Getting the right video, brand film, or content at the right price can often be a conundrum for clients. How much should you pay and what should you expect?
We understand it’s easy to get frustrated with a production company when you ask: “How much will a film or video cost?” and the answer is: “Well, it depends.” Frustrating because you just want an answer, but also because it really does depend on many factors. Each factor can make or break your final communication, its success and your return on investment. We believe it is our job to help you work out what will work best based on valuable insight and what those factors are for your needs and audience to offer a tailored solution for maximum impact.
Low cost vs high production values
Video is less expensive and easier to create than ever before. You can shoot a video, edit it on an app and publish to YouTube all via an iPhone. If that method captures the look and feel you’re after, and communicates your message perfectly, then why not? However no matter how accessible film and video recording technology has become, it doesn’t make everyone an expert. Great insight, strong creative, and high production values, along with good clear planning and dissemination strategy is what will make your film great and work for you. Going back to the old tried and tested production triangle FAST, CHEAP, GOOD. FAST and CHEAP does not result in good. FAST and GOOD is more expensive. CHEAP and GOOD takes time. The sweet spot is in the middle.
What goes into making it great!
It’s easy to see the difference between a great video, TV spot or film with strong production values and thought behind it, and its amateur counterpart but it’s not always easy to see or understand what went into making it. We make sure the right elements are in place to achieve what you need.
Concept & treatment development.
Depending on the sophistication of the work even before we get to pre-production, some level of thought and planning for the whole production has to take place. You may need our to help develop a concept that meets your goals. This process starts with your brief leading to our response. Using our experience and insight this response concludes with our creative approach in a treatment that meets your objectives for the desired content. This treatment is needed for all video or film production in some form. We prefer to write creative to a briefed budget estimate so we can develop a creative idea that delivers the maximum impact.
Project planning / Scheduling
At this stage, preparations are made in terms of project management. Any imminent deadlines are discussed and incorporated into the project plan. We begin forecasting how much work the video might require and can start drafting a production budget so that you understand the costs associated with your requirements.
The costs associated with this stage depends on the scope of your project and the amount of support you need to define the goals of your content and how these are reached.
The pre-production process is multi-faceted. There are both creative and organizational elements. If you don’t put the effort in at this stage, you are likely to waste a lot of time and money in the production and post-production stages of the project.
Storyboard design & illustrations.
Storyboards are not always needed but are vital if you want to make something sophisticated for use online or broadcast. They are an early opportunity to generate a strong idea of the TV spot, film or content, scene by scene, so that you and we are sure we’re on the same page. Ultimately, storyboards are about expectations. Rather than blindly entering the production process, you have a strong visual reference for what you are setting out to achieve and will get.
The fees for pre-production are set in the early stages. It’s our responsibility to keep a strong reign on the budget while creating the perfect blueprint for your video, advert or film. A feedback process is written into the project plan so that you can comment on the storyboard and development of all aspect of the film.
Graphics design & visualizations
If your video or film includes any graphics, this needs to be discussed and planned for in pre-production. You may have pre-existing motion graphics that can be incorporated into your content. However, there’s also a chance that you will need custom graphics. At this stage our motion graphic designer / animator produces some options so you can decide what look and feel you want and feed back.
Editing and motion graphics are often bundled into the same process but it’s good to remember they are not the same thing. High-quality 3D graphics take more expertise and are charged at different rates, depending on requirements. If you want to reduce costs by providing your own graphics, they must be a high enough quality/resolution. Low-quality graphics look cheap and nasty.
Our team have extensive casting experience casting for major feature films and also our advertising work. If your spot, brand film or video is going to include any talent, e.g. a presenter, actors or a voiceover artist for narration, we will work with you to cast the best person/people for the job. The cost of any actors, presenters and voiceover artists really does depend on their experience, the usage and how in demand they are.
Planning and Crew
While all of the creative magic is happening, we plan the logistics of the production. The key areas that are organised include:
Times and dates
Gear (filming equipment)
Costumes and props
Plan B (for when things might go wrong!)
Communication of all the above with call sheets/schedules
When displayed in a list like this, it seems so easy. However the process of organizing a shoot can at times be time consuming and complicated. It’s about getting a team of people together, with all of the things they need to do their jobs properly, at the same time and place, with the same idea in their heads about what happens. This line in the budget is, therefore, essential to guarantee an organized and professionally run shoot. More days filming naturally means more days planning.
Once shot we produce a cut for our clients to preview for feedback. Normally this will be a fairly polished edit with motion graphics elements. Once reviewed we take feedback on produce a final cut which can be delivered in numerous formats. Delivery formats vary in cost
We always do our best to work out what will work most effectively for the budget you have allocated. Sometimes it maybe more sometimes less. One thing we do not do is cut corners that can end in a video or film ending up as not what you or we want. We always recommend the best route possible whilst keeping costs effective to deliver the best result possible.