Vail Valley Realtor tries Web video sales pitch
EAGLE COUNTY When real estate sales are slow, brokers start looking for an edge. Ed Swinford thinks he may have found one.Swinford, a longtime broker with Slifer, Smith & Frampton, was in Scottsdale, Ariz., not long ago and discovered the work of Andrew Beneze, the owner of NextEdge Video, a company that shoots high-definition video tours of expensive real estate, then puts that video on the Internet. Seeing Benezes work, Swinford decided to hire Beneze to do profiles of three properties he has listed locally, two at Bachelor Gulch and one at Belle Terre, a new project in Edwards.Its very costly to do compared to what Id usually do for marketing, Swinford said. Im anxious to see what kind of results we get.Swinford said hes getting more and more first contacts on listings from the Internet, so it may be time to put more than just still photos on the Web.Beneze, a former TV news photographer, does more than just shoot some video and put it on the Web.We do it like and HGTV show (on cable TV), Beneze said. The videos are edited, scripted and narrated to show the property in its best light. That work has earned Benezes company a local Emmy Award nomination in the Scottsdale market.Luxury property deserves more than a few photos, Beneze said.And the approach seems to work. In the current market, one of Benezes big clients in Scottsdale has sold three homes that had NextEdge video profiles.People in the second home market will often look closely at sales materials before coming to look at property, Beneze said. People can really get a feel for the homes even before they visit, he said.Another advantage to video, Beneze said, is that Web pages with video content will usually show be listed higher up in Internet search engines.This is Benezes first work in the Vail Valley, and he said he feels lucky to be working with someone like Ed. The feeling is mutual.Its just extraordinary quality, Swinford said of Benezes videos.And, while Swinford is using these videos as a way to stand out in a sluggish market, he believes he may be onto something even when the market turns around again.I have every optimistic view of the market returning to normal, Swinford said. Im trying to position myself for when it does.The Web, he said, is probably the place to do that, and moving pictures simply tell a better story.Brochures really dont seem that important any more, he said.Business Editor Scott N. Miller can be reached at 748-2930, or email@example.com.