What you’re probably expecting in this article is something like a bulleted list of all the great video industries from weddings to bah mitzvahs to TV and Netflix movies (and how to be an influencer “filmmaker” – gag). That’s not what we’re here to talk about, today though – instead, we’re going to tell you how to build a business using video production as your service and product. We’ll discuss how you need to look at your video production services and what might need to be flipped on its head. This article isn’t written by a ghost-writer with not a shred of skin in the videography game (and merely taking a check to put words in a Google doc for publishing on a site). This is our real experience in a nutshell, passed to you for your use. You’ve been warned!
In our time building and establishing a Dallas video production company, our experiences in event production, video marketing and ad media production, have taught us so much. We’ve encountered an incredible amount of variables and options for which to choose in curating our business. Most videographers, we’ve found, take the approach of one-off shoots and videography jobs for events or milestones, micro-influencer music videos or other smaller-ticketed services and then find that they have grown a name for themselves overtime and eventually grow to a point that the phone rings regularly with client calls for video production jobs.
This is exactly how we started ourselves, in fact. And while we credit every job large or small, we did find a profound flaw in this business model – it’s dreadfully and inescapably feast or famine. We would go 6 months or more on a so-called “lucky streak” where not only were the bills being paid, but capital was abundant enough to grow an inventory of top-notch cameras, lenses and gear. It was exciting, rewarding and fulfilling.
But then as fast as the leads poured in, they would dry up. Winter hits or the world goes on lockdown and events are suddenly a thing of the past. We could have saved our profits for the famine that we learned to be inevitable – but we would never have gained that capital without the ability to close leads at higher price points using high-quality gear as our selling point deal-maker. So the cycle would repeat and before long, we could smell the famine coming from a mile away.
That’s when we knew that in order to scale and grow as a business, something had to change – something fundamental about how we did business. Instead of using half of our resources, time, energy and marketing budget on the one off job pool, we needed to reevaluate the leads we had done business for already and decide – is this actually what THEY need? What would, in reality, bring THEM more money to their business?
It dawned on us that if we could answer this question for them, it would create a need. A need that sustains and doesn’t have an ending date, because so long as the need is being fulfilled, their business is growing. And if theirs is growing, ours will naturally follow suit.
This is how we started out on our own path towards corporate video services, commercial real estate video production, lawyer videography services, podcast video production, and industrial video production. In these arenas, we saw that there already WAS a need (an on-going, ever-money-making need) for videographers that produce videos for marketing. These videos make businesses real money and are a leg up on their competition as it brings into play a MUCH larger and more effective role in social media, which is the digital slice of the networking pie and one of the best places to make a video advertisements known and seen. Our role became the one that makes sure this video is not only seen (using our digital marketing experience and background in video production SEO and social media video marketing) but be a show-stopper to all who scroll upon it.
We also learned from past experience in the fields of local business, event, corporate, law firm, industrial, and e-commerce marketing that a businesses website is an incredibly vital piece of the puzzle. Essentially the cornerstone of all things past, present and future, this is true in lead generation, lead nurturing, customer lifetime value and closing or conversion rates. Using a website to land the deal or make the sale is not only convenient, but ever-increasingly expected by buyers.
And the best part is, we can connect analytics to our websites and know for SURE if what we’re doing is working, how well, when, for whom and why.
Digital assets like photo and video are always needed and the larger a company grows, that need for video asset production services grows too. Every new webpage added to the website needs media, and it needs to look good in order to continue the upwards growth trend for that business.
This is where we come in as a video production company, and where we recommend that you do the same. Find a video production industry that’s client-base either already understands the importance of media assets, video marketing services, video ad production services, business or product video production. Or should understand it, and introduce them to the benefits.
Show prospects work that you’ve done in a similar space and if you haven’t done any yet – offer big discounts or freebies to build a portfolio. Once your foot is in the door, make every networking connection you can and do a great job. Not only because your clients need that from you, but also because their associates and colleagues are watching.
You are your own walking billboard so just as you want your work to be impressive after post, be impressive on set and make it a habit to always respond quickly to client emails and calls, remember the things that they love and hate. Never stop learning and practicing new skills. Learn each fellow videographer and video editor so that they can help you when your business grows large enough to need them. And never, ever burn a bridge.
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