Video: What will it cost? Part 2
If you read my previous Blog about the cost of video you probably thought, “Ok, but how much will it cost? What are the numbers?” So here we go, part 2….
Some ground rules for the discussion.
Not all corporate videos are created alike so I will break the discussion down into different categories of video. Additionally I will give a range of costs in US dollars with the core assumption that professional resources (aka people and equipment) are being used and any travel expenses are separate. All videos are no more than about 5 minutes in length.
Keep in mind that if you can get Joe in the Marketing Department that has a video camera and can edit to help for free that does not mean the cost of the video is free. There is an intrinsic value in Joe’s time, expertise and the use of the equipment.
Category 1: A basic talking head video. Example:
The first category is a basic video with just one person talking to the camera. No script, no graphics and little or no editing. Can be done with a cell phone for a cost of $0 but quality could be an issue. At the other end of the range would be a camera crew of 1-2 people to setup a camera with nice lighting, maybe a teleprompter, and an hour or two of editing out the mistakes for a cost of up to $2,000. So, a Category 1 video has a cost range of $0 to $2,000.
Category 2: A basic 1-2 person video with limited graphics. Example:
Add some basic graphics and perhaps a second person to the Category 1 video and you have increased your costs slightly. Now you must do some editing to insert the graphics or do the taping with more elaborate equipment to “switch” in the graphics. If the two people are on camera together then quality sound is an issue that might require 2 microphones and an audio mixer. If the people are taped separately then more editing is required. Cost range $1,500 to $4,000.
Category 3: A basic scripted video with narration, on camera talent and limited graphics. Example:
Category 3 takes the jump into simple scripted videos. Perhaps it is an internal training video or a product overview. You have 3 core costs: script, 2-3 person video crew and editing. There are a lot of variables such as non-professional talent vs. professional actors, professional scriptwriter vs. in-house writer and the numbers of days and locations for taping. Typical cost range $5,000 (non-professional writer and talent) to $25,000 (professional writer and talent).
Category 4: Testimonial or success story. Example:
Category 4 is the basic testimonial or success story. The core expense is the on-location tapings with an experienced video crew that can setup quickly and not be too invasive. Selecting and editing the comments into a cohesive story can be time consuming. Typical cost range $15,000 to $40,000 (remember that travel expenses are not included in the ranges).
Category 5: A complex scripted video with narration, graphics and on camera talent. Example:
Category 5 moves up the scale to create a more engaging or fun video. Perhaps it is a marketing video or something motivational. Costs include: professional scriptwriter, actors, 3-4 person video crew, professional graphics and/or animation and editing. Every component becomes more critical in this type of video and lack of quality in any component can hinder the effectiveness of the video. Typical cost range $30,000 to $70,000.
Category 6: A complex scripted video with an analogy, motion graphics, and complex location video shoots. Example:
Category 6 pulls out the stops to create a visual experience. The script must be more precise and visual. The video crew and type of equipment required is high end. Editing becomes much more expensive to incorporate the graphics. Typical cost range $50,000 and up.
Of course not everything fits into these neat categories but this can help identify a budget and frame the discussion with your video production resources. Good luck….