Oh man were a real business! What now?!
When it comes to hiring someone to do video for your business, startup, or artistic venture it can be tough to decide on a lot of things. My goal with this article is to give you the tools you need to hire the right person for YOUR goals (if you even need to bring someone on at this point).
The biggest question to ask is WHY am I doing this?
Video is a lot like a bucket. It’s just a container or medium to hold messages, and it can be used for a lot of different tasks. You have to figure out what size bucket you need for your job. Lets look at a few ways it can be used.
- To connect with people emotionally and create tighter connections between your brand ethos and your demographic of users/customers.
- To directly sell products or services.
- To inform people or raise awareness about the existence or nature of your venture.
- To bring perceived legitimacy to a product or brand that hasn’t established it yet.
- To elevate the perception of a product or brand above competitors.
- To automate repetitive tasks that take time such as education, or explanation videos.
- To entertain people in a for profit or non profit context.
- To raise awareness to issues (activism).
- To document or archive data for historical or academic collection.
- To strengthen brand identity through documentation of philanthropic and community outreach efforts instead of direct advertising efforts for branding.
- Personal memories and fulfillment.
There are many other ways video can be utilized for problem solving in business, but depending on your specific needs it will start to give you an outline and idea of what you need. You now have a rough idea of what genre/format/length you are looking at, which also gives you an idea of WHO to hire. Before going any further, this would also be a great time to start hashing out a budget (if there is any).
The next question we need to ask ourselves how much it is worth to accomplish our goal??
This can be a very obvious or abstract answer, and depends on many things. A marketing director at a for profit company will likely be given that number up front by someone else. A small business startup who is in charge of creating their own business plan (i.e. you) are a bit less sure. Video is a business where daily set budgets span from $0.00 to over $100,000. Why do the finest luxury companies pay out on the high end, when our cousin George can do it on his day off to build his portfolio??
The answer is that they know the overall value of their product. When their overall marketing budget is 40 million dollars and they stand to make 120 million in profit off the entire lifespan of the product, spending $200,000 for a high end video is only a small part of the overall picture. For them the trust, faith, and ability to rely on the top of the top is worth more than saving even HUNDREDS of thousands of dollars.
If you’re a small business doing $200,000 in gross sales a year, it would literally put you out of business to hire that crew, but the stakes are not that high for you. You can probably accomplish your goals for much less. (see article about dimishing returns of production costs)
If you’re a fresh startup still doing this part time trying to build from scratch. Go ahead and take the chance with your cousin from art school. You have nothing to lose, and if it doesn’t come of anything, oh well. You really might not need more than an iphone, or a free volunteer looking to build their skill set, but if you are demanding proper results, don’t curse the whole industry as a rip off because your cousin did a horrible job for free.