5: What to Demand From Your Video Production Company
A Guide to Everything You Need to Know to Get the Most From Your Video Marketing
elcome to the fifth part of Video Production for Clients: Everything you need to know to get the most from your next video production.
Stick with us for the next few minutes and you’ll learn just what you should expect from your Video Production company and what they in turn expect from you.
We’ll also give you some tips to make sure you get the best result possible.
In fact even if you haven’t settled on a choice for your next production company then this post will arm you with all the information you need to make sure you pick the company that’s best suited to your companies brand and you.
Let’s assume that you’ve found the Video Production company in Melbourne (or somewhere else) that you think can handle your brief, and you trust them with taking care of your brand.
But what next?
As a client what can you expect from your Production Company?
We’re sure that you’ve seen the cliché on TV & Film of the brilliant creative who creates amazing work but has a fragile creative ego and the time management skills of a chimpanzee.
Truth be told it’s a cliché for a reason – these people are out there!
But does that mean you have to put up with missed deadlines, blown out budgets or an argument every time you suggest a change to “their art?”
It seems that a lot of Corporate Video Production companies forget that the service they are offering is in fact the whole experience of getting something created with them – not just the finished product.
As a result we’ve put together a quick rundown of what you should demand from your Video Producers.
Part 01: Table of Contents:
Each part of the guide has it’s own table of contents so you can get the info you want quickly and easily!
Video Production Company Skill no1: Communication
By the far the biggest factor on this list is communication – without the proper communication there are so many places where major mistakes can be made. Good interaction is key to translating the brief accurately, keeping on budget and delivering on time. Clear communication will also make sure that you can relax knowing you are in good hands and that if the producers need anything from you, they will be in touch.
Production Schedule and Deliverables :
From the very beginning you should be informed as to what to expect at each stage of the production, including what will be needed from you.
Once the brief is accepted (unless the project is very complex,) you should also be given dates of delivery for each stage and their payment policy.
The Corporate Video Brief :
Putting one of these together for the Production company can be a daunting process – after all what if you get it wrong and the finished product is way off the mark?
A professional Production company understands this – and will guide you in putting together a creative video brief or similar document that clearly states what is needed and what will be created.
This coming together of minds is a perfect place for the Producers to suggest things that can enhance the finished product.
Hot Tip: The Corporate Video Brief Creator.
Here are some questions to ask yourself that will help you work out what you need in your video.
In fact if you answer as many of these questions as possible and give that to your production company you’ll be giving them a great video brief.
We also have a downloadable corporate video brief template here Production Brief Creator
What in the broadest terms do you want your video to achieve?
What is its purpose?
To let people know about a new product – Dandruff no more!
Get people to sign up for your email list.
To increase likes on our facebook page.
To get the brand out there.
What specific things need to be communicated? List all points.
We get rid of dandruff in 24 hrs or you get double your money back.
Those that sign up will receive discount vouchers with savings worth over $500.
By liking our Facebook page you will enter in the chance to for weekend away for 2 in the Yarra valley worth $850.
At acme we make the very best ingenious inventions that are perfect for capturing those pesky road runners.
What is your Target Market? Paint a picture of the perfect person/people you to watch this video.
Are they male or female or both?
How old are they?
What sort of job do they have?
What is the highest education they received?
What do they like doing in their spare time?
Do they have any kids? How old?
What do they worry about at night?
What sort of music do they listed to?
What sort of videos do they usually watch?
What books do they read?
How long do you want your video to be?
Are there any graphic elements that need to be present?
Please keep the logo in the bottom right hand corner the entire time. We would also like to give 5 seconds of screen time to the shampoo bottle.
Please make sure to have our contact number 123 456 789 for 6 seconds at the end.
We want to show the video on a landing page with the Facebook like button directly underneath so please put a big red arrow (the same colour as our branding) pointing directly below the video for the last 4 seconds of the video.
This video will be put on YouTube and we will be asking for a subscription and using an annotation, please add a graphic call to action to reflect this.
Do you have a preference for music or the type of voice over?
Give any examples.
How do you imagine the visuals?
I would like to see before and after shots of both a man and woman with and without dandruff.
I’d like to showcase the various products that vouchers give discounts for, with the percentages that they will save.
I’d like you to source a 25 – 30 year old happy healthy looking spokesman who will deliver the message straight to camera, and then include shots of the Yarra Wacky doo resort (supplied) that the winners will be staying at.
Our CEO will be the presenter – She wants to demonstrate some of the better Acme Inventions.
Do you need actors; are you using a staff member?
Where will this video be shown?
YouTube, Vimeo, social media, channel nine during the midday show.
Our website home page.
On a specific landing page that is all about the competition and getting them to like our facebook page.
As an introduction before the CEO starts his keynote speech in the Las Vegas Road Runner Catchers Convention.
Are there specific dates that the video must run for?
Are there anything that should be avoided?
Please do not show balding men or people with dull lifeless hair.
Do not mispronounce our product name – it’s Sheety Shopping (as in sheet).
Please do not have any shots of the models drinking any wine.
It is crucial that you avoid all reference of and to Wile.E. Coyote.
Do you have any reference videos that you think can help us get an idea of what you want?
What about this example do you like?
I like how the voice over is caring and trustworthy and not like a late night infomercial.
I like how they list the benefits that they receive by flipping them around in 3d.
I like how it talks to the same audience we’re going for good music and pacing.
I like how it’s real you can see that the blender is making mincemeat out of that….
(did you think we were going to say road runner?)
What about the example do you not like?
It’s too long and too slow
the call to action isn’t clear enough? How do I get these benefits?
I can’t stand the graphics – it looks like something from that seventies show.
The presenter comes across like a raving lunatic – of course you have to catch road runners.
The Proposal / Scripts.
Depending on how the Video Production company works – you should be given a script and also a proposal that outlines what they want to create for you and why.
The budget should be clearly referenced with total costs for the production.
Based on the various elements that are required for the production, the producers should clearly communicate which elements you will be expected to approve, and how long you have to do this without impacting on the production timeline.
This also includes the approval of the scripts / proposal.
A professional production company will have clearly explained to you what you get for the budget agreed upon. This will normally include one set of changes to various elements and then after that a pro rata amount per hour for further changes.
2 Hot Tips!
2 Hot Tips!
Try to be clear within your own organisation on who is part of the approval process and have clear communication with them on due dates to receive feedback.
Many video productions fall by budget and completion date due to an unclear or haphazard feedback system on the client end.
If the CEO has to approve and is very busy, perhaps you can book a meeting in advance knowing that you will be able to get their attention long enough to get the feedback that you need.
Also as a aside note – feedback via committee is often a recipe for disaster, try and keep the amount of people who have a say in the changes down to a bare minimum.
How much control you have of the production really comes down to how many and which elements you will want to approve.
If you are a micro-manager and want to approve many aspects – it’s a good idea to let the Producers know early on so they can make room for these approvals and any time needed to make the requested changes.
But be aware –you’ve hired this company for their creative skill – if you dictate too much you will not let them do what they do best. In fact the more you try to micromanage your production company – the longer the production time and the bigger a chance that both time and budget will get blown out.
This can be a very exciting time, especially if you’ve never seen video being created before.
If you are going to be on location on the day, you should receive a call sheet, with the time and address to meet up. It will also have the address and contact numbers of key persons on the crew as well as the numbers of the nearest emergency facilities.
It is up to the Production company to make sure any needed permits are taken care of, and will be responsible for all equipment unless otherwise agreed upon before the day.
It can be very handy to be there to supervise on the day just in case something unplanned for pops up.
Perhaps the spokesperson is mispronouncing your product? – But to get the best outcome possible try to keep your comments to one or two people that have been assigned as your contacts on the day.
The reason for this is in order for the shoot to go as smoothly as possible, all direction toward key cast and crew will only be coming from one or two people at the appropriate times, too many interruptions can cause poor performances by those in front of camera, push shoots to go overtime or lose their creative momentum.
Once the shoot “is in the can” it’s time for the Video Editors, Designers and Audio Engineers to go to work.
Depending on your production agreement – you will be sent/presented with a rough cut – or perhaps a first draft for approval before final changes and then the final product.
Some companies do not like sending a rough draft or will only send them through on the condition that it’s to approve only certain elements in the production.
This is because it can be hard to see a half-finished production and imagine what the final result will be. It’s often hard for the untrained eye and ear to know what is likely to be a mistake and what is only an element that is yet to be tweaked, processed or modified.
Because hindsight is 20-/20 it’s common to see the edit and think of things that would improve the production by modifying it beyond the agreed finished product.
A good Production house will always be amendable to changes, especially if it means a happier client and a better product. But this has to be balanced with the time it will take to make these changes and how this will effect both budget and delivery date.
Sometimes what seems like a simple change is like asking the chef to take out the salty taste from the already completed meal.
It’s important for both parties to discuss these implications – the last thing you want is a nasty surprise come invoice time!
A professional Production company will know how you are planning to use your completed video/s and will make sure that they are delivered in a format that suits your uses. If you are also planning on using them in other ways tell your Production company.
If you are going to use your video/s for something very specific or unusual there may be extra costs involved to give you the most suited format.
A good Video Production house will have asked whether this was needed at the quoting stage.
BUT! If anything changes in the meantime it’s important to let them know as soon as you can. Believe it or not, the rise of digital video hasn’t made things simpler in fact it’s now much more complicated – iphone’s will only play certain formats – old internet browser’s will only play other types too.
If you plan on burning it to DVD or Blue-ray then you will need different formats entirely – it’s much better to get the creators of the content to give you these formats straight from their master Edit Suite project.
Afterward: Feedback & Video Marketing.
Like any profession – A good Corporate Video Production house understands that there is always room for improvement and learning.
Expect to be asked for candid honest feedback about your experience and the delivered product.
If you were given something substandard let them know – or if you think something in the service was lacking tell them also.
If you loved the way you were treated or the product itself – give them praise, after all we all like to be complimented and testimonials these days are worth their weight in gold!
Super Ninja Hack!
Super Ninja Hack!
This strategy sounds simple but is super powerful!
If you plan on getting more videos created in the future ask your production company for honest candid feedback on how they think you could help make the production better next time.
Never under estimate your importance in the production process!
One of the key skills to a really good Video Producer is getting the client working as part of the team, that includes teaching them/you how to add value to the creative ideas, communicating in a timely manner and knowing when to let the creatives go for it!
This might just be one of our motivations for creating this content ; )
The best clients are those that don’t require a good producer for all of this to happen!
What are you going to do with your Video/s now?
These days some Video Production companies offer advice or services to help you leverage your new material to get the most out of them – talk to your production company at the beginning about what you plan on doing with them – you may find that they have ideas that will make your campaign many times more effective by some simple tweaks and web video marketing implementations after completion.
Also check out Part 7 How to Leverage Your Videos – it’s jammed packed with great advice on making sure you get the most out of your video marketing campaign.
We hope that we’ve been able to help you know what to expect from your Video Production company, and also how you can best help to make sure that you get the best result possible. Really it all comes down to communication and control – finding a talented Video Production agency that strikes the perfect balance for your style of working with others is the key.
Here’s Our Last Hot Tip:
Here’s Our Last Hot Tip:
These days, it’s easy to get stuck with amateurs pretending to be professional, to avoid getting stuck with them from the very beginning, start by asking them what you as the client should expect, what happens from now?
Listen to their response, do they show foresight with defined areas of communication to make sure that everyone’s on the same page?
Do they give you a very clear idea what you should expect or are they just acting like Yes men, enthusiastically agreeing with all your suggestions saying
“yep we can do that, what a great idea – absolutely wonderful!”
– Without a clear concise plan on how they will achieve this, after all as the old saying goes – those who fail to plan, plan to fail.
This can be a very clear early warning sign that you may in for trouble down the road, in which case our advise would be to look for another Video Production Company
Don’t Miss Part 6 !
In the Part 6, our next chapter you’ll discover how long a production should take.
We’ll look into the best strategy’s to make sure that your production comes in time and within budget as well how to spot a Video Production company with the time management skills of a mad scientist.
You’ll learn how to know what is a reasonable amount of time a video production should take and which factors are the most likely to blow out the due date putting you over budget and over time.
Video Production for Clients Guide Table of Contents:
Here’s An Index of Every Chapter:
So you can get the content that interests you the most!
Ready to Get Started ?
Why Rockmans Creative Media?
Rockmans Creative Media brings a professional skill set and over 18 years ongoing television experience to your video project.
We understand that we are custodians of your brand.
Our videos are unique, and are tailor-made to meet your company objectives.
We know how to produce engaging, attention grabbing and interesting videos.