3D video technology has been used in $300 million blockbuster movies for a number of years, but a San Francisco agent for Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage is helping to pioneer the use of cutting-edge 3D blu ray technology in marketing luxury homes in the tech-savvy Bay Area.
Kim Barnes, an agent in the company’s San Francisco Van Ness office, has partnered with Golden Gate 3D, a locally based video production house, to create 3D virtual tours and other videos in her marketing of local properties. She is believed to be one of the first Realtors® in the country to adopt the technology for real estate sales.
“When you market high-end homes, it’s all about the clients and going the extra mile to make their listings stand out from all the rest,” Barnes said. “These videos do just that. They are absolutely breathtaking and really make potential buyers feel like they are actually there inside the home.”
Barnes said the use of 3D technology in marketing is appropriate given her target market. “The kind of people who are likely to purchase our high-end listings are ones who likely would have 3D blu ray equipment and all the latest and greatest technology,” she said.
The cost of producing 3D videos for her clients isn’t cheap by any means. On average, Barnes will spend $10,000 a day for production costs, and videos can take upwards of two-three days to shoot. “Obviously we can’t spend that on every home we sell, but for the luxury listings it’s worth it,” she said.
The reason for the high cost starts with the sophisticated production equipment, which can run more than the home being filmed. The ultra high-def 5K 3D resolution in the videos is higher than most still photographs, let alone actual videos.
The high cost of the new high-def 3D technology has kept it from trickling down to the mainstream media thus far, according Peter Chang, managing partner of Golden Gate 3D. Chang was recently honored in the Guinness Book of World Records for filming the first 5K wedding.
Barnes has long been enamored by technology, an interest that goes back to her days as vice president of sales for Yahoo! mail, print and advertising. So when she was approached to help test the use of 3D video in real estate marketing she jumped at the opportunity.
“I’ve always been a bit of a tech evangelist,” she said. “The more I learned about this technology and what it could do for marketing homes, the more excited I got. The video quality is so far superior to anything thing else that’s out there. I could see how this could be a game changer in real estate.
“I imagined someone sitting in a skyscraper in China watching this and truly experiencing the feeling that he’s in the home right now, walking through each room and taking in the panoramic city view from the balcony. Nothing else puts you there in the quite the same way as this technology.”
Kacie Ricker, regional vice president of marketing for Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage, said pioneering new technology in real estate marketing is nothing new for the company.
“Some 75 years ago, Henderson Talbot, the founder of Coldwell Banker Previews, redefined luxury real estate marketing by capturing prized estate homes on film and holding exclusive gatherings for affluent buyers to preview them,” she said.
“I think it’s only fitting that here we are again today, reinventing the way consumers view the finest homes and estate via video,” Ricker said. “We are continuing to set the benchmark for luxury real estate marketing around the world.”