With the complications of today’s economy and the progress of technology, prospective customers are more apt to create a strict budget and diligently shop for all of their services and vendors. When a prospect inquires about my services the first obvious question is the date. What time of year, month, day and time. The spring is still the most popular time with April, May and June the top three, although the cooler, drier months of September and October seem to be closing the gap and finish a close 2nd. These are the “prime time” months that figure to be hi in demand which allow all vendors to usually work at a premium price.
Planning your affair on a Friday or Sunday can considerably save you money in certain areas. For myself as a videographer, traveling on a Friday afternoon to and from a church, followed by a photo session and to the reception hall during rush hour especially during the summer months makes things trickier with time schedules that were planned with these obstacles not in mind. The good news about Friday and Sunday events is that you probably have a slightly better chance of getting the vendors you want opposed to a Saturday.
Once you have your date in the books and all your vendors lined up it is time to start thinking about….times. In my case, what time and where do you want to start your videotaping of your special day. The bride’s house, the park for photos and /or first look, the ceremony location or if your affair is all in one place at the reception hall. All these factors will help determine how much or less your videographer’s fee will be. It is not just the time and travel getting to these locations but for every location there is that much more footage that will need to be screened and decided on before post production even starts. For example if a reception goes an hour overtime it is not just shooting for an extra hour, it is the cost for the extra media stock, in my case SD card that will store your data, the time screening and deciding then fitting that footage into your final product-editing.
If you are hiring a high volume studio that does multiple jobs in a day, do you know exactly who your videographer is and are they the experienced shooter that help produce the demo you saw at the initial sales consultation? You may save money going the 1 stop shopping route but every once in a while, but sometimes that lacks the experience or attention you will get, especially if the person in charge of videography is not up to date or an expert in that field- Don’t Get Burned! Pay the extra money for an experienced videographer with up to date and back up equipment.
Make sure you get to meet with your videographer to discuss exactly what you are expecting along with any unique and out of the ordinary features that you want captured. Weddings thirty+ years ago are not nearly the same nor are the expectations of present day clients when it comes to videography. A pre production meeting in person or via phone is a must for all events no matter how many times your videographer was married at or worked at your location venue. Every event is unique with it’s own set of obstacles that need attention.
Finally, the experience of and success of a videographer can make the difference in setting his/her rate schedule. Education, experience, working resume should all be factored in. Personally I have found that some of the most creative, successful videographers started their career off as hobby without pressure on the job as an assistant, then went on to master their trade by consistently attending seminars and training sessions to educate them in style and creativity. I like to think that I have both education and some natural God given ability under my belt and also realize that I need to prove it each and every time that I am hired to cover an event.