Guest Post by Anthony Gilbert of TheRealFX Group.
If you’re a drone enthusiast you probably spend a lot of time using your drone to fly over all kinds of places and take a look. You may also take pictures, and if you are good at photography those pictures could potentially be worth something or land you some different types of work. One of the jobs you can focus on with drone photography is in real estate.
More and more listing photos are being taken with drones, and that means there’s room for hobbyists to start moving into real estate listing photos. Not every real estate agent is hiring, but if you want to have the best chance of getting an agent interested in working with you, you’ll want to be prepared. Here are some things you can do to get the attention of real estate agents looking for drone photographers.
Make Sure You Have a Portfolio
If you don’t have anything to show real estate agents, the chances of them hiring you to take photos for their listings are almost zero. But there is a lot you can do about that. A portfolio of home photos – that are of course taken with permission – will show an agent what you can do. Make sure you don’t take pictures of only mansions and luxury homes, either. Take pictures of smaller homes, duplexes, condominiums, and even mobile or manufactured homes if there are a lot of those in your area.
The more of a mix of properties you have, the more you show an agent the kind of photos you can offer. Making older or less attractive properties look good while still being realistic about the photos is among the best ways to get an agent’s attention. If you show you have an understanding of how to showcase good curb appeal, an agent will see you have more alignment with their business than someone who only takes pictures of a home’s facade and nothing else. Not all properties are show-stoppers, but they can still have good photos that are representative of how they will actually look to a buyer.
It’s Time for a Website
Once you have a good portfolio of pictures, you don’t want to have to carry it all over town asking to show it to agents. While that may work for some places, most of them will want to just see your photos online. It’s also much easier to send out a link to a bunch of different agents and realty companies than it is to spend hours driving all over town and neighboring locations to show people your pictures. To make everything efficient for you and for real estate agents in your local area, you’ll want to have a website. Then you can focus on getting that site information out to agents who may want to use your services.
You should have your portfolio pictures, your contact info, and other materials that may be of interest. A short bio is not a bad thing, and if you have a resume of others you’ve
done drone photography work for, that could be a big bonus, as well. Also consider addressing rates, but you don’t have to be specific. You can say where your rates start, or provide a range. You can also have a flat rate, or something much more detailed or direct if you choose to. It’s really up to you and what you want to present to real estate agents. Just be sure to keep things very professional but not stuffy.
Additionally, you may want to create a site that is geared specifically toward real estate. Some agents may not mind working with a generalist, but others might prefer to utilize the services of someone who brands themselves as a real estate photographer.
Don’t Give Up, and Keep Seeking New Opportunities
There’s a huge number of real estate agents available in any area. Even if you live in a smaller town or a more rural area, there are a lot of options. Don’t give up if the first few agents you talk to aren’t receptive. They may not be interested in your services, but other agents may love what you have to offer. Established agents at big brokerages, smaller operations, and up-and-coming agents are all prospects for your drone photography. If you do the legwork and optimize your outreach, you have a good chance of getting people interested.
In the meantime, keep taking pictures and adding them to your portfolio. You never know when a particular picture could be just the right thing for an agent to see and appreciate. The great thing about making connections with real estate agents is that it can turn into a recurring gig if they like your work. Homes are sold every day, and in today’s online listing world, high-quality photos are in demand.
Anthony Gilbert is the owner of The RealFX Group. Anthony specializes in real estate, real estate marketing, managing the team and achieving set goals.
Miriam McNabb is the Editor-in-Chief of DRONELIFE and CEO of JobForDrones, a professional drone services marketplace, and a fascinated observer of the emerging drone industry and the regulatory environment for drones. Miriam has a degree from the University of Chicago and over 20 years of experience in high tech sales and marketing for new technologies.