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

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Old October 14th, 2015, 01:06 PM   #16
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Re: Outsourced editing?

There are a lot of wedding videographers here, just google wedding videography New York, New Jersey area. there are swarms of them, mostly newbies that are itching to shoot. The equipment to even shoot 4K and editing suite to boot can be had for under $5K dollars as opposed to linear editing SD with eng 3 chip cams that set you back well over $25k back then. No wonder everyone's in on it. I like to know how much LESS of these characters would be around if equipment costs were as then. Fact is, we old geezers have to deal with the times and as we get older our back and knees take a slow toll on us. That's why I tend to lean on the lazy side. Like a poem I once remember had the line " the old order changeth yielding place to new". I wish luck and prosperity to all who venture out armed with cameras and burning desires to shoot.
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Old October 14th, 2015, 01:56 PM   #17
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Re: Outsourced editing?

Arthur, I'm starting to lean more toward your approach as time goes by. Although only a fraction of my work has been weddings, I've noticed something that applies regarding event videography clients, whether they are corporate clients or wedding clients.

There are basically two big classes. One class wants a full production. Another class is quite content with a simple recording of the event, provided it is a high quality recording.

Each class is further divided into two sub-classes. Low rate clients, and clients willing to pay well for quality work.

I can profit from the full production sub-class that's willing to pay well. A premium price.

The simple recording class can also be profitable, provided you cull out the clients that are too low rate.

Forget the middle. It doesn't exist in my area. There's big budget production. And there's low budget recording. Most decent people who are low budget will pay a decent price for a really good recording. They don't have the funds for an elaborate production job. By adjusting the amount of work and equipment to the budget, I can still turn a decent profit.

Offering a full production without charging a high price is a formula for going out of business. When people don't have a lot to spend, offering them a very high quality simple recording of their event with very minimal editing can be a practical approach in a market that's flooded with cheap and even free video options for the customer.
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Old October 14th, 2015, 04:13 PM   #18
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Re: Outsourced editing?

I think Roger is correct in his analysis of types of wedding clients, but then the question is do you target all, some, or one particular type. To target the high end payers, technically complex shoots and multi operators becomes essential, but then of course up go your overheads, investment and operator costs. At the opposite end of the scale, budgets are low, expectations simpler and therefore investment, overheads and operator costs will be greatly reduced.

Areas vary according to potential client income, but generally the higher the cost of a wedding video the smaller the market will be, but also the fewer companies servicing that market. The lower and lower mid priced market will be the one that has the highest number of potential clients and also the most companies. Many of those companies though will be recent startups, probably inexperienced and often short lived. So from my own point of view, building up a long lasting reliable business, with a credible product servicing the highest volume end of the market makes sense.

I have always been a solo operator, using one camera for at least a couple of decades. I like to work fast and light, but have noticed a change in people's expectations, not jnecessarily for short form or long form, but more for an expectation of a more professional product. To that end, over the last few years I have added voice recorders and multiple cameras, still usually solo and still fast and light but giving the ability to supply a more sophisticated product, although with probably a 30% longer editing time.

Given the fact that certainly in the UK, wedding video to photography is probably in the region of 1:10, I added a joint video and photography package to our offerings and work in a way that still keeps it easy to operate. That has had an interesting knock on effect, as clients tend to book photography well in advance, so we have seen a big increase in bookings 1-2 years ahead. 2017 already has over double the contracted number of weddings compared with the same time last year and all but one are joint package bookings. This means that each one of those weddings is worth considerably more than our video only weddings. As a direct result of the interest in the joint package, we have now added a much higher priced joint package with some easy extras and a totally separate photo only package at the same price as the video only.

This all means that for the first time, we have some clearly priced alternative packages which will enable us to pull in some of the higher paying clients. All the packages are still solo shooter based, which enables Claire and I to take 2 of any combination of packages on any day, although in practice if we only have one booked, we both share the work.

Just to include the original subject of this thread, I would never sub out video or photo editing as I consider my expertise and experience to be a big part of what the client is paying for and subbing would considerably increase my charges to the client.

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Old October 15th, 2015, 01:43 AM   #19
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Re: Outsourced editing?

I don't see anything wrong in subcontracting out. None of us are the very best in everything; for me audio is my weak point. Not that I can't do audio, but there are others better able to restore bad audio if ever captured, to a standard that would not be possible by me. I think if I ever had a major audio catastrophe, I'd consider sub contracting that out.

Aside from that I've pondered but never done, sub contracted a basic edit of the Ceremony and Speeches out. There's the lengthy task of going through footage and selecting the cuts you wish to use, but I feel thats important for me to do this, no matter how arduous and time consuming it is.

In regards to clients, I agree there are high payers and low payers. When it comes to peoples expectations, I find it very difficult to simply group them as high or low. The fact that such expectations have risen is only to be expected. At a recent Wedding the Bride was telling me that she didn't initially consider a video. She had this impression of something cheap and cheerful, a home video style shot with 1 camera. An impression no doubt not helped by the fact that when a Wedding Videographer is ever represented on film or TV, its usually just 1 guy hand holding a mid range camcorder. A far cry from the service many now provide.
However with the internet, such impressions are quickly changing. Quality of Wedding videos have improved leaps and bounds in the last decade and as more and more couples see the results, naturally they are going to expect more.

Last edited by Steve Burkett; October 15th, 2015 at 02:26 AM.
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Old October 15th, 2015, 08:54 AM   #20
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Re: Outsourced editing?

Clients in my opinion expect more because they see more. They see nice well done videos, mostly by videographers that have done an excellent job shooting and editing to present a wonderful demo for them. Many use sliders, monopods, steady cam, etc. It is not your old-fashioned 80's video low res SD video memories anymore. Videographers now create really nice stuff with gear that was to dream for just a decade ago. They create masterpieces, spend lots of money for gear and now are all in competition with each other. One offers more, the other offers to lower the price , yet another not only offers more but also lowers the price.This is business. I totally agree about the categories of client's budget and taste and the high end ones expect high end work for their money. I have a few clients that come to me every year to request a high end coverage. I direct them to another videographer that I know as a friend for years, explaining that he is better suited with gear and personnel to handle high end events. I target clients that are not exactly low rate but on another notch up from the myraid of low priced newcomers and ones who advertise prices in the sub $1000 class. Those low "ballers" as we often refer them, are the ones who clients often go to after noticing how high prices can get for a pro production job. So now the client swings back and forth between high and low and everything in between seeing his/her work and another's hopefully settling on one that does quality work within their budget. Not easy to find but they are there. The majority of videographers here consist of a 2 cameramen charging between $2200 to 3500. This the client expects trailer video. their choice of music score, a few re-edits thrown in, nicely done transitions, in short a well done video. The low end "ballers" on the other hand are those who usually advertise on Craigslist or other free ad sites in the $400 to 1000 range. They usually have full time weekday jobs and this is extra pocket money for them. Consisting of a sole cameraman offering interviews and a short trailer at the end with just basic cut in/out editing.Fine and dandy but the client can't really expect much in expertise and quality creative work. That's fine I have nothing at all against them, in fact I love it when a client comes in saying they wanted to spend more to get something much better than them. "Much better" is subjective but plain to see if that next level of betterness involves professionalism, fast turnaround, eye for detail and years of experience. For that extra step up I charge between $1400 to 1600, well within their budget. I give them easy payment terms, low booking deposit, editing done within a week ( they all like that one), unobtrusive coverage and I stay at the venue until the fat lady sings.
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