One way to know whether it’s time to bring in the professionals regarding video production work is to ask yourself a few simple questions:
- Who is our target audience?
- What are we trying to accomplish with the video?
- Where will the video be posted?
- Do we have the skill set and resources to produce a video that will not diminish our brand due to poor quality?
Answering just a few of these basic questions will help in deciding the best path to take.
Why Should We Hire A Video Production Company For Something We May Be Able To Do Ourselves?
That’s a good question. If your company has a staff that is capable of producing quality content, then you may be able to do it in-house and invest the resources saved into other important growth expenses. However, let us offer some important considerations that we feel should be made prior to uploading any content that will represent your company’s image and brand.
There are some situations where video shot on a mobile phone works just fine, sometimes even as accommodating as a professional production, depending on the desired outcome. An example might be a vlog type or quick upload video where there is an implicit understanding by the viewer that this is not meant to be a professional video presentation. Companies should take advantage of this opportunity whenever available. However, outside of this and a few other scenarios, presenting anything other than quality video content may not be acceptable to your viewing audience.
Does It Really Take Better Equipment To Produce Better Videos?
Quality video production uses high quality, high-resolution cameras and lenses. These cameras and lenses allow for a wider array of filming options that allow the user to dial in shutter speeds, frame rates, shooting styles, ISO and a host of other stylized preferences. While mobile phone cameras have come a long way in recent years, they are very limited when it comes to certain lighting environments, as well as other needed camera setting variables. That said, there are some very good mobile apps that will help a video shooter get the most our of their mobile phone for videography, including our favorite, Filmec Pro. This software allows the camera sensor and lens to digitally mimic that of a professional grade camera, and having the ability to make the most of the onboard equipment of your mobile phone could improve this type of filming dramatically, that is, if the person recording on the mobile phone has a basic understanding of camera settings.
Additionally, many people underestimate the importance of lighting when it comes to video production. While there are many times when natural lighting such as the sun, an overcast sky or shade might help a creator capture the perfect emotion for a scene, many times professional lighting will be needed to accomplish the objective. Whole courses are taught on just this aspect alone and correct lighting can often take years to master. I remember reading about a scene from the movie Casablanca where the main character, Rick, goes up the stairs and opens a safe. The lighting and shadows were all carefully choreographed, and the scene was amazing, but many people probably overlook the amount of work that went into it, due to its seeming simplicity.
A third, and arguably, one of the most important areas of video production is sound. Many people can testify to enjoying the viewing of a well-produced video, aesthetics-wise, but having trouble consuming the content due to poor audio. Quality audio can often require at least a modicum amount of understanding and training in sound equipment and design. Choosing the right microphone for the filming environment (on-board camera mic, external camera mic, lapel mic, boom mic, etc.) is an important consideration, without getting into the more technical specifications of each microphone type. Additionally, most often, in a more professional production, a device is needed to set and monitor audio levels, as well as to capture the audio digitally.
Hiring A Video Production Company And Post-Production
Continuing on the subject of audio, the sound captured on the audio device will need to be uploaded into an audio or video software and possibly further enhanced with the software and additional plugins such as: channel EQ, a delimiter or noise cancellation, or other third-party plugins just to name a few.
Post-production also includes the editing process, where the footage that has been shot is “produced” for final delivery. This process is most often handled by video production software like Final Cut Pro X, Adobe Premier Pro or Davinci Resolve, to name some of the most popular. The video, still image photography/graphics and audio files are are all imported into the software and edited to create the final product. Included in this process is: creating events and projects, selecting clips, cuts, transitions, color correction, color grading, animation, adding titles, choosing music, adding sound-effects and so on. Once edited, a specified output is selected and the footage is uploaded for distribution. (Click here to view our portfolio.)
We hope this information helps anyone who may be trying to decide whether or not to hire a video production company or rather, to self-produce videos that are needed in branding and social marketing in-house. This article is not meant to be exhaustive in nature, however, we have tried here to cover some of the most important areas for consideration. For the record, this article is in no way an attempt to overwhelm or frighten anyone or any company who may try to take on the role of video production themselves. However, the decision as to whether to hire a professional videography company comes down to a person’s or company’s needs, the available personal or in-house resource skillset, and the desired or expected outcome. With that in mind, results will surely vary depending on all these variables.