I recently made my 300th video to put on my Valencia Property YouTube channel. There are actually 326 but some are private for specific clients or unlisted as they were only for friends or family. However 300 public videos is a lot.
The channel started in 2007 but not much happened in the first two years because there were bandwidth, equipment and time issues. It really took off a couple of years ago once I got myself a Mac which made making videos not only easier but actually enjoyable.
Here is the video and underneath you can see the tips.
So what have I learnt in the time since 2009 when I started making them a bit more regularly?
1) The best videos are not going to be the ones you think are the best. I have a video with over 3000 views about my Sunday morning visit to a fruit shop.
2) Most commenters on YouTube are spammers and a waste of energy. Only engage with those that put something intelligent there.
3) YouTube can help to drive traffic to your site but don’t count on it. The descriptions used to be at the side of the videos and clickthroughs were much higher then. Don’t worry though as a repository for backlinks it works well, especially if you backlinking the individual videos and get them pagerank too!
4) You don’t need thousands of raving fans to get your message across. Make your channel focussed for those who want to know more about your subject and build your followers slowly.
5) If you plan on making a series of 100 videos about a subject to be released over a period of 100 days make sure you haven’t got a road trip across France planned at the same time. It makes things complicated.
6) Sound is king. The images matter of course but if your sound is low or affected by background noise or whatever, people will click off. Make sure to use a Microphone if at all possible (Ninja trick, use the iPhone as your sound recorder and sync with your video using a clap to start off! Thanks Ed!)
7) Longer is not necessarily better. The average attention span on YouTube is around 2 minutes max so make sure that you grab the attention early and don’t let it go.
It is possible to sell a property simply by making a video (And even without having the property in the video itself!) and the greatest ROI comes on videos that have nothing to do with trying to sell a property directly.
9) Video builds trust as long as you don’t mind putting yourself out there and placing your mug in front of the camera. It shows you have nothing to hide. Use it and get over yourself if you have issues.
10) You don’t need to be a technical whizz kid to put together decent videos and you don’t need stunning equipment. I have two video cameras, the Kodak Zi8 and the iPhone. I have a 15 Euro mic that plugs into the Zi8 and I have iMovie on the Mac for editing. (I can now do that on the iPhone if I want) I have Screenflow for Mac but only use it for Screencasts although a friend of mine swears by it for all video editing.
So that’s it, I learnt some other things like if you put a camera on an uneven surface Murphy’s Law states that the higher it is the more likely it is to fall, that when you do the perfect intro and speech into the camera invariably the Mic isn’t plugged in correctly (And you only find this out when you get home) and that at times you will not notice the nutter in the background until you try to edit them out. But all in all the lessons are good.
And one last thing, do not try to do Martin Scorcese. People want information presented clearly and concisely. If you get arty you get clicked off. However this video is still my favorite, Spain by Tom Robinson with pictures of Valencia and my family.