Let’s talk about what types of marketing you can do with professional real estate photography once you’ve received your images. After all, having the actual photos taken is only half of the marketing equation. If you want to take your listings to the next level, and if you want to broaden your range of listings or potential clients, you’re going to need to maximize exposure. So without further ado, here are the top twelve tips for taking full advantage of your freshly produced photos.
Include the photographs on printed marketing materials like flyers, pamphlets, door hangers, and postcards. Along with the beautiful photos, be sure to list the major selling points and a description of the home. Great printed materials can entice buyers and increase brand awareness. While I always recommend supporting local print shops, if you’re looking for great service from larger online printers, be sure to check out Uprinting, Vistaprint, and Minted, three companies I’ve used successfully in the past.
Post the hero shot (a dramatic exterior photo taken at twilight or a stunning shot of a beautifully staged room that defines the elegance of the home) and a link to the listing on social media sites like Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter. Even if the posts don’t connect directly with a buyer, sellers will appreciate the outreach and you’ll increase brand awareness among your network of other real estate professionals and potential clients.
Create pinboards on Pinterest highlighting each listing or the best photos of the month. Since Pinterest is a visual platform, it works perfectly with professional real estate photography since you can show off your listing photos to potential buyers and potential sellers who are looking for a listing agent in your area.
Combine the listing photographs with written descriptions that jump off the page, grab the buyer’s attention, and appeal to their emotions. Paint a picture with your descriptions that highlights the beauty of the imagery and tells a story about the home.
Multiple Listing Services:
Add the photographs to the local MLS site complete with all descriptive details and other important features of the home. Keeping with the theme of your written description, upload the images in an order that tells a story about the house, starting with the front exterior shot, followed by a shot walking through the front door, and then moving in a cohesive way through the home and property.
Third-Party Real Estate Sites:
Use the photographs for a featured listing on the various third-party real estate websites like Zillow, Redfin, or Realtor.com. Also include the photos on your broker’s website if it has a specific section to highlight or feature your listings.
Virtual Tour Slideshow Video:
Use the real estate photographs to create a virtual tour slideshow video of the listing. While many buyers prefer to quickly rifle through the photos at their own pace, a virtual tour with music can set your listings apart when you’re hunting for new clients. Here’s an older video that shows you how to use Picasa—a free image program—to make your own basic slideshow virtual tour video. It’s not as amazing as one you’d likely get from your professional photographer, but if you’re on a tight budget it may be good enough.
Blog posts on your own blog (or even a Tumblr page) that include photos of your listings can help make your marketing stand out—just don’t make your blog a sales page where you’re really trying to push people to buy the houses you’re currently selling. Instead, use the professional real estate photography to elevate the useful or enhance and valuable written content you’re providing to your clients.
Include the best photos in your email newsletters. While you don’t want to spam your clients’ inboxes, a few emails a month (outside of daily MLS updates for interested buyers) never hurt anyone. To really wow your clients, combine stunning photographs with a strong subject line and call-to-action. Don’t have an email list set up through any of the services you currently use? Check out some of the popular mailing list companies like Mailchimp and Constant Contact.
Unique Property Website:
Create a unique website (I use Namecheap for my domain name needs) for each of your listings to promote the property. Set up a website for each property with the property address as the domain name, so if you are selling a home at 123 Main Street, you would register the domain name http://www.123mainstreet.com or something like that. On the property’s website, along with the photos of the interior and exterior of the home you should include a map, a floor plan, local photos of the neighborhood, and a description of the property.
Local Neighborhood Images:
Make use of local images that show more than just the home. After all, what’s more important for many buyers than location, location, location? Show off the neighborhood with a selection of beautiful local photographs. Showcase the development where the house located, local town landmarks, and beautiful parks. Side note: Did you know that the term, “location, location, location,” has been in use since at least 1926?
Home Portrait in a Care Package:
Make a care package for the buyer or seller and give it to them after closing as a thank you gift. It’s a great way to make sure sellers or buyers remember your name (and hopefully share your info with their friends and family). Include a high quality print of a “portrait” of the home. Here are a few other things to consider. Costco memberships. Movie tickets or tickets to a live theatrical performance. Sports tickets. Restaurant gift cards. Wine or your client’s alcohol of choice. Ready to use “gotta have” items, or other things to help your move out of or into their home.
Have any other unique ways to take advantage of the professional real estate photography you purchased for your listing? Feel free to share them below in the comments section and I’ll update this post to add the best ones.