Real Clear Software Blog Post
Drone Videos: Bringing hip action to an inanimate building and saving them on RCS
The strides technology has made over the last decade or two are astounding. It really wasn't that long ago that many of us in the commercial real estate industry marveled over the ease of a fax machine, then were awed by email, then websites, then the cloud and the list continues to grow and evolve. The smartphones in most people's pocket could have run the NASA's space program in 1960's, yet why then do so many commercial real estate owners and brokers use and rely on "old school" marketing materials?
When considering the above, it safe to surmise that commercial real estate tends to be one of the lagging industries to embrace new technology, especially when it comes to marketing and referencing the location's image and quality. Marketing for most major commercial real estate projects consists of the same tactics: put up a listing sign, make a nice brochure, place the information in the MLS and hope or wait for the brokers to produce. Yes some brokers are definitely better/more efficient than others or their "special sauce" is more intriguing, but the basics have remained the same and unchanged for decades. In fact many brokers/owners still do not fully utilize the technology at hand, as many multi-million dollar projects don't even have a website or a video presentation, all of which can cost less than the listing signs and hard copy brochures.
Could you ever imagine Apple or Samsung producing a new phone and only placing a billboard outside a store and then offering to email a brochure to a customer when they need it? Maybe phones are more hip in the "marketing world", but in reality they are just glass and metal objects, purchased or leased every other year and used by all businesses - kind of like a building. In order to make their product desirable, Apple's marketing professionals produce short video clips (who hasn't seen a smart commercial in the last 24 hours) with cool background music, users dancing with them, interacting and thus making what is essentially an inanimate object come alive. Thanks to new drone video technology, this kind of marketing can be accomplished for real estate as well.
What better way to bring to life a huge immovable object like a building than to fly around it and offer angles and views that are normally not obtainable. You can figuratively make the building dance compared to its surroundings and show the life around it. Local amenities or access points now appear real and reachable with a simple video scene 'pulling back from the project' showing the action moving around and through it. With the help of drone videos, you can now look down on the project and float around it and film all sides. Couple with it some great background music and creative graphics and you have the making for a picturesque building or property that any person would want to occupy.
Drones now offer real estate marketing an interactive and stimulated approach that was not as readily available just a few years ago. Yes it might have been available through small plane fly overs or by hiring a helicopter, but now it is available to any building owner. Drones are inexpensive, easy to use, offer tremendous flexibility and you can find them just about anywhere. A simple web search will show that most drones cost anywhere from $500 to $1500, a drop in the bucket compared to a multi-million dollar asset's marketing budget. Nearly all drones come either with a camera or a camera mount and most now offer real time Bluetooth video feed. With a smart phone and some video editing software on your phone, you would be shocked at how quickly and easily a drone video can be produced. As for using them, just about anyone, or any kid, that has played X-box or PlayStation, can fly and use one. What is really great about owning a drone and being in control of the video content, is you can keep the marketing fresh. You can highlight projects during the seasonal changes, when new tenants arrive or renovations have been completed. It only makes sense that if a building owner spends millions of dollars on a capital improvement it should be marketed properly and immediately.
The use of drones and short video presentations is likely to see more influence in the commercial restate industry. It won't replace the traditional marketing campaigns but it will greatly enhance them. We are all busy, including our customers, tenants and prospects and we don't have time to wait for long drawn out messages. We want our information quickly, animated and fun to watch - especially the millennials that are growing up with this technology. Short video clip messages, web commercials, and making something that catches the eye of your audience the new means to effectively market real estate projects.
The great thing is, all these videos and images can easily be stored, referenced and utilized through RCS Portfolio platform. RCS Portfolio allows users to upload and link these images for all future reasons, even beyond marketing. It is a great way to reference roof reports, site selections, grounds up keep and more.