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Video Hot Topic at AEI MLS In Your Face Session

Mar 24, 2009 Michael Wurzer

I had a lot of fun being on the “MLS In Your Face” panel at the Association Executive Institute (AEI) meetings in Colorado Springs yesterday.  Marilyn Wilson from the WAV Group was the moderator and the panelists were me, Frank Llosa of Frankly Realty and FranklyMLS.com, and Errol Samuelson, President of Realtor.com.

Marilyn led us through a lot of interesting topics, but one of the topics that stood out for me was video.  Errol mentioned that some research Realtor.com has done indicated that 70% of consumers would be more likely to list with an agent if they used video as part of their marketing effort.  In contrast, only .33% (that’s one-third of one percent) of agents use video.

We released the ability to link videos to listings about 15 months ago, and I knew that Errol’s numbers weren’t too far off but I wanted to confirm it when I got back.  Across all of our 110 MLS systems, .26% of the active listings have videos attached.  That’s one-quarter of one percent.  In contrast, 9.87% of active listings have virtual tours attached.

One member of the audience asked how they could promote use of video to their membership.  Both Errol and Frank showed small video cameras they said made it very easy to create good quality videos and post them to the web for viewing.  Errol also mentioned Realtor.com has a good how-to video on how to create good property tour videos.  (Perhaps he’ll comment and give us the link.)

My suggestion was one I’ve made before here on the FBS Blog.  Associations and MLSs can encourage use of video with one simple step: Make video a category on the hot sheet.  If new videos were a category on the hot sheet, you’d see an instant increase in video use.  Promise.  Of course, quality video is important, too.  So perhaps the MLS could go one step further and put the videos on a public facing site and allow voting on them.  Overall, I think the hot sheet is a compelling tool both inside the MLS and outside to promote quality content in the MLS.