It can be scary to hire a videographer to come and help you create video assets for your business.
And based on conversations I’ve had with a number of other business owners, it’s possible you’ve had some less than ideal experiences with freelancers in the past.
So in an effort to help you (and help whatever videographer you hire) have a big “win” and a positive experience, here are three essential things you should do before hiring your next videographer for a project.
Step 1: Define your goals
In the book Alice in Wonderland, Alice is trying to figure out where she needs to go.
So when she found the Cheshire cat, she asked what path she should take.
“That depends a good deal on where you want to get to,” said the Cat.
“I don't much care where—” said Alice.
“Then it doesn't matter which way you go,” said the Cat.
If you don’t know where you’re going, it’s impossible to know if you ever get there.
Which is why it is essential to determine what your goals are BEFORE you ever hire a videographer or cinematographer to help.
Otherwise it’s really easy to have miscommunications and end up with a video that you (as the business owner) aren’t very happy with.
So before you start working on a video project, take a step back and think about what outcome you hope to accomplish with the video.
Do you want to use the video to help build your brand?
Are you using it to increase likes?
Are you trying to create content that will go viral?
Is there a specific level of quality or style you’re looking for? (e.g. Hollywood style vs something that’s filmed on a smartphone)
And are you looking for a specific return on your investment?
This last question is my favorite.
What does “success” for this project look like for you? How will you know the video is a winner?
When you have answers to those questions in mind, you’re ready to go to the next step.
Step 2: Decide what kind of video you need
Now that you know what outcome you’re trying to achieve, you’re ready to choose what type of video to film.
And the type of video you need will depend on the outcome you want to achieve.
Are you trying to deliver a lot of information in a short amount of time?
Are you trying to create an asset that can help you sell more of your products and services?
Are you trying to build your brand, or create additional videos people can watch on your website?
Each of these require a different “type” of video.
So to help, here are a few of the biggest video “types” most businesses need:
This is great content that helps your customers and potential customers get a “behind the scenes” look at you and your business.
You can use documentary style videos to introduce new products, reveal information most people may not be aware of (but that they may find interesting), or even just to introduce your followers to your brand and the people who work in the company.
In most cases, documentary-style videos are best used for additional “behind the scenes” content or “about us” content for your website.
Cinematic Lifestyle Video
This is my favorite type of video, and subsequently the type that we specialize in at Rodda Films.
There are a few unique things about Cinematic Lifestyle Videos.
First, we shoot them using state of the art Hollywood-style cameras and techniques.
This way every video feels like it has been pulled straight from a movie.
And even better, because it’s focused on a story instead of a specific product, that one video has the potential to serve you and your business for years.
Second, when you shoot the video using state of the art Hollywood-style cameras and techniques, you get the feeling your Cinematic LIfestyle Video (aka your business’s commercial) came straight from a movie.
Cinematic Lifestyle Videos are the perfect way to create an emotional connection (just like in the movies) with potential customers and clients and drive them to take action, even before you’ve ever interacted with them.
Think of it like a 45-second story-based commercial that is totally built to sell people on your brand.
But instead of advertising a specific product or service, we use emotion and story to connect you and your brand on a human level, to your (potential) customers.
Plus at the end of the video there’s a specific call to action.
This way you’re able to directly tie the video to your marketing goals, or whatever goals are most important to you in your business.
The best part is because it’s such a versatile piece of content, you can use it to promote your brand basically anywhere from your website to any (or all) of your social media channels.
For example, I recently made a Cinematic Lifestyle Video for a city in California, which they posted everywhere, from their website to their social media channels.
The video was the most liked, commented, and shared piece of content the city had EVER released.
And it also created a firestorm of people who were reached out, either interested in visiting (or in some cases even moving) to the city.
Mission accomplished ✅
Talking Head Style
You’ve probably seen many videos that follow this style before, as it’s one of the most popular styles of video today.
The “talking head” is where you have one (or occasionally two) people standing in front of the camera, talking.
They’re typically very inexpensive to make and you can deliver a large amount of content in a very short amount of time.
Talking Head-style videos are great when you’re trying to help your customers and followers get to know you and your brand better. You can talk about yourself, the brand, a product, or really anything you want to.
In most cases, talking head videos are best when used on the “About” page of your website, for extra content.
Step 3: Know Your Cinematographer’s Style
Now that you know what outcome you want to achieve and what type of video you’ll likely want, you’re ready to find a videographer.
But as you can imagine, not all videographers are created equally.
To start, you may find it helpful to look to see if they have any “testimonials” or reviews online from people who have worked with them in the past.
Next it’s important to realize that there are a number of different “specialties” when it comes to videographers.
Some specialize in weddings, real estate, or other types of cinematography.
So it’s important to not only consult with them and make sure they understand your vision for the project, but to also look at examples of their work so you can have a general idea of their style.
And as they catch the vision of what you have in your mind, they will likely have fantastic ideas that can help take your idea to the next level.
So while you may have an idea in your head of how the project is supposed to look, be open to their feedback and ideas.
Great filmmakers and videographers have amazing ideas and will be able to take your ideas and turn them into something that’s visually wonderful, for you and your customers.
Whew! If you enjoyed this content, let me know! I’d love to hear your experiences from using these guidelines as you navigate the wonderful world of working with videographers.
Not only will the principles I’ve laid out here help you and your videographer be on the same page, but by setting clear outcomes and goals, you’re more likely to achieve the exact goals you are hiring the videographer to help you with in the first place.
Until next time!