Ravi Kewalramani, director, RK Mumbai Realtors is a social media sensation with his property tours. Here’s the backstory.
In a world where the human attention span is weaker than that of a Labrador puppy, the ones who keep us engaged become the new pied piper.
Some of these modern-day puppeteers sing some of them dance, some dole out knowledge, and a few share their everyday lives on social media.
Ravi Kewalramani does nothing of this sort. He takes people inside homes and office spaces in the suburbs stretching from Andheri to Bandra in Mumbai through addictive Instagram Reels.
He has hooked hundreds and thousands to his videos much like the music which enchanted the kids of Hamelin in that legend all the way from the Middle Ages.
Seeing how the homes, in some of Mumbai’s most expensive locations, look from the inside, and if the city’s homes are really tiny are some of the aspects curious viewers look to unearth in Kewalramani’s videos. The 370K plus followers are evidence of the fact that such a guilty pleasure is often irresistible.
A second-generation real estate broker, Kewalramani leads RK Mumbai Realtors which deals in the purchase, sale, rent and lease of commercial and residential properties.
Today, this fame has helped him charge clients for their properties to be featured on the company’s social media accounts. While the starting price for individual owners and genuine clients is nominal starting from ₹7,000. As an influencer, he sets his rates from ₹50K onwards.
It is, however, crucial to note that the prices are always subject to change because the real estate market is everchanging.
This success, however, is no overnight tale and neither was it born on Instagram. The first video Kewalramani made was on how to rent in Mumbai and it was uploaded to the company’s YouTube account which was created in 2014.
Kewalramani, before taking over his father’s business, spent over a decade in the United States and started focusing on the YouTube account in 2020 when the lockdowns hit.
“There was a lot of fear in the real estate market because our work was in the field,” he says and recounts how everyone from brokers to industry associations descended to Zoom calls, but one such call shook him where they realised, they were on their own and no particular support from the government was incoming.
“I realised it will not work out. I needed to do something. It was my father’s business and I would not be responsible for shuttering his legacy,” states the real estate agent.
Kewalramani knew he had to put himself out there on social media, on YouTube, so he took a month to learn iMovie (Apple’s video editing program), researched online on the kind of content people like to watch, and began to shoot videos himself.
“I got 1,000 subscribers on YouTube, then 10k, it kept growing… YouTube is long format and time consuming and I did everything on my own,” he explains and says he “wanted another platform where he could interact with the buyer.”
One cannot send a direct message to a channel’s owner on YouTube. Adding to this, he wanted a backup to his YouTube account and so he moved to Instagram in May 2021. It was in December of the same year when success began to visit him.
Today, RK Mumbai Realtors has doubled in size. “From having seven to eight people, we are 14 and looking to hire more people. The sales team saw three people join and there is a complete social media team which looks after the videos.”
A noteworthy aspect of all the videos is how clean the homes look. This is because Kewalramani insists the house be dusted and cleaned before he and his team get to work. “A shoot takes anywhere between two to three hours,” he tells us. They indulge in multiple format shoots for Instagram and YouTube.
Adding to this, Kewalramani does not depend on a script to describe the property in the videos. The secret to this lies in thorough research.
Potential customers are asked to fill out a Google Form (20-30 points) which details all the terms and conditions, fees, and any special mentions, and asks them for information about the property. Once filed, both parties receive an email with the form making it legal. Now, Kewalramani’s team visits the location and takes photographs and gets to work.
If a customer does not want his/her property to feature on social media, the team will only share the photographs privately when a genuine client asks for them.
“I’ve given up on traditional platforms like 99acres, MagicBricks, and Justdial three to four years ago. All leads come through social media, existing clients, walk-ins, and existing clients’ referrals. This is the future. If you’re not adapting, you’re going to fail,” he stresses.