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Old April 12th, 2013, 08:21 AM   #16
Inner Circle
Join Date: Dec 2004
Location: Arlington, TX
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Re: How much to charge to film 40 interviews?

Craig, I can not say I disagree. You always offer a valid point for keep in business. But, just to play devil's advocate, in Santos' case, what if the client looks at the $20,000 quote and says "we only have a budget of $2,000" ?

Would you say "I can only do 4 interviews at that price" or I can use my phone without additional lighting and make the interviews 10 min in length".

Sounds over the top but where do you draw the line of "dumbing down" your services? Because in my view, the more we compromise our product, the more it looks like the amatuer work at the payscale so many expect - low.
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Old April 12th, 2013, 08:45 AM   #17
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Location: Brooklyn, NY, USA
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Re: How much to charge to film 40 interviews?

Your line is drawn based on your business model.

Where I hold my ground is the number of hours in a week I must book relative to the number of dollars I must make in those hours. Cutting the client's cost usually has to be commensurate with cutting my own costs.

You can cut total shoot hours but decreasing the number of shoot days (hours) by increasing the number of interviews at each shoot.

If you can't meet your business model either there's an issue with the model or there's an issue with the job. If the client said they only had a budget of $2000, then the issue is with the job. You give the client the option to reorganize things. If they can't, you walk away.

Saying you can do 4 interviews at that price is a reasonable response. Shooting with my phone wouldn't save me any money. The client has the opportunity to say yes to the 4 interviews and measure the results and decide if they want to invest further... or they may walk away. But that's no lose.
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Old April 13th, 2013, 09:47 PM   #18
Join Date: Aug 2006
Location: San Diego, CA
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Re: How much to charge to film 40 interviews?

I don't think I could tell a client - no matter how deep the pockets - that it would cost $84k to shoot 40 interviews.

I agree with those saying you have to be a little flexible. In this scenario, I'd give options. My lowest rate is a half-day rate. $500, portal-to-portal. So by the time I arrive, set up, account for break down and travel time, we might have 3-4 hours in a half day. We could shoot one interview, move the setup, shoot another interview, break down and go home. They would all look nice, and all look different. This, in the $20k ballpark. We could do full days, same deal, and gain a couple of extra hours (less travel time overall). At the same pace, probably 6-8 in a day. Dayrate is $900, so 6 days... $5400. Now we're talking. Honestly, this is where I'm trying to get to - a figure that sounds reasonable and achieves the client's goals.

Now... when the client says...I only have $2k... okay. Line them up outside the conference room, I will spend an hour or so on the first day putting together a nice interview set, complete with ficus tree, and we will rattle through them - 15 or 20 minutes at a time. 20 the first day, 20 the second. BTW, here is $200 back - the two day shoot will only cost you $1800.

Where does it end? I don't know. I have said "no, thanks" before. But the line I echo all the time is that I don't think you need a lot of money to be entitled to use video. If they only had $500, perhaps I would charge $150 to pick out a camera for them and do a half-hour training on the phone - leaving them $350 for a camera. What I have learned is that sometimes Microsoft has $20k to do a 3 minute video, and sometimes Ed's Auto Upholstery has $500. They can't all be Microsoft. You gotta take what you can get. The only thing you need to be sure of is that you are doing 1/40th the work for $500 as you are for $20k.
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