How to Use Photographs to Tell Your Property’s Story (And Sell It Even Faster)

By Sarah Anderson, VP Marketing at VHT Studios®

Want someone to remember your message? Don’t just tell them — show them.

Humans are visual beings yet words are what we turn to more often today to communicate a message. Research shows we’re not only processing visual information faster, but we remember it better too.

For real estate professionals, that’s worth noting.

Curb appeal has been important to selling homes forever. But how do you generate curb appeal in the digital age when 90% of homebuyers start their home search first online?

During their online search, 89% of buyers report that photographs are a “very useful” feature. Having spent a number of years leading the marketing for a real estate photography and visual marketing company, I’ve seen this confirmed in practice time and time again. Clearly, appealing imagery is essential to intriguing buyers.

So, how do you get it?

1. Know Your Brand Personality

Real estate pros can borrow a trick from top brand marketers who are experts in creating an emotional connection with buyers. Successful brands have personality — a story about who they are and their place in the world. That story makes an emotional connection.

Translated to home buying, we know people aren’t just purchasing a house — they’re investing in their future and a lifestyle. Think of that lifestyle as the brand or the story of that property. What could living there look like or feel like? The best source is to talk to your seller. Ask them what they love about the house as well as the surrounding area.

2. Showcase the Listing’s Potential

Real estate professionals now have plenty of tools at their fingertips to showcase a home’s potential, such as virtual staging. A vacant basement can be virtually redecorated as a man cave or a second family room; a spare bedroom becomes a stunning home office, a workout room or even a nursery.

Virtual redecorating can also appeal to buyers’ varied tastes and preferred styles. Tech tools make it possible for real estate professionals to abandon the “one-size-fits-all” approach to marketing a listing. Staging gives you the flexibility to showcase a variety of styles, helping the buyer envision their life in that home. By appealing to more preferences, you can attract a larger set of prospective buyers, which can result in a faster sale and a higher sale price.


3. Bring A Listing’s Story to New Heights

When it comes to providing a high-level view of life in a new home, aerial photography and video can tell a story that ground-level still photographs would never capture, such as a beautiful setting and/or community features like a pond, playground, or tennis court. Done well, “dronography” is unparalleled for creating that sense of story that gives a property a personality or brand.

There are now certification requirements and FAA rules guiding drone usage. While many hobbyists have taken up drone piloting, beware of the pitfalls of taking a DIY approach. It takes time and money as well as skill to pilot a drone and manipulate the camera for high-quality video.

As the saying goes, a picture is worth a thousand words. When it comes to presenting a property, though, the right images might also be worth many thousands of dollars.

About VHT Studios
VHT Studios, celebrating 20 years, serves real estate and business professionals with excellence in professional photography, virtual tours, virtual staging, interactive and standard floorplans, drone photography and video, 3-D home tours, and image management services. To learn more, visit

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