Every video project is a real partnership between client and production company and there are lots of important elements to consider. Sometimes the intangibles can be as important while the tangible. All video companies aren’t created equal and your decision is dependent upon what you would like to accomplish. Here are some what to consider when you create a decision.
The Plan – Before you contact production companies
Establish a clear goal. The more defined your objectives, the greater the last product will be. Determine a budget range. In many cases, the budget will define the finished product. You’ll save plenty of time by knowing what you would like to spend – even if it’s a range – and sharing these details with the production company. Know your audience. Will the program be properly used to sell an item? To educate customers? To launch an item? To boost your brand and image? To motivate and inspire employees? To entertain?
Establish quantifiable measurements for success. What would you like the audience to accomplish, think or feel after they have seen the video? Research. Can get on the Internet and discover around you can about the production companies by which perhaps you are interested. Ask business colleagues. Lots of business will come from word of mouth. What better solution to narrow your choices that to ask friends and family who work at other companies? Check social media. Ask your contacts on LinkedIn for advice and their experiences with video production companies.
Identify internal expectations. What results will persuade your management that the project has been a success? Does your CEO expect you’ll be on camera? How long if the finished product run? Will there be travel? Budgets can increase dramatically if a team must shoot in multiple cities. Getting customers and experts on camera can strengthen the message and is often worth the excess cost. What are the most well-liked delivery options? Will the program stream online? Will it be broadcast on TV? Will it be presented at an event?
Limit the number of bids. Request bids from two or three production companies. Whenever you approach four companies and above you might reach a place where it’s hard manage proposals and arrive at a qualified decision effectively. Is there strong opinions for a direction? Sometimes companies think they know what kind of approach they want before they start. If that’s the case, they must be made known to the bidders. Who’s the idea of contact?
The Meeting – The first impression can inform you a great deal
How’s the pitch? If the company can sell themselves and understands what it takes to supply key information, the greater the possibility they can do exactly the same for you. Have they done their research? Is it obvious they know what your company does or is this the very first time they’ve heard of you. It’s (almost) O.K. if you’re a startup but with the Internet, they should have some inkling about who you are. Will there be chemistry? You are likely to be spending plenty of time with one of these people. You should at least like them. Do you receive the sense they like each other? You don’t need conflict when you even get started.
Do they listen? Do they go on and on about themselves without digging into the purpose of the program and the potential challenges. That’s a notice sign. Do they ask good questions? Intellectual curiosity is key to a great proposal and a fruitful script, shoot, edit and finished product. Look at reels. In the event that you haven’t seen their work online, ensure you see it once you meet and ask questions. In the event that you don’t see examples that show the amount of quality you expect, it’s most likely not planning to suddenly arrive in your project.
Have a tour. If they have an editing facility ask to see it. You don’t need to know much about equipment but know enough to learn if the gear is relatively new. If the gear is old, there might be problems. Consider awards. But don’t decide predicated on awards. A corner of awards can indicate a company’s excellence or their competence at filling out award competition applications. Be consistent. If you are getting bids from several production companies, ensure they all receive exactly the same parameters and background and budget information.
Find out about the staff. Do they have in-house writers, editors, videographers, directors and producers or use freelancers? Or both? What is their experience? Who owns the footage? In many agreements, the production company owns the raw footage and the client owns the finished product. Avoid surprises and discover ahead of time.
The Proposal – Do they have it?
May be the proposal presented in a specialist manner? A well-produced proposal demonstrates an awareness of detail that’ll be essential to the production of your project. Is the method clear? A video production is a logistical challenge. May be the workflow well organized? Will there be a deliverables timeline that’s clear and easy to understand? Is your role as client defined? Is the concept right for your audience? Did they look closely at your input? Does your gut inform you this may work?
May be the creative treatment attuned to your corporate culture? Could you sell this idea to your management? If not, how would it be revised to create it work? May be the production company available to your creative input? This can be a preview of your future working relationship what is an indie filmmaker. If they’re rolling their eyes now they are most likely not the team for you. Is a person in the creative team present? Account managers serve a useful purpose but sometimes you’ll need to talk directly to the writer, producer or director to obtain key questions answered.
May be the budget clearly presented? Did they look closely at your financial allowance range? May be the payment schedule clear and associated with deliverables? Will there be a contingency budget with guidelines regarding how and when those funds is going to be spent? How many creative treatments? A good proposal will limit the number of creative treatments. This shows confidence in the proposed approach. A bid with four or even more treatments lets you know the creative team isn’t sure what you would like or what’ll work (but it’s within somewhere).
Your choice – The minute of truth
Check references. It might seem like it’s unnecessary, but take action anyway. Believe that the production company is giving you their happiest clients and most successful stories. You are able to still dig for useful information. Would they use the production company again? What were the challenges? How was the product received? Location. Location… etc. How important can it be that the production company be local? To some people it matters. Trust your gut. Decision grids are great but sometimes you merely know one company will do a much better job. Go with this feeling.