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Why Video Is More Like Your Kitchen Renovation Than a Pair of Shoes

5 things everyone should know before they produce their first video

Video is one of the best ways to build engagement; educate audiences and share complicated information. For clients, producing video can be one of the most frustrating and confusing experiences. Why? Because the first question any video partner asks is, “what’s your budget?”

Clients are almost always put off by the question. They feel frustrated that creative pricing is so squishy. They’ll ask, “how much should it cost?” or “how do I know it’s a good deal?”

If you go into a store and pull a pair of shoes off the shelf, there’s a price tag. You know what you’re buying and you know how much the shoes are going to cost.

Creative pricing – especially pricing for producing video -- is more like a kitchen renovation. You can go into a big box store and buy a stove, dishwasher, kitchen cabinets, etc. and hire a handyman to install them for you. Or imagine driving out deep into the country, choosing spectacular reclaimed wood and custom producing gorgeous hand wrought cabinets. Unlike any you will ever see again, knowing every morning when you reach for your coffee cup, that the cabinets holding those mugs were crafted just for you. Maybe you’ll find a gifted contractor and build a kitchen that somewhere in between. Budget matters.

You can usually find a quality partner to work with you on producing an effective video within whatever budget you have. The five things to think about before you hire are:
  1. Purpose: What are we trying to achieve with this video? A lot of clients are given the direction that “we need a video.” Before calling a production partner, internally ask why. Why are we doing this video? What do we want to achieve with it? What are we trying to say?

  2. Audience: Who do we want to talk to? Internal? External? Consumers? What’s their knowledge of our organization/industry? How does the subject of this video matter to their lives? Why will they want to spend time watching it? What’s the hook to draw them in? What’s the call to action (response) we’re looking to provoke?

  3. Distribution: How are we going to reach them? If the video is being produced for social media, the viewing space is small – adding subtitles will improve engagement. If we’re producing it, for example, to run as a trailers at a movie theater, the screen size is massive. Production quality and onscreen talent will matter more.

  4. Production: Do we have existing content that we can use? Should we buy stock footage? Or, do we need to film? If we film, where do we want to shoot? Permits, lighting, microphones and other logistics may come into play.

  5. Script: What are we trying to say and who is going to say it? Do we have strong ideas? Do we need someone to write the script? Are there people on staff who should be in the video or do we need to hire talent?

The most important thing to remember is that today you can do anything. And, you can do it within your budget. A quality partner who can help you work through these details, and troubleshoot others that may come up during production is important not only to maximize your budget, but to save your sanity.

Stay confident. You’ve got this.


Brand & Buzz is a full-service strategic communications firm. We focus on solutions and deliver results. Our boutique firm is made up of experts in communications, publicity, public relations, video production, website design and branding. Everyone is unique. Our programs are too.

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