on January 20, 2015 Opinion

Why Production Value is Worth Paying For

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From law firms to film studios, in an age where "every company is a media company," utilizing the ability to create, share, and promote video content online to attract potential partners and/or customers is essential. Video content is the most effective way to tell your company’s story. These figures from Digital Sherpa show just how important videos are for a business today:

  • Videos Increase a Viewer’s Understanding Of Your Product Or Service by 74%

  • An Introductory Company Email That Includes A Video Receives An Increased Click-Through Rate of 96%

  • 50% Of Users Watch Business-Related Videos On YouTube Once A Week

  • 80% Of Your Online Visitors Will Watch A Video, While Only 20% Will Actually Read Content In Its Entirety 

  • 45% Of Viewers Will Stop Watching A Video After 1 Minute & 60% Will Have Stopped By the 2 Minute Mark

As you can see, online videos are vital to a company’s performance. HubSpot, the marketing software company that went public late last year, created HubSpot Academy, where they film training videos to teach marketers how to use their software to promote their business. The videos have perfect picture, sound, and graphics. If it wasn’t for HubSpot Academy, HubSpot would have never gotten to over 10 thousand customers, but because HubSpot put time, effort, and money into these tutorial videos, people continue to use their software. 

But what about the smaller companies? Most small businesses struggle to quantify the value of marketing videos or ads. They see the need for content but try to save costs—and they often choose to save on staffing. They end up hiring the person who will work for the least, in the hopes of landing a preditor (producer-editor in one,) or a 22-22-22 employee (a 22 year old working 22 hours a day making 22K a year.) Subsequently, they end up with poor quality content. 

Here’s the kicker: In order to create high-quality video content, you’re going to have to spend money. Purchasing the proper equipment is essential to all aspects of video production, but more importantly, hire the right team members, and enough of the right team members. Companies want good video content, but struggle to justify the expense. 

And here’s what happens... 

Let’s check out some real job listings in film production I found online: 



What’s wrong with this listing?

Knowledge about sound/audio equipment… great! I just graduated from film school with a major in audio technology! Wait… I have to "own or have access to” the equipment? Isn’t that expensive? So I have to work part-time, unpaid, film a web series for four months, pay for transportation, AND somehow manage to buy and bring sound/audio equipment to produce video content that I probably won’t even get the credit for? 



What’s wrong with this listing?

This company is looking for a producer/writer/director.  Sound awesome. That’s the dream of so many film students, to be able to write, direct, AND produce a film, right? Wrong. Everything you film will be dictated by the company, and owned by the company. The salary for this listing is 30K a year! That’s almost three grand a month!  But wait—it gets better—not only do you have to produce the film from start to finish, you have to communicate and distribute the content to clients, AND be in charge of the finances as well! Three jobs for the price of one! Yeah—no. 

And of course, my favorite…


Let’s see how many jobs can be created from this one post. 

  1. Producer (Pre and Post)

  2. Editor

  3. Writer

  4. PR person

  5. Reporter?

  6. Distributor

  7. Marketer 

“Does this sound like you?” No, this doesn’t sound like me. This doesn’t sound like anyone. Kevin Bacon couldn’t even fill this many roles. The best part of this job is that they don’t even tell you how much—or even if—you get paid. No pay for seven jobs in one? Any catering companies hiring? 

Hire an agency, hire freelancers, save money on unnecessary tech costs or office snacks, but don’t save money on talent. Remember: You get what you pay for. Let your competition shoot their videos on their iPhone. It’s time to make better content. It’s worth the investment.

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Nick Shanman

Intern at large. Movie buff.