New, Inexpensive Video Opportunities Explode For Small Businesses (Including Hyperlapse)

This article was originally published on Geek Estate Blog:

If you haven’t tried out Instagram’s new Hyperlapse app (and your Facebook feed isn’t already full of your friends’ time lapse videos), stop reading this article, get the app, and try it out right now.

My first reaction to this app was that its ability to shoot a time lapse video from a mobile phone was really interesting, but its ability to stabilize video through its programming that constantly monitors the phone’s gyroscope was the really useful feature.  Steve Pacinelli at Tech Savvy agent beat me to it, but I think that most people will come to see this stabilization as significantly more useful for shooting real-time real estate/home tours than a time lapse.  The ability to use this stabilization in other functions will continue to make mobile video production more and more professional.

In the past few months I’ve seen more new video products created for small businesses and real estate agents than I’ve seen in years before.  Here are a few links that run the gamut from creating your own videos, to hosting them for video SEO purposes, and for displaying them in an attractive fashion on your website:

3rd Party Video Hosting

Video hosting services have been around for a while, but more are creating hosting pricing packages that are in reach of a real estate agent.  SproutVideo is one of those services that we’ve personally used and been impressed with.  The strategy behind using your own video hosting service is to maximize video SEO.  Submitting sitemaps to the search engines tells them your video resides on your own website, and points the traffic there.  There’s a lot of literature on this, but the simple takeaway is that when your YouTube video outranks your website in search results, 99% of the time people will watch your video on Youtube and then leave.  In many cases, “owning” your videos and keeping them on your website will result in better conversion of traffic, even if the total traffic numbers are lower.

Video Hosting and Display Channels

Tagible has created a platform for hosting your videos, but also displaying them as a channel that can be housed on your own website as opposed to on YouTube.  They’ve got a nice interface for uploading and adding content, and one of their biggest strengths is the tie-in to pre-made video libraries.  As an example, they created a channel for me that displays my team’s videos, and also pulls in real estate videos from 3rd party sources as well as branded videos like those from Coldwell Banker.  It’s a real kick-start for someone who doesn’t have a lot of video content yet, and it’s very attractive.

Rebranding of Video Libraries

What a lot of busy folks are looking for is simply a video library that’s ready for their customers to view, with their own contact information added to it.  I bumped into Bill Kerbox at Inman Connect in San Francisco, and his company is working on a product to do just that for agents.  They have a standard set of videos about the usual questions and topics that come up in conversation or prospecting for agents, and agents can have their own marketing/branding, contact info, and calls-to-action added to each video.  They’re displayed right on the agent’s website, so the traffic stays within the agent’s sphere.  This might not appeal to those looking to do unique local videos, but it’s certainly a fast way to start a potential contact-generation video campaign, and could be tied in to listing prospecting fairly easily.  Here’s an example from an agent in Southern California.

Building the All-In-One Mobile Video App:  WrapVideo

WrapVideo logo
I’ve been imagining what the perfect small business mobile video app would be for some time.  I started planning it out a couple of years ago, but as most entrepreneurs with real jobs on the side do, I never got around to finding someone to build it.

It would have the ability to blend photos, video clips, music, and audio like Videolicious. A real estate agent or small business would simply have an intro and outro image uploaded to their phone, and it would allow them to add video clips, and produce the video.

What didn’t exist until now, was the stabilization to make the video look somewhat professional.  I experimented with Luma in the past, but now that Hyperlapse has set the standard, the reality is here to integrate that stabilization into a Videolicious-style app.

Finally, the app would need an integrated video hosting service to maximize the video SEO.  With an integrated hosting service, the business person would shoot, edit, add music, voice it over, upload to hosting, and potentially even plunk the video down right on their website from the palm of their hand.  Imagine a sculpture artist, a furniture maker, or a real estate agent creating professional product videos on a regular basis for their website, with little hassle or time necessary.  It’s a content gold mine.

Ideas Are A Dime A Dozen Without Hard Work and Development

While I thought the idea was genius two years ago, I made the mistake a lot of people probably make–thinking that I was the only one with this idea and not talking to enough people to see if it was worthwhile.  Finally, a serial startup guy told me that there are probably a dozen other people with the same idea and no motivation, so I just needed to get the idea out in the open, and see if there was really a need or a market for it (thanks Christopher Fryer).

I built a video pitch a year ago to express the value proposition and the pain point for online video.  Want to steal my idea?  Be my guest.  If you build it and I can use the app, I’ll be happy.  Interested in working on it with me?  I’m all ears–I can sell if you can build.


Someone out there is probably working on an app like this as we speak. If not, let’s just hope that it’s on its way soon, because I know a lot of business owners who would adopt video content immediately with this kind of access.