Is it possible to produce a quality video without spending a lot of money? That depends on your perspective. Most of us have seen the unimpressive results of videos with low production values and little to no time spent refining the creative process.
This experience can lead people to believe that attempting to save money on video production is always a bad idea. Fortunately, that’s not quite true. It is possible to save money while maintaining high standards. You simply have to look in the right areas to save money. Consider the following 5 tips:
1. Create a Budget
A film production budget is very similar to your personal or business budget. You can’t fly by the seat of your pants and save money. Instead, you have to make a plan, determine how much money you have to spend, track expenses, and make adjustments when things go astray.
Don’t hesitate to use Excel or other software to organize and track your budget. Even if your first video project doesn’t quite hit the budget goals you set, that information will be valuable as you set budgets for future projects.
2. Avoid Over-Editing in Post-Production
Most people in marketing or creative fields have a strong tendency toward perfectionism. Whether it’s writing a compelling blog post that really grabs attention or producing a video that hits the mark, you may be tempted to spend time continuing to perfect things.
In video production, this happens during the post-production process. Sometimes, it’s a good thing. You catch things that need to be fixed or find a change that can make the final video much better.
The problem is when you keep asking for edits to the extent that it causes delays or increases your post-production costs. It may help to remember that asking for editing can cause much more work beyond the “one simple change” you perceive yourself as asking for.
3. Let Experts Do Their Jobs
Presumably, you aren’t a video production expert. You’ve probably hired people to help you with this process, and you may even be working with a video production team. At the same time, you are responsible for the final product, since the end result can significantly impact your business.
This reality can lead to micromanagement, and that’s understandable. It’s also expensive and counterproductive. Remember that you used due diligence in finding people to work on your production. Now, let them do their jobs.
Keep in mind that what you see in the midst of production isn’t going to be the final product. There is a post-production process that will take place where plenty of editing will happen.
You hired experts to work on your video. Trust your judgment and let them do their jobs. If not, you could end up paying more money for your experts than originally planned.
4. Educate Yourself On the Process
Take some time to learn how video production works. While you may not become an expert in all phases of production, the knowledge you pick up will give you a better understanding of how things work. This insight will put you in a better position to facilitate a more efficient video production process.
Additionally, by learning how the process works, you will be able to hire better experts to manage your video shoot and your post-production processes. This optimization will save you money on having to redo things that go wrong or hiring additional video production experts to fix errors in the final product.
5. Control Your Licensing Costs
Music and other elements from professional artists can really take your production to higher levels. Unfortunately, if these assets are licensed, you’re going to have to pay for them.
In some cases, you might pay thousands of dollars for licensing. Also, remember that you will have to pay ongoing fees the more your video is played or if you plan to use the licensed assets in other projects.
Additionally, while music is the first thing people consider when it comes to licensing fees, it isn’t the only thing. You may also have to pay for stock footage, images from stock photo sites, and even sound effects. Decide early if you would be better off foregoing licensed elements in favor of things that are in the public domain.
Plan for the Future
Take notes during the production process. Then plan to have a post-mortem session once production is over and again after you get your performance numbers back. This annotation will help you to document what works well and what does not for future videos.