With the trend towards digital web video and animated web video now firmly established, video freelancers and owner-operators have sprung up to offer video production services at lower cost than a full time video production company.
The price is usually attractive, but there are still some uncertainties
– which gives today’s marketer a choice:
> to go with the cheaper option and possibly greater risk
> or go with a full time video production company and pay more for greater certainty.
Let’s compare the two from 6 different points of view.
1 – Certainty
Before you buy any video you need to see:
> a website
> a portfolio
> and proof of experience.
This is what gives you the confidence and certainty you need to buy.
While a professional video production company will always offer this, a freelancer might not.
So there’s a lot you don’t know, or can’t see.
You need to be sure that paying less isn’t getting less
– as getting less ripples right through your business
For example, does paying less mean you get less customers from your less effective web video?
2 – Latest Effects & Equipment
You can expect a video production company to have state if the art equipment, and more importantly, state of the art plugins.
Software plugins are critical to today’s video production.
There are plugins for colour enhancing, fastmo, slomo, many different types of animation.
The list of useful software plugins and apps is a long one.
And many of the professional plugins worth having cost hundreds of dollars.
The same applies to video editing software.
You’d expect your video to be produced with the latest version of a leading video package
– not a 2 year old version, with minimal plugins, wouldn’t you?
Latest versions, state of the art video computers, and a battery of top quality plugins is what it takes to make good quality video in 2015.
3 – When problems happen
When something goes wrong – be it large or small – you need a video supplier with the ability to fix the problem.
A larger video company will have more internal resources for fixing problems, such as more in-house skills, a wider experience base than a one man band, and generally greater collective know-how.
If you’re a novice video maker yourself, you won’t have experience of what can wrong, so you’re not necessarily going to be in a position to ask your owner operator “what if this happens?” or “what if that happens?”
The answer is to produce a simpler video first time round, where less problems are likely to happen.
4 – What else do your video company do
If an owner operator’s core skill is camerawork, then they’ll probably do weddings, corporate and social events work – where camera operators are in great demand.
If their core skill is editing & animation, then they’ll likely be picking up more low cost, small local business & community work.
By contrast a full-on video production company with a team will not only specialise solely on business video
– but have other specialisms, such as experience in different marketplaces including yours.
So if your product or service video message is fairly simple, then a freelancer or owner operator may well fit the bill.
But don’t expect them to be aware of “marketing realities” as you know them.
They’ll need a lot of guidance from you – and they’ll expect it.
By contrast, the professional video company will be able to advise you on what’s hot in your industry, and show you how to get it.
5 – What happens when they’re already busy and you’re in a hurry
Owner operators don’t like turning away work.
If a video company gets a rush of business, particularly during new budget time, they’ll need to examine their production schedules to make sure they can fit it all in.
When there are a number of video editors available, this can usually be worked out, so no client experiences unforeseen delays.
With an owner operator there can be a problem.
I’ve personally know of customers who’ve been told they have to wait 3 months because that’s as fast as the tiny video company can produce.
Too much work, and not enough hours in the day.
So you need to ask yourself if an unscheduled delay is worth the lower cost.
6 – Who writes the script
Generally, freelancer’s don’t do scripts – and many don’t do storyboards.
Your choice is to:
> write the script yourself
> or pay extra for a professional scriptwriter to be hired.
A video production company will normally provide a scriptwriter who’s experienced in your marketplace, and related areas
– as part of the overall video package.
You need to think carefully about what you need here.
Certainty costs more.
Many customers take the view:
“I don’t mind paying to get it right.
I just can’t afford to get it wrong.”
So who do you choose: A freelancer or a full time video production company?
The message is that you pays your money and you takes your choice.