You already know that online video is an important part of your marketing strategy. As it stands, over half of marketing executives agree they would spend budget in the next year on the popular medium, and brand-sponsored video content has surged 44% in views between 2012-2013. However, as an increasing number of brands want video, many marketers don’t know where to start.

Even for savvy marketers, it isn’t necessarily easy to seek out a video production company that’s exactly right for you or your brand, and if you haven’t worked with a third-party on video before you might be wondering what it’s like. So, here are some things to consider when you’re ready to make a video:

1. Understand the Purpose of your video

PurposeThe best part of working with a video production team is that you can involve them early to develop and build out a creative concept. Knowing exactly why you’re making a video in the first place is a great understanding to bring to the table to allow for a more useful first meeting. Are you looking to introduce a new product or announce a rebrand? Showcase your brand personality? Engage your community in a fresh way? Know the reason you’re making a video and what you want it to actually make your audience do before you even begin throwing out ideas to ensure all parties involved are strategically aligning concept with the overall purpose. The best part of determining “why” first, is that you can always realign if you lose your way in the process.

2. Find the right video production partner

Now that you know why you’re making your video, teaming up with the right video production company can  help you launch your video off the ground and create something that’s exactly what your company needs.

Some of the best video production companies are typically poor marketers of their wares and usually survive via word of mouth. A Google search can be an OK start, but the trust factor is difficult to gauge. So finding a reputable video production company is a very crucial first step. We welcome you to use our Notch Video marketplace to find ranked and rated video production partners.
The internet is awash with video content, but not everything is right for you or your brand. A good starting point? Look for video work that you wish you made. Look for recommendations from companies you admire, and ask those who have partnered with production companies to get a sense of whether they enjoyed the experience with that particular company.

3. Share your vision…

ShareOnce you’ve identified one or more production partners it’s important to state why you’re making this video (you should always return to this point) and if you know them, state your goals. If you can get the production company or agency excited about your project it will help get the creative juices flowing!

It’s great to have some do’s and don’ts in mind to kick off the conversation. This gives a production company a starting point to build from. For example, maybe you know you want to use animations to explain your business but aren’t sure of the best way to go about it. Or perhaps you are eager to do a surprise-and-delight video for your community, but could use some insight on how to make it different and noteworthy.

4.…but be open to ideas

A lot of production agencies have pumped out some amazing content – and they play a significant role in getting initial buy-in from other major brands. That said, they likely have some experience and know-how to share – so be willing to leverage that! Your firm understanding of why you’re making a video must also allow for open-mindedness and creative collaboration.

5. Think outside the box – er, video

Consider how you’re planning to share your video. How can you leverage a production team to amp up this video’s life on social? Perhaps they can cut a quick Instagram video to ensure you’re effectively using multiple platforms, or pull some behind-the-scenes stills to share across your social channels to supplement existing content (thus giving your content a longer shelf life). Brainstorm with your agency what extra content might make a difference and that way they’ll know it’s an expectation to capture these moments and assets.

6. Understand your budget

BudgetThe question of budget is usually the second question you’ll be asked after “when is it due?” It’s crucial to have an idea of what you want to/can spend on a video production and let your production team show you what a project within that budget could look like.

For example, here’s a look at the different budget ranges we’ve worked within and what those final pieces looked like. This levels expectations for both parties and cuts down on the back and forth in the initial stages.

As with anything, getting started is often the hardest part – but once you take that initial step toward outsourcing your video production work, hopefully these six tips help make the process as seamless as possible. Happy filming!

Leah Ruehlicke