Choosing the right film production company can be challenging.
With film now being so popular as a marketing resource, there’s a mass influx of professional film production companies. Determining which film production companies are professionals and which ones simply call themselves professionals may not be the easiest so here are some tips to help you avoid costly lessons.
Film is one of those areas of marketing, even more so if you are new to it, that it is essential to choose the right company to work with. Professional filming doesn’t come cheap and the last thing you would want is buyer’s remorse from simply not going through the correct selection criteria.
When choosing any new supplier, you want to ensure that their criteria matches yours. It’s important for a number of reasons, probably the greatest being the synergy of expectations and results as you move forward.
Let’s face it, if you’ve decided film is the way forward for you, you want to make every penny count! That’s why all of the top brands of the world invest so much into it. When executed well, it just works.
Here are 3 things to evaluate when you’re choosing your film production company.
You need to know that the supplier you choose can (and more importantly will) deliver. It would be wise to look for a company / team who have invested the man hours to have all the necessary experience. Malcolm Gladwell cites 10,000 hours as being the yard stick by which to measure peoples’ level of expertise. Once past 10,000 hrs they can be categorised as ‘expert’.
Ensuring that you gain value from your production company means that they should be taking a very keen interest in your needs. It may be that your budget and expectations are mis-aligned but a brilliant production company will not only talk you through this but they’ll also discuss with you how you will be able to make your budget work all be it if it’s not the Spielbergesque feature film you had first imagined.
Before you’ve worked with a company, you may think it difficult to measure their professionalism but there are a number of ways you can check their credentials in this vital aspect of your decision making process. The first thing you can do is speak with their existing customers. A good company will always have happy customers who are pleased to speak with you. You should perhaps think about asking them about things that have gone wrong and how they’ve been resolved. Accidents do happen and in actual fact, how a company deals with these mini crises is a very good measure of their overall professionalism. You should also ask to see risk assessments and method statements. If these aren’t present, this is a very clear warning signal. Finally, how comprehensive is their insurance? You need to know that all the liabilities are covered and no-one, particularly you, will end up out of pocket as a result of some unforeseen circumstance.
The hand held domestic video footage of baby biting other baby’s fingers is not the future of video on-line.
Many of the top brands have come to the realisation that if they have a clear enough “call to action” to drive enough traffic to their web-site, those brands are now able to consider themselves in the same way as a genuine TV channel. But this position carries responsibility. Your “viewers” have expectations about the quality of the video they watch on-line, and if other competitors have video on their site at genuine TV quality, they will expect the same from you.
With the BBC’s iPlayer and other on-demand broadcast domains, the consumer can now watch the same TV quality via a digital source as they expect via their satellite dish or digital aerial. So your on-line offering needs to be produced at that TV standard, and the quality must be conveyed through to the viewer by maximising playback and data rates, which are still considered a “black-art” by some, but not by our chosen partner.
The camera’s, lights and all the other kit plus operators MUST be the best, not kids just out of film school with a handy-cam coupled with a cheap piece of plastic on the front masquerading as a lens and then some basic software to edit on. The director needs to be able to write a script, if called for, so the edit has depth and tells a story. That’s how you elevate a basic edit into a short film. The producer and the director need a proper TV background and plenty of practical familiarity and experience, not just cutting the family’s holiday video’s. And for those clients who do not have any professional TV or video production experience it can be extremely hard to ascertain who out there is experienced and will bring gold standards to the table, and those that have only the basis of an understanding of how to make a strong, striking and effective film.
Choosing the right film production company is imperative to maintain control over your costs and satisfy the quality needs of your company.
By Ryan Mullins