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Q&A with Brothers & Co-Founders of Aerial 9 Media

Q&A with Brothers & Co-Founders of Aerial 9 Media

The Lockheimer brothers are a valuable part of our extended team and I’m always happy to put the spotlight on entrepreneurs doing it right. Thanks to their stellar resource, we have been able to craft visual storytelling programs that are part of each listings marketing assets, driving exposure with potential buyers. From incredible drone photography capturing the Pacific Coastline perspective of an estate, to giving a real “bird’s eye” view of Rancho Santa Fe’s downtown community and lifestyle, the assets they bring to our luxury real estate marketing program make me proud.

As a supporter of bringing the best in the business to our Compass family and the industry, I am excited to share this Q&A with you. You’ll get to read about the hottest trend in real estate marketing and learn why these digital marketing resources are vital for successful real estate sales. Enjoy the “eye candy” of some of our projects together as well.

Thank you to Erik & Eli for always pushing the barometer up in what we do – keeping it fresh, inspiring and exciting for both buyers and sellers.

Q&A with Aerial 9 Media Founders

Name:  Erik & Eli Lockheimer
Title:  Founder & Co-Founder

What drew you to this niche?

Creating high-quality marketing content for real estate has been a huge part of our business.  We started to focus strictly on Real Estate in 2017 when drones became popular and video was being utilized more frequently to market listings.

Do you have a background in photography and digital technology?

We have grown our business out of a pure passion for content creation and content marketing.

When did you launch Aerial9 Media?

We launched Aerial9 Media in the summer of 2015.  At the time, our focus was passion-driven on content creation for luxury automotive dealerships.  After filming for high-end automotive brands and dealerships such as O’Gara Coach, Rolls-Royce, Lamborghini, & Bentley, for a couple of years, there was a shift in the Real Estate market and a greater demand for professional drone photography and videography, so we shifted gears and have been at it for 3+ years shooting real estate.

We appreciate how you take the time to work with clients to capture how a home looks and feels in full daylight, dusk, and sunset to evening.

What time of day do you think is the absolute best for aerial photography?

Shoot time varies depending on the property. A few things we take into consideration is the location of the home and which direction it faces. If a home faces the ocean and has a stunning view of the water, we like to shoot sometime in the late morning/early afternoon unless we’re specifically shooting a sunset. In the afternoon, the sun sits at a weird position over the water, causing a blinding glare, which can be very difficult to capture the view through a lens.  If the home is nowhere near the water, we consider the position of the house and where the sun is shining the most light. When shot at the wrong time, shadows can become overbearing.

How do you maneuver the drone while taking photography?

We take a unique approach when it comes to capturing smooth and engaging drone shots for real estate.  Every property is different, and finding captivating angles that feature the home in the best way makes a marketing video much more interesting to watch.

Tell us about your Matterport services and why it is one of the hottest trends in luxury real estate marketing today.

Matterport is a valuable addition for producing quality marketing content.  These 3D virtual tours allow potential buyers to do a self-guided tour of a property to get a complete representation of a home.  Given the current situation in our society (COVID19), it has become even more essential to have creative, effective and quality content to show prospective buyers. As realtors, you have to abide by regulations and are held to a strict standard on showing homes. Why not take advantage of doing it virtually with a Matterport tour.  We also provide clients with a detailed 2D or 3D floor plan to give even more details on a property’s overall layout.

Here is a Matterport Sample:  https://my.matterport.com/show/?m=87FVMvPgn68&brand=0

What are some of your most treasured images? Please share 3-5 of your favorite captures across San Diego coastline and/or Rancho Santa Fe.

What are some of your favorite projects with Milligan RE? Please share 2-3 of your favorite image captures and/or video from Milligan property sales.

In your opinion, what is the advantage of capturing beautiful images when selling a home? What is your strategy when getting the best home shots?

When it comes to homebuying, first impressions are everything. Many people think that their 12-megapixel phone is good enough for taking listing photos; but, that can be a huge mistake. If you want to sell your home quicker and for more money, you should hire a professional real estate photographer.

Some benefits to consider are:

  • Attracting More Buyers:  Let’s face it, gorgeous pictures will trigger emotions, and emotions sell. You need to capitalize on that as much as possible.
  • Look More Professional:  With professional residential real estate photography, you are projecting yourself as a serious seller or agent who spared no expense in marketing the property.
  • Images aren’t just for marketing a home:  The photos can go into your brochures, flyers, emails, newsletter, and more to sell yourself to other potential clients looking for an agent to list their home.

Where’s your next adventure going to take you? For fun, do you take images across your travels? Can you share any images and/or detail? (Example: Are you heading to Joshua Tree or Big Sur?)

California is a beautiful state to travel within. We would love to visit Yosemite National Park and capture the beautiful scenery and wildlife the park has to offer for our next adventure.


Garret Milligan

A lifelong resident of Rancho Santa Fe, Garret was raised in a family deeply integrated in the historic and vibrant community. Garret developed an affinity for the real estate industry at a young age by observing his mother—one of the community’s most successful real estate agents for more than 30 years—and learning the secrets to becoming a personable, yet results-oriented Realtor. He became the youngest partner in an elite luxury real estate legacy in ‘the Ranch’ in 2012 and quickly honed his skills, developed a vast network of industry resources, and built an impressive list of satisfied clients.

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