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How You Can Make A Video Blog – cheap, quick & easy

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A while ago I decided that I wanted a web site that was just for my videos.

I have video embedded in blog posts on my main real estate site, but I wanted a clean looking page where people could go and just watch my content. A video-blog, or vlog, as the cool kids call it.

As of yesterday, I have one:

a screengrab of my Video Site

a screengrab of my Video Site

Before I built this, I did a bit of googling, and all the nice ‘video’ wordpress themes were anywhere from $37  to $150.
I have nothing against premium themes – I use Agentpress, and Canvas by woothemes for different sites – but this was more of a weekend project that I didn’t want to put cash into (yet – I don’t invest cash in a site until it’s producing revenue).
 
Plus, I want to show my friends how to duplicate it, and free makes that easier.
 
After scouring the web for literally dozens of minutes, I found a plug-in called Tubepress, and I gave it a whirl:
Tubepress WordPress plugin for online video 

Easy install, and the control panel was simple enough for me. So far so good. 

Tubepress allows you to embed youtube videos, and you have the option to select videos by playlist, keyword, and more. You can display all of your videos, or all videos (by all users) with “Austin Real Estate” in the title. 

On my vlog, I am displaying 3 separate channels – Business Advice, Commercial Real Estate, and videos about Kitchener Waterloo (my local market).  I am able to embed a separate playlist on each page, and each page is just a simple-to-add page in wordpress.

Tubepress, so far, gives me the ability to have a fully functional vlog without paying for a premium vlog template. I tinkered around with a few free themes which looked nice, but I settled on Canvas by Woothemes, which I’m using on another blog (and I own the rights to reuse it, so its not costing me $. I also like how the free versions of Titan and Vigilance look for a vlog like this) .

I really like the layout – what do you think?

Plugin allows you to easily display videos

Ben’s Action Plan

In this era of new media, social media, web 3.0 – or “talking to people” as I like to call it, you want to have a vlog (and a blog, and a twitter, and a facebook, and a …. you get the point. Be easy to find!) where people can sit and watch you for hours (eventually. It’s ok if its only for minutes to start with). 

This is really easy for you to implement in your business. Here is what I would do if I were you:

1) Buy a flip camera, a camcorder, or a webcam

2) Time block 20 minutes twice a week to create short videos.  On market conditions; on mortgage rates; on new listings; on how to win multiple offers; on that hot new restaurant in your area that just opened up.  Just like a blog post, make vlogs that your potential clients will find interesting and valuable.

Be less concerned with the quality of the production, and more concerned with the quality of information.

3) Upload the videos to youtube.  If you have a google/gmail login, you have access to youtube (because google owns it). If not, sign up (it’s free).

4) Organize your videos into playlists on youtube

5) Start a new blog, or install tubepress plug-in on your existing wordpress blog

6) Make a post/page and embed tubepress in it (you just type [tubepress] – its that easy).  I have mine as the only blog post on BenjaminBach.TV, so its what people see when they come to the site. On another blog, its a page on an existing blog (see here) that you can click on.

7) Let people know about it online and offline, just like any other site you want to promote.

8 ) Make GREAT content (that’s the killer app)

(UPDATE: I’m hearing from #SXSW via gingerw that you should also have PubSubHubbub installed on your video blog.  Google it, like I am now 🙂

Let me know how you make out; I’d love to hear tips you have, themes you’re using, and plug-ins that are making your life easier. I just put my vlog up yesterday, so I’m as eager as anyone to learn 🙂

Come and find me on twitter @benjaminbach to let me know that you liked this article (and especially if you didn’t, but you gotta tell me why) and what you’d like me to to expand upon.

Benjamin Bach is a REALTOR with Keller Williams Realty in Kitchener Waterloo, Canada (home of the Blackberry) and shows people how they can avoid a mediocre retirement by building wealth through smart Real Estate Investments. You can find out more at Kitchener-Waterloo-Real-Estate-Investments.com

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26 Comments

26 Comments

  1. Stephanie Crawford

    March 15, 2010 at 2:02 pm

    Cool. Thanks for the tip. I’ve just made a page with Tubepress. https://stephaniecrawford.net/blog/video/ Right now it’s showing all three of my playlists: listings, blog posts, and personal. I’d like to filter out the personal vids but haven’t quite figured it out. I suppose I must move them to a new user id.

    • Benjamin Bach

      March 17, 2010 at 10:10 pm

      Stephanie, your corgi-husky is adorable. my wife grew up with corgis, and we have a samoyed now. cute!

      RE: tubepress, in the documentation, which I found by googling, it lays out how to show only the playlist you want:

      [tubepress mode=”playlist” playlistValue=”6813408AE8D50E6F”] where the “6813408AE8D50E6F” is the end of the url link youtube gives your playlists

      Let me know if that works

  2. Kevin Baker

    March 15, 2010 at 2:14 pm

    Another Great Post Ben! Site looks great and definitly a good idea. I have the video’s embedded in my site usually with some written copy but this idea is just another way to get the word out there. Keep up the great work!

  3. Benjamin Bach

    March 15, 2010 at 2:15 pm

    Thanks Kevin, I appreciate you
    written copy is very important; i’m going to implement that on the ‘channels’ pages by linking to relevant articles, and perhaps an excerpt.

  4. coolsprings

    March 15, 2010 at 3:11 pm

    There are several agents that have started video blogging around the area. Only one of them has really started doing it professionally. Most of them are still hacking it up with Flip Mino cameras.

    • Benjamin Bach

      March 16, 2010 at 2:33 pm

      I’m actually a fan of the Flip cams, although mine is first gen (not the sweet HD ones). What’s your beef with them?
      It’s been my experience that people want good content, moreso than slick production (although well made things are good!)

    • Nashville Grant

      March 16, 2010 at 3:52 pm

      I agree, a Flip camera + no editing skills can equal a poor representation of yourself…not that Ben’s are like that at all.

      • Benjamin Bach

        March 17, 2010 at 10:07 pm

        an expensive camera + no editing skills can look crappy too
        but
        a cheap camera + no editing skills + killer content can = many happy clients

        • Nashville Grant

          March 17, 2010 at 10:10 pm

          That’s totally true too. Maybe I’m just too ugly for the camera!

          • Benjamin Bach

            March 17, 2010 at 10:13 pm

            I highly doubt that. Most of us are just camera shy. I watch myself, and I cringe -and we can all see how good looking I am.

            Feel confident giving info, just like you would to a client. Pretend you’re talking to a client, what would you tell them?

  5. Justin Boland

    March 15, 2010 at 4:36 pm

    Great content, man, thank you. This was very timely and very well done.

  6. Benjamin Bach

    March 15, 2010 at 4:39 pm

    Thanks Justin, I appreciate you
    How can I help you grow your business this year?

  7. Ken Brand

    March 15, 2010 at 10:15 pm

    This is wow-worthy work. Simple to follow and supremely actionable. This is very helpful. Thanks.

  8. Chad Bergman

    April 1, 2010 at 12:43 pm

    Great App. I’ll integrate it into both of my WP websites.
    MyDenverHouse.com
    LivinginRoxborough.com

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Austin

Austin tops the list of best places to buy a home

When looking to buy a home, taking the long view is important before making such a huge investment – where are the best places to make that commitment?

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Looking at the bigger picture

(REALUOSO.COM) – Let us first express that although we are completely biased about Texas (we’re headquartered here, I personally grew up here), the data is not – Texas is the best. That’s a scientific fact. There’s a running joke in Austin that if there is a list of “best places to [anything],” we’re on it, and the joke causes eye rolls instead of humility (we’re sore winners and sore losers in this town).

That said, SelfStorage.com dug into the data and determined that the top 12 places to buy a home are currently Texas and North Carolina (and Portland, I guess you’re okay too or whatever).

They examined the nerdiest of numbers from the compound annual growth rate in inflation-adjusted GDP to cost premium, affordability, taxes, job growth, and housing availability.

“Buying a house is a big decision and a big commitment,” the company notes. “Although U.S. home prices have risen in the long term, the last decade has shown that path is sometimes full of twists, turns, dizzying heights and steep, abrupt falls. Today, home prices are stabilizing and increasing in most areas of the U.S.”

Click here to continue reading the list of the 12 best places to buy a home…

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Housing News

Average age of houses on the rise, so is it now better or worse to buy new?

With aging housing in America, are first-time buyers better off buying new or existing homes? The average age of a home is rising, as is the price of new housing, so a shift could be upon us.

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aging housing inventory

aging housing inventory

The average home age is higher than ever

(REALUOSO.COM) – In a survey from the Department of Housing and Urban Development American Housing Survey (AHS), the median age of homes in the United States was 35 years old. In Texas, homes are a bit younger with the median age between 19 – 29 years. The northeast has the oldest homes, with the median age between 50 – 61 years. In 1985, the median age of a home was only 23 years.

With more houses around 40 years old, the National Association of Realtors asserts that homeowners will have to undertake remodeling and renovation projects before selling unless the home is sold as-is, in which case the buyer will be responsible to update their new residence. Even homeowners who aren’t selling will need to consider remodeling for structural and aesthetic reasons.

Prices of new homes on the rise

Newer homes cost more than they used to. The price differential between new homes and older homes has increased from 10 percent traditionally to around 37 percent in 2014. This is due to rising construction costs, scarcity of lots, and a low inventory of new homes that doesn’t meet the demand.

Click here to continue reading this story…

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Housing News

Are Realtors the real loser in the fight between Zillow Group and Move, Inc.?

The last year has been one of dramatic and rapid change in the real estate tech sector, but Realtors are vulnerable, and we’re worried.

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zillow move

zillow move

Why Realtors are vulnerable to these rapid changes

(REALUOSO.COM) – Corporate warfare demands headlines in every industry, but in the real estate tech sector, a storm has been brewing for years, which in the last year has come to a head. Zillow Group and Move, Inc. (which is owned by News Corp. and operates ListHub, Realtor.com, TopProducer, and other brands) have been competing for a decade now, and the race has appeared to be an aggressive yet polite boxing match. Last year, the gloves came off, and now, they’ve drawn swords and appear to want blood.

Note: We’ll let you decide which company plays which role in the image above.

So how then, does any of this make Realtors the victims of this sword fight? Let’s get everyone up to speed, and then we’ll discuss.

1. Zillow poaches top talent, Move/NAR sues

It all started last year when the gloves came off – Move’s Chief Strategy Officer (who was also Realtor.com’s President), Errol Samuelson jumped ship and joined Zillow on the same day he phoned in his resignation without notice. He left under questionable circumstances, which has led to a lengthy legal battle (wherein Move and NAR have sued Zillow and Samuelson over allegations of breach of contract, breach of fiduciary duty, and misappropriation of trade secrets), with the most recent motion being for contempt, which a judge granted to Move/NAR after the mysterious “Samuelson Memo” surfaced.

Salt was added to the wound when Move awarded Samuelson’s job to Move veteran, Curt Beardsley, who days after Samuelson left, also defected to Zillow. This too led to a lawsuit, with allegations including breach of contract, violation of corporations code, illegal dumping of stocks, and Move has sought restitution. These charges are extremely serious, but demanded slightly less attention than the ongoing lawsuit against Samuelson.

2. Two major media brands emerge

Last fall, the News Corp. acquisition of Move, Inc. was given the green light by the feds, and this month, Zillow finalized their acquisition of Trulia.

…Click here to continue reading this story…

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