On July 18th, 2017 I was surprised to see that a feature story in a real estate industry news site was their top story…
From Inman News:
Lyons, Colorado, is a town about an hour northwest of Denver and about half an hour outside of Boulder — which makes it an ideal place to buy a home for anyone who works in the big city but wants to “get away from it all” every day.
So when real estate broker Laura Levy landed a listing in Stone Canyon — a quiet enclave within Lyons — she wanted to capture the feeling of escaping the pressures of everyday life in her listing video. “I wanted to do something that felt a little bit like a commercial and a little bit like a movie trailer,” she said, “representing the best points of the property without being obvious by stating all the specs. I wanted to convey a feeling about the property.”
The result is “Top Secret in Stone Canyon,” a listing video that tells the story of a husband leaving for a grueling day of getting his identity compromised and hand-to-hand combat with another spy at the “office” while his wife spends her day working at home.
“I love any kind of inventive marketing,” Levy said. “I’ve been in real estate marketing for over 20 years, and one thing that frustrates me is we tend to copy each other and a lot of things feel very templated.”
So she deliberately looked for a videographer who didn’t have any real estate experience. “I didn’t want anybody with any preconceived notions about what a good real estate video was,” she said. Ryan DeCesari at Ascent Multimedia fit her bill; Levy was familiar with some of his work for Eldora Mountain Resort and thought his skills shooting outdoors scenes would come in handy.
Stretching out with other video projects
“We wanted to show in a comical way that although parts of Colorado — especially the suburban neighborhoods — are popular and some have become congested, this little community is awesome because it’s kind of off the beaten path but it’s also near everything in Lyons as well.
“I wanted to convey the idea that no matter how tough your day is, you can come home to this sanctuary,” she added.
And even though the wife is spending a relatively relaxing day at home — dipping into the bathtub while he’s grappling near a river, for example — the end of the video gives a little hint that her rough day is about to manifest.
“I’d love to do a sequel that shows her day in the life,” Levy said. “We wanted her working from home so someone could be enjoying the property, but we also wanted to put her on an equal playing field.”
She noted that because the homeowners were in the process of moving, “there were rooms that didn’t have furniture and rooms that were kind of messy,” so she wanted to focus strictly on a few key areas in the house and the neighborhood itself.
In “A New Dawn,” a video marketing project for a four-acre piece of land (sans house) that Levy has listed, she wanted to capture “what it would feel like to wake up on the property each morning,” she said.
So her videographers got up before the crack of dawn so they could be on the land as the sun rose, and that visual is set to audio captured at the property in the early morning hours.
And last week, Levy released a video for a log cabin that uses animated postcards to help showcase the lifestyle and perks of the area — plus camera work that lovingly lingers on the details that make this home special. (Anyone who’s a fan of log homes will appreciate the caulking and joint work in this one.)
Levy says that she tries to use “every kind of technology that makes sense” to market her listings. “We always do drone photos, and we always do Matterport, too,” she noted. “So I felt like we needed to do something extra.
“I just think as a buyer you must be so tired of seeing the same thing,” she added. “Realtors are paid to be creative and make a property stand out and to demonstrate the best of living there, and I feel like video is the way to do that.”