Real Estate Blogs and Research
Updated: Dec 1, 2018
I recently had an online conversation with an agent who swears that the use of real estate video for agents is the end-all, be-all, and he has the stats (from his own site) to prove it.
My research on video for real estate says that videos addressed to homebuyers aren’t all that.
In fact, when asked how they prefer to get their real estate information, buyers prefer website content (it came in first) and video came in last – behind open houses, according to your association’s research.
So, who is right?
Is it the guy who wrote a recent article, titled “Google Loves Video?” He’s pretty persuasive, citing studies that show “A video is 50 times more likely to appear on the first page of search results than a traditional web page.”
That just doesn’t jibe with reality. See for yourself.
Enter any real estate term that a buyer may use into Google. How many of the results are in video form?
The author also quoted an SEO Moz study as well, telling us that “Blog posts that include video content attract 3 times more inbound links than posts without video.”
Thankfully, he linked to both studies so I could go take a look at them.
Both studies are from a decade ago. As you know, in the tech world, that’s a lifetime.
So, why did he have to dig so far back to get stats that support the use of video over text?
The guy works for a video company, so he has an obvious agenda
The very first thing to do, then, when researching the veracity of statistics is to learn about the author. When there is an agenda, such as the aforementioned, I distrust everything the author says. So, I dig into the statistics – how old are they? Who did the study?
As to why he didn’t use more recent stats to support his premise, it’s because they don’t exist. And, that’s the biggest issue, although there are several others you should consider as well.
I did walk away from this in love, head over heels, with Nate Elliot at forrester.com. The guy from the Google Loves Video piece linked to one of his articles. He ignored Mr. Elliot's disclaimer at the top of the article:
“As much as I appreciate seeing this research continue to circulate online, I'd like to note that these findings are now almost 4 years old and are almost certainly no longer accurate.
Just as you wouldn't rely upon Nielsen ratings from January 2009 to tell you what's popular on TV today, nor can the data below tell you how Google is handling search results today.”
It’s far too easy to blindly accept a statistic when it agrees with your assumptions. For instance, some of NAR’s highly touted stats about FSBOs are not only outdated but they’ve been debunked by university studies.
A Stanford University Economics Department study, for instance, found “no evidence that the use of a broker leads to higher average selling prices. . .”
Then there’s the study by the American Economic Review, a couple of years later, that showed that FSBOs who used FSBO websites made “at least as much for their homes” as did home sellers using an agent.
If you find yourself agreeing with a statistic because it agrees with your assumptions, it’s time to dig deeper. Even if it hurts.
Whether you’re reading a news story or an industry piece, RESEARCH is your best friend.
And, when it comes to your real estate content, the only good research is recent.