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Effectively Planning
for a Video Project

How Real Marketers Plan Video Projects

Before pressing that big, red record button, get your pre-production process down to a tee. Learn how marketers at Act-On plan their video projects.

Should Video Production be
Outsourced or Done In-house?

Paper or plastic? Fries or onion rings? There are a lot of difficult choices we make every day, but for marketers, the big question often comes down to this: in-house or outsourced?

Creating your video strategy is a multi-step process, and how you produce your content should be at the top of your list of things to consider. Building a team in-house can be expensive, but it adds creative control. Outsourcing opens more doors to equipment, but you might end up being one client of many.

Here are a few things to keep in mind when deciding whether you want to build your own video marketing team, or to leave it to the specialists:

Pros and Cons of Going In-house

First thing's first when deciding to build an in-house team is scope: what kind of videos are you looking to produce, and how much are you willing to spend in terms of salary and time. You may have a YouTube superstar working on your marketing team that could easily handle video blog posts and interviews, or you may be sitting on top of a million dollar marketing budget, and in a position to bring on a team that can handle everything from production to motion graphics.

Here’s what you need to consider when building an in-house team:

deeply understand your brand
full creative control
owning your own equipment means it’s always available
ability to set your own timelines
output is tied directly to team size
difficult to provide unbiased view
initial investment in equipment is expensive
salaried members of your team make downtime costly
team size limits production capabilities
may be difficult to find specific skills locally

Building a team in-house definitely allows you to truly shape your video vision, but the overhead costs can be prohibitive if you’re looking to experiment with video rather than dive into a 10-part video series.

Pros and Cons of Using a Production House

The alternative to building your team in-house is to work with an agency you trust to bring your video marketing goals to fruition. There are a ton of agencies out there that can help (we work with a few ourselves) and the results can be fantastic.

Much like building your own team has its ups and downs, working with an agency comes with a set of benefits and constraints. Here’s a few things to keep in mind when you’re looking to outsource:

neutral, unbiased point of view
much larger pool of production equipment
specialized knowledge of motion graphics, video editing, etc.
experience building similar content for similar businesses
easier to predict costs and timing
often more expensive on a per video cost
loss of internal control
competing for time with other clients
more communication needed to finalize details
may take time to find the right agency for your needs

Before you start working with an agency, it’s important to know what to expect, and what you need to prepare on your end. Check out this great post by our friends at Notch Video: 6 tips on working with a video production company.

Do you Have to be Exclusive?

The above criteria may seem daunting, but there’s nothing wrong with building a hybrid video production strategy. Having someone in-house that knows their way around video production, and can hire the right freelancers that will do your brand justice is an excellent way to kick off your marketing efforts. Even companies with a large in-house team leverage video production agencies for specific projects. Why bring in a 3D animator full time if you’re just looking to create one 3D video?

Above all, remember that you can start producing video with nothing more than a smartphone and the video editing software that comes with your computer, or even record screen and webcam videos for free with a tool like Vidyard. So don’t be intimidated by the concept of bringing in new people. Your video marketing is what you make of it, and as long as you have goals attached to your video, and a system in place to measure it, experimentation is always a good thing!

Step-by-Step Video Planning Process

Settle on your own pre-production plan with this step-by-step guide! You’ll learn:

  • to identify specific goals for particular videos,
  • how to map videos to your target audience and their buying stage,
  • tips on brainstorming video ideas and developing concepts,
  • the best ways to ensure your video team is on the same page,
  • and more!

Creative Brief Template

All great video projects start with a well-briefed team. Get everyone on the same page with this easy-to-use creative brief template!

lesson 3

Getting Started with In-house Video Production

Start Lesson