yeah I’ll get in front of the camera!  What day?  Let’s do it!”  Cut to filming day, and my team of boisterous, outgoing Realtors quickly turns into a team of sullen, quiet, sit-in-the-corner-and-mumble types.  What is it about a video camera that turns everyone to stone?

I don’t know the exact answer to that, but I think I’ve found some really good ways to quell it.  I hope these suggestions will help you, because real estate video is the future of our industry, as well as other relationship-based businesses like financial advising.  Your clients want to get to know you, and video is a great way to communicate with them more personally than just in written form.  So, here are the best three ways that I’ve come up with to overcome your aversion to video cameras, so you can get on with making real estate video that rocks!

On a side note, I’m going to skip anything physical, because I think that we should all be comfortable in our own skins.  It’s been said that the camera adds 10 pounds, but that’s a lie.  If you’re unhappy with your body image, then do what you need to do to become happy with it, whether that means you need physical or mental tweaking.  Be yourself, embrace who you are, and know that video cameras don’t lie.  The resulting video is an accurate representation of you as a person; your face, your voice, your overall vibe.  People like you already, so don’t be afraid to show that to the camera.

The first way to get over being camera shy is to get used to being in front of the camera.  Get in the habit of filming yourself daily.  I know, that sounds crazy… take selfie videos while you’re in the car, or waiting in line at the drive-thru.  Set up a tripod in your living room and just talk to it like it’s a person.  The more you get used to acting normal around a video camera, the more naturally your speech will flow and you won’t be so stiff every time you hit the ‘record’ button.

This next one may be a little controversial, but it’s just the honest truth from my experience in filming salespeople doing real estate video.  The next way to get over being camera shy is booze.  Yep, you got it; get a little liquored up.  I’m not saying get wasted or have slurred speech… that’s not the image of yourself that you want portrayed to the public and your potential clients.  But just one shot of alcohol can loosen you up enough for you to be yourself in front of your camera.  On a side note, can anybody spot the bottles of beer in the background of this team video I did recently?  Oops…

My last-ditch effort to get people to get more comfortable in front of the camera is this:  don’t be afraid to make mistakes.  My first day of filming with local Realtor and good friend Carmelo Nuccio, he would shut down completely when he stumbled on a word.  The truth is that mistakes are natural, and unless you just dropped an f-bomb in the middle of your take, just keep talking.  The outcome of not fearing your mistakes is 1) the mistake you made might not be as bad as you thought, so the video is still useable, 2) after that one mistake, the rest of the shot might be perfect, so with some smooth editing you can still save the footage, and 3) when you’re not focused on NOT making a mistake, you will make less mistakes.  Read that again.  It’s 100% true, I’ve tested it!  When I sit salespeople in front of my camera to make some real estate videos, I often tell them “let’s take some practice runs” but I record them practicing, just in case.  8 times out of 10, the final product came from the practice run.  When you’re in front of the camera, and you start feeling that pressure to perform, mistakes are imminent.  Don’t let a mistake shut down your whole production.

I hope this information was helpful to some future YouTube stars out there!  Be sure to check out some of the real estate videos that I have worked on with my clients.  They’re all getting better and better, every time we shoot a video!  If you want even more information, here’s a blog I wrote recently on real estate video marketing.  It gives comprehensive step-by-step instructions for making great real estate video.

Brittany Gilbert

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