Social media is always changing.
One of the latest changes is the advent of live video-streaming apps - and one of the most common is an app called Periscope.
And I'm going to let you in on a little secret...
Periscope is a great way for real estate agents to efficiently and effectively grow their business.
I know this from experience.
Let me show you how:
What is Periscope?
As mentioned above, Periscope is a live video-streaming app.
It combines the video aspect of YouTube with the live engagement aspect of Twitter.
This means that anyone who has an account can host a live video stream through the camera on their smartphone (Apple or Android).
Here is a quick video that shows you what it's like.
So here are the basics:
The first time you open the app, you will be taken through how the app works.
Eventually, it will ask you to set up an account.
If you have a Twitter account, then the setup will take seconds. (If not, then you can use your phone number to set one up.)
Once your account is setup, you will be able to stream or watch other streams.
Streaming is essentially like shooting a video, except that it’s live.
It’s live from beginning to end - so keep that in mind when you start out.
Some options you can choose before you hit the "Start Broadcast" button include titling your stream, adding your location (great for real estate!) and posting it to Twitter.
You can also make the stream public or private.
If you are not going to stream a video - or "scope" as it is called - then you can watch others who are streaming.
Navigate through the app to the TV icon or search for specific content.
One other thing about watching Scopers:
You can do this through Twitter too.
This will come up later in The Real Estate Blueprint for Periscope, so I will rewrite this...Periscope broadcasts can be viewed outside of Periscope on Twitter.
This also means one can watch a scope on their mobile device, a laptop, or a PC.
There are some great features which users can use when using Periscope.
The first is the privacy settings.
This feature allows you to limit who can see your broadcast before you go live.
(As an agent, I am not sure if you want to use this feature as you do want maximum exposure for your brand and your listing.)
Another great feature is the replay of a broadcast.
Periscope keeps your broadcast for a full 24 hours. I see this as a great way for Realtors to add some exclusivity to their business.
Interactive features on Periscope include "hearts" and chat.
These are done by other people who are watching the broadcast via the Periscope app on their mobile device. Viewers can tap on the screen to "heart" your broadcast, which is essentially a "like" or "favorite" on the Periscope platform.
As you build up your hearts, you will begin to rank higher on the "Most Loved" list.
Chat is an even more interactive way for viewers to watch the broadcast.
With the chat feature, viewers can ask questions and make comments while watching. This can be extremely helpful if you are interacting with someone on a broadcast.
To review, the features of periscope they are:
- Privacy Settings
So how do I make money with Periscope?
Periscope is not going away anytime soon, so you should really think about integrating it with your marketing.
I see Periscope as a tool for agents who are working with buyers.
I do not see it as a lead generation tool.
However, I can see leads residually trickling through the platform.
I have developed a great way to build your Periscope acumen, using what I call The Real Estate Blueprint for Periscope.
The Real Estate Blueprint for Periscope
First, you need to practice, then you need to develop your process.
This is the way for real estate agents to leverage buyers.
Take 2...and 3... and 4...
You must practice your Periscope demeanor, and the best way to do this is to create short video clips outside of Periscope.
Because of the unique feature of Periscope (a live video-streaming service) one cannot simply practice on the app without it going live and streaming to their followers.
I would recommend developing an opening and a closing script.
For most of my videos, I simply introduce myself and the topic covered as my opening.
For the purpose of Periscope, I would recommend your script include your name, brokerage, and property type.
"Hi this is Chris Webb with XYZ Realty and I am holding a digital open house at 15 maple....”
My closing is always the same basic structure.
"This is Chris Webb with XYZ Realty, 520-240-5736. Thank you for watching."
On a brief side note here, these two elements of videos are the two which most agents who are starting out struggle with.
Often times they start off a little rough, go through their key points much better and flame out at the end.
I literally give agents homework in writing and memorizing these two critical parts of video production.
Agents typically know their industry.
But they rarely know how to start a video and end a video.
Sometimes I ask agents to shoot me 10 videos before they come into our office with just the intro and closing.
This trains them to respond when the brain finishes going through the points to be presented.
On Periscope, this training is even more important because of the live streaming aspect.
You cannot retake on Periscope.
The YouTube Effect
Did you know the first video online was way back in 1993?
If we were to look at this differently, video has been around longer than Facebook - which was started in 2004.
YouTube came out a year later in 2005.
This is significant because it paved the way for applications like Periscope as a training ground for future producers.
Sometimes referred to as the ‘YouTube effect’, there are several things agents who are using periscope can attribute to YouTube as a quasi-training/experience outlet.
These aspects include the following:
- Simplification of the publishing process for videos
- Free video hosting
- Enable video to easily be embedded on websites and blogs
- Target marketing with videos
How to Leverage Buyers on Periscope
Leveraging buyers is a new concept in real estate.
We often hear from seasoned brokers about leveraging listings because one listing can literally bring in several buyers off of the marketing of the home.
Leveraging buyers is a concept I developed because of the changing nature of the industry.
Can a homebuyer take several days off work to preview homes?
This is why home sites like Zillow and Realtor.com are so prevalent.
Buyers can easily log on and see several homes for sale in the 2-6 minute time frames they have free while at work or running errands.
We all know buyers are currently doing this.
So why not give them exclusive viewing of a particular home?
Periscope allows for this.
Once you have practiced your intro and closing, you are now ready to begin leveraging buyers.
You do this by setting a date to preview a few homes, give yourself time to travel to each home and to practice a walk through.
For example, if you have three listings in the same subdivision then you can set times at 3:00, 3:15, and 3:30.
This gives you time to do a brief timed walk through, shoot live, and travel to the next home.
The next step is to send an email to all of your buyers and explain how they can attend.
The best way is to have them follow you on Periscope.
However, the most convenient way would be to have them monitor your twitter feed a few minutes before the set time.
I will be holding a digital open house on Wednesday at 3:00 for 123 Maple, 3:15 at 456 Oak, and 3:30 at 789 Cherry. I would love for you to attend. I chose this house based on your search criteria and I wanted to provide you an opportunity to preview them with me from the comfort of your desk at work. I know your time is valuable and this will literally take only 2 minutes and if you have any further questions you can text me immediately upon its completion. You can view these digital open houses on my twitter page https://twitter.com/tucsonchrisRE.
Now you have the time set and the audience’s interest.
Twitter owns Periscope, so posting to your Twitter feed is seamless and it should be a simple way for those who are not on either Periscope or Twitter to view your live broadcasts.
The next logical question from agents is…
Do any real estate agents use Periscope?
Yes, in fact there is a great agent here in Arizona who has done this with great success:
The Phoenix Real Estate Guy, Dean Ouellette.
This is what he has to say:
“When I am out doing showings I either show up 10 minutes early, or I stay for a few minutes after my clients leave, I fire up periscope and do a walk through of the house. I only do this with vacant homes, never with occupied houses.”
In fact, he even leverages it with his showings!!
This agent is not only seasoned in the field of real estate, but also seasoned in the field of social media.
You need to start small at first first.
And then you can build up your acumen over time with each video and each live shot.
Periscope is a great way for Realtors to leverage their buyer business.
You can use it to differentiate yourself from other Realtors and - if done properly - will lead to direct sales as well!
In the Real Estate Blueprint above, you will have the framework of exactly what you can do to use this tool to leverage buyers in your business.
What are your thoughts? Comment below!
Chris Webb is a former Realtor who is known throughout Tuscon because of his unique way to analyze an industry and create unique marketing strategies for real estate agents based on how they will be viewed online. Click here to learn more.