Finding a new video production company isn’t as simple as typing ‘corporate video production’ into Google and seeing who pops up first! Well, you can do that, of course! But if you want to get the most out of your corporate video supplier, you’ll need to do a little bit more…
If you have no existing relationship with a video production company, starting a new one from scratch can be daunting. It’s like starting any relationship! You’ll want to find a video production company that is on the same wavelength as you – that get you and what you’re about. You need to be able to trust them, have them understand you and what your about. They need to be professional and good problem solvers as much as have creativity and an enthusiasm for their work.
If this is you, we’ve put a few tips together for things to look out for if you’re on the lookout for a new video production partner.
Don’t be afraid to open up!
The first conversation you have with a new video production company should cover as much detail as possible. Don’t be afraid! Unload as much as you can onto them!
You’ll want to talk about the project, your perspective and your goals. This will most likely be in an email first off (and one that you’re probably sending to multiple companies too!) so feel free to take some time to add in as much detail as you can. Include a short overview of your organisation, followed by a succinct brief of the project you’d like their help on.
It’s good to mention any initial thoughts on the length of film, deadlines, visual style etc. But also make sure you talk about the messaging, who the audience is and what the purpose of the project is. This will help the company understand more about your motivations behind the project and they can even start to generate ideas early on.
Yes, it takes a bit of time to get all this together, but it’s definitely worth it. If you just email someone and say “I want an explainer video, how much is that?”, chances are you’re not going to get a huge amount back! Plus, putting in this effort shows that you have a good understanding of what you need and what’s involved.
Discuss budgets early on
Sharing how much you have to spend on a corporate video early on in discussions can save a huge amount of time further down the line! There’s no point in going through the ritual of emails about ideas, phone calls about deadlines or meetings about visual styles if, after finally getting a proposal back from the video production company it’s double the cost you were aiming for! Everyone has their own ideas of how much a corporate video costs!
By explaining to the video production company what your budget is, they can provide a completely bespoke quote that takes into account every element of your brief and will guarantee that they don’t spend a penny more than you want.
Whenever we put costs together for clients, we always break every element down into the four project areas:
- Pre Production
- Costs usually include scripting, project management and scheduling.
- This covers the cost of filming mostly, with crew, equipment and travel in here too.
- Post Production
- Editing costs plus any stock footage, animation and music licences.
- We always provided advanced video hosting and English captions, but any extras like translations and subtitling will sit here, plus any ongoing support such as lifetime footage archiving.
Making sure your video production company gives you a breakdown of costs means that you can see where pretty much every pound is going to be spent. You can also easily compare it with other quotes you’re getting in, meaning you’re in a better position to negotiate.
Do they care?
Any supplier you’re starting a new relationship with, such as a video production company, should share your enthusiasm for the project. Are they energetic when talking on the phone or are they distracted? Do their emails read like they are genuinely interested in what you do or are they tedious and bland? You want to work with a video production company that are excited to be doing the job they’re doing, and even MORE excited that they now get the chance to work with another new client! You!
They should be asking questions about you, the project, the expectations, and anything else! this shows that the video production company are not new to this game and that they have the confidence and experience to make this new relationship a perfect fit. But make sure that they’re not talking more than you! If they start to go into a pre-rehearsed script about how amazing they are (or worse, bad mouthing other companies!) then make sure you bring the conversation back to what they can do for YOU!
Don’t be afraid to give them a challenge too. A decent video production company will be excited by the prospect of problems and only look for solutions. Whether it’s related to budget, deadlines or a particular visual style you want, problem solving is a key part of making videos so you don’t want the company you’re talking to be scared off by that! A lot of video production is about problem solving, so they should be up for a challenge!
Get everything in writing
Having a corporate video produced is not one of the cheapest spends when it comes to marketing, so you want to make sure you have everything in writing so you and your team can make an informed decision before proceeding with your chosen video production company.
You should get a detailed proposal that covers how that company will approach your project, with a breakdown of their process through the entire production process. As well as this, if you briefed them properly at the start, you should get a few concepts and approaches for your specific project too. Don’t expect full scripts or storyboards at this stage, but just a page or two that shows that the company have thought about your project and what they can do is perfect.
Make sure you also have done your own research – check out their website testimonials, Trustpilot, Google Reviews etc.
Above all, make sure that you feel that you can trust the video production company. Have an open, honest conversation with them, and if the fit feels good, then hopefully it’s the start of a new professional friendship!