Planning Is Key To Paying For Video

Scott Davis Chief Growth Officer Prophet (client)

Scott Davis
Chief Growth Officer
Prophet (client)

BrandSmart is one of my favorite marketing events every year. The Chicago chapter of the American Marketing Association brings in some real heavyweights to talk about their branding success stories, and it’s a day that inspires all sorts of ideas. However, my BrandSmart 2015 takeaway is a little different.

As a ChicagoAMA sponsor, I get to attend and take in everything the speakers have to offer just like everyone attending. Not surprising, many of my past takeaways have centered on how brands are using video. This year was a little different though.

Conversation Starter

My biggest takeaway came from a conversation I had with ChicagoAMA board member, Tom Jacobs. Tom will be the board president next year, and he runs the Jacobs Agency in Chicago. We were talking about how video has exploded over the last few years, and how my job of marketing T60 has changed with it. The conversation included an important message for PR and marketing professionals.

See… when I first started out, the biggest marketing job I had was simply convincing business leaders they should be producing videos. Ten years ago… that was a tough sell as they listened to their dial-up modems. My pitch was that online video was going to grow as internet speeds increase, and you (the business leader) need to be on the ground floor producing videos as this takes place.

In a lot of cases… crickets. Not many people bought it.

Flash forward to now and barely a day goes by without all of us watching some sort of online video.

Hence… my pitch has changed. I no longer have to convince business leaders they should be producing videos. They all want to do it, they just don’t want to pay for them.

Let me rephrase that… they think producing videos will be too expensive.

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The Truth About Video Production Cost

One of my biggest hurdle is helping them understand the value of video. In most cases there’s no need to sped $20-grand on a production.

Our typical video costs about $6,000, and we work hard to ensure that, whatever the price point, we’re delivering a video that’s going to connect with viewers. Something that’s going to provide a great first impression for that business. A video that has the potential to touch several prospects and make them more open to doing business with that company.

Here’s where PR and marketing pros come in. A big reason many of these business leaders don’t produce video is that video is never planned for in their marketing strategy. What I have found is that video tends to be an add-on once the marketing plan is well underway.

In other words, the marketing budget has been spent and now they’re trying to figure out a way to add video. Throw-in the misperception of how much video production costs, and many people just chuck the idea at that point.

Plan When Paying For Video

My message here for PR and marketing pros is that video should be a part of your strategy for businesses from the get-go. If it’s included as part of the plan from the start, the cost doesn’t tend to be as big of an issue. Instead, it’s a line item in the greater marketing budget.

This is key because, again, business leaders typically no longer need to be sold on video. Many of them would love to produce videos for their business, so don’t let it get lost in the shuffle as you’re preparing your marketing strategy pitch.

blog quoteIf you’re putting together a plan and don’t know how much a series of videos will cost, get a few producers to give you a ballpark estimate. We do them all the time and are happy to explain how-to figure out video production cost. That way you can simply incorporate the cost into the budget you’re either given or are proposing.

Videos is no longer a luxury item. It should be a standard part of just about any marketing plan.

–Tony Gnau

Tony Gnau - T60 ProductionsTony Gnau is the Founder and Chief Storytelling Officer at T60 Productions. He’s a three-time Emmy Award-winning journalist, has led T60 Productions to winning 18 Telly Awards for its corporate videos, and is the author of the Amazon #1 Bestseller “Lights, Camera, Impact: storytelling, branding, and production tips for engaging corporate videos.”