A Travel Writer’s Advice for Real Estate Agents on YouTube

I’ve now written hundreds of travel articles for various cities around this great country. As part of my research, I watch YouTube channels for real estate agents to see what they have to say about the city. My television management background kicks in when I watch some of the videos and I cringe. I’m actually taking time away from work to help out anyone who is new to YouTube.

Stop with the Stage Fright

Some of you look downright uncomfortable on camera. You don’t have the words, you fill with “ummss” and “ahhhs.” You look like a terrorist is pointing a gun to your head and making you talk. If you aren’t comfortable on camera, GET comfortable on camera or find someone in your office who is. Unfortunately, the world is literally now a stage with all the social platforms and we need to be authentic, yet dynamic on camera.

See if a local news person or theatre performer will help you with speech patterns, ad libbing, reading a prompter, etc. They might do it for a small fee or in exchange for real estate advice? Just get some help. I feel so bad watching some of you pushing through something you clearly hate doing.

Get. A. Microphone!

Some videos are so hard to hear I have to turn my volume up to 100% to just make a little bit of recognition of your words. Get a lavalier mic or a stick mic so your words are being heard. Don’t trust the mic on your phone or camera.

One error all people tend to make with audio is that they judge it by how they can hear it. You need to judge it by the audio levels. Yes, it’s a little technical, but every editing system has a way to balance or “normalize” audio levels so you don’t sound like you’re whispering or shouting.

A quick YouTube search will give you a plethora of videos showing you how to do this (with great audio, to boot!)

Slow Down

Those of you who know your area are great at talking about it sometimes. Too much, other times. If you are rambling through a list of items, make sure your audience can keep up. If I think you talk too fast you MUST talk way faster than the average person because I talk fast too!

Don’t Ding Yourself

Yes, it’s cool when you can pop up a reminder to subscribe with a ding or a bell noise, but if that’s happening when you’re in mid-sentence, it’s going to make it so hard to understand what you area saying. Since many of you don’t opt for closed captioning, or let crappy captioning fill the bottom of the screen, I have no idea what you just said. In an effort to get more people to follow your content, you are ruining the value of the content by covering up critical words.

I actually heard one that went like this “The worst part of living in XXX is **DINGGGGGG!**”. ARGH!

Don’t Ramble

I get it. Southern California has great weather and no seasons. You don’t have to say that 5 different ways over and over again. If you are part of a duo doing real estate videos, don’t try to “one up” the other one by repeating what they said in your own way, or disagreeing with them. Figure out the cadence before you hit RECORD to get the best performance. If you feel yourself rambling, stop recording and start over. Nothing a quick edit can’t fix.

Trapped in a Car

Remember, when people choose a real estate agent, potential clients are wondering “Do I want to be trapped in a car with this person for hours?”

You are helping them with one of the biggest investments of their lives. How you present yourself on camera might be their first glimpse of you. Present the best possible YOU.

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