Video is often touted as an essential marketing tool for real estate agents. But while it may help put an agent's new media savvy on display, some are skeptical about the medium's ability to convert viewers into clients.
Launched in April of 2011, Viewbix aims to bolster video's ability to generate leads.
The app is designed to reel in leads directly from a video player by providing subscribers with the ability to add a wide range of apps to a video that viewers may click to access additional content or contact an agent.
"The optimal thing you could do with you Internet marketing is to get a contact," said Benjamin Bernstein, social marketing manager at Viewbix.
Using Viewbix, "you can enable your player to allow viewers to learn more."
Depending on the features a subscriber adds to a Viewbix video, a viewer may click on icons that sit on the margins of a video player like YouTube to do things like browse through photos of a listing, see the location of a listing on a map, sign up for an email marketing list, call or email an agent and even schedule a showing -- all from inside the video player.
The company claims on its website that more than 20 percent of viewers of Viewbix videos click on call-to-action buttons or apps added to Viewbix videos.
A promotional video posted on YouTube by Viewbix.
Bill Kerbox, a Malibu-based agent and the founder of video-prospecting company GameChangrz, has used the app to enable viewers to do things like post a video to Facebook or Twitter, call him on Skype, see market reports and browse listings.
Kerbox said that the typical marketing videos that agents display on YouTube and their websites do little to attract business, going so far as to describe some of them as "pathetic." But Viewbix allows video to reach its marketing potential, Kerbox said.
"They have such an amazing interaction, a seamless interaction," he said about Viewbix. "You can probably get 20 or 30 applications that are on the interactive side."
The basic model of Viewbix is free, while its "Silver Package," which provides access to all supported apps instead of a limited number, is $7 a month.
The $20 "Gold Package" offers all supported apps as well, but it also allows a subscriber to brand the player and track activity on video through an analytics tool. More expensive options further expand the Viewbix's functionality.
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