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The Seven Best Video Lighting Tips

The Seven Best Video Lighting Tips

LIGHTS. CAMERA. ACTION. There’s a reason lights come first in this familiar Hollywood phrase. Because it can make or break your finished product. And we’ve got the seven best video lighting tips to get you on the right track.

The 7 Best Video Lighting Tips

Finding the best lighting for your videos can be a challenging task. Maybe your shot isn’t bright enough. Or it’s too bright. Sometimes the color temperature isn’t right, or the shadows are so harsh that you can barely decipher what is what.

You want your prospects and customers to really absorb what you have to say. Especially if you’re sending them a personal video email.

Knowing how to get good lighting for videos will keep your content looking sharp and professional. And you don’t need all the fancy lighting equipment you’ll see in a professional shoot.

There are simple, effective ways to get good lighting in videos, without hauling around a ton of gear. Watch the following video, or read the post below for seven DIY video lighting tips for video:

1. Use Windows During the Day For Best Indoor Video Lighting

Windows are your best friend when finding the best lighting for videos indoors during the daytime. And they should ideally be in the shadows to give you a soft, diffused light.

Make sure the window is generally in front of you when filming. This will give you the balanced lighting you’re looking for.

If you’re filming a video near a window flooded by sunlight, the harsh lighting will create dark shadows on your face.

You’ll also likely find yourself squinting on camera. That can be distracting to your viewers or video email recipients.

2. Turn On A Lamp at Night For the Perfect Lighting Indoors

The best lighting while filming indoors at night will come from a lamp. It should be bright but also diffused.

Your lamp doesn’t need to be a professional one. It can even be a simple, inexpensive desktop one.

But ensuring it gives off a diffused light is key. This will give you the soft video lighting you need with minimal shadows.

It’s also important to place the lamp even or just above your head. If it’s too far in direction, shadows will start to show on your face.

Bonus Tip: If you’re filming personal videos with your phone, a ring light is a great piece of video lighting equipment. It’ll give you the perfect lighting that really accents your face in a balanced way.

3. Seek Shade When Filming Outdoors in the Sun for the Best Video Lighting

When recording videos outdoors in the sun, it’s important to avoid harsh lighting. Look for spots in the shade to shoot your videos.

outdoor lighting, harsh lighting

Steer clear of direct sunlight that will cause overwhelming shadows on your face and squinting.

This will not be an issue on cloudy days, as you’ll have great, diffused video lighting to work with.

4. If You’re Recording Outside at Night, Find a Street Lamp

Shooting your personal videos outdoors at night can be tricky. But when your business depends on responsiveness, sometimes you’ll have to do it.

One of the best lighting tips for video in this situation is to use a street lamp. When you do this, don’t go too far underneath the lamp.

This will likely cause long shadows down your face. So, your viewer or video email recipient won’t be able to see your eyes. And how can you build trust with them if there’s no eye contact?

5. How to Set Up Lighting for Video at Your Desk…

The best lighting setup for video at your desk will depend on a variety of factors:

• If you have a window near your desk…that should give you the good lighting you need for your personal video. Just make sure there’s no harsh lighting coming through.
• If you don’t have a good source of natural light at your desk…a lamp will give you great LED lighting for video.

• If you’re recording your videos with a webcam…we recommend Logitech. The awesome thing about Logitech’s webcams is that they don’t need a lot of light to capture a clear image. See the gear review video below to find out more…

6. Avoid Mixed Video Lighting

It’s a good idea to try to avoid an overwhelming amount of mixed video lighting. This is when you have competing color temperatures in your shot.

So, if you have a lamp producing a warm tungsten light, while also receiving cooler light from a window – you’re going to get an odd light combination on your face.

The mixed lighting can be rough on your camera sensor, as it’s trying to auto white balance with the contrasting lighting. Depending on how the sensor white balances, you can end up very warm and yellow shots or very pale and blue ones.

If your camera is struggling with the different color temperatures, turn off the lamp and stick with natural lighting.

7. Don’t Go Overboard with Backlight

Backlight is a very artistic and cinematic filming technique. But it’s not needed for simple video.

If you’re using a webcam to record your videos, it will probably have auto exposure. So, if there’s too much backlight, your camera will set the exposure to the light behind you. And your face is going to be left in the shadows.

lighting tips for video, backlight

For more helpful tips from our partners at BombBomb, check out their blog!

Make Video Email One Of Your Top Sales Automation Tools in 2020

Make Video Email One Of Your Top Sales Automation Tools in 2020

In sales, time is of the essence in order to meet quotas. But it can also take a lot of time for your sales team to build relationships with prospects to close these deals. While there are plenty of helpful sales automation tools out there to speed up the process, there’s one that helps them get face-to-face with potential customers quicker, and more efficiently – and that’s video email.

Because as nice as it would be to meet in person with prospects to really make that connection, there’s just not enough hours in the day to do that. Video, however, allows your team members to do this in a scalable and personal way.

While we understand why incorporating new technology like video into your sales process might seem like a time-consuming undertaking, it truly isn’t. Because instead of struggling to set in-person meetings or getting people to listen to what your sales professionals have to say on the phone, your team is getting their message across in an authentic way via prerecorded video emails. And they’re accomplishing this without ever having to leave the office, dedicating hours to cold calling, or spending time drafting intricate text-only emails that can get lost in translation.

Video is quicker (and more effective) throughout the sales process. And you can create endless evergreen (pre-recorded videos that can be sent to multiple recipients) content that is still personal to connect with prospects in meaningful ways. We’ve listed four times that video will help save your team time below and why you should make it one of your top sales automation tools in 2020:

Cold Lead Outreach

It’s hard enough to get email opens, let alone replies, when people are swarmed with prospecting emails daily. In order to be successful with cold lead outreach, your team members need to set themselves apart from the competition.

They can do this faster by creating pre-recorded cold lead outreach response videos tailored to their buyer personas. Because, let’s face it, a clever subject line and text alone doesn’t cut it anymore. To really keep recipients engaged, something in your team’s emails has to catch their attention and draw them in.

By bringing a face to the forefront of your messaging with video, it differentiates your salespeople from the rest of the pack. And it’s more effective because it’s harder to ignore a real human in your inbox who is willing to take the time to get to know you and send you a personal message.

So, instead of your team spending the bulk of their time attempting to craft the perfect cold prospecting email, have them record everything they were going to say in a simple video – adding that personal touch that helps prospects really connect with what they have to say.

What to include:

  • A personal touch
  • An acknowledgement of the recipient’s pain points, or obstacles getting in the way of their success.
  • An explanation of how your product or service will help them overcome these hurdles.
  • The benefits they’ll see from using your product or service.
  • A call-to-action.

In the video below, Jonathan, one of our account executives, conducts a cold outreach effort with prospects in which he showcases his knowledge of a common pain point in their industry (in this case, cold outreach email engagement challenges), and how video will help them see results.

 

He uses the screen recorder video email feature to immediately present how the product will work for the recipients’ companies and showcase its ease of use. So, he’s not just explaining what BombBomb does, he’s showing them how it works in real time for their businesses.

Automated Lead Response

It’s no secret that sales teams need to act fast in responding to a lead. In fact, the Harvard Business Review indicates that in a study involving 29 B2C and 13 B2B businesses in the U.S., those that responded to prospective clients within an hour of their inquiry were almost “seven times as likely to qualify the lead as those that tried to contact the customer even an hour later – and more than 60 times as likely as companies that waited 24 hours or longer.”

What makes video email such a great, time-saving sales automation tool is that you can record evergreen lead response videos in a short amount of time, and set them up to send as soon as people request more information.

All it takes is setting aside a little bit of time to record evergreen introductory videos. Once that’s done, your team will have video content that can be used as a means of response for every inquiry. Instead of having to respond to each lead personally with a typed out email, the automated video email does the work for them – while still coming across as genuine.

What to include:

  • An intriguing animated preview that grabs the attention of recipients – whether that be a cool background with family photos or posters of your interests, or the movement of you walking around in your neighborhood. The whole point is to get your leads to press play.
  • An introduction of who you are, what your company does and what it offers that other companies don’t.
  • Address next steps to come in the process.
  • A call-to-action, which in this case can be a request for questions, or a meeting to discuss things further.

The following clip is a video that mortgage broker and loan officer Chris’ leads receive when they submit a request to learn more via Zillow or Trulia about his mortgage services…

 

All it took was a few minutes of his time to create a video lead response that will not only give prospects the immediate response they’re looking for, but also address them in an authentic way that builds trust and makes them want to work with him.

An important thing to note is that if you and your team want to reach out to leads with a more personalized approach, we encourage sending one-to-one videos. It’s still faster than typing out each individual lead response email, and showcases who you are as a  person. And recipients will appreciate this because they want to know who they will be working with in order to open up and trust the salesperson they are interacting with.

Appointment Setting and Reminders

Appointment setting can be time consuming without the right sales automation tools. But in order to sell more, appointments need to be on the books quickly to stay top-of-mind and have the conversations needed to close deals. Video email helps you accomplish this.

Record a simple evergreen appointment setting video to send to prospects when they request a demo. This puts your team in front of prospects via video at the click of a button. It shows them that they are valued as future clients, so they are more inclined to set and keep that appointment. Video allows you to set more appointments faster and easier.

Just as important is sending out those appointment reminders to ensure prospects show up to their appointments. And you can set up automated video reminders to send out to potential clients as their time slots approach. Again, these are videos that only take up a small portion of your time to record, and can be reused again and again to encourage people to show up for your demos.

Sending individual videos tailored to recipients is a good strategy that saves time by not having to type out individual appointment emails

What to include:

  • An engaging animated preview. Give recipients a glimpse of your friendly personality in this preview that will intrigue them to play your video message
  • A background of your relationship with the recipient
  • An explanation of why you’re reaching out, and why they would benefit from a demo
  • A call-to-action to schedule a meeting, or a reminder to join the scheduled meeting
In the example below, Mandy, one of our BombBomb Customer Success associates, touches on all of these points in a friendly and relatable way to ensure she secures coaching appointments with clients she hasn’t heard back from…

Automated Process Updates

Customers like to be kept in the loop along the sales process. And using video as one of your team’s sales automation tools saves them time, while still keeping clients informed and happy along the way to finalizing the sale.

Have your team create pre-recorded videos that encompass every step in the sales process to send to your prospects, so they know exactly what to expect. So, instead of them emailing clients continuously with updates, they can just send out a video email with the content they’ve already created.

And the recipients of your team’s updates will be more at ease knowing that there’s another human there for them to answer their questions and keep them updated. This is something plain text can’t do.

What to include:

  • An explanation of where they are in the sales process
  • Information on what comes next
  • Action items that need to be completed for successful completion
  • An expression of gratitude for their time and business

The clip below is a video that real estate agent Sascha sends to his clients when they are under contract for a home. He congratulates them on their milestone in the home buying journey, tells them what is to come, informs them of things they need to do and why they need to do them, and showcases genuine excitement for his customers…

 

Use BombBomb to adopt video email as a top sales automation tool.

If you’re ready to start saving your team time by using video as one of your top sales automation tools in 2020, BombBomb is just what you need to get started.

You can easily integrate video in the sales tools your team members are already using, like Outreach, as well as within their Gmail and Outlook email accounts.

In fact, BombBomb is making it even faster and easier to integrate video email into your sales process with our new Salesforce integration. It allows your sales team to increase productivity, build trust faster, and differentiate themselves with video directly within Salesforce.

Request a demo today, and see the difference it makes for you and your sales team!

For more helpful tips from our partners at BombBomb, check out their blog!

Crafting Captivating Real Estate Email Subject Lines

Crafting Captivating Real Estate Email Subject Lines

9 Ways to Craft Captivating and Effective Real Estate Email Subject Lines

It’s not easy to coax potential customers to click on an email – the internet has shortened attention spans, provided previews of email subject lines, filled our inboxes with clutter, and taught us all about the power of skepticism.

To increase clientele and build meaningful connections with current and future clients, you have to know how to draft captivating content in your emails. Below are a list of the 9 best ways to create powerful email subject lines that work. Including any of these along with a BombBomb video will guarantee higher open rates, more appointments held, and offer a better customer experience.

 

1. Keep Email Subject Lines Simple And Short

Did you know that 40% of emails are being read on cell phones and mobile devices? And it’s not unlikely this trend will only increase as time goes on.

Desktops and large monitors may be great for work and leisure, but most of your customers are getting your mailers right to their pockets.

While that may seem like a good thing, the screen on a mobile device is tiny, offering them only 4 to 7 words of your subject line before it falls out of sight.

What does this mean?

Well, it means that your subject lines have to be punchy and straight to the point.

People are more likely to click on a short, evocative subject line than a complete sentence.

You’re not trying to write them a novel—you only want to give them enough to entice them. Instead of “The real estate listings you need to see right now,” trying something like “Don’t miss these listings” or “Make house-hunting easier.”

2. Don’t Be Afraid of a Little Mystery

Though customers have become accustomed to common sales pitches in their mailbox, everyone loves a good mystery.

When deciding on your email subject lines for real estate, don’t be afraid to think outside the box and offer your future customers an enticing hook.  It creates a curiosity gap.

The only job of a email subject lines is to get the reader to open.

So, try taking a unique strategy for your approach.

A subject line like “Let’s get right to it” creates curiosity readers feel compelled to follow. You could also go for “It’s been a while” or “I can’t believe I forgot,” anything that asks a question of the reader.

One we’ve used that works great is starting with “Something happened and…”.

A subject line like this compels the mind to bridge the information gap. We can’t help but wonder what happens, and what that means for us.

It’s very important the email subject lines that use this curiosity mechanism to lead to an email that truly delivers on the initial message, or you’ll cause your reader to lose confidence and trust in you.

It’s not about tricking your customers, it’s about giving them the chance to learn about the truly amazing listings, service and offers you have for them.

Writing subject lines like this gives you a much better opportunity to get your message in front of someone it can serve.

3. Do a Little Research

You’ve already taken your first step – why reinvent the wheel when you can see what the professionals have been doing?

Find out which tactics work and which don’t. Use this wisdom to improve your email click-through rates.

There are tools out there that you let you look up keywords to see how they’re performing. The Email Subject Lines Grader, for instance, allows you type in a subject line and gives you a score of 1-100 based on the words it contains, word and character count.

4. Cultivate a Sense of Urgency

Much like how people crave mystery, your potential customers can also be unmotivated to click if there isn’t a reason for them to do it right now.

While the promise of expert real estate advice should get them in the door, the fact is, sometimes you’re going to need to light a fire under them. A sense of urgency creates a sense of momentum, a sense of need, and can offer a boost to their interest.

Here are a few real estate email subject lines examples that use a feeling of urgency to promise a one-time deal:

  • “One more day on the market!”
  • “Don’t miss this open house”
  • “Last chance for your dream home”

5. Be Honest!

While the subtle approach can sometimes pay dividends, don’t be afraid to experiment with blunt honesty.

For one, it’s refreshing, a welcome break from the sneaky language of sales that potential customers shy away from.

Secondly, honesty can make the reader laugh, which creates intimacy and opens the door to feeling good about the person on the other end of the email.

Thirdly, people don’t expect it, and if you surprise your reader, it makes you become memorable.

Try shaking loose and trying something like…

“Yet another real estate email,” or

“House hunting sucks! If only you could make someone else do it for you.”

Honesty is indeed the best policy for a reason, and using it in your email subject lines can build trust and credibility with your prospects, clients, and readers.

Even sending a simple thank you message to new clients working with you is a great way to establish rapport.

6. The Power of Threats

Now, we don’t mean actual threats. Rather, we’re talking about describing the negatives to not working with you.

Realize that while selling the benefit of action can be great, selling the downside of not acting can be just as, if not more motivating.

“Don’t fall into this home buying trap,” plants a seed of doubt in the reader’s mind, questioning their own abilities and making them wonder if they’re doing something wrong.

And, do you notice anything else this subject line does?

It creates a curiosity gap!

The line “7 mistakes buyers make” invokes both mystery and a sense of fear they may be making the same mistake as these buyers.

And this type of subject line is sure to get you opens.

Suggesting a problem or possible problem and promising a solution is as old as advertising itself, and can work wonders on any email subject line.

7. Personal Interest

When thinking about email subject lines for real estate, consider the fact that your reader is only interested in themselves.

They don’t want to feel like another face in the crowd or an email address on a mailing list somewhere.

While it’s easier to mass-produce generic newsletters and fire them into the ether, it rarely works, and you’ll get unsubscribes aplenty with that approach.

But, if you use the tools in your mailing list program or website to personalize your message, you increase the odds of a reader opening that email with anticipation of what’s in it for them.

We always recommend getting as personal as possible. If 1:1 videos aren’t an option, try segmenting groups that have similar interests. The more granular the better.

Counties are good, cities are better, and neighborhoods are the best if you have that kind of intel. The bulk of the message can stay the same, but simply change the subject line and use local real estate listings.

It’s more work to do it this way, but you want the great results, right?

A tailored email feels more like a conversation, and is well worth the extra bit of effort.

Try “Buying a home in [LOCATION]?” or “[LOCATION] homes getting scooped up fast”.

Subject lines like these are more likely to catch the eye of a reader than generic ones.

8. Avoid These Words

Not every email subject line is created equal, and not every subject line has the same shot at greatness. When writing a subject line, try not to think of it as a label.

Many people use the subject line as a title, which has been shown to immediately turn-off readers. For instance, there is a 18.7% decrease in click rates when the word “newsletter” is included.

Why?

Because no one wants to read a newsletter.

Now, people do read newsletters all the time, but not because their called newsletters in the subject line. As you can see by the graphic below, removing the word “newsletter” only drops the CTR one percentage point.

The other side of the coin is to think of the automated side of the process – the dreaded spam filter.

Spam filters are a constantly shifting target, so it’s important to search for “words to avoid in email subject lines” every six months or so to stay abreast of the changing requirements.

Here are a few of the words and phrases you currently want to avoid to not get hit by the spam hammer:

  • Once in a Lifetime
  • Don’t Delete
  • Bonus
  • Congratulations
  • Certified
  • Free Quote
  • Act Now
  • Best Price
  • Big Bucks
  • Credit
  • Free Consultation
  • Income

There are more, plenty more, which is why it’s a good idea to frequently check on what words throw up red flags.

8. One word you should use

We did a study of 15,000,000 email sends from BombBomb in January of 2016, and found that emails with the word “video” in the subject line got

  • An 8.3% higher open rate, and…
  • A 32.8% higher play rate of the video in the email

That is a significant increase in open rate from only including one word. And if you have the word, you can start off in the email by introducing recipients to open your video message.

That’s one of the ways that BombBomb helps business professionals get more email opens and more replies and responses.

In addition to the increased open rate, there’s no better way to communicate your message so you connect with your audience or reader in an impactful way.

If your reader is compelled by the subject line enough to click that email and open it, seeing a smiling face in that email is going to make a much better impression than a plain-text email. 

9. Question Everything

A question dares an answer, even if the reader doesn’t end up saying it out loud. A question tucked into your subject line triggers an innate human response to find or provide an answer.

That means that by asking a question in your subject line, your recipient is psychologically already engaged with your content before they’ve clicked on the email.

A question like “Why isn’t your home selling?” drops an obvious answer in your reader’s mind: “Well, I don’t know.”

Even if it’s just in their head, they’ve recognized a potential shortcoming in themselves, and you’ve tossed them a life preserver, all in one swoop.

Try “How can your real estate agent do better?” to thrust the reader into a conversation they didn’t even know they were having.

Right away, they feel like they want to be helpful.

They want to improve both themselves and their relationship with their real estate agent.

They’re curious about the tips you have to offer to make their real estate experience easier and more fruitful. They want to know more.

Research, Personalization, and Engagement

Writing an email subject line is its own art form, one you can master and profit by. A little time and research will not only save you wasted effort, but can increase your leads over time. Buying or selling a home is a stressful experience, and the people on your mailing list do want help. Sometimes they just need a little hook to get them reading, to get them listening, and to get them clicking.

Real Estate Marketing Fundamental: Keep In Touch

Real Estate Marketing Fundamental: Keep In Touch

Your key to a healthy real estate marketing approach: keep in touch with engaged leads and past clients.

It’s obvious. And fundamental. Often challenging.

You’ve done all the work to connect with, convert, and serve your buyer or seller. Staying in touch after close helps prevent them from jumping into another agent‘s lead funnel by referral or by online search when they’re thinking about buying or selling again in the future.

When you keep in touch effectively, you’re stacking your business with repeat and referral opportunities. You’re building and building from competitive advantage.

The key word there is “effectively.” It’s not just about the touch, it’s about the relationship. Anyone can have stuff sent out. The key is the tie back to your personal relationship and emotional connection with that client.

When you worked together, your buyer or seller learned about you. And your family. And your “why.” When you worked together, you learned about your client, as well. You connected.

Rekindling that relationship is what this process is all about. And generic touches can’t do that for you.
Here: we’ll take a look at some National Association of REALTORS® data and share REALTOR®Mag‘s 7 real estate marketing tips to keep in touch.

Plus, you can be the first to know about a new product to help you keep in touch more effectively.

Read Time: 4 minutes 30 seconds
Takeaway: Why and how to generate more business from your database

The Best Real Estate Marketing: Keep In Touch

Every year, the NAR publishes its Profile of Home Buyers and Sellers; they released the 2016 Profile at the end of October.

In the Buyer Highlights of the 2016 Profile:

  • 88% of buyers say they would use their agent again
  • 11% used an agent they worked with in the past
  • 42% used an agent referred to them by a friend, neighbor, or relative
  • 70% interviewed only one agent

Even though buyers seem pleased with their agents and say they’d use them again (88%), they’re not (11%). A very likely cause: the agent fails to stay in touch.

Nearly half of the buyers surveyed chose an agent referred to them by people close to them (42%). You need to be top of mind to be referred and you need to keep in touch to be top of mind!

And the consideration set for agents is limited, as the vast majority on buyers only talked to one agent (70%). You have to be in early and almost exclusively to get the business.

In the Seller Highlights:

  • 85% of sellers say they would definitely or probably recommend their agent
  • 64% used an agent referred to them by a friend, neighbor, or relative
  • 72% interviewed only one agent
  • 33% used an agent they worked with in the past

Each of these again points to significant opportunities to win more business simply by staying top of mind by keeping in touch.

Sellers want to recommend you (85%), but are they? Well over half of sellers rely on referrals (64%), but are those referrals going to you? Most only talk to a single agent (72%), so how do you get that appointment against competitors?

To win here and to capture all those repeat sales opportunities (33%), you just have to keep in touch.
So how do you close the communication gap? How do you overcome the challenges of time and resources?

7 Real Estate Marketing Ideas to Keep in Touch

One of many stories published about keeping in touch with people in your database to maintain relationships and generate repeat and referral business comes from Melissa Dittmann Tracey in REALTOR®Mag.

Here are 7 ideas from that story:

  • 1. Deliver news they can use (email or print)
  • 2. Offer an unusual gift (something to remember you)
  • 3. Send memorable and personal cards (don’t blend into the crowd)
  • 4. Give them a call (yes, pick up the phone)
  • 5. Follow up with a survey (show them you care)
  • 6. Connect on social networks (less formal, more friendly)
  • 7. Get creative (parties, events, value-adds)

Read the story to get details and read about examples of these ideas.
Are you doing any of these? Which ones? Consistently?

Which are effective? Which are cost-effective?

Which make a personal and emotional connection? Which build on the relationship?

Discover what works and do it consistently. Drop what doesn’t and try something new.

Staying in Touch with BombBomb

Nearly 600 sales professions, including approximately 360 real estate agents, shared with us the benefits of using BombBomb.

90% reported that it helped them stay in touch more effectively and nearly 4 in 10 said it doubled or more than doubled their ability to stay in touch effectively.

  • One-to-one video emails to check in with engaged leads and past clients (examples).
  • Automated drip campaigns triggered for closed clients or engaged prospects (described).
  • Monthly market updates and newsletters – often with a personal video (examples).
  • These are all smart touches that build relationship, in part through propinquity, over time.

They help you be the agent whose name is mentioned in a lunchtime conversation. They help you be the agent who gets the call from a past client for a new buyer or seller consult. They help you win from business you’ve already closed … the best marketing of all.

For more helpful tips from our partners at BombBomb, check out their blog!

Why Consumer Education Videos Work in Real Estate (And How to Be Successful With Them)

Why Consumer Education Videos Work in Real Estate (And How to Be Successful With Them)

Creating great consumer education video content can help your business thrive. We know this because we’ve seen our top video influencers in real estate thrive in this video niche by creating informative, valuable and engaging content that ultimately leads to people wanting to work with them.

And while your go-to consumer education video might be a market update, there’s an endless amount of topics you can touch upon that can be of value to potential and current clients.

In fact, they want this content and are actively looking for it, especially on YouTube. According to WordStream, YouTube has more than a billion users, which accounts for about a third of all internet users. And “The Values of YouTube” 2017 study reported that 86% of viewers often go to YouTube to learn something new.

Karin Carr, one of our 2018 Top Real Estate Video Influencer Up and Comers, has truly embraced this consumer education video genre as her niche. And despite only starting her YouTube channel two years ago, she has over 4,400 subscribers and videos with thousands of views. The Keller Williams Coastal Area Partners agent also got 75% of her business from her YouTube channel alone—and no cold calling.

She even created another YouTube channel, “YouTube for Agents,” to teach other real estate agents her tips and tricks, as well as recently wrote a book on it, “YouTube for Real Estate Agents.”

See the video below for a look at what Karin focuses her educational content on and why she does so. And keep reading the post below for more on her story, why you should make consumer education a top priority when creating video content, and how to be successful with it.

Table of Contents

Consumer Education defined 
-Recommended real estate topics
Achieve success with consumer education videos
-Getting creative with content 
-Prioritizing keyword research
-Staying consistent with video 
-Being yourself on camera
-Providing value in videos 
-Karin’s bonus tips 
Why consumer education videos work 

What is consumer education?

So, the consumer education definition is pretty self-explanatory when it comes to video—you are providing educational content from your industry to consumers. But there are many ways you can approach this.

“When people go to YouTube, it’s a search engine. People are looking for videos like, ‘How do I fix my washing machine?’” Karin explains. “On YouTube, people go there to learn something or to be entertained. And if you can combine the two, those videos perform really well.”

And she’s not wrong. The top five reasons reported for why people turn to YouTube are:

1. For help with fixing something in a home, car or other
2. Entertainment
3. For learning something new
4. For satisfying curiosity about a topic
5. For assistance with solving a problem

For real estate, she recommends topics like: 

• How much does it cost to sell my house?
• How much do I need for a down payment?
• How do I stage a home on a budget?

“They’re Googling those questions, and if you make a really good YouTube video it can show up in the very first page of Google search results,” Karin says.

You can also get the full guide of real estate consumer education ideas at the end of this post.

How to be successful with consumer ed videos

Now, you might be wondering how to get started and prosper with educating consumers via video. And there are steps you can take to maximize your potential, and thrive with it. Here are Karin’s tips and recommendations for anyone looking to get started:

Get creative with your content ideas

When curating your consumer education content ideas, think outside of the box and get creative with your videos. Use your location, industry experiences and challenges as inspiration and opportunities to teach and generate prospects.

The first thing Karin did when she started making videos was pick a specialty to tailor her videos to—working with the military, as her market is located in Savannah, Georgia, a military community. A lot of the videos she made were about VA loans and using Basic Allowance for Housing (BAH) to cover mortgage payments.

“I was trying to come up with topics that I thought those specific people would be interested in, and that way I would attract my ideal client. Once you know who you’re trying to reach and what they want to know, it’s pretty easy to come up with content,” she continues. “If you try to be a general all-purpose agent in the market, there’s too much competition. You have to prove your value, and you do that by being a specialist.”

It’s also important to keep a bank of your ideas recorded somewhere—whether that be a notebook, computer, phone, etc. that you can access any time you get a new video idea. Karin keeps all of her ideas on her phone’s notes application.

Make it a priority to research keywords

Keyword research is SO IMPORTANT if you want your videos to be viewed. They determine where your video will rank in search results. And the video views generated through this are what lead to conversion.

Data from Advanced Web Ranking indicates that the higher you rank in search results, the higher the possibility that consumers will click and visit your website. The highest ranking Google desktop search results garnered a 31% click-through rate and 23% on mobile! As a result, the lower you rank, the lower your chances are of getting those clicks.

After deciding on an idea for her videos, Karin always does keyword research. She uses Keywords Everywhere—a free Chrome and Firefox plugin— and looks for what people are typing into the search bar that has a lot of searches, but low competition.

“If there’s low competition for a keyword I can rank for it at the top of the search results pretty easily,” she says.

Karin uses her selected keywords in the titles of her videos to get more organic traffic to them, and, in turn, her website to generate more leads. “If you make a great video but give it a terrible title, no one will ever find it in the search results,” she says. So, it’s best to avoid general titles like “Karin’s Vlog #2,” and instead use more specific titles that include your keyword, such as “Home Staging Tips to Get Your House Sold.”

She said even if there’s only 200-300 searches a month—but there’s little competition—for a keyword that shows intent that it’s still beneficial.

“They’re not Googling, ‘How much is a house in Savannah?’ if they’re not looking to buy a house,” she says. “So, 200 searches with high intent is fantastic! It doesn’t have to be thousands and thousands of searches a month.”

Consistency is key with video uploads

One of the lessons Karin talks about time and time again is the importance of consistency with your video uploads. She highly recommends:

• Figuring out what your upload schedule will be like and sticking with it
• Putting your upload schedule on a calendar
• Not skipping any of your scheduled upload times
• Recording multiple videos on a specific day of the week to have content to schedule out
• Say in your YouTube channel art or social media platform how often you’ll be posting videos

“You will be rewarded by the YouTube algorithm for your consistency,” she says. “It it tough? Yes, it is. But I’d rather be consistent than perfect.”

And her reason for this is, “If people show up to your channel on Wednesday morning at 10 a.m. expecting there to be a new video and there isn’t one, eventually you’re going to train them and the YouTube algorithm that you are not consistent and that you don’t show up when you say you’re going to. Is that really something you want to be known for?”

Probably not, so be as consistent as possible!

Be yourself on camera

Do not be afraid to showcase you and your personality on camera. Video is all about showcasing who you are and what you have to offer—not what you look or sound like. So, own your video and who you are, and let your authenticity and humanity shine through.

“You look how you look, and you sound how you sound—nobody cares. You just keep making videos anyway because you will attract the people that like your personality, however you appear on camera,” Karin says. “They will like that about you. They will feel drawn to you. And when the time comes they will ask for your help. People are looking to you for your guidance and your expertise, not because you have a 26-inch waist.”

Also, don’t script your videos. It doesn’t work, and you won’t come across as genuine. When Karin started creating videos, she used scripts and could never get it to sound natural. Now she creates a bullet list of everything she wants to talk about, and builds from there.

Karin showcases her personality in every video she produces. She’s not afraid to be goofy and have fun in her videos, or be animated with her facial expressions or use her hands when she talks. She even dresses up in characters sometimes to make more data-heavy videos, like market updates, engaging and exciting yet still educational.

“I try to make it entertaining as well as informational. We feel like we have to be very professional in order to come across as competent. But that doesn’t mean we have to be boring,” she explains. “You can still be yourself on camera and show your personality and still deliver the information they want to know.”

Provide consumer value in your videos

After Karin decides on an idea for the video she’s going to record, she sits down and records a hook that includes her keyword at the very beginning to draw them in to the video from the start.

“Too many people start with introducing themselves and basically talking about how great they are for the next 45 seconds and nobody cares,” she says. “So I do my hook and then I briefly introduce myself because you have to say that you’re a real estate licensee so you don’t get in trouble with your local real estate commission, and you want them to know where you are physically located. Get through that quickly and then move on.”

Then she gets to the topic at hand quickly, and makes sure she answers the question viewers tuned in to have answered.

“You have to not talk all about yourself. You have to think of what the consumer wants to watch in a video, and it’s not a commercial,” she explains. “They typed something into the search bar because they were trying to find an answer to that question. People are looking for this information, so give them what they’re looking for and you will be rewarded with more business than you can possibly imagine.”

By not making videos that sound like sales pitches, you come across as more relatable and helpful.

“If they don’t feel like they’re being sold, I think it really lets them let their guard down and then they trust you,” Karin says.

She ends with a call to action that, again, is not straight up selling anything, but offering something of value, like a VA Buyers Guide. And that guide is on her website, which they submit contact information for and then she has a lead. She says 90% of the time, she received legitimate information, and her prospects are excited to hear from her because they think she’s famous after seeing her on YouTube.

Karin’s Bonus Tips:

Video length: Karin keeps videos around five minutes for a higher possibility of showing up in search results. This is short enough for the consumer to keep watching the whole video if they’re interested, and long enough to appeal to YouTube’s algorithm. Shorter videos are OK for other social media platforms, and may actually perform better on those outlets. HubSpot recommends the following video lengths for social media platforms:

• Instagram: 30 seconds
• Twitter: 45 seconds
• Facebook: 1 minute
• YouTube: 2 minutes

Equipment: You don’t have to use expensive equipment to make a quality video. Karin uses her phone or tablet most of the time to record content. She also uses an inexpensive microphone that just plugs into the audio jack. She does use a ring light for better lighting, and has a camera, but for the most part she sticks to the basics. And for her editing, she initially used the built-in video editing software from her computer and now hires a virtual assistant to do it. “All that time you get back is worth the expense,” she says.

Why consumer education videos work

Cisco estimates that by 2022, internet video traffic will account for 82% of all web traffic. And people are spending over a billion hours a day watching videos on YouTube. That is a huge stream of potential customers you can reach with consumer education videos.

And, in the words of Karin, “I get a boatload of leads. And they’re not just leads—they’re leads that turn into clients, and closings and commission checks.”

She was new in her town in June 2017, and within a year had so much business she needed to hire a showing assistant. Then that showing assistant became a buyer’s agent. And then she had to hire another buyer’s agent, two virtual assistants, and now she’s looking for a listing specialist. All of this happened within two years because she started making consumer education videos.

Karin explains that when people go onto Zillow and see a house for sale and request additional information, they don’t care who calls them because they’re just interested in the house. But if they watch her video on “How much does it cost to sell my house in Savannah?” and they call, it’s because they want to work with her.

“Whenever I get a seller lead or a buyer lead for that matter, 99% of the time they don’t even interview anybody else,” she says. “It’s amazing that by the time they’ve reached out to you, they’ve already decided that you are the person that they want to work with.”

When you give your prospects your wealth of knowledge via video without expecting anything in return, Karin says that when they do call you “it’s a done deal.”

“I’ve had people sign buyer/brokerage agreements over the internet and they’ve never even met me in person before because they feel like the know me already having seen so many of my videos,” Karin says. “It’s the best form of lead gen that I’ve ever done and I’ve been in business for 14 years.”

Get Started Today!

Now that you have all the knowledge to thrive with consumer education videos, it’s time for you to start making your own—whether that’s on YouTube, social media, or a video email via BombBomb.

If you’re feeling a little reluctant to start and are doubting if it’s for you, you are not alone. Karin says her first videos were bad. But she kept doing them, and look at where she is today.

“The first 20 videos you make are going to be awful. Make them anyway,” she says. “The more you do it, the better you get. Start now. The longer you wait, the longer it will be before you start to master it.”

And it you’re in need of inspiration, check out our 2019 Video Influencers Guide when it’s released later this year. There’s a whole section on our top real estate video influencers in consumer education that you can learn from.

For more helpful information from our partners at BombBomb, check out their blog! 

6 Follow Up Sales Email Templates That Get Responses

6 Follow Up Sales Email Templates That Get Responses

Quick, what’s the most convenient way to communicate in the business world?

The phone is an effective way to speak with a client or prospect, but that’s assuming they answer. And even then, the conversation can derail quickly if the discussion strays from your script.

Email, on the other hand, provides an easy way to get your point across, in the format and manner in which you feel most appropriate. In fact, 86 percent of professionals say email is their preferred method of communication.

But, there’s a hitch.

Your message is literally one of the hundreds of emails that the average businessman receives every day. So even if your client or prospect opens your email, they are most likely skimming and not giving it their full attention.

That’s not to say you shouldn’t be sending emails. Follow up sales emails remain a necessity to maintain your relationship with your clients and potential clients. If you do it correctly, you can create great follow up emails to help increase your sales.

What Makes a Great Sales Follow Up Email

While your marketing department probably tends to send out beautifully designed emails with flashy graphics and call to action buttons, your follow up sales email doesn’t need all the bells and whistles to be great.

You just need to focus on a few key areas:

  • Personal Message – Your follow up sales emails need to be personal. Focus on your client’s specific needs and challenges.
  • Helpful Content – Give your client a reason to read your email, other than to just say hello. Offer information about a service that your business provides that can address their needs.
  • Get to the Point – No one wants to read a novel. Clearly and quickly explain why you’re emailing and what you are offering. If this email is coming after a meeting, provide a recap and action items so there are no miscommunications.
  • Subject Line – Give your client a reason to read your email. You might have the best message, but if you don’t have a great email subject line, your email might go right to the trash.

Of course, all emails will be unique and should be used at different times in the sales cycle. But if you focus on these four key areas, you can craft winning messages.

6 Great Follow Up Sales Emails

There are endless situations in which you’ll need a great follow up sales email. Anything from your first contact with a prospect to the end of a major contract, and everything in between.

Here are examples of follow up emails to clients for some of the most common situations.

1. Follow Up Sales Email After Leaving a Voicemail or Speaking on the Phone

Most of the time when you first call a prospective client, you’ll get a voicemail. Your chances of getting a call back are pretty slim, so you’ll need to send a follow up email.

That email should briefly introduce you, explain why you’re calling, and clearly map out next steps.

Subject Line: I must have just missed you

Hi [Name],

My name is [Your name] from [Your company]. I just left you a voicemail regarding [briefly explain the reason you called].
I’d love to chat with you more about how [Your service] can improve [What it can improve]. I will try to call you back on [Day].

If this time is inconvenient for you, please email or call me back and we can schedule another time to speak.

I look forward to talking with you soon.

[Signature]

You can use the same style of email after speaking with that person on the phone. Just briefly recap your conversation and what will happen next.

2. Follow Up Sales Email After Client Opens an Email and Doesn’t Respond

In most cases, when you send emails to clients and they’ll never respond. There’s a chance they never opened the message, or maybe they did open it but took no action – there are ways you can track email opens.

There’s a chance your clients wanted to reply to your messages, but the emails got buried in their inboxes and they forget. There’s a simple sales follow up email trick that can work to entice a response.

Simply find the original email in your sent folder, and reply all to it so you are copying your original message in your new email. This prevents your client from having to dig through their inbox to find it.

Subject: Let’s try this again

Hi [name],

I sent you an email a few days ago about [Email topic] and noticed you haven’t had a chance to respond. You may be busy and forgot about it – that’s understandable.

For your convenience, I’ve included the original message below.

Thanks,

[Signature]

3. Follow Up Sales Email After an Event

Local events like conferences and networking sessions are a great way to meet new prospects.

However, in most cases, you only had a few minutes to speak with these prospects before exchanging contact information and going on your way. Make sure your follow up email includes information about something you spoke about to help them remember you. They are more likely to respond if they don’t view you as a stranger.

Subject Line: Great meeting you at [Event]!

Hi [Name],

I enjoyed speaking with you at [Event] last week. I noticed on your LinkedIn profile that you [What they do]. My company actually helps people like you with [Services]. If you have a few minutes, I’d love to meet up for coffee and chat.

I’ve available [Date/Time], does this work for you?

[Signature]

4. Follow Up Sales Email After Closing a Deal

The conversation doesn’t end after your client signs on the dotted line.

You want that client to be a repeat customer and refer their colleagues, so it’s important to maintain the relationship that you’ve built during the sales process.

This email should include a thank you and invitation for them to contact you with any questions or issues.

Subject Line: Welcome to the [Company] family!

Hi [Name],

I wanted to send a quick note to thank you for [recent order/partnership]. I know you’ll be thrilled with the service and quality [Your company] will provide to help you address your business needs. If you have any questions or concerns, please do not hesitate to contact me at any time.

I look forward to our professional relationship.

[Signature]

5. Follow Up Sales Email After a Client’s Contract Ends

In a perfect world, every client would be a repeat customer.

Unfortunately, the world isn’t perfect and some of your customers won’t buy again.

Even though your professional relationship is ending, you still need to send a follow up sales email to thank them for being a loyal customer and offering your services again in the future. Plus, you never know if they might come back one day.

Subject line: Thank you for being a loyal customer

Hi [Name],

I’m sorry to see our partnership come to an end. Thank you for being such a loyal customer over the past [Length of contract]. Please keep me in mind if you need additional [Type of service] in the future.

Thank you,

[Signature]

6. Follow Up Sales Email After Client Stops Responding

At some point, it becomes apparent that your client has lost interest and won’t be buying from you. Before you cut your losses, try one more follow up email to see if they’ll re-engage. At the very least, you might receive confirmation that they aren’t interested.

Your previous templates obviously haven’t been working, so this is your opportunity to show a little creativity, humor, and personality in your message.

Subject line: Is this thing on?

Hi [Name],

I’ve tried to get in touch with you over the past few months, and it appears I’ve been unsuccessful.

I understand the timing might not be right, you’re just plain not interested, or you’ve cut the cord and are now living a new life off the grid. It’s ok, I won’t take it personally.

I’ll stop emailing you, but please keep me in mind should you ever need [Type of service].

I hope this isn’t goodbye.

[Signature]

Creating Great Follow Up Emails to Increase Sales

Obviously, our sales follow up email templates are just suggestions.

You understand your clients and their needs, and you know what has worked in the past.

If you have a system that’s worked for you in the past, keep using it. But, if you’re looking for a new way to increase your numbers, consider trying some new follow up sales emails.

For more helpful tips from our partners at BombBomb, check out their blog!

How to Send Video in LinkedIn Messages – 3 Simple Steps

How to Send Video in LinkedIn Messages – 3 Simple Steps

According to LinkedIn, InMail messages get a 10-25% response rate, 300% higher than emails. The two main factors behind this increased response rate include:

  1. People go to LinkedIn to connect and learn. LinkedIn shows you when your contacts are live on the site, so you can hit them a message at a time when they’re thinking about business/career goals and how they might achieve them.
  2. Your professional profile is attached to your message. With a single click, your prospects can learn more about you, your company, your experience and expertise, and your connections without leaving the platform. They can quickly qualify you and your message, respond, and get back to what they were doing on LinkedIn.

Although these benefits are very real, the massive influx in sales practitioners leveraging “social selling” has resulted in your decision makers’ LinkedIn inboxes becoming nearly as saturated as their email inboxes. You must differentiate yourself and your messages from the crowd if you want to capitalize on the benefits of LinkedIn and earn time with your hard-to-reach prospects.

The best way to win the LinkedIn inbox (and prospecting in general!) is by making your messages as engaging and impactful as in-person interactions. BombBomb helps make this possible by making it simple to record, embed, and send personal videos through LinkedIn InMail.

Engage Prospects More Effectively with Video in LinkedIn

Someone using the BombBomb Video Chrome Extension to record a video

With BombBomb Video, you can quickly and easily record yourself, your screen, or a combination of both, and embed those videos into your LinkedIn messages to humanize your message and scale your best sales asset: YOURSELF.

Step 1: Record or Select a Video for your LinkedIn Message

Once you’ve downloaded the BombBomb Video Chrome Extension, pressing the BombBomb logo in your extension toolbar will immediately activate the BombBomb Video recorder without leaving LinkedIn.

Within BombBomb Recorder you can:

  • Record a webcam and/or screen capture video
  • Choose a video from your library
  • Edit your camera/mic settings

BombBomb’s proprietary video tech uploads your video while you’re recording it. No waiting around for your video to be ready to send. In fact, you’ll actually save time compared to typing your message out because you talk way faster and more effectively than you type!

Step 2: Customize Your Video Thumbnail

Once you hit stop on your video, you’ll be given the options to save, re-record, or customize your video thumbnail. By default, LinkedIn will select a random frame from your video to save as your BombBomb Video thumbnail, so customizing your thumbnail can help to provide context for your video and drive engagement. We recommend using a whiteboard or piece of paper with your prospect’s name written out to help show that the video was created just for them.

 

To apply a custom, still-image thumbnail to your video, you can capture a new thumbnail with your webcam using the “Thumbnail” button. Hovering over the button will activate your webcam and clicking “Thumbnail” will instantly capture and save a new image. This can be done unlimited times until you’re happy.

Whenever you’re ready, click “Save.”

Step 3: Copy and Paste Your Video

Once you’ve customized your thumbnail and saved your video, it’s time to paste your video into your LinkedIn message. In order to do this properly, you’ll want to use the “Copy URL” option.

 

LinkedIn InMail shows link previews to your message recipient, so when you paste the URL into the message and send, your link will “unfurl” and your BombBomb video thumbnail will appear as a clickable button alongside any accompanying text you provide within the message.

Upon clicking on your video, your prospect will be redirected to your BombBomb Video page. Our pages are solely designed to deliver your unique message to a captive audience. There are no ads, no distracting exit links or images, no suggested videos, just you and your message.

Building relationships on the world’s largest professional network has never been easier.

Humanize your LinkedIn Messages

If you’re ready to go from a faceless blurb of text that goes ignored to a real person who stands out in the LinkedIn inbox, then request a demo of BombBomb Video today and start getting face to face at scale with the people that matter most to your business.

To learn more tips from our partners at BombBomb, check out their blog!

How to Use Gmail: 6 Tips and Tricks That Will Make You Unstoppable

How to Use Gmail: 6 Tips and Tricks That Will Make You Unstoppable

You’re a busy working professional.

You don’t have enough time to tackle your email inbox, and it’s hard enough for you to remember all of the tasks that come with having a busy inbox.

You use Gmail because – you get it. Google creates some of the best technology for working professionals.

Because you’re a working business professional that relies heavily on email, it is imperative for you to find ways to organize and enhance your Gmail inbox and increase your work productivity as a result.

That’s why we’ve pulled together eleven tricks that exist both within Gmail, and through external Google Chrome Extensions, that will show you how to use Gmail better. These tricks will allow you to enhance your inbox, save time, and scale your business.

1. Unsend an Email (Yes, you read that right)

We’ve all been there. That moment when you send an extremely important email, and then you realize there’s an error in the email. You panic. How can you fix it? There’s a solution.

Gmail has a created a feature that will allow you to unsend emails seconds after sending.

After sending an email in the bottom left hand corner of your screen you’ll see an option that says “undo send.” That will recall your email send.

To change the time setting on how quickly you can recall a message, select the “settings” gear in the top right corner. Scroll down to “Undo Send.”

Gmail Email Sent Undo Button

Finally select a cancellation period of either 5, 10, 20 or 30 seconds.

2. How to Clean Out Gmail – Unsubscribe from Emails You No Longer Read!

Most people are subscribed to far too many newsletters. If you’re constantly getting emails that no longer provide you value, do something about it.

Unroll.me is a website that will connect to your email inbox and instantly show you a list of all of your subscription emails. You can take that list and determine which emails you would like to be removed from by selecting an “x.”

 

This process will save you a significant amount of time, as you will not be required to individually unsubscribe from every email send. You will instead be able to unsubscribe from multiple lists at once.

Hello organizational heaven! Your Gmail Inbox will thank you.

3. Email Tracking in Gmail

Wouldn’t it be incredible if you could find out the exact who, what, and when of every interaction with the emails you send from Gmail? This information would allow you to follow up with the right people at the right time.

With the BombBomb Google Chrome Integration, you can track all of your email sends. When you know exactly who’s opening your emails and playing your videos and exactly when they do it, you can follow up much more efficiently and effectively!

 

How to Set Up Gmail Tracking

  • Add a video to your Gmail emails and the extensions will track email opens and video plays.
  • Just send text and BombBomb will track the email open. Click tracking off and we won’t track it at all.
  • Once you’ve got the BombBomb Chrome extension added and you’re logged in, the PowerWheel appears automatically in every Compose and Reply window. You can click and drag it around – move it wherever you’d like.

Gmail Tracking: What’s New with PowerWheel

  • Before you send any email, you can keep tracking on or click to turn it off.
  • Tracking is always on by default in any Compose or Reply email. Clicking it off turns the Tracking circle on the PowerWheel a lighter gray.

You must keep tracking turned on if you want to use the Schedule or Remind features.

When you activate Scheduling, Reminders, Videos, or Help/Feedback from the PowerWheel, you’re taken into a window that gives you access to all the other work areas. Here, too, you’ll find tracking to turn off or on.

The gear icon in the lower left corner of that window gives you access to more Gmail tracking options.

  • Fly-in desktop notifications for email opens and video plays
  • Tracking action bar across the top of your inbox
  • Activity list panel on the right side of your inbox

4. Schedule an Email in Gmail – (& set a reminder too!)

Timing is everything. You can send that email now, or schedule it to be sent later. Set reminders before sending so you never miss an opportunity.

Whether text, video, or some of both, the email you just made in Gmail can be sent right now – or be scheduled to send at any day and time in the future!

To do so, download the BombBomb Google Chrome Extension.

Once you’re setup with the extension, just click “Schedule” on the PowerWheel in any Compose or Reply window.

From that click, you’ll be brought to a calendar starting with today and the next half hour. Schedule the send later that day or for any day in the future. Schedule it on any half hour of the day.

After you pick your day and time, click “Save.” You’ll be returned to your Compose or Reply window and the “Send” button now says “Schedule” and the day and time you selected will appear when you hover over the Schedule button on the PowerWheel.

When you’re done creating the email, click “Schedule” (formerly “Send”). The email goes to your Drafts folder, where it’ll stay until its scheduled day and time arrive for sending with a little “BB Scheduled” tag on it.

 

Change your mind? Just click that “Schedule” button on the PowerWheel and “Unschedule.”

5. Gmail Spell Check

We’ve already talked about how terrible it feels to send an email with typo in it. Even with Gmail’s spellcheck feature you can still misuse words, or use improper grammar. This is where Grammarly comes in as your saving grace.

 

Grammarly is Google Chrome Extension (among many other things) that will connect within Gmail and check every single email you write. The app will simply mark mistakes with a red line. If you double-click on the word, it will give you a correction suggestion. You can even click on every word in your email and Grammarly will suggest a synonym for you.

To download the Grammarly Google Chrome Extension, click here!

PS: You know another great way to avoid typos? Send a video! More on this in suggestion 11!

6. How to Send a Video Through Gmail

Don’t rely exclusively on plain, typed-out text to communicate, connect and convert. Get face-to-face more often by sending simple videos directly inside your Gmail inbox.

BombBomb’s Google Chrome Extension will allow you to send video in your email.

 

First you will need to download this extension! Once you’re inbox is all set up, follow the instructions below.

How to Send Gmail Video 1: Red Record Button in PowerWheel
Click the red record button in the middle of the PowerWheel to open up the pop-over recorder.

From the recorder, click the red circle to record, click the red square to stop, then “Save” to drop the video into the Compose or Reply email. Notice that it’s automatically given an animated preview to help improve video play rate.

NOTE: By clicking and dragging, you can move the video recorder anywhere on your screen and you can move the PowerWheel itself anywhere inside the Compose or Reply window.

How to Send Gmail Video 2: “Videos” in PowerWheel
The big, red record button opens up the video recorder. The smaller “Videos” button on the PowerWheel opens up your video library.

Any video you’ve recorded or uploaded into your BombBomb account is available here.
You can scroll through them in reverse chronological order (most recent first). You can also filter by tag – so be sure to assign a tag to your frequently used videos in your main BombBomb account.

After you click the “Videos” button on the PowerWheel, you’ll have access to your BombBomb video library, as well as other tools and features. Select the video you want, then click “Insert Video.”

How to Send Gmail Video 3: “Send Video” Button
For a time saving shortcut, click the “Send Video” button in the top left corner of your Gmail inbox.

Just one click of that button will:

  • Create a new “Compose” email
  • Open up the BombBomb video recorder

This button is a carry over from previous versions of the BombBomb extension for Google Chrome.

A More Powerful Gmail Inbox:

Tracking, Scheduling, Video, and Snippets were four of the ten suggestions that can be tackled by downloading the BombBomb Google Chrome Extension.

BombBomb is building for you the standard of excellence in business communication. With the PowerWheel, we want to improve specifically and dramatically the effectiveness and efficiency of your Gmail inbox.

This toolset is included with any BombBomb account. Click here to try BombBomb absolutely free (no credit card required) for two weeks. See if it’s a good fit for you!

How To Get Started

NOTE: for Tracking, Schedule, and Remind to work properly, your BombBomb email address and Gmail address must match.

Four Ways to Rehumanize Your Business

Four Ways to Rehumanize Your Business

In today’s digital world a human element has been removed from so much of our communication. People now hide behind email or send mass emails to their database. We often receive voicemails from robots. Even text messaging which was once deeply personal, quick communication, has been taken over by promotions and advertisements from companies we didn’t even realize had access to our phone number.

To stand out, it is imperative to be different, and be true to yourself. Because YOU are the differentiator your customers are looking for.

Below we’ve shared four of our favorite ways that can help you “rehumanize your communication,” and in turn, create a phenomenal customer experience that your clients will never forget.

1.) Determine Your Brand Identity Make Sure It’s Front and Center

According to Leadpages.net, the About section is typically one of the four most visited areas of your website. Isn’t that surprising? Now that you know that, think about what you currently have on your about page. Is it personal to you and your team? Does it speak to your values and what makes you – YOU?

It should! If you love dogs, take a cue from Mortgage Broker Alex McFadyen. Alex has created a brand all around his pug, Ernie. His Company is called “The Mortgage Pug,” and he includes his pug in all of his videos! Why? Authenticity! Alex explained that when he started his business “he didn’t want to be just another guy in suit.” He understands that mortgages can sometimes be “stressful, and boring,” so he decided to make it fun! This process has worked wonders for him!

When you’re creating your company branding, or your about page, don’t be afraid to include information about you as a person. Tell your future clients about your family, your hobbies, and even include it in your branding and marketing when it makes sense. People trust people more than brands.

2.) Send a Thoughtful and Personal Gifts

We learned this tip from Joey Coleman in his amazing book, “Never Lose A Customer Again” and it has changed the way we think about gifting.

This sounds simple when you think about it but most people aren’t doing it. How many times have you signed a major deal with a company and received a t-shirt or coffee mug with their logo on it as a thank you gift? It’s kind of a nice gesture, but it’s also a little selfish don’t you think? If you wear that t-shirt or use that mug, you’ll be helping that company expand their brand awareness. Seems pretty one-sided.

Don’t feel bad if you’ve done this – we’ve been guilty of it as well. But change your mindset for future thank you gifts! Think about the conversations you’re having with these people. Did they mention a favorite local restaurant? Are they wine connoisseurs? Do their kids love Legos? Next time you land a major deal, think through previous conversations and send your customers something that they would appreciate. Even if you don’t get them the perfect gift, they’ll think so highly of the fact that you remembered their interests, and it will leave a lasting impression.

3.) Provide Value Within Your Community

The phrase we live by on our marketing team is “Be of value and abundance will follow.” Try to provide your community with valuable information that relates to your interests and your businesses interest.

Social Groups (Like Facebook, LinkedIn, and Meetup) are a great way to get involved with your community. For example, if you’re a real estate agent and you love crafting, join a local crafting group and create content around DIY home decorations. But don’t just sit back and post content. Respond to your peers. Give them feedback and suggestions. Become an active participant within these groups and conversations.

By doing this you’ll build relationships with like-minded people and build your reputation as a reliable resource.

4.) Use Video Email

We could write a whole book on this (in fact we did) because we believe that video is the number one way to bring people back into our digital world. Think about it. If you’re looking for a real estate agent and you receive three generic emails, and one personal video, who are you going to remember? The video of course – and the person inside it.

We recommend using video email in a variety of ways including cold lead follow up, appointment reminders, happy birthday messages, purchase anniversaries and many more. It’s a great way to communicate hard to understand processes, procedures, or even difficult situations.

As we mentioned – there is so much more that can be said on the benefits of using video in business communication. Because of that, we’ve compiled everything we’ve learned with and from our customers over the past 10 years into this easy-to-read, highly informative book.

“Rehumanize Your Business” is a hands‑on guide to adding simple webcam and smartphone videos into your communication mix in order to build trust, save time, and truly connect with people.

It’s been ranked as Amazon’s #1 new release in Sales & Selling, Communication Skills, and several other categories.

It’s been ranked as Amazon’s #1 best seller in Business Sales and Business Communication.

Click here to see where you can purchase it today!

For more helpful tips, visit the BombBomb blog!

The Step by Step Guide to Creating Community Videos That Will Grow Your Business

The Step by Step Guide to Creating Community Videos That Will Grow Your Business

Community Videos can be a really big part of your marketing strategy as a real estate agent. They not only show that you’re passionate and knowledgeable about your community but they also can show what a buyer would get when moving to that part of town. As a realtor, you’re not just selling a home – you are selling an area or neighborhood! Below we’ve made a list of steps to help you confidently film and share a great community video!

What to expect

Time commitment: 3 days total per video
(one day planning, one day filming, one day posting and promoting)

Average budget: between $500 – $2k

Potential outcomes:

  • More followers and viewers on social media
  • More community connections
  • New clients/prospects
  • You establish yourself as a local expert
  • You help promote something you love

1. Decide What You’re Passionate About

The very first step in this process is to decide what part of your community to highlight. You need to pick something you’re excited about and passionate about, whether that be restaurants, parks, non-profit organizations, etc. Judy Weiniger, a community video master, says, “Chose the businesses that excite you.” Don’t force yourself to get excited about a subject you don’t gravitate towards.

We know it can be hard to choose the topic of your first community video, especially if you love a lot of things in your area. We put together a list based on passions and interests to help you get started.

Do you love food & drinks? You could feature….

  • Coffee Shops
  • Restaurants
  • Bars
  • Local Chefs or Bartenders

Do you love shopping and supporting local businesses? You could feature…

  • Small Shops & Boutiques
  • Any New Shop/Business
  • Outdoor Markets

Do you love being active? You could feature…

  • Parks/Trails
  • Gyms
  • Yoga/Dance Studios
  • School Sporting Events

Do you love music & art? You could feature…

  • Art Galleries
  • Local Bands
  • Local Artists
  • Festivals
  • Craft/Pottery Studios

Do you value family? You could feature…

  • Schools/School Programs
  • Libraries
  • Family-Friendly Activities in the Area

Do you love animals? You could feature…

  • Local dog parks
  • Pet-Friendly Restaurants/Bars
  • Local Vets
  • Local Animal Shelters

If you really want to go ALL IN on community videos, you can challenge yourself to feature your 30 favorite places in town over 30 days like Craig Veroni. Craig is one of our Real Estate Video Influencer winners who found a creative way to highlight the best parts of his community on social media. He was trained by Jesse Peters, and Michael Thorne of RE Video Studio.

Also keep in mind that you don’t just have to feature places or events, you can specifically feature people as well! Every community has inspiring individuals that your viewers will love learning more about. Craig Veroni has done another series called My Favourite Humans in Vancouver where he showcased different people.

2. Create a List of Specific Businesses to Reach out to

Once you’ve decided on what type of community videos you want to start with, it’s time to pick specific businesses/places/people to feature! When creating your list, we recommend focusing on a specific part of town. Marguerite Martin, a Real Estate Video Influencer winner in the Community Video Category, specializes in downtown Tacoma, instead of trying to cover her whole city. We also recommend keeping an eye on the news channels, papers and bloggers to see what people are talking about!

Pick the top three things you’d like to feature. Figure out who you need to contact for each topic and gather emails. If you can’t decide between a few places or businesses, ask some other people in the community what they’d prefer to see a video feature on. And like we said before, keep an eye on blogs and the news. Though it’s important to be passionate about what you feature, it’s also important that it will spark your viewer’s interest.

3. Reach Out with Video

Now it’s time to see if you’re able to film your community videos at the places you’ve chosen. Depending on what you choose, you’ll need to reach out to the person who owns or runs the establishment. If you have picked something like a park, you could try to find & contact a person through the City Government. If you’ve picked a business, then you’ll need to reach out to the owner and get permission to do a feature.

We think the very best way to reach out is through a video! It’s a great way to introduce yourself and explain what you are wanting to do. BombBomb makes this very easy to do. You could even go to the place you want to feature and record your introduction video there! (If you’d like to try BombBomb free for 2 weeks – click here!)

Not sure what to say in your email or video? We put together a script that we used to reach out to local businesses here in Colorado Springs!

Hi (Owner/Employee Name),
My name is (first name), I’m the (job title) at (company name).
As a real estate agent, I need to establish myself as an expert on our community and a great way to do that is by filming what we call a community video. For this video, I would really love to highlight your establishment, (business name).
INSERT BOMBBOMB VIDEO
My goal is to show off some awesome places in the community. I absolutely love your business, which is why I’m reaching out to you. If possible, I’d like to come by for a couple hours during a slower time and film a quick video with you. My goal is to capture the story of your business – so I’d love to interview you for part of the filming as well.
Let me know if that is something you’d be interested in! We want nothing in return. Our goal is to simply highlight our community on social media.
Sincerely,
(full name)

One last thing to remember is to make it clear that you aren’t asking for money. Ask for nothing in return. Community videos will be an investment on your part but trust us, it is an investment that’s worth it. Community videos establish you as a local expert. They will grow your following and viewership. They will help people connect you with. They will even help you establish relationships with local business owners who may eventually need to buy or sell their home! Ultimately, your community videos should bring you new clients and prospects as you grow your connections and community presence.

4. Plan a Time to Film Your Videos

The business owner might want to meet with you to plan your video. In that case, make sure to set aside time to meet and plan. You may also be able to work things out over email. We estimate most community videos take around 2 hours of filming on location. Try to schedule all your community videos for one day so you can knock them all out at once.

It’s important to pick the best time for the business owner. They likely won’t want you coming during their busiest time of day. Try to go when you won’t be disruptive with your filming and when the business owner/employees will have the most time to talk with you! If you’re filming a lot outside, try to pick a day where the weather will be nice and pick a time where the sun won’t be too harsh.

5. Hire a Videographer

**Note: This is not mandatory! Many of our video influencers shoot their community videos on their cell phones. But if you’re new to filming, a videographer is a good place to start. We jump to our tips on how to do it yourself in the video below.

We suggest using Judy Weiniger’s method of finding videographers. She says, “How I found mine is through searching videographers who do weddings.” Ask around or post something on Facebook asking for good, local wedding videographers. Most weddings are on weekends so these videographers will often be excited to get side jobs like this during the week.

When choosing a videographer, we suggest watching some of their previous videos to make sure their style aligns with what you want! The average wedding videographer gets paid between $1,000 – $2,500 for a day of filming and editing. If that is outside of your budget, we suggest trying to find an aspiring wedding videographer or a film student. They will probably work with you for a lower budget. (Thank you to BombCast Guest & John L. Scott Real Estate Agent, Paul Balzotti, for this tip!)

If you and a coworker or partner are wanting to tackle this project without hiring anyone, it’s doable! Here are some tips from Visual Storyteller, Matt Mead and Content Marketing Specialist, Alexa Franck. They walk through all the gear you need – both the basic setup and the pro setup.

6. Create a Video Outline

Now it’s time to plan out your video so you’re ready for filming! This plan should include a list of video shots you want, questions you’d like to ask the business owner, details you want the community to know, etc. Write down the script of how you want to intro and outro the video. You don’t have to stick strictly to this script, but it’ll keep you on track while filming! While planning your video, plan out the story that it will tell. Every business and person has a story to tell!

Depending on who you hire, you might sit down with your videographer to plan this out. You can also send this plan over to the business owner for them to approve before the filming. It’s always good to have a second pair of eyes (like the business owner or videographer) to look over your plan so you don’t miss any key points. You don’t want to get done filming and then realize a day later that you missed an important shot or piece of information.

It’s also important to plan for how long you want your videos to be. The ideal length of a YouTube Video is 5-10 minutes so you should shoot for getting enough footage to create this length of video.

Here’s an outline example that we used for our community videos:

Carnelian Coffee Community Video Filming Outline
Video Shot: Alexa in front of the coffee shop
Opening Script: “I’m here at Carnelian Coffee Co in Old Colorado City – only a few minutes away from the BombBomb Office! We’re going to go chat with the owner, and hear all about this cozy little spot!”
B-Roll: Alexa walking down the street into the coffee shop
Video Shot: Kate (coffee shop owner) sitting for interview
Interview Questions:
Tell us about the beginning of your coffee shop and what inspired you to start it!
Walk me through what a typical day at the coffee shop looks like for you!
What are some of the best things you serve/best selling drinks?
What do you want people to experience when they come here?
What makes your place unique?
B-Roll: Kate making a cup of coffee, pulling espresso, steaming milk, etc.
Extra B-Roll Shots:
-Shots of the shop interior and decor.
-A pan shot of the inside and outside.
-Shot of two people talking and drinking coffee.

While we were in the shop, we learned that Kate will only sell merchandise from Colorado Businesses. Because of that, we also got some footage of all of the trinkets she sold at Carnelian. It’s important to remain observant as the owner tells their story, and get shots of the amazing details they share!

Once your video is planned, you have the option of coming up with a clever name for your community video series! Here’s a few great names used by our Community Real Estate Video Influencers! See what other community video creators are doing and get some inspiration:

7. ACTION! It’s Time to Film Your Videos

Filming day has come. If you’ve followed each step and taken our advice, you’ll have scheduled to film a couple of places/business for the day. You will want to have a videographer who’s ready to go and knows what shots are needed. You’ll want to have your outline ready. And fortunately, you’ll also have already built a relationship with the business owner or manager through video or meetings so you’ll feel comfortable filming with them!

Things should go smoothly if you’ve planned accordingly. Our main piece of advice at this point is to have fun and enjoy the process! To build interest in your upcoming community videos, you should go LIVE on Facebook or Instagram before wrapping up your day of filming. You can include the business owner and quickly introduce them or give people a sneak peak of the places you’ll be featuring. Consider it a promo video for your community videos! We recommend going live for at least 5 minutes. If you’re worried about taking a video that long, try to prepare an outline for that video as well.

Try to film another promo video apart from going LIVE. When you go live, it’ll just air on Facebook or Instagram. You’ll want a promo video for other social platforms as well. Film a quick intro in front of each place you’re highlighting. In a promo video, you can inform your viewers when the community video will premiere on your social accounts. You can also give people a sneak peak into the things you’ll be talking about in the community videos.

Here are some examples of our promo videos here at BombBomb: BombBomb Facebook Videos

8. Create a Social Media Plan for the Videos

While your videographer is hard at work getting your videos edited, you can start planning out your social strategy. Here’s the distribution process we recommend for your videos!

Short Community Video Promo

General Guidelines:

  • Video Size: 1080 x 1080 pixels
  • Video Length: 1 minute

Where to Post:

  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • LinkedIn
  • Instagram

Short Community Video Teaser

General Guidelines:

  • Video Size: 1080 x 1080 pixels and 1080 x 1920 pixels
  • Video Length: 15-60 Seconds

Where to Post:

  • 30-60 second square teaser on Instagram and Twitter
  • 15 second vertical teaser on Instagram Story

Full Length Community Video

General Guidelines:

  • Video Size: 1080 x 1920 pixels and 1280 x 720 pixels
  • Video Length: 5-10 minutes

Where to post:

  • Vertical on IGTV
  • Horizontal on YouTube

Medium Length Community Video

General Guidelines:

  • Video Size: 1280 x 720 pixels
  • Video Length: 2-3 minutes

Where to post:

  • Facebook
  • LinkedIn

Create an ad budget for promoting your video on Facebook. You need to pay to get views. We suggest creating a Facebook audience that includes people in your area. You can make your lists more specific as well! If you featured a yoga studio, target people who are interested in yoga, a specific yoga studio, etc.

Another great way to help your videos do well on social is to have the business themselves use the video however they want! Let them use it on their website. Let them share it on their social pages. For them, it’s like a free promotional video so they will probably love sharing it. You can ask them to tag you in their posts.

9. See What Your Audience Loves and Give Them More

If you did three different videos and one performed better than the rest, try to replicate what you did. If your video on a coffee shop performed the best, maybe try to feature another coffee shop. Don’t try to cover all the things in your community. Find your niche and stick to it. If you’re planning to do a series, stick to the topic of your series until you have between 5-10 videos. Then start planning your your next series. You’re becoming a community expert!

Here is the community video we did here at BombBomb! We went out and visited a local coffee shop to film our community video. We used a lot of the tips we listed here in this post and the results have been great. Thanks to Kate Firoved and Carnelian Coffee for letting us stop by!

For more helpful tips, visit the BombBomb blog!