What You Need To Know Before Hiring A Video Production Company

Do you know how to select the right video production company to help create your video campaigns?

Are you still making that age-old mistake of shopping around based on price, rather than on the production company’s mission, process, and value proposition?

We always get the question, “How much for a 2-minute video?” A high-value production company won’t have an answer to that, though. For us, there’s no set number or price. It can range between hundreds or thousands of dollars, entirely depending on the creative process to make that vision come to life.

It’s like asking an artist how much for a 10’x10’ painting. It entirely depends on who the artist is, what they’re painting, how long it takes, the methods they use, and the final product.

If you’re looking to create a video strategy that actually shows tangible results, your bid has to be about more than the cost.

So what should you compare in order to hire a video production company that will be the right fit for you?

production company

Get an idea of your goals

Before you start shopping around for a video production partner, you want to figure out why you’re commissioning a video campaign.

What is your purpose for utilizing video?

Start by asking yourself (or your team) the following questions:

  1. What are the goals of this video? What are we trying to accomplish?
  2. Who is the audience? What do they want to see, and why do they care?
  3. How do we want the audience to feel about the brand after watching the video?
  4. What is the call to action? How do we want this video to move us forward?

Next, you want to address your expectations. What does a successful video look like to you? What kind of results are you hoping to achieve?

Create an “after-action” report. This essentially outlines the ideal conclusion for how your video’s metrics and results will look. This includes:

  • The channels/platforms on which it’s distributed
  • Number of views
  • Click-through rate
  • Conversion rate
  • Comments/feedback
  • Social sharing
  • Engagement
  • The “non-numbers”—like how your audience will feel after watching the video

What will make you happy with the end product? Be reasonable, but don’t be afraid to dream. When you present your after-action report to a production company, they can help you determine what is feasible and how they’ll help you reach your goals.

What you should compare

How do you know if a production partner is the right fit?

1. Start with a scorecard.

A “scorecard” is similar to a job description when you’re hiring a new employee. It’s a list of the qualities you’re looking for in your video production company. You want to score each production candidate on the following questions:

  • What are you really good at?
  • What are you not good at?
  • How would your previous clients scale you 1-10?

Basically, you’re trying to get an idea of the organization’s value proposition. What does this production company bring to the table that no one else does?

From there, does their value proposition align with what you’re looking for in a partner?

2. Ask about their experience.

Inquire about the company’s experience. You want to see the quality of the video they’re outputting, the success those videos have, and the happiness of their clientele.

This is different than asking to see “relevant” work to ensure they’ve made videos in your field. In some cases, having experience in the same industry is useful. For example, True Film Production does a lot in the medical industry, so we understand the kind of language that’s needed to stay compliant.

Often, though, relevance doesn’t matter as much as creativity. You want your video production company to be a visionary and take a more innovative approach to your video. You don’t want it to look like everyone else’s video in your field.

So you want to see that the company has experience making awesome videos—but that doesn’t mean those videos have to be similar to yours. It’s more about the vibe than the content.

3. Acknowledge their core values.

What is the video production company’s mission? What do they value? And how do they approach video production with those values in mind?

Most importantly, are their values in alignment with yours? For example, True Film Production’s values are:

  • Keep growing and learning.
  • Embrace being uncomfortable.
  • Demonstrate extreme care.
  • Connect on a human level.
  • Strive for greatness.

If you’re looking for a production company that is both forward-focused and detail-oriented, then True Film Production would be top on your scorecard.

Why do values matter? Because customers want authentic, honest marketing that reveals your brand message and mission. If your production company shares a similar mission to you, they’ll better be able to make your vision come to life.

Read: Are you creating content with your mission in mind?

hire video production company

4. Inquire about their process and strategy.

What does their process look like? This is the most expensive question—but also the most important. It tells you everything you need to know about the company’s use of equipment, manpower, post-edits, brainstorming, and more.

Ask them what their strategic approach is for different types of videos. Does this production strategy align with the vision you have in your head?

5. Don’t compare apples and oranges.

We typically don’t recommend comparing bids. The number doesn’t tell the whole story. There will be a range of prices, based on all of the video production services that go into that company’s creative process.

When comparing production companies, don’t compare based on price. In fact, it’s not uncommon that the lowest bid will give you the worst result. Compare based on your scorecard, and then talk to the “finalists” about your budget.

Read: Video production costs – more bang for your buck

How to communicate your vision

Before you can select your video production partner, you want to ensure they understand the vision you’re trying to convey. Do they comprehend what you’re trying to do? And can they leverage their creative process to bring your vision to life?

So how do you communicate your vision?

  1. Find a reference video. Pull inspiration from different videos, so your production partner can get an idea what you’re looking for.
  2. Craft a creative brief. This brief essentially details everything we’ve gone through in this article: goals, audience, expectations, distribution methods, available resources, inspiration points, timeline, and budget.
  3. Go through the brainstorming process with your potential partner. The best production companies are more than willing to have an initial meeting with you to discuss ideas you have in your head—and then put their creative team on the case to get even more ideas flowing.
  4. Explain your timeline. When do you need the video by? What is the purpose of this timeline? For example, if you need a video for the Christmas season, it tells us that you’re looking to create a story that inspires during the holiday season—so your story will be inspirational.
  5. Share your budget. Your partner needs to understand what you’re trying to accomplish within the funds you have available.

Note: Sharing your budget is different than comparing based on price. When you have a good idea of a production company or two you want to work with because they’re the right strategic fit, then you want to let them know what your budget looks like. From there, they can utilize their process to ensure you get the best video—in alignment with your mission—for the best price.

Hire video production company today

As you start comparing video production services, think of what you want your end product to look like. Compare how well a company can bring your vision to life—not simply if they can make a low-cost vieeo.

At True Film Production, our value proposition is storytelling. We’ve seen fantastic results by turning every video into a story. Whether you’re selling a medical device, fundraising for a nonprofit, or spreading your brand message, it’s the story that sells. Check out this Tedx Talk to see just how powerful stories are to get results.

If you want to create a story that shows results aligned with your mission…

Then request a quote with True Film Production now.

We won’t send you a price tag. We’ll send you a strategy. We’ll send you our story, so you can see how our mission-driven purpose will help bring your visual story to life.

Reach out to us now to get started.

The post What You Need To Know Before Hiring A Video Production Company appeared first on True Film Production.

13 Strategies to Boost Your Event Marketing With Video

Our tips to promote your event effectively.

In-person live events and conferences are the most critical marketing channel to achieve business objectives and generate leads, especially for b2b and tech companies. They give you the opportunity to connect and build engaged communities while potentially turning prospects into clients. In just a few hours, hundreds or thousands of people gather in the same space to have an experience provided to them that will educate and elevate your brand experience.

With the right strategy, you will maximize your results, save time and money. You are guaranteed event ROI by incorporating video into your event. Not only can you capture enough content to support your marketing efforts for this specific event or conference but you can utilize this content for the remainder of the year through different channels. Video is a crucial tool to incorporate into your event. Here are 13 ways to use it for every step of the production.

Save the Date

If you don’t have enough details to start promoting your event but want to get people thinking about it, a Save the Date video is your solution. This puts the date on people’s mind, and onto their calendar without needing to be ready to share all of the fine details

Event Hype Video

This is a great tool to use to launch the event and get people's information. Include an overview of highlights, what to expect, what they’ll experience, speaker line up and have registration information. Promote this with a short hashtag to assist people with finding your event on social media

Event Mission Statement Video

This is where you can incorporate the backstory and inspiration of how the event came to be, include an interview with the organization’s CEO/Founder and display a thank you message for all in attendance.

Social Media Posts

Social media teasers are a good way to share some hints about your upcoming event and countdown or deadline reminders for any promotions or discounts. Keep these short and make a square version for Instagram!

Behind the Scenes

People love watching behind-the-scenes footage to give them a sense of the inner workings of the event. Take a before-event and after-event video that shows the transformation. Have someone conduct a Q&A with the panelists and speakers before they take the stage. Including personal content connects the viewer and adds a level of authenticity to your event. Customers like to able to see the faces of the crew, staff working hard on the event or see what your favorite speaker is doing just minutes before they take the stage.

Welcome Video

Welcome videos are always a nice, personal touch to have at any event. It allows you to remind your attendees of the mission and purpose of the event before it kicks off.

Speaker Announcements

Use a short video to introduce each speaker, award recipient or honoree as a visual aid. This video should tell a quick bio about who is coming on stage and what the audience will learn over the next couple of hours.

Panels/ Keynote Speakers

You can capture panels or keynote speakers then take that footage and turn it into additional content.

Sponsor/Partnerships Integration

If you have an event that has Sponsors or Partners attached to it, incorporating their brand into your event video is key. Curated footage of their involvement onsite at the event, ex. setting up their booth, interacting with the attendees, shots of their product is a great way to highlight their involvement

Live Streaming

Live streaming is so important because of the level of immediate interaction and engagement. Communicate information about your livestream in advance in order to build anticipation. When users join your live stream, they have the opportunity to ask questions, make commentary, use icons and visuals to show how they are feeling and connect with others posting on the live stream; all in a matter of seconds.

Live-streaming creates brand hype about the current event and creates FOMO. People who missed out will see how great your conference is and will be the first to sign up for next year’s event. It is a great tool to engage your attendees and those who are not in attendance. Once you put it out on various social media channels, it can generate interest through word-of-mouth.

Customer Testimonials

Testimonials give you credibility and allows you to put a face to your business. They are an important validation of your prospects from their peers, which provides a sense of trust. What were your attendee's takeaways from the event, was it a success, would they attend it again the future, how would they describe it best to someone who was not there? If you are inviting clients to your event or conference, this is a good time to capture their feedback and you can repurpose this footage for future case studies. This saves time and money from coordinating another shoot.

Thank You Video

The event is over, your guests are still talking about the great time they had. Within 24 hours, some sort of communication should be sent to your attendees. Leaving too much time between your event and your thank you message will not be effective or engaging. Your Thank You message can include a personal thank you from the founder and highlights from the night and if you already have your next event lined up, a great time to put a quick note to Save the Date.

Post Event

Event recap videos keep the buzz going for attendees and if used properly, can attract future attendees. Everyone likes to be nostalgic and reminded of their favorite times. Use your post-event video to evoke that emotion in your attendees so they’ll want to come back for more or share with their friends. Consider creating a Sizzle, a 1-3 minute highlight video that pulls from all of your event video footage. You want people to look back at your event, talk about it and share it with others. It incorporates powerful clips from the day, upbeat or emotion-provoking music, crowd interaction shows (laughing, clapping, standing ovation) and your message. Think of it as a way to get your information out to the world in a quick, effective way – like a movie trailer. It should get them amped up. Remind them that this event will be taking place again the following year.

As you can see, when you have the right strategy, video can be a powerful asset pre, during and post-event. With all of the footage that you have captured from your event, you can repurpose sound bites, key points, turn them into social media content to use throughout the year. With the right planning and video partner, you can find a way to be effective and efficient. This leads to saving not only time but money on creating your event video marketing strategy.

You now have 13 ideas of how to incorporate video at your next event and we have shared the benefits of why it’s so important to include these steps in your process.

Contact us to schedule a free consultation about how you can use video for your upcoming event.

The post 13 Strategies to Boost Your Event Marketing With Video appeared first on True Film Production.

How This Tedx Talk About Toy Green Soldiers Can Change The World of Storytelling

Have you ever had a toy that meant everything to you? Maybe it was your Raggedy Ann doll who went everywhere with you, or your GI Joe who encouraged you to go on more adventures, or your first skateboard that launched a boarding hobby for life.

It’s that toy or moment that made an impact in your life… in your personal story.

For us, toy green soldiers are at the heart of our True Film story. I’m Stanley, the founder and CEO of True Film Production. I had the privilege of sharing my Tedx Talk in Boggy Creek about how my toy green soldiers—my childhood best friends—taught me to use his imagination, strategize an “attack” plan, and create a full-fledged story from start to finish. The skills I learned from receiving that single toy changed my passion, my future career, and my mission for True Film Production.

The Tedx Talk

This Tedx talk was really exciting for me personally and for our entire team at True Film Production. I’ve wanted the opportunity to share my experience to get at the heart of our mission at True Film. But even more than that, I hope that my story can be an inspiration to other storytellers, creators, and dreamers out there. When you see my Tedx talk, I want you to see yourself in my story, in my drive, and in my passion.

In this talk, I work to draw in the audience and keep your attention by telling an age-old story, shared through my unique lens: I wanted an expensive gift, but I got a less expensive one. But it’s much more than that. I share the meaning behind the toy. I get you invested in the dream that stemmed from those little green soldiers.

Then I explain how receiving that gift was the moment mmy life launched down a new trajectory—and how those little green guys inspired me to become the storyteller I am today.

Throughout the Tedx Talk, I share stories about myself so you can get to know me. Telling you about my summer job gives you a sense of my work ethic. Quitting my job two weeks after my daughter was born to start a video production agency tells you about my adventure, passion, and commitment.

I tell you my story, so you can get to know me. By the end of the video, you should feel like a friend. You may even be inspired to pursue your own passion, or you might be excited to work with me and share your own story through video with True Film Production.

It’s the story that keeps you engaged, makes you interested, and encourages you to take action.

The Beauty of The Story

This Tedx talk is chock full of stories. From the primary through-line of the toy green soldiers to the individuals I meet throughout my experiences, to the little moments that inspire you to think of your own stories.

That’s because authentic stories build trust and foster connections. This kind of emotional response keeps you engaged throughout his talk, and even way after the talk is over. People are innately drawn to people. We all love a good story about a hero defying the odds or a princess taking control of her own destiny.

Stories are what unite us as one society, one world. Stories are inter-cultural and, in some cases, even inter-dimensional. A story about a young man in a low-income village in rural Africa who is in love with a girl out of his league is just as relatable to us if we’ve ever felt rejection. Someone in the futuristic 3000s who’s dealing with a tragedy pulls on our own heartstrings because we too have felt our own tragedies. Any story has the power to move—to hit home with the audience.

As I say in the Tedx talk, “inspiration is all around us.” Everyone has a story, and everyone’s story is relatable to an audience. It’s simply about extracting that story, sharing it in a creative way, and making that story come to life. That’s our job at True Film Production.

Storytellers set the vision for their generation. That’s why i started this company “in the storytelling business.” I’ve always been passionate about stories, and I knew that video was the perfect way to creatively and visually share stories—both for fun and for marketing.

The “Market” of the Story

Stories are powerful. So what if we tapped into that power?

Customers connect to stories. If they are inspired by what you have to say, they won’t just buy your products—they’ll become your hardcore brand ambassadors. They’ll share your stories on social media. They’ll connect with you. They’ll tell everyone about your brand, and they’ll become an integral part of your community.

We can never say it enough:

Authentic stories are the best asset your company can invest in.

Stories build relationships between company and customer. In my talk, I share the statistic that 95% of all purchase decisions happen unconsciously; it comes from a connection that we feel to people and stories about the brand, much more so than the product itself.

When a customer buys from you, they’re choosing to enter into a relationship with your business. Before they do, they want to know who they’re getting involved with. So if you want customers to buy from you, you need to humanize your brand. You want to make your story authentic, vulnerable, and real—and that’s where the true connection happens.

Your Toy Green Soldier Story

Everyone has a moment (or many) of inspiration that sparks your pathway. Maybe you were enthralled with Buzz Lightyear as a child, so you decided to go into the astronomy field. Or one day, you saw a woman at a grocery store who couldn’t afford her cart, so later in life you decided to make your mission to feed families. Or maybe you saw a video about surfers, and you decided to move to the beach.

And every business has a story too. Maybe you started your soda company because the best day of your childhood was when you had a local soda at a county fair. Or you decided to launch your animal shelter because your family used to foster animals.

Every story has a start. When you’re looking to create a mission or story for your marketing campaign, you want to try to get at the heart of what this story is—by unlocking where it began.

That’s the purpose of this Tedx Talk. The talk is captivating because it uses my stories to get you to discover the stories that matter to you. When I talk about the gift I always wanted for my 8th birthday, it gets you thinking about that “special gift” you wanted on your birthday too. When I tells you about Blake’s passion, it makes you dream about your own passion too.

So what IS your story? What kinds of stories will inspire your employees, your customers, and your community?

It’s your story to share

I couldn’t have done this Tedx Talk two years ago. I’m passionate about storytelling, but it took me a while to gather the courage to share my own story. But I decided to push myself, because I see the success our clients have when they share stories and step outside that box.

Don’t let fear hold you back from sharing your story… from making those connections… and from inspiring your community and customers.

Reach out to True Film Production to start sharing your story. It’s our job to help you find and bring your story to life—and connect with your audience and customers. Let us be your visual storytellers.

What did you think of my Tedx Talk? Did my story make you connect with me more? Leave a comment with your thoughts!

The post How This Tedx Talk About Toy Green Soldiers Can Change The World of Storytelling appeared first on True Film Production.

10 Not-So Secrets of an Entrepreneur

One thing I have found is that becoming a successful entrepreneur is not a matter of having a great idea. That great idea is just the beginning. It takes the right combination of certain factors to take that great idea and make it into something successful.

I have found 10, not-so secret, secrets of becoming a successful entrepreneur. Here they are.

Strong leadership abilities

An entrepreneur cannot build an empire without strong leadership skills. An entrepreneurial endeavor comes with a certain about of uncertainty and unpredictability. A strong leader can reassure his team and motivate them to keep moving forward.

Strong self-motivation

Motivation for an entrepreneur must come from within. An external motivation, like a job loss or pressure from a loved one, is not going to get a budding entrepreneur very far. A strong, internal drive to succeed and take an idea as far as possible will push that person forward even on the worst days.

Willingness to fail

Failure is a part of business, especially for entrepreneurs. It helps them learn what is not working, so they can change directions toward what is working. It builds a certain mental resiliency that makes the entrepreneur stronger and more motivated than ever.

Willingness to do the hard work necessary

Let’s be honest. Starting up a business is not a simple task. There are tons of things to do and, in most cases, very few people to do it all. The entrepreneur must be willing and able to put in the hours and hard work necessary to keep the business running and moving forward.

Dedication to see the venture through

An entrepreneur must have a stubborn sense of dedication. Getting people to buy into a new idea can be an uphill battle. Getting lenders to buy into a vision can be a long journey littered with rejection. Getting customers to make that first order can seem like an effort in futility. That is why dedication is critical for entrepreneurs.

Desire to build strong relationships

Almost all successful businesses are built on strong relationships. The entrepreneur must have the desire and ability to build those kinds of relationships with peers, employees, vendors, lenders, investors, customers, and just about everyone else.

Willingness to treat staff the right way

Treat your staff with trust, dignity and respect, and you will see results. If you treat your staff members right, they will treat your customers right. If they feel discontent and no motivation, that will reflect in how they treat your customers.

Constant sense of competitiveness

One thing that motivates most successful entrepreneurs is the desire to win any challenge presented to them. They see opening up a company as one of the biggest challenges out there. This sparks their competitive side to win at all costs.

Ability to recognize and address knowledge gaps

The inability or unwillingness to ask questions is a weakness that can cause a business to fail before it gets off the ground. Asking questions and seeking advice from subject matter experts is a cornerstone of successful entrepreneurs.

Comfortable with taking risks

Opening a business is a risk. Putting yourself out there to sell your idea to a potential investor is a risk. Signing that first customer contract is a risk. Cold calling 20 people a day is a risk. An entrepreneur who is risk-adverse is not going to get very far.

I have seen many great ideas go nowhere because the people behind them just did not have what it takes for an entrepreneur to succeed. Do you have what it takes?