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Old August 3rd, 2011, 02:36 AM   #16
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Re: Your actions when bride cut filming in half?

Here what happened at the wedding....
At the end of the day I filmed for 9hrs, Yes! not for 8hrs originally booked and then reduced to 4, but 9! I did made some discount for them, but at the end we both were happy....)
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Old August 3rd, 2011, 03:49 PM   #17
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Re: Your actions when bride cut filming in half?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Edgar Vasiluk View Post
Here what happened at the wedding....
At the end of the day I filmed for 9hrs, Yes! not for 8hrs originally booked and then reduced to 4, but 9! I did made some discount for them, but at the end we both were happy....)
That's wonderful Edgar. Very often, I find myself staying longer and doing more for the couple than I originally agreed to. It gives me a great feeling to know I've gone over and above the expectations, and that perhaps I've made their big day even better. And when you enjoy doing it anyhow, it's not even work.
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Old August 4th, 2011, 06:15 AM   #18
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Re: Your actions when bride cut filming in half?

This will be the reality: She cut your pay in half but when you arrive, you'll see a $10,000 dress, expensive flowers, expensive limos, Surf n Turf served to the guests, a desert menu that is out of this world, etc etc. Why do you think she is out of money?
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Old August 4th, 2011, 06:32 AM   #19
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Re: Your actions when bride cut filming in half?

You won't find out the truth...but that wedding was quite "posh". Reality is that they think photo is more important then video, and that's what most couples think...(
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Old August 4th, 2011, 06:36 AM   #20
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Re: Your actions when bride cut filming in half?

I guess that if you're really serious about consistently making a big money from weddings you go into one of these businesses: dressmaking, cake-making, limo hire or become a minister, or one of the many other services that bride's will happily pay for before they book or drop a video. It was ever thus and I guess will be.
Nice one Edgar, you did work you were happy to do, earned from it and made a bride happy, isn't that what passionate video making is all about. I think that we sometimes loose site of that once the idea of making 'big money' gets involved.
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Old August 4th, 2011, 06:44 AM   #21
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Re: Your actions when bride cut filming in half?

I don't do weddings, but when faced with a budget cut, I put the entire decision in the clients hands, asking them to make the decision on what to cut. So I'd simply have asked what they consider most important - as in "Would you prefer me to shoot the getting ready and the wedding itself, or the wedding and the reception?" Then they make the choice, and you've remained friendly, helpful and responsive.

I've got a current project on hold, while they decide if they really need to include both factories? I've suggested doing a little more at the main site and ignoring the extra days shooting at factory two - this does mean the storyboard has to be savaged, but it can be done. Now the company are fighting internally about it, and I can just sit back and wait. Doing two shooting days at the price of one is NOT on the agenda. I'm a service industry, and not a charity. The freelance people working for me want paying per half or full day. Although I could use a few favours up and do more work myself, why would want to? Drop your price once and you have to do it again, and again and .......

I think the wedding industry must be the same. Clients talk, and always get referrals. Do you want to be known as good and worth the money, or just cheap? (or worse, some kind of 'do a deal' trader)
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Old August 4th, 2011, 09:22 AM   #22
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Re: Your actions when bride cut filming in half?

Hi Paul, I agree that the two business models are different.

With commercial work for businesses there is usually an assigned budget (even though it may be modified) whereas weddings tend to work to a notional budget that is very elastic and variable. I don't think that many couples really sit down and allocate specific amounts, rather they shift and shape there budget in the light of what they've spent and what they've got left.

With commercial work there is a realistic expectation by the client of what will be involved and the cost, on the other hand
with weddings the couples usually have no idea what is involved and base their expectation of cost by looking at websites, asking friends what they paid or ringing around, and anyone who has done that will know that price vary to such an extent that most couples cannot accurately know what to expect to pay until they make some deeper enquiries.

With commercial clients there is a realistic possibility of developing an ongoing relationship with repeat work, with weddings the best that can be expected is that they pass your name on to friends (then hope that you're not already booked on the date and have to pass it away).

Commercial jobs may require additional equipment or personnel be brought it at additional cost, most business would understand that and expect to pay for it, wedding clients just want it filmed, they're not too concerned with the nuts and bolts of how it will be achieve.

Most people doing weddings are 'one-man-bands' or work with a spouse or friend (I know that there are exceptions), but I think Edgar is a solo shooter. As such a wedding day feeds into a substantial part of the following weeks' work (and income). To turn away even a reduced amount of recording is throwing away all of that income.

My final comment is that commercial work tends to be a fairly straight forward commercial transaction based on achieving a targeted goal in an efficient way, whereas, on the whole, there is a lot more personality, and dare I say artistry invested in wedding work and as Edgar demonstrated even though he had negotiated a smaller production for the reduced fee, his own ambition and pride in his work caused him to go over and above the expectations, I don't think that many would be so obliging, or be expected to, for a commercial company project.

Last edited by George Kilroy; August 4th, 2011 at 11:01 AM.
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Old August 4th, 2011, 09:40 AM   #23
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Re: Your actions when bride cut filming in half?

Well said George. Wedding videography is unlike any other form of video production -- a whole different beast.
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Old August 4th, 2011, 11:10 AM   #24
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Re: Your actions when bride cut filming in half?

I think as an individual or company, you must have a long contract with terms and conditions. In our contract it clearly states, that any reduction in hours or date change is subject to 8 months prior notice and as far as cancelation, once the contract is signed , it's 10 months. The whole argument to that is that we could have booked another date which happens and since we turned them around we need to partially make up for that.

And as Michael says, no one is out of money. They just like to try to pay you less and frankly speaking there is nothing going wrong with going above and beyond for couple but if you start sticking around for an extra hour or two one then the word will spread. Your time is valuable, get paid for it. I understand loving what you do and that's true but if this is your full time business, you should have an overtime rate. We always tell our couples during booking to get extra hours as it will cost you half the rate it will once the contract is signed and this year we have 50% of our clients go over at least 2 hours.

So I guess the bottomline, you are not worthless. Make people pay you, you are not a slave but a professional
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Old August 4th, 2011, 11:29 AM   #25
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Re: Your actions when bride cut filming in half?

I guess I'm a special case among most of the forum members here. Wedding videography isn't my full-time business; it's done on the side from my regular 50-hour-a-week career. I don't incur any debt from doing it, and I love being paid for something I really enjoy doing.

I also believe that people are indeed out of money at this point, in general. The majority of what people spend on weddings is on credit -- money they don't have. Being that the economy is in the state it's in right now, I'd much rather people not hire a videographer, thus not spend money they don't have, than to go deeper into debt.

I am indeed a professional, and not a "slave." I make good money doing this, but also love to serve others with what I'm able to do.
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Old August 4th, 2011, 11:51 AM   #26
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Re: Your actions when bride cut filming in half?

Corey,
I wasn't suggesting that you take advantage of people's debt. The point I was trying to make is if anyone for that matter does stuff for discount and less money or no money, people will expect more and those are the people that will give you hard time.

I agree with economy and all but we as professionals including yourself have a responsibility to make video production a valuable service. In the very beginning about 4 years ago few weddings we did, it seemed people didn't have money but when you go to reception and what else they booked, they were over 100,000$ wedding. Yes in these tough times it's wrong to spend that much but at the same time if people have the money or credit to spend so much on everything and when it comes to us they have no or little money left, that's what we need to change.
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Old August 4th, 2011, 12:11 PM   #27
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Re: Your actions when bride cut filming in half?

Hi Jawad.
It's all very well have such terms and conditions but the situation that Edgar was put in was with only a couple of days notice, and in general terms that was the situation I was addressing.

What would be your action be in that circumstance?

As I see it if they contact you with just days to go and say they haven't got the money to pay you have a few options. Stand firm on your contract and say there is no get-out and if they break the contract you will pursue them for the balance owed, or accept their situation and negotiate a new deal as Edgar did?
Not necessarily the one they are asking for, maybe delayed editing and extended payment terms .

As I see it with option one you spend time and possibly legal costs and end up with a distressed and angry couple who will go out of their way to blacken your name but with the second you'll have a couple who will be very grateful and happy to tell their friends how helpful you have been. If those referrals arrive with expectations of a cheaper deal at least it will be before the booking and you can either convince them of your full worth or decline the booking or ask for full payment before the wedding. I don't think many people make a booking months ahead of time thinking 'we'll beat him down days before the wedding'.

Unlike Cory, weddings contribute 50-60% of my business income, video production is my self-employed job, but I have a similar ethic as Cory I don't want to be party to people getting into deep financial trouble. Anyone who contacts me before the day and negotiates a new deal is fine, I don't encourage it or like it, but I'm a realist. I'd much rather that than they tell me afterwards when I have done the work for them. I take half payment as a booking fee which they loose to me if they pull out so it's to their benefit to negotiate something for that money and I really don't want to take money from someone with no return. Okay so it may mean that I turned down the possibility of another wedding but that's the nature of the business. If this was a regular occurrence, or I discovered that there's a website which lists those videographers who are a soft touch and that was where they were getting the idea from I may revise my position.

Having read your second post I'll just add that if I did turn up at the wedding on a smaller deal and saw that I was the only service they'd cut then they would only get a bear minimum production with staying over and above. In the end it would be a matter of how I felt there attitude was.
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Old August 4th, 2011, 12:13 PM   #28
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Re: Your actions when bride cut filming in half?

Jawad,

I know what you're saying. You're right -- we should all be working to make video a more highly-valued commodity.

I think a lot of the problem is that unlike a lot of the other things couples spend their money on for their weddings, video doesn't really add to their wedding party/guests' enjoyment of the celebration (neither does photography). The things like food, drinks, flowers, decorations, DJ's, bands, limos, etc., all bring more enjoyment to the day itself.

Video and photography generally don't contribute at all to the celebration (in a lot of cases they can hinder the enjoyment). They are of value to the couple only, and maybe their immediate family and some friends. The rest of the people at the wedding couldn't care less about whether or not there's a video.

I think a lot of couples see it as a luxury item, which it is to a certain extent. Convincing them otherwise is part of our job.
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Old August 4th, 2011, 12:23 PM   #29
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Re: Your actions when bride cut filming in half?

In my long experience this sort of situation is quite rare, I'd be interested to know how many people really do have this sort of thing happen to them on any sort of regular basis. We may be getting the whole thing out of proportion.

I've just totted up and to the best of my recollection in over twenty years I had about five cancellations, and a couple of postponements and if I remember correctly I was able to re-book all but two.
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Old August 4th, 2011, 01:17 PM   #30
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Re: Your actions when bride cut filming in half?

George,
We have had 3 cancelations and 1 postponed. But I was referring to bride calling and saying now I need you for four hours last minute. That's just trying to pull out after her budget which went up and I am sure video wasn't the only service she contacted and the fact it ended up 9 hours someone must have given her discount.
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