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Wedding / Event Videography Techniques
Shooting non-repeatable events: weddings, recitals, plays, performances...

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Old May 20th, 2010, 11:44 AM   #16
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Join Date: Sep 2004
Location: arlington, texas
Posts: 420
Just to add to the conversation here...

Your branding will add an immense amount of value. If you have a really strong brand, you should charge for it. There is a perceived value in branding that most small businesses don't think about. If your branding and your videos look the same as everyone else in your market (local, national, or global), then you might be on the track to price wars with competition. At this point you will have to suffer quality over quantity to make the amount of money it takes to survive. Charge more, take less gigs, and have a more qualitative product... or charge less, take more gigs, and have a more quantitative product (depending on your business model). People will argue that a Mercedes is better than a Ford because of XYZ and vice versa... however, Mercedes has great branding and a perceived value that is much higher than the Ford... most people in the world typically think that "you get what you pay for". There is a lot of psychology that goes into branding/marketing... hire someone to help you if you don't really know how to approach this in an effective way. If you only plan on doing this as a hobby/side gig, you might make more money shooting for another company (assuming your intent is to make a profit).

The quality of your work and creativeness is very important, but learning how to "run" a business is what will set you apart from the other guys. I wish the creative part was the only thing that would set you apart, but it doesn't (it sure helps though). Just as Travis said, there is a lot that goes into pricing structure and it's not just your cost + a little extra for profit to get by, figure out your monthly costs first (your expenses to live and run a business)... that includes marketing, research, software, lease, driving, clothes, etc... then figure out how many hours/minutes you spend doing ANYTHING for your business (editing, driving, marketing, research, client meeting, shooting, etc...). Do the math between your hour worked for your business vs. the costs that are associated with your life/business and that should be the base you need to make to survive. Another way to figure out rates... If you need to make $75k a year and you only want to work 24 weddings a year, you need to make at least $3k per gig (Taxes and 401k are included in the $75k). Every minute is money lost or earned. The goal of all businesses is to make a profit, and keep that profit growing every year.

I definitely suggest you start reading the IN[FOCUS] blog (read the archives too) and check out for video coaching and resources.

There is not just one way to "skin a cat", so definitely listen to what everyone has to say before you leap into anything head first.

Good luck!
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