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Shooting non-repeatable events: weddings, recitals, plays, performances...


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Old December 18th, 2006, 10:32 PM   #1
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Wedding video package pricing

We're just starting up a small enterprise to work weddings at the weekends, and are a bit clueless about pricing. I've surmised that for a wedding package containing:
1. Bridal preparation
2. Wedding ceremony
3. Reception
...with a two cam HD shoot that it wouldn't be unreasonable to ask for $1000 or more. Whilst I know there are many factors involved in pricing, I would be interested to hear approximate price ranges of others here (I know this can be a sensitive subject..!).
Thanks
Greg
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Old December 18th, 2006, 11:36 PM   #2
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It's google time

Hi Greg,

You'll want to learn more about wedding videography to make sense out of answers we could give here - there are many variables that would influence the pricing. A good place to start would be to google "wedding videographer san diego" and begin to see various packages offered in your area. And check your local craigslist.org events - some cost consciensious videographers don't have websites. Actually, you should already be carefully studying what successful videographers are doing to please customers in your marketplace. And don't stop after you've seen a price sheet - look at the demo streaming videos, contract T&Cs, links, etc. Read books with a business focus as the "Wedding Video Handbook" and "The Business of Wedding & Special Event Videography". If you're serious about this as a profession, I recommend you join the Wedding Event Videographer Association (WEVA), your local wedding videographer chapter (Professional Videographers Association San Diego (www.pvasd.org), etc. BTW - your PVASD group website mentions wedding videos run from $500 to $5,000. Again, carefully study what successful pros are doing in your area - see their webpages by looking at PVASD chapter's links here: www.pvasd.org/memberlist.shtml As a rookie, you'll get a tremendous value by joining their group.

Also, start listening to the last 2 years worth of Al and Kathy's audio/podcasts at wedvidtalk.com (free) - and paying for WEVA membership will provide you access to their forums and audio/videocasts, etc.

Good luck, Michael
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Old December 19th, 2006, 01:04 AM   #3
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Michael, thanks very much for that useful reply and list of resources. Looks like I have a deal more research to do...
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Old December 19th, 2006, 01:13 PM   #4
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Greg,

Careful where you place your money, sometimes the return isn't worth the investment. There's a lot of free resources available to you that deliver the same, if not better, information.

Pricing is full of factors as it depends on your skill level, market, etc. I guess at the end of the day if your making the profit you need then the price is right, regardless of how high or low the price is.

Ben
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Old December 19th, 2006, 01:40 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Greg Quinn
We're just starting up a small enterprise to work weddings at the weekends, and are a bit clueless about pricing. I've surmised that for a wedding package containing:
1. Bridal preparation
2. Wedding ceremony
3. Reception
...with a two cam HD shoot that it wouldn't be unreasonable to ask for $1000 or more. Whilst I know there are many factors involved in pricing, I would be interested to hear approximate price ranges of others here (I know this can be a sensitive subject..!).
Thanks
Greg
I heard a good bit of business advice the other day: "You don't want to be the cheapest and you don't want to be the most expensive". See what other videographers are charging. View a few sites and a bridal show (if available). You should start off doing SD (in my opinion) and work your way up to HD if the demand presents itself (i.e. when HD DVD/Blu-Ray players prices drop).
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Old December 20th, 2006, 01:48 PM   #6
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Old December 20th, 2006, 02:33 PM   #7
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Pricing Models

Interesting, Shelden's thought "You don't want to be the cheapest and you don't want to be the most expensive" also pertain to the *RANGE* of prices almost all wedding videographers use to present prices to customers. The strategy is to have a basic, entry-level, no frills service - perhaps only shooting the ceremony, doing a quickie edit and giving a VHS tape to the customer. The mid-range offering is akin to Greg's offering (although others wouldn't provide HD and would charge more than $1,000). And the high-end offering would have several camera operators, lots of footage before and during the wedding, editing, music, projector montage show at the reception, leather-bound embossed cases with a handful of DVDs, etc, etc.

The idea is to steer most customers to the middle package - a marketing concept that we all see in day to day life. So the same is true in offering wedding videography. Once you offer some "at cost" or freebie weddings to get your feet wet, follow Shelden's advice and gravitate your offering among your peers. Of course, if you're truly doing something different from the rest of the pack and have a different price, hopefully your clients will agree with your differentiation and buy from you. Of course the "artist" videographers confuse their work with business...

And I double Sheldon's thoughts that it's probably best not to begin in HD. It's so easy for wedding videographers to focus only on the tip of the iceberg. With all the uncharted areas of HD, issues associated with lighting, extra camerawork considerations, new issues in editing, and even factors as clients/family/frinds that won't WANT that much detail (after all, they aren't Hollywood models), the jury is still out on wedding HD. Remember, it takes more than an expensive paintbrush to make a rembrandt! But when you're ready to appeal to the high-end market and have mastered the millions of factors to become a top videographer and have customers that insist on HD (and have the $$$), by all means - go for it.

Regards, Michael
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