So you want to commission a professional video for your business or organization?
Perhaps a charity video to help raise awareness or funding, a corporate video to promote your company, services or products, or a patient experience case study video to inform patients, their families and healthcare professionals. But how do you go about choosing a video production company when you haven’t used one before?
Whether your initial research starts with a word-of-mouth recommendation, is via social media or a Google search, here are some tips to help you select the perfect video production partner.
Check out their video portfolio
Spend some time watching videos that the prospective video production company has produced for other clients. It’s worth watching a video in its entirety to really evaluate whether it works or not. Showreels are all well and good but the clips you see are out of context and are often just the most visually appealing shots or ones featuring well known people. Do you like the look and feel of the videos? Are they creative, varied in style and well put together? Does the company specialise in and excel at certain types of video production?
Read reviews and client testimonials
Before any interaction with a video company on your short list, you will learn a lot about them and the way they work from reading reviews and client testimonials. Do they deliver excellent results on time, on budget and to expectations without turning a client’s hair grey? Are they customer-focused and great communicators? How detail driven, professional, flexible, reliable and fun to work with are they from a client’s perspective?
How do they communicate?
It’s crucial that the video company you use are excited about working with your company and fully understand your brand, what the video must achieve and your target audience. As you haven’t worked with a professional video production company before, they should guide you through the production process and explain at what points they will need your input. Do you feel they’re on your wavelength and are asking the right types of questions? Do they listen to what you want rather than tell you what you need? If you have provided a brief, is their proposed treatment for the video creative, on-brand and pitched right for your intended audience?
How much do they charge?
Be realistic when setting your budget for the video. Generally you get what you pay for. An excellent video is usually down to a creative approach, a lot of work and a video production team with years’ of professional experience. Get several quotes and be clear from reading them precisely how your money will be spent. Look for a company that provides a detailed and transparent breakdown of the costs – without adding much mark-up (if any) to elements which they buy in (e.g. royalty free music, narrator etc.).
Meet them face-to-face
Having done your research, compared creative treatments and costs and had initial communication, you will have a clear idea of the front runners amongst the video production companies you have approached. At the very least have a telephone conversation with them before making your final decision. Ideally, invite them in for a face-to-face conversation. You will be spending quite some time working with the video production company so it’s important to listen to your gut instincts. As well as being a professional video company with a track record of producing excellent work at a reasonable cost, choose a supplier that you feel comfortable with on a personal level.