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Old October 8th, 2006, 06:57 AM   #1
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Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: Melbourne, AUSTRALIA
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Starting a company - best way to promote yourself?

We've just started a videography company in Melbourne, Australia and we're gonna do our first wedding soon.

We already have three weddings booked in (but they're all 'mates-rates' deals and are as far away as late 2007) and we're wondering how best to promote ourselves.

Would you recommend a web site at this early stage?

We've completed one extremely successful job only so far (a high school debutante ball) and have probably secured two more deb balls (again, in 2007) but so far it's all been word of mouth and all the jobs are too far in the future. So we can't progress much more until we secure jobs that are in the near future rather than the distant future.

How did you all go about making those initial steps towards promoting yourselves? We're not strictly a weddings company, we'll do anything.

Thanks for your help,
-- John.
John Hewat is offline   Reply With Quote
Old October 8th, 2006, 02:08 PM   #2
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Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: San Jose, CA
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Wedding Videography Promotion that does not cost a lot

1) put up a website
2) get business cards
3) do some free weddings right away
4) create a network

1. PUT UP A WEBSITE
I would definitely put up a website. I'd at least put up contact info, pricing, samples, and blog. Some people do not like posting prices, however, I'd do it to get the most possible quality inquiries. I'd respond to any inquiries right away and let them know I'm a startup. I'd make the pricing match the fact I'm a startup. Have someone else design the site, unless you happen to be a designer. I'd suggest using http://midphase.com/ for hosting.

2) GET BUSINESS CARDS
Have someone design business cards for you as well. I'd use http://www.overnightprints.com to print them.

3) DO SOME FREE WEDDINGS RIGHT AWAY
Gain more experience and portfolio material by doing free weddings. Find people who will be having a wedding within a month who are not having videography because:
a) They can't afford it
b) They don't see the value of it
Since they were not going to have a video in the first place, if you make a mistake, it's okay since any video is better than no video.
If you do a free wedding for someone who can't afford it and you do well, it'd be a great gift and they will evangelize your services.
If you do a free wedding for someone who doesn't see the value in video, and you do a great job, they will be converted and tell everyone who is not sure they want a video to definitely have one and then refer them to you.

I'd suggest contacting popular wedding coordinators and venues in your area to see if they have clients that will not be having videography within a month. They are usually the first vendors a client hires and if you do a great job, they will keep you in mind for when clients ask if they know any good videographers. A recommendation from someone in the wedding industry carries a lot of weight. You can find popular local coordinators and venues by reading wedding forums such as http://www.theknot.com

4) CREATE A NETWORK
When you do book some free weddings, be sure to connect with the coordinator, photographer, and DJ. They can be your greatest source of referalls and you see most of them at every wedding. When you first see them, be sure to introduce yourself. When you leave, be sure to exchange business cards. Try to complete the wedding highlights video as fast as you can (within 1 week after the wedding if possible). Post the highlights on your website and send a link to your client and the vendors from the event while they are on the "wedding high" still. Link the vendors you love working with on your website. Write a post praising venues or vendors you liked on your blog. Having a blog will keep your site fresh. Some people don't update their sites for months and no one knows if they are still alive. A blog post can be as easy as writing an email. Having blog posts about video is also helpful. It shows you have a passion for video and that you are knowledgable in the field.

As you get better and gain more experience, you can raise prices accordingly.

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Old October 9th, 2006, 05:05 AM   #3
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Location: On the NC Crystal Coast
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Quote:
...Post the highlights on your website...
As a courtesy, if not a legal requirement, you should get the client's ok to post any video of their event, whether the job was done for free or a fee. It could be included in the contract for the event, or as a separate (and signed) agreement.
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