By Juliette Fairley.

With new listings hitting the rental market daily, property managers nationwide are looking for ways to distinguish their property from the competition. In some cases, drone video is the latest technology they are using to set themselves apart.


“Using a remote controlled drone to capture video can offset the cost of leasing a helicopter, hiring a sound person, editor and director,” said Christian Turnier, founder of GCT Marketing, a real estate marketing company based in Manhattan.


Commercial drone use is soaring because aerial videos and photos captured by high-tech drones showcase a property’s assets with ease. According to VideoBrewery.com, real estate listings with videos receive 403% more inquiries than those without.


“Drone video footage from up above is a natural evolution in making rental transactions close faster because there’s less doubt and uncertainty on the part of the tenant,” said Bob Gruder, founder and CEO of Lifeclips.com, which manufactures and sells action cameras that are attached to drones.


Property managers who combined 3D Floor Plans with an HD Video got 61% more leads on average nationally than those who didn’t, according to customer data from ForRent.com, which offers real estate aerial videos and photography nationwide.
“We host some 8,500 apartment community videos and recently added licensed drone pilots and FAA-registered drones to expand our customers’ options,” said Terry Slattery, president of For Rent Media Solutions.


Three specific branding strategies can assist property managers in creating a successful visual technology campaign involving social media outlets that will better market their rentals.


First, drone aerial photography can be used to showcase a property’s surroundings.


“A walk through the apartment or home is something a property manager would want to feature on social media as well as footage from a drone flying over a swimming pool, for example, during its busiest hours so that potential tenants can get an idea of a rental’s social vibe,” Gruder said.

Depending on the state, privacy laws could require written permission from all persons whose likeness is featured before the video is posted publicly.


Other externals to stream on social media are various exterior angles of the apartment building, views from the window, the gym, parking lot and community room when applicable.

“You want to project a sense of the listing outside of floor plans and nice photos,” said Turnier.

Second, telling a story with the images is key in retaining the attention of potential residents.

“Anybody who is relocating is trying to start a new chapter and is looking for a lifestyle change, so incorporating a story makes the property relatable,” Turnier said.

Including a story line can be as simple as adding subtitles at the bottom of a video and even voice-over.

Finally, following current FAA regulations and local guidelines pertaining to commercial aviation is an important element of a property manager’s video technology campaign, which could require hiring a real estate drone photography specialist.

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